Influencer Marketing For Ecommerce Brands

Influencer marketing, promo codes and referral links

Despite almost everyone on Instagram trying to become an influencer, influencer marketing is facing challenges. Trust in influencer posts on social media is declining sharply, with only 4% of people believing what they say.

But we don’t discourage you to use influencer marketing efforts in your marketing mix. It makes perfect sense for consumer brands because of it helps you reach wider target markets and show off your product in the context of a certain lifestyle. It definitely increases brand awareness.

We only remind you to do performance tracking of influencer marketing campaigns closely in order to have your budget under control and generating the results you want.

So let’s go over the basics of influencer marketing strategy from your point of view and how you can stay on top of it.

Promo codes vs referral links

Promo codes are SpringSale, Alicia30OFF, SurferBoy15 and so on. You probably give them to influencers as a unique promo code for their followers to use at checkout.

Promo codes can be shared across channels and mediums – in Instagram captions, as overlays on pictures/ videos/ stories, offline on printouts or simply as word-of-mouth. They are like a password customers have to use at a certain point when shopping and are not associated with a particular channel.

The most important thing about promo codes is that they show conversions – when you look at a promo code performance in your analytics, it shows how many conversions you got with this code. But you can’t see what traffic you got associated with it.

Referral links, on the other hand, are the dedicated URLs with added parameters at the end your influencers share as part of a referral marketing program.

Here’s more info on how to add UTM parameters to your URLs. If you don’t want to generate UTM tags by hand, Metrilo’s Campaign Manager in the Marketing Performance tab can do that for any influencer you create.

Referral links are used in sponsored content and video descriptions to drive traffic through. One of the best affiliate program database websites is Kontely where you can explore various affiliate programs and networks.

It is much more convenient to use referral links because they directly get people to the target landing page and are tracked automatically by most analytics softwares so you can easily see the traffic and revenue they bring.

Influencers can use both promo codes and referral links depending on the platform rules, but using them together increases your chances of getting clicks and sales.

Some people will choose to go to your site directly in type in the code while others will prefer to click on the link.

Influencer marketing tracking of promo codes and referral links

Results are all that matters in our game so watch closely how your influencers perform and keep only the good ones.

Influencer marketing ROI

Looking at conversions by promo code is great. You’ll see what type of deals work well and which influencers convert for you. Influencer marketing tracking gives more info for decision making so we recommend analyzing referral links more carefully.

Customer Retention in the long run

Apart from the momentary impact of influencers on your sales, you should look at how they help you in the long run. Sometimes the effects of influencers on customer loyalty are surprising.

Maybe one influencer gets you good immediate sales but none of these customers returns to shop again. And maybe others attract fewer but more engaged customers who place many repeat orders. While purchasing likes might be frowned upon, buying real Instagram likes can increase engagement, grow your following, and bring exposure to your account. However, it’s important to avoid using services that use fake or low-quality profiles, as this can harm your reputation.

That’s worth exploring because influencers with good retention results actually make a few sales on each conversion, meaning you get an ROI times higher for the same money.

Metrilo does monitor customer retention by coupons and campaigns over time.

How to use Metrilo for influencer marketing tracking

If you already use Metrilo, you can monitor influencer results and make budgeting decisions based on the data.

Individual influencer results

If you want to use a dedicated referral link for each influencer, you can track the traffic and conversions coming through that link as follows:

  1. Go to the Marketing Performance tab.
  2. Then, go to Manage campaigns. 
  3. Choose Create an influencer. 
  4. Name the influencer and you’ll get a referral link generated (that saves you the work on inputting UTM tags). This is the link the influencer has to use to get the results properly attributed.
  5. If influencer promo codes will be used, add them at this step. Either type them in or upload a CSV. 
  6. Save and close. Now all traffic and sales from this link and coupons will be attributed to this influencer.
  7. To see results, filter the main view in the tab by Campaigns (list by names) or by Referrals (list by referring websites).Referral View
  8. If you want to see results by the different coupons attributed to this influencer, click on the Analyze revenue right of the metrics. This will open a Revenue breakdown. Filter it by Coupons. Voila!Coupon Breakdown

Influencer campaign results

If you want to track a whole campaign that features many influencers and/or lots of coupon codes, we got you covered, too:

  1. Go to the Marketing Performance tab.
  2. Then, go to Manage campaigns.
  3. Choose Create a campaign.
  4. Continue as above, naming the campaign appropriately to find it easily, e.g. SpringBreak.
  5. You get one ref link associated with the campaign, but you can give out unique coupon codes to compare results within the campaign. Enter the codes or upload them here.
  6. Save and close. Filter the main view by Campaigns and then drill down using the Analyze revenue button. This pulls Revenue breakdown – select to compare by coupons to see the final comparison among coupons within the campaign.

Traffic and conversions by coupon

If you want to simply compare different types of coupons across influencers, here’s how to do it:

  1. Go to Revenue Breakdown. It’s showing revenue by default (the other option is Visitors).
  2. Choose Breakdown revenue by Coupons.

This way, you get each coupon’s impact on sales. It’s useful when you have unique coupons for each influencer or combine influencer and channels, e.g. MarinaInsta, MarinaFB.

Retention by campaigns and coupons

And finally, if you wish to track how influencers impact your sales over the long term, use Metrilo’s Retention analysis.

There, you see customers clustered in cohorts by campaign or coupon associated with their first order, and how the cohorts behave over time – how much they buy, when they place their next orders, etc.

Cohorts By Campaign

This way you’ll see which influencers bring customers who become loyals and shop a lot, and which influencers bring only one-time buyers. For customer-centric brands concerned with their image and appeal, finding the right fit with influencers is important so long-term effects should be taken into account, too.

Read more about cohort analysis and customer loyalty


About the author

With experience in FMCG and marketing, Dimira writes to help the brands of tomorrow succeed and believes passion is a key ingredient in any business.

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