3 lessons from our Manchester Arndale influencer campaign

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Earlier this year, Manchester Arndale briefed us to deliver a campaign that positioned the shopping centre as not just a retail destination; but an integral part of Manchester life and individuality. We wanted content that would inspire and build a positive brand perception, while growing the Arndale’s presence on social channels.

Together with influencer agency Social Chain we decided to harness the power of Influential Manchester shoppers and feature them on the Arndale’s website via social media. We collaborated with 6 micro influencers, specially chosen to provide us with content that would engage and resonate with our target audience.

Over the course of 20 posts released over Instagram and other social media we picked up some valuable points about the worth of micro influencers. So what did we learn?

The medium is the message

The massive advantage of having our target audience on Instagram was that the visual capabilities that the platform provided were perfect for the brief. Our influencers were asked to take photos photos relating to themes of Art, Music, Food, Architecture and Nightlife. Their photos highlighted all these wonderful aspects of Manchester lifestyle, whilst simultaneously displaying the varied fashion choices available to shoppers at the Arndale.

Micro influencers = macro influence

Because we wanted an audience who were fans of fashion and retail in and around the Arndale, we picked influencers based in Manchester. Kardashian-type influencers may have strong impact in the short-term but are unlikely to change the long-term behaviour of shoppers looking for a retail destination in Manchester.

What you don’t gain in social reach, you more than make up for in credibility. According to AdWeek and the Drum, faithful followers of micro influencers mean 60% higher engagement rates and 4 times more content conversations. If that’s not convinced you, a whopping 82% of consumers are highly likely to follow the recommendation of a micro influencer.

Integration, integration, integration

All our campaign activity was tied together using the #MyMCR hashtag. This was amplified further by using the influencers’ own social reach. They promoted a competition that invited people to share their own Manchester inspired style for the chance to be a guest blogger on the centre’s website.

Having an influencer promote your brand’s message on social media is great, but it needs to be part of a wider online ecosystem. Paid ads and promoted posts supported the campaign, while some amazing new images brought the centre a reach of over 364k users, delivering 25,476 engagements and paid social delivered a 1% click through rate.

If you want to know how influencer marketing can help your brand or find out how your business can profit from the limitless possibilities of digital, talk to Bertie.