In today’s interview, we had the opportunity to speak with Gordon Glenister, Global Head of Influencer marketing and presenter of Influence Podcast, BCMA (Branded Content Marketing Association).
He is an international expert in the areas of membership, promotional merchandise and influencer marketing. He lead an industry as director general. Won awards for sales excellence in his earlier life and been a judge at the Institute of Promotional Marketing Awards, British Excellence in Sales and Marketing and also a qualified digital marketer.
1. Gordon, Tell us about your journey of Global Influencer Marketing, What lessons you would like to highlight for marketers, entrepreneurs, experts throughout your journey?
I launched the first global association for the influencer marketing community under the Branded Content Marketing Association in July 2019, with the aim of promoting best practice and supporting our members. Influencer marketing is expected to be around $10bn in value this year and maybe as much as $15bn by 2022 The sector has shown rapid growth as an industry over the last 10 years. All our members are vetted and signed a code of conduct, giving reassurance to brands. There is a widespread view that influencer marketing when done well can deliver 11x ROI more than other forms of marketing investment. So when done well I mean finding the right influencers that resonate best with your brand and can deliver excellent engagement (not just follower numbers).
There are specialist influencer agencies and platforms that can help brands deliver excellent results, these will vary from influencer sourcing to entire campaign delivery tools or indeed full-service agencies. Some of my tips would be to make sure you have a proper detailed influencer brief (not sure of what one looks like, then I can happily provide for you) and a contract this not only covers all the legal requirements for a campaign but also makes sure there is no ambiguity. Lastly, influencers are real people, not just media assets, treat them well to build a lasting relationship that’s why some of the best campaigns result in ambassador programs. Although influencer marketing is seen as largely a B2C focus increasingly the B2B sector is embracing these principles of thought leadership and content marketing.
2. Tell us your Unique Skill which you think you have as a Global Head of Influence Marketing.
I am a people connector and compare host on influencer marketing. I also bring the very best opportunities to the membership through collaborative partnerships – we have had some great articles written in PR week, including new research in 2020. I am a podcast presenter on influencer marketing and this has helped me reach a wider audience and widen the reach of the BCMA brand and influencer marketing I launched Pitch Influence, a global competition to help encourage creativity and build brand connection. This concludes in September with a live final at Borderless Live. This can be found on the BCMA website – www.thebcma.info.
3. What is the best advice you’ve ever received and you have implemented till now for BCMA(Branded Content Marketing Association)?
It’s better to hone your craft and member engagement strategy without doing a full-on launch too soon, why because this allows you to pivot and move forwards – things do take a lot longer in life than you sometimes think. So we did a soft launch with several members and have served their needs well but learned a lot too. We were planning a significant launch in 2020 then COVID hit which has hit the whole advertising industry, so keeping the membership at a manageable level and supporting them on a very personal level has been great advice. Our membership strategy has been to target the best companies not everyone.
4. What Are Some Of The Challenges For You When It Comes To Grow Business revenue?
Right now the impact of the virus has had a major impact on the industry and particularly for associations and event organizers through no fault of their own. Being able to check in on members, making sure they’re OK has been the right course of action and keeping costs and exposure under control. Normally we would be partnering with 30 different events and organizers and I’d be arranging speakers and panels. Some of these organizations have gone virtual and we have been able to support them for example Social Media Week, I managed to not only be a media partner but secure 10 VIP passes worth $500 for some of my members, and you can imagine that helped them. Refocusing budgets in some cases dropping revenue expectations. Sadly a lot of businesses will fold this year, however, others will refocus on what’s essential, how they use their time, whom they employ (and keep), and what technologies they embrace.
5. So, What is Next for You?
I want to reach out to our global partners more and find ways to embrace influencer marketing around the world. The UK and USA are saturated markets but several other countries are in the early adoption phase and maybe when I complete my book on influencer marketing next year it will be an opportunity for me to speak internationally on the subject.