Influencer Pricing

As the Founder and CEO/CMO of Beyondinfluence, a content creator marketing agency, and the Managing Director DACH of Scale Digital, a specialist acquisition agency, I am bringing in over 15 years of experience in developing and implementing innovative digital marketing strategies and campaigns for global brands. I am a seasoned practitioner in influencer marketing, affiliate marketing, mobile marketing, and content creation, with a strong track record of delivering impactful results and increasing brand awareness, engagement, and conversion. I am also at the forefront of marketing and organizational framework implementation of AI in B2B and B2C businesses.



[00:00:00] Jeanette Okwu: The result of this we’ve all seen is that influencer marketing gets a bad rap and I think regulating it though is tough. I think what we need to do is, as practitioners, have some ethical codes or some best practices. In Europe, there is a strong belief in CPM calculations, which I don’t like.

[00:00:31] Jessy Grossman: All right, if you guys are watching this on YouTube, you are getting the fresh-faced, no makeup, barely done hair girl today. This is just real life and we’re going to roll with it. So welcome to the podcast. I have been trying to film this intro for days and it’s been a busy week and I’m tired of waiting.

[00:00:51] Jessy Grossman: Yes. So sometimes it’s just important to not wear some makeup on our face and feel confident and just show the world that like, we don’t always have to wear makeup. I do love makeup though, and that’s when I wear it otherwise, if I don’t have a meeting or a thing to do on camera, I am usually never wearing makeup.

[00:01:08] Jessy Grossman: So today is one of those days. I, first of all, just have to acknowledge, want to acknowledge the amount of you Who have been reaching out to me and sharing your support and your stories. And just like from the personal episode that I shared about three weeks ago or so when I was recording this, it was really hard for me to do.

[00:01:32] Jessy Grossman: And I don’t know, there were like many reasons why I decided to make that episode and I don’t think it’s worth, I mean, maybe I’ll go into it at another time, but the point being is that like, I think my secret wish was that I would find Other women who are, we’re going through those things just to like, feel a little less alone.

[00:01:48] Jessy Grossman: And I’m so grateful for so many of you that have reached out to say, like, I also had a strange relationship with my mother, or I’m also going through fertility issues or, you know, someone told me all sorts of stories that I’ve heard. And I’ve just, I’m so grateful and so moved by that. So thank you. That is what my.

[00:02:11] Jessy Grossman: Dream was with a whim. Honestly, it’s like creating a family that I never had. And I think that’s one of the many reasons why community is so important to me. And creating a community of just women being just like super real with each other is like. what I gravitate towards. So anyway, I just wanted to acknowledge that because many of you have listened to that episode related to it and just like made a point to reach out about it.

[00:02:39] Jessy Grossman: And I just really appreciate that. So thank you. This week I feel, okay. So I was going to say this week’s episode is an interview episode, but I feel like the last few weeks after that solo one she’s been doing a lot of interview episodes and like, It’s all friends of mine. I haven’t brought anyone on like new who I’ve never met before onto the show with a fresh interview.

[00:03:00] Jessy Grossman: And today’s going to be no different, but I hope that you enjoy chatting with my friends in the industry. It’s enjoyable for me to just catch up with them and pick them up. their brain, but Jeanette Akwu is someone that you guys should know. She has a company called Beyond Influence.

[00:03:16] Jessy Grossman: She’s the founder and the CEO slash CMO of the company, which is a content creator marketing agency. She’s also the managing director D A C H of Scale Digital, which is a Specialist acquisition agency. She’s been in the industry for like 15 plus years. She’s been developing and implementing innovative digital marketing strategies and campaigns for global brands because she used to be based in the U S and now for many years, she’s been based in Germany, and I’ve been to Germany.

[00:03:49] Jessy Grossman: Such a cool country. It was there for like 24 hours. So like, wish I was there for more. She provides such an interesting perspective though, about the opportunities overseas and there, it takes somebody who understands all of those different markets. And she brings that to the table.

[00:04:07] Jessy Grossman: Also having lived in the States to be able to compare them. I think it’s so good. She is well versed in influencer marketing, but also affiliate, mobile marketing, and content creation. And she’s delivered impactful results, increasing brand awareness, engagement, and conversion. She is incredible.

[00:04:27] Jessy Grossman: She’s also helped us in the past with like LinkedIn ads when nobody had any idea about it. And she was so generous and just been such a connector and a friend to me over the years. It’s been great. It’s been wonderful getting to know her and I’m just looking forward to you guys getting to know her too.

[00:04:42] Jessy Grossman: So without further ado, cause I can go on and on and on and on. This is Jeanette Oku of Beyond Influence.

[00:04:52] Jessy Grossman: This show is sponsored by Women in Influencer Marketing, better known as WIM, the best online community for the creator economy. You will meet fellow influencer marketers, you’ll meet brands, you’ll meet talent agencies to talk shop, get hired, and even find a mentor. When you become a member, do not forget to check out all of our incredible resources.

[00:05:16] Jessy Grossman: For example, we have dozens of masterclasses from the top voices at TikTok, at YouTube of award-winning agencies and women who are paving the way for us all. So if you want the chance to network with a few who and influencer marketing, check out what it takes to become a member. Make more money and have fun doing it.

[00:05:37] Jessy Grossman: Visit I am wim.com. slash join. That’s I a m w i i m dot com slash join today. And I so look forward to seeing you more around the community. All right. So I mean, selfishly, I was just excited to have you on today just so we can catch up. I feel like we were having regular catch-ups and now it’s been like once every few months or so.

[00:06:02] Jessy Grossman: I was looking forward to having you on today. So how are you? 

[00:06:06] Jeanette Okwu: I am good. I have a little cold. I thought I was going to dodge the bullet this winter, but now that spring has sprung, it catches up with me. So otherwise I’m very good. Thank you. Good. 

[00:06:20] Jessy Grossman: Do you think it’s a cold? Do you think it’s allergies?

[00:06:22] Jessy Grossman: It’s a cold. Oh, it’s definitely 

[00:06:23] Jeanette Okwu: a cold. I felt last weekend when I came out of a sauna that I should have probably Worn something thicker and then in the evening I already noticed like, Oh, okay, here we go. 

[00:06:34] Jessy Grossman: Something’s coming on. Well, I’m glad everything else is good. Hopefully, you’re on the mend from that.

[00:06:40] Jessy Grossman: And I’m just excited to have everyone sort of be like, I’m sure a lot of people in our community are familiar with you. You’re part of our mentorship program also, which I love. And you’ve just been part of the community for so long but for the handful of people who are like, Who is Jeanette? I’d love for you to just tell us a little bit about your come-up in the influencer marketing world.

[00:07:02] Jessy Grossman: And also a fun fact, like an unknown, something that maybe I might not even know about you. Right. 

[00:07:09] Jeanette Okwu: Yeah, of course. So I mean, we go back a long time and me and the influencer marketing thing go back even longer. I’ve been in social media since I think 204, 206, the rise of YouTube. Twitter and Facebook, this was all for me so exciting back then.

[00:07:31] Jeanette Okwu: And then when we hit 2010 with Instagram and bloggers, et cetera, I knew that there was something there and I just hopped on the bandwagon when the influencer marketing industry started to ramp up at the time I was living in Los Angeles. I, spent in the United States 20 years, hence my not-so-German accent.

[00:07:58] Jeanette Okwu: And I was working back then for an agency that was the in-house agency for Jaguar Land Rover, and we created an influencer marketing strategy. That also could operate globally. And that’s a little bit of my sweet spot. Also having moved back in 2016 to Germany to take that knowledge and just make it possible when brands want to expand either from the U.S. into Europe.

[00:08:26] Jeanette Okwu: Or the other way around. So basically, I’ve been in the influencer marketing industry, I think now for almost 15 years. If you can say that it’s like, Oh my gosh, can’t even fathom that. And a fun fact, a little bit, something unknown about me as I used to do rhythmic gymnastics, you know, with a ball and the ribbon and all of that.

[00:08:49] Jeanette Okwu: And now. Was almost close to going to the Olympics with that. 

[00:08:53] Jessy Grossman: Wait, that is such a fun fact. You probably had to like really like study hard and practice hard. Like, I mean, how long were you doing that for? I think I started when I 

[00:09:04] Jeanette Okwu: was, gosh. Second grade. Yeah. Second grade. And then up to 16, 17. Yeah. 

[00:09:12] Jessy Grossman: I love that.

[00:09:14] Jessy Grossman: Are you still athletic? Like do you still enjoy sports? Let’s put it 

[00:09:18] Jeanette Okwu: this way. I think I’m counting on that, all of that, and I should do more. So if I do a little, then. Muscles have a memory and I was like, Oh, I don’t need to do that much. So I should do more. Well, we 

[00:09:30] Jessy Grossman: all should do more, but that’s so cool. I did not know that about you.

[00:09:34] Jessy Grossman: And that is a very fun fact. Also, I wanted to congratulate you. I saw that you won the global top 30 leading women in the creator economy for this year. So congratulations on that. That was exciting to see you on that list. And that’s like, I don’t know, that’s, it’s a very particular award, right?

[00:09:53] Jessy Grossman: It’s like, it’s global, it’s women in particular. It’s not just, you know, advertising and marketing. It’s a creator economy. So it’s such a specific award. I can imagine that it’s really meaningful and I’m curious, like, what does receiving that mean to you? 

[00:10:08] Jeanette Okwu: To me, it means quite a bit because unlike in the U.

[00:10:12] Jeanette Okwu: S. In Europe, influencer marketing is still a little bit looked at. Well, what is this influencer marketing thing? I don’t know. I can’t take it seriously, but more and more we get attention, and being at the forefront of that is a testament to it. Work that has been done. I also love that it’s about women because our industry most of the time is being done by women.

[00:10:44] Jeanette Okwu: Let’s be honest about it. And we have the whim it’s mostly women. And I think recognizing that is huge. It’s an accolade that I wear proudly. Yeah. 

[00:10:53] Jessy Grossman: And as you should, but I don’t know, it’s an exciting award. I think that also, like, do you find that it’s like when you found out that you won, like, do you feel like you take in the compliment of sorts or the achievements?

[00:11:05] Jessy Grossman: Like, how do you personally resonate when you find out that you win an award? Do you feel like fully taking it in? I think I. 

[00:11:13] Jeanette Okwu: I gasped it in when I got the email. So that was like, and then the first thing was I screenshotted it. And then I sent it to my family, WhatsApp chat, my daughter, and my husband. And I said, look at this.

[00:11:31] Jeanette Okwu: And then my daughter, she says, well, I didn’t expect anything less. Okay. Very nice. My mom is very proud. I think in our fast-moving industry and profession, I love that. I love it’s all there, but I’m moving on already to the next campaign. And, I know for this year, it’s all there. And I know when we have the global influencer marketing award and all those things coming up I’m excited.

[00:11:57] Jeanette Okwu: Traveling to, in London, et cetera, you will be with like-minded people and other professionals, and they will recognize you in the real world, outside on the street, nobody will know. 

[00:12:10] Jessy Grossman: It’s true. But I can imagine also as somebody who owns your own business, that it can be really helpful for you. To put it like to display it proudly clients will say, Oh, she’s that much more credible.

[00:12:21] Jessy Grossman: And people will have you top of mind cause they see you on a list. So as much as I would like to say like, Oh, it’s just an award. Strategically, especially when you own your own business, like it’s very helpful. It can be incredibly helpful from a perception standpoint. 

[00:12:38] Jeanette Okwu: It’s very interesting. I was. A couple of days later on a monthly meeting with Scott Guthrie from the IMTB in the UK and also with Quentin from Cold Square because we’re, we meet regularly and talk about the industry in Europe, et cetera, and the UK.

[00:12:54] Jeanette Okwu: And Scott says, Oh, congratulations. You made it on the top 30 list, et cetera. And I just said, Oh, I think the Academy and we just made a joke about it. But he said, it’s a serious achievement. 

[00:13:06] Jessy Grossman: Yeah, it is. I also like, I don’t know. I I’ll speak personally, but I know that like, if we know the few times that I’ve gotten anything like that, like I’ll have that like immediate dopamine hit, you know, where I’m like, Oh my God.

[00:13:20] Jessy Grossman: But then it like, it fades quickly. And I like similar to what you were saying, how this makes you feel. Yeah. It’s interesting. Like about awards, like you get that immediate dopamine hit, you know, when you get it. But I think that too often we’re just like, we’re onto the next thing. It’s like, all right, now back to business.

[00:13:38] Jessy Grossman: And like, it’s important. Your business has got to run and that’s like the day-to-day. But I also think there’s something important about Celebrating those wins, like truly celebrating it because otherwise, it’s like, what is the work for, you know, like, I feel like there’s like this really strong culture to just like, keep pushing, keep driving, keep grinding.

[00:14:01] Jessy Grossman: And like, most of us love that there is a joy in that, you know, we love the work that we do, but I just think like, I wonder if there are just moments where it’s like, Oh, we can like slow down a little bit and also just like celebrate. ourselves. We’re so used to always celebrating other people, pushing other people, working with influencers or clients, or whatever.

[00:14:22] Jessy Grossman: And I don’t know, it’s just something that’s been on my mind. So I hope that even if it’s like a week later, celebrate. I hope you do. You know, it’s a big deal. It’s exciting. I’m curious. So you’ve said you’ve been in the industry for about 15 years. I love that you have this, like, from my perspective, a unique perspective and that you’re based in Germany and you’re seeing.

[00:14:44] Jessy Grossman: The, the market outside of the U.S., but you’ve also lived here. So you do, you’re very like fluent, both of those things. And I’m curious from your perspective, where do you think our industry struggles the most these days? I don’t know. You probably can rattle off a whole long list, but like, what are a couple of things that come to mind?

[00:15:03] Jeanette Okwu: Yeah, I think the biggest constraint is. In the end, it’s about the client, right? So we’re an agency, and the client expects so much from influencers. So in the end, it’s about numbers. How many sales can an influencer drive? Forgetting that they don’t put the same measures. onto an ad, right? But they treat influencers like an ad.

[00:15:29] Jeanette Okwu: I always say to my clients, if you want to have an ad, do an ad, but these are people, it’s a people business. That’s the component that with digital marketing, you do not 

[00:15:38] Jessy Grossman: find. Yeah. A hundred percent. And like, why don’t you think that gets through still? Cause like, I agree with you. I’ve heard it before.

[00:15:45] Jessy Grossman: I’ve said it, you say it, but like, What’s the disconnect? Like, why doesn’t that sink in? I think 

[00:15:53] Jeanette Okwu: it’s because if, if, because we look at content that is being done by people who with the democratization of the iPhone made something out of themselves, by themselves, right? And since it’s this little thing here, people think, oh yeah, if this person can do it, I could do it too, but I don’t want to.

[00:16:16] Jeanette Okwu: So we’re belittling the hard work that is being done. So that’s why I think for me internally, because I’ve thought about this a lot is maybe we’re, we’re a little bit jealous. Or we don’t want to give them full credit for the hard work because they need to know so much about their content, about the algorithm, about what to do with your content.

[00:16:40] Jeanette Okwu: So it resonates with the audience, the time of posting the, do a reminder or whatever it is. Right. So, we don’t give enough credit to that.

[00:16:54] Jessy Grossman: Understanding and empathy and like understanding what’s on the other side. I can, I mean, that’s like the whole world, right? It’s certainly the creator economy for sure as well. What do you like? So if this is our biggest struggle right now, I’m not asking you to solve the problem, but like, where would you start maybe to solve the problem?

[00:17:13] Jeanette Okwu: I think even though we’re in this industry for yeah, over 10 years, full-fledged, there’s still a lot of education to be done. And I think that’s something that we need to push forward. The WIM needs to push forward and we’re doing that already. I do this here in Germany with a similar association, a public association, where we also have members.

[00:17:38] Jeanette Okwu: Education, I think, It’s still something that could change a lot within our industry. I know it’s tough and it’s like a long road, but I think that’s how you bring those two different things 

[00:17:50] Jessy Grossman: together. For sure. Education is super helpful. So speaking of education, I want to just like, I want to get candid a little bit about pricing.

[00:18:01] Jessy Grossman: I think that’s like another. widespread discrepancy in our industry in terms of what’s a charge, what’s within the range. And I will say, like, I’ll say candidly as I come from the very regulated world where I was working with actors in commercials. So that was all for the most part regulated by the unions here, SAG AFTRA.

[00:18:24] Jessy Grossman: And so a lot of the rates, they were all pre-negotiated and they weren’t great and there wasn’t flexibility. So. Part of the allure of getting into the creator economy for me, like many years ago was because there was flexibility, like coming from the talent management space. I was like, I could negotiate whatever I want for this person who I think the world of, and I can get them an incredible rate and I can do so much better by them because I love negotiating.

[00:18:52] Jessy Grossman: Right. But I think that what, well, I won’t even say what I think. I’ve heard a lot of chatter within WHM that rates are all over the place. They’re not even within the ballpark of each other. And I think that’s a problem. You know, you talked about education. I think that some of it perhaps stems from a lack of experience or education in terms of what others are charging, et cetera, et cetera.

[00:19:18] Jessy Grossman: What are you in terms of pricing and your eyes, what do you think needs to be? 

[00:19:26] Jeanette Okwu: If I’m honest, it’s great with SAG AFTRA, it’s a regulated space, but the influencers, it’s a free market, so you can call up any price you want. I see this currently with a campaign that I’m doing across the globe with smaller influencers.

[00:19:42] Jeanette Okwu: They’re like 5, 000 followers strong. Some of them, some 15, 000 followers strong. They quote prices. I’m like, excuse me? And then I have. People with 200, 000 followers do it for almost the same price. So of course it’s crazy, but I think in the end, it’s also the result of an opportunity. B, if you can get that from somebody, why not?

[00:20:08] Jeanette Okwu: Right? Who am I to tell you if you’ve gotten it with company A or brand B? That you cannot ask for that. It’s just that me working for brand C, I’m sorry, that’s not what I want. And I wouldn’t recommend it to the client because in the end, and that’s what we discussed before it’s about accountability, what do I get?

[00:20:33] Jeanette Okwu: In return for this, because there will be a CFO or CEO sitting. Okay, what are we doing with these influences here? How much money did we spend? What did we get from it? Impressions. I don’t see this in my ROAS or my ROI and I can understand that. And that’s, that’s, that’s a good question. The result of this we’ve all seen is that influencer marketing gets a bad rap.

[00:20:56] Jeanette Okwu: And I think regulating it though is tough. I think what we need to do is as practitioners have some ethical codes or some best practices in Europe. There is a strong belief in CPM calculations, which I don’t like. I know that, in the U S. Things, were handled a little bit differently, which I do like, but I did speak to a colleague the other day and they have a quite interesting approach.

[00:21:26] Jeanette Okwu: They do a CPM, but they do a CPM on stories and they ask when they work with the influencer to send over their insights on stories over the past seven to 10 to 14 days, not older ones. And that’s when they calculate their CPM price and they say, look, Approximately 25 euros is okay. So that’s how they, and then they offer that as a price.

[00:21:52] Jeanette Okwu: And if the influencer or the manager says, no, we’re not doing it, then they say, okay, then we can 

[00:21:57] Jessy Grossman: do it either. It’s interesting. I appreciate the way you started your answer, especially it’s like that it is a free market which is part of its beauty. I think it’s like a unique opportunity because what I heard you say is like, there needs to be just.

[00:22:13] Jessy Grossman: Be more communicative, right? Like from the influencer or manager, especially the manager’s perspective, quote, what you’ve gotten before. If you’ve gotten that right before then phenomenal, fantastic. I hope that person will continue to work with you because they also got the results they were looking for from that rate.

[00:22:31] Jessy Grossman: But if you got it before and it’s a similar campaign or like scope, then quote that. But I think that like not enough people are. Have strong pitches, right? Because quoting a price without any sort of justification or any details in that, and you have an awareness, and you’ve done this enough that you have an awareness that you’re quoting on the high side.

[00:22:58] Jessy Grossman: If those two are true, then. In my opinion, it’s lazy. It’s just lazy and it’s probably not going to convert. And so at that rate, like why even bother? She’s wasting everybody’s time. I think it’s one thing to quote a high price with no context. And then it’s another thing to quote a high price and say, I’m aware that this is on the higher side.

[00:23:20] Jessy Grossman: However, here’s my thought process behind it, because I can imagine that from your perspective, if you hear that there’s just like immediately a little bit, you’re more open to hearing it, or perhaps like there’s more of a respect there that like, okay, well, this Person is reasonable. Like they have an awareness or self-aware to know where their price sort of probably falls in comparison to others that I’m getting.

[00:23:45] Jessy Grossman: But they’re also going a step further and saying, and here’s why. And perhaps saying also like, and if this is still too high for you, maybe we can explore something in three months or so once they’re off of the Netflix show that they’re on, or there are different circumstances, or perhaps instead of Instagram, we do something on TikTok.

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[00:25:51] Jessy Grossman: You’re like, Oh, good. They’re thinking. No, I 

[00:25:53] Jeanette Okwu: love that. Actually. I also know that. When we’re negotiating, the client has a specific thing in mind, you have a program, you have a strategy, you have all these things, but I love that when the manager says, or the influencer themselves, that when they say, Oh, maybe I could do this and that, or I could add a few pieces of content.

[00:26:15] Jeanette Okwu: And put that in for free, and that’s fine too. It just needs to match the expectation or also the level of understanding of the program and the opportunities from the client side. Here we are at the education topic again. 

[00:26:31] Jessy Grossman: You know, what comes to mind too, when you bring that up, is that like, I can imagine that it might be, if.

[00:26:38] Jessy Grossman: The initial outreach or brief, really not, you’re not at a brief stage yet, but like if the initial outreach and conversation don’t have some of the expectations listed or some specific answers that the manager or the influencer would like to know to be able to price accordingly, I can imagine that like they should just ask more questions before necessarily like quoting a price.

[00:27:01] Jessy Grossman: But I also have heard from managers that they’re like, I don’t want to. I don’t want it. Like there’s a hesitancy in doing that. You’re dealing with hundreds of influencers at a time and it’s like a volume business. But how do you feel about asking more follow-up questions? Or is there a point where there are too many questions?

[00:27:20] Jeanette Okwu: Sometimes yes, because. You just want to, your task is to bring 200 influencers on board for a campaign, which means, and I’m looking into my system, I have outreach to 1, 500. If that doesn’t go quickly and we have, we are on a clock, I don’t want to have a chit-chat back and forth. I just want it to be done very quickly.

[00:27:42] Jeanette Okwu: That’s, that’s the reality, right? Of course, I wanted to sit and discuss everything, but sometimes it’s not easy to realize. I also think. In terms of pricing, the other difficult aspect is that is the arrogance of brands. Oh, my brand is so cool. If I come to you, dear influencer, and offer you to work with us, you should be so happy.

[00:28:09] Jeanette Okwu: And you should just get the product for free and I shouldn’t pay you anything so that we still have to, we have some mature brands and they know what they’re doing and they have a plan. Probably really full-fledged influencer marketing programs and activities. But there are still several brands and businesses that don’t get that.

[00:28:29] Jeanette Okwu: That there is a lot of work that goes into it. You want high-quality content that needs to be produced. It needs to be edited. You have a team. It costs time. You may have to have legal advice. And if you have a manager who takes a lot of this off, that person needs to get paid too, and gets a portion of the fee.

[00:28:50] Jeanette Okwu: It’s all included. 

[00:28:51] Jessy Grossman: For sure. And I think the pricing, it’s like money in general, right? It’s a tough subject for people to talk about. There are so many nuances. To it, I think, but I happen to agree with you. Like, I don’t think the solution is regulating it. I don’t think the solution is stifling this sort of like free market that currently exists, but I agree with you.

[00:29:16] Jessy Grossman: I think that like best practices. Would be helpful. Some like guardrails would be helpful and just more education to say, like, this is a range, it’s a range. I think a range is appropriate to say within this range, this is what we’re working with here. But it’s those, it’s those companies or specific instances where they’re like so far outside of the ballpark that it just, it’s like, it’s off-putting.

[00:29:43] Jessy Grossman: And I think that some people are seeing those. Types of quotes more and more and this like culture on TikTok, especially where creators will just create content saying like, you have to just like, you have to charge what you’re worth and like this like empowering thing, which I’m all for it. But I think it’s her horrible advice to say, like, you have to charge what you’re worth, give them no guard, got like guidelines in terms of like, what’s a reasonable, like framework to stay within.

[00:30:18] Jessy Grossman: And then to just like, let them go off on their own with this sort of like false confidence. Because you also don’t want to look like a fool when you quote something that just like Is astronomical. You know what I mean? 

[00:30:31] Jeanette Okwu: I agree with you, but I also think, let them do it. Let them play influencer marketing because I think there is a, there, there is a professional side to it and there is an unprofessional side to it.

[00:30:47] Jeanette Okwu: And if the professional side is expanding from us practitioners, With best-in-class examples of campaigns be how content is created, see how pricing is being done. And also how you set up programs, including potentially even affiliate marketing programs and influencer marketing, and the brands that are willing to learn from that.

[00:31:14] Jeanette Okwu: I think we’re okay. The other ones that want to empower themselves, you have them in other industries as well, and they’re 

[00:31:22] Jessy Grossman: just slackers. It’s just, that I worry that from an influencer’s perspective, they don’t know how to tell the difference, right? Like they don’t, like, I want to give them the benefit of the doubt.

[00:31:33] Jessy Grossman: I just, so maybe that’s the lesson for an influencer is like. Do your due diligence, like don’t just trust things at face value, you know, just because someone posts a video on TikTok with some advice and they’re like a self-proclaimed expert on the creator economy doesn’t make them one. And so I just say, I don’t know.

[00:31:50] Jessy Grossman: There’s just a lot of like, they will learn. 

[00:31:53] Jeanette Okwu: That’s not how they get jobs. If they want to earn an income from it, that’s not how it goes so much into a campaign. I mean, on the other side, you can also ask the, you know, Does the influencer know what an influencer marketing manager is looking for? It’s not just your pretty content.

[00:32:09] Jeanette Okwu: There’s a method to the madness on that side, right? You have a valuable thing. And that is to me personally your audience. You are just the gate to that, right? The vehicle. And that’s what I’m after. So to do that, I want specific things that come out of it, and that’s where I think education is on both sides.

[00:32:33] Jeanette Okwu: Right. 

[00:32:34] Jessy Grossman: Totally. And so I’d love to dig into that a little bit more. So like, you know, if you’re working on a campaign, like one that you’re working on, like right now, let’s give like real-life examples. This campaign that you’re currently working on is like a home run. And at the end of it, your rap report is like, what is it filled with?

[00:32:50] Jessy Grossman: Like, what does a home run look like after a cam, after a campaign, like a campaign that you’re currently working on? What are you looking 

[00:32:56] Jeanette Okwu: for? Well, it’s two-pronged, right? So this is an awareness campaign. And for anybody who knows their craft, awareness campaigns are not. Conversion campaigns are set up differently.

[00:33:07] Jeanette Okwu: So the measurement also is set up differently from the beginning and mid-campaign, you know, switching is almost impossible. Now, does the client want to have some conversions coming out in the end? Yes. That’s why the influencers get codes, but not all of the influencers want to postcodes because of the influences that we have in this particular campaign, there are.

[00:33:30] Jeanette Okwu: Not conversion-driven influencers. And you need to know if you want to do an awareness campaign, you pick people who are very good in awareness impressions that you create. They also know if they’re professional about themselves, that they’re not good converters. Now I know when I want to do a conversion campaign, I go to different people.

[00:33:51] Jeanette Okwu: And I know I go to this person and I have worked with her on numerous campaigns. I said, listen, I have this, are you interested? What can we do about your base price? If you do, let’s say an affiliate deal with us. She can go down and then because she knows she sells, but with this particular campaign I’m in right now, it’s not the case.

[00:34:14] Jeanette Okwu: So I measure awareness and they’re all small influencers. So I have to also speak to the client. Say, don’t expect a million impressions. Setting expectations is very important because if you run stories with this campaign, the times or the, how often this will be seen is quite minimal. So I think in the end, it’s also about.

[00:34:35] Jeanette Okwu: The content that you will get the brand out of for your usage is something valuable and measurable in the end. I 

[00:34:42] Jessy Grossman: love that. I also want to pick your brain a little bit too, because I know I’ve said this a few times, like, I just think it’s really for our audience, it’s like an exceptionally unique, unique experience.

[00:34:52] Jessy Grossman: Perspective that you have, like being so familiar with the U S market, but also like international. And I think that there’s a lot of like startup brands in particular who might start here and like make a killing, but there’s like literally an entire world open to like additional business. So, my question is for brands who are particularly us-focused, like what international markets seem to be like really taking off these days in terms of like really being receptive to influencer marketing, and like, Where are the opportunities generally for expanding overseas?

[00:35:26] Jessy Grossman: Like for, you know, for brands. Yeah. So actually 

[00:35:30] Jeanette Okwu: I can even name an example. One of our longstanding clients is Ruggable. So US brand, a very successful brand, basically builds an entire business with the help of influencers. And I started working with them a few years ago to introduce the Ruggable brand to the German market.

[00:35:53] Jeanette Okwu: And. They specifically decided to work with me because I know both sides. I know the American market, meaning when I talked to the team, we understood each other because it’s different here. Prices are different, much higher than in the U S it’s harder to get the influencers to work with a brand that is not German.

[00:36:17] Jeanette Okwu: So there are all kinds of cultural nuances. Where I positioned myself, I think in the right way, because I know both sides, the opportunity that Ruggable took was that we started with a specific kind of campaign where we also incorporated whitelisting. So using the influencer account to put some paid media behind it, was phenomenal, and was a great success.

[00:36:45] Jeanette Okwu: And then we expanded into other markets. Uh, we launched last year, in France. And boy, if you want to expand to the European market, the French people are very nice to work with. So that’s very interesting for me to see again and again, that it is much easier to work with influencers in France. And also Italy, but, and here’s the big, but the biggest budget for marketing sits in Germany.

[00:37:17] Jeanette Okwu: So the money that could be spent is much higher here. And that’s where you, where I always recommend to, when you work internationally to work with people who are on the ground and understand. The regions, the markets, et 

[00:37:31] Jessy Grossman: cetera. Yeah, no, that’s super interesting. It’s cool to know, like, you know, just what markets are interested in it.

[00:37:37] Jessy Grossman: I mean, it like, it’s just, you know, it’s interesting to think about influencer marketing also culturally, right? Like not all cultures, like. are aligned with, I don’t know, like idolizing people online sometimes and like, and wanting to get recommendations that way, like different cultures are different. So, but I guess like, I would caution companies who are solely US-focused because like, there’s just so much more opportunity out there.

[00:38:04] Jessy Grossman: And I think that. It would just be such a mess not to have an awareness of it and be able to build infrastructure to support influencer marketing beyond. But to your original point, like, I think you, it’s really important to like to align yourself with somebody who’s like really well versed in those individual markets because things can change and you don’t want something to like, not get lost in translation, but like, Get lost in translation.

[00:38:29] Jessy Grossman: Like even on like such a micro level, like with a whim, you know, we’re producing all these events like all over the country and like, I would never claim to know like where people want to hang out, like in Dallas, Texas, or Atlanta, Georgia, like, I’ve never been to either of those places. So like for me to come in and be like, Oh yeah, let’s do a happy hour at this time.

[00:38:53] Jessy Grossman: Some people might be like, we’re not like a happy hour type crew. We would much rather like a morning thing and know where most of us live around here and not over there. Like there are just important nuances. And so like getting people who are well versed. is important.

[00:39:09] Jessy Grossman: Not just assuming that you know, like what translates in one market is going to translate in the other, but with all of it too, it’s all like testing and learning as well. And I think like, in terms of that, I’d be curious, like what trends have you been seeing maybe in, like in Germany, in the UK, you’re talking about Italy and France, like, have there been any trends over there in terms of like, Influencer marketing that you found particularly effective, also different from what you’ve seen in the U S market that you think might make its way to the U S something to keep an eye on.

[00:39:43] Jeanette Okwu: I don’t think that would be the case. I think it’s more the other way around. And I think a lot of it is also platform-driven. For example, we say now Instagram is introducing communities, the community spaces, that’s what people are testing. With mixed results. And I think in the end, it’s about how it’s being adopted by the followers.

[00:40:07] Jeanette Okwu: I know, for example, a couple of cases of people who have a very strong following here in Germany. They have now created community extra community-specific community space for conversion-driven activities. Doesn’t, didn’t work, didn’t convert. So basically what it is is that take all the collaborations and corporations and the sales stuff off of my base account and push it into a separate account.

[00:40:40] Jeanette Okwu: And that doesn’t resonate with the audience because they want to see the good stuff. And if there are partnerships included in that, then that works, but going to go shopping in the other space didn’t work. So there are some mixed results in that. So 

[00:40:57] Jessy Grossman: we briefly touched earlier on affiliate marketing, but we didn’t dive deep at all into that.

[00:41:03] Jessy Grossman: And it’s been like a really interesting, like 2023 in particular, I, from my vantage point, it was like a really interesting year for affiliate marketing. It is not a new concept by any means whatsoever, but it sort of had new life breathed into it. I felt like. Creators used to be like when I was managing talent, like they were like, once you sort of get to a certain threshold or cache, like affiliate marketing used to seem as if it was like beneath them, like, no, I get a flat fee.

[00:41:36] Jessy Grossman: Like I’m not going to work for all my money basically, but I felt like there’s been a shift in that. And so I’m curious if you’ve seen similar or if there are specific platforms that you recommend, we get that question a lot on a whim, which is like, what affiliate marketing platforms do you guys like and use?

[00:41:53] Jessy Grossman: And just like generally, like, are there things that you recommend keeping in mind when implementing an affiliate marketing strategy? Yeah, 

[00:42:02] Jeanette Okwu: I think that creators don’t want to, you mentioned the flat fee. It’s work to do affiliate because you have to keep going and keep pushing the content or the product.

[00:42:11] Jeanette Okwu: And it’s easier to collect a flat fee. Also flat fleece, a fat flat fee. And you have that in your pocket. Whereas. You never know how much a product or how well a product will sell, even though it fits your brand, your creator brand. It’s always a, you know, you don’t have the certainty. Now, some influencers know that they sell.

[00:42:35] Jeanette Okwu: I have one who I become very friendly with. She says, I, Jeanette, I don’t know what that is, whatever. I. Show into the camera. It sounds like hotcakes. So she knows it and she is all for affiliates. Most of the people don’t trust themselves as a sales tool. That’s why the flat fee is more attractive to them.

[00:42:57] Jeanette Okwu: Yeah. It’s like a safety net. Totally. Now I would love for people to explore. There’s no shame in doing affiliate marketing 10, 10 pieces of product. And if you sell more, you can negotiate a staggered commission fee, if not no harm is done in terms of platform. I think Instagram, if we speak about social networks where this could pan out quite nicely, YouTube also, because you can just insert it, you know, it’s just there.

[00:43:28] Jeanette Okwu: You don’t even have to work that hard. I’m not so sure about TikTok. I wouldn’t be able to actually. Give a judgment on that. I think Tik Tok, I know that we have these hashtags, you know, pick Tik Tok, make me buy it, et cetera. And I see on LinkedIn quite often, that this project was released or this brand or this product was launched on Tik Tok and it’s sold gazillion of time times.

[00:43:52] Jeanette Okwu: That may be true for this particular product, but in the big scheme, I think it just still needs to be a lot explored. And. Experience collected to say that TikTok is, as I say, a sales channel, it, you know, it may, maybe, and I have high hopes in terms of when you set a platform where you can run these affiliate programs, did you mean technology to where to do this?

[00:44:18] Jeanette Okwu: Yeah, I think there are. And it’s very interesting. When you mentioned 2023, because we have traditional affiliate marketing SaaS platforms, which have almost nothing to do with influencer marketing, right? Because you just put out a piece of content, you make deals with publishers and click conversion, whatever you get.

[00:44:42] Jeanette Okwu: A piece of the action and the numbers that you can bring in are much higher than an affiliate program for influencers. So that’s again, education. That’s also somebody who engages in influencer marketing affiliate programs needs to be aware of. You won’t get the same numbers as within a classic affiliate.

[00:45:02] Jeanette Okwu: Program it’s much lower because the variables are so much different, but I think that some technologies have zoned in on that. Upfluence is one, example, that I use. Then there is the impact has integrating the creator suite onto the affiliate suite, which is what they used to, what was it called?

[00:45:24] Jeanette Okwu: Activate. They bought activate. And then as of last fall, they integrated it into their, um, impact suite. And, uh, that is to me a numbers game. It’s, it’s an included system where creators are on the platform and then they can apply to programs that brands launch there like a marketplace. I think there’s also Maverick, which claims to have the biggest community already onboarded, which I think is quite attractive, but it’s attractive.

[00:45:55] Jeanette Okwu: I think for the U S market. Not so much for outside the U. S. because it’s, they’re very U. S. focused. And I think there’s also Captivate, if I’m not mistaken, you know, this better when you do your tech days and which ones do, you know, also, 

[00:46:10] Jessy Grossman: I mean, there’s so many of them, truthfully, like I can rattle off the ones that exist.

[00:46:14] Jessy Grossman: I think like what I was hoping to get to are like the ones that, you know, you know, and believers are effective and good. 

[00:46:22] Jeanette Okwu: I use Act. Uh, I use Affluence and the other thing is, yeah, I would love to. Try out more, but it’s a cost-prohibitive thing. And only demos just, they just tell a teeny, teeny bit of the entire story.

[00:46:36] Jeanette Okwu: You need to work with this whole thing to see what works and how it works for you and if it’s satisfying. 

[00:46:42] Jessy Grossman: There’s also this really interesting movement that seems to have taken off in 2023 about creator marketplaces, like companies. There are a couple off the top of my head, like Trend Tree Three, although there are a few others for sure, where you as a creator, sign up, and it is basically like.

[00:47:03] Jessy Grossman: It brands it for you where you can just give out that link and it’s like your own personal little storefront of recommended products. And of course, it’s all tracked and it just like it adds, and of course you combine retailers. So it’s not just Amazon or just, it’s not limited in that way. So that’s interesting.

[00:47:24] Jessy Grossman: Cause I do think that part of what. Always needs to be infused in any sales, like the selling process is keeping in mind the user experience because, you like the follower, the user subscriber, what have you like they might be completely sold and ready to buy. And if there’s some little something that trips them up in the process of checking out.

[00:47:52] Jessy Grossman: Okay. Then it’s just all for nothing. And it’s what a crazy thing to like that can be the thing that has you lose the sale. Right? So I’ve been intrigued by some companies that have been popping up where it seems like they’re mostly focused on the user experience, right? Like, so some of those platforms that I mentioned, you have the storefront.

[00:48:14] Jessy Grossman: And so it’s a technology. platform, because what you can do as a user, like if I’m just like, all right, that’s my favorite influence. I’m going to buy this shirt, this necklace. Well, they’re all from different stores and what the platform allows the user to do is like, it handles the multiple shipping, you know, like ways of doing it.

[00:48:36] Jessy Grossman: Right. It just makes it. Seamless and it’s just recommendations from all over. And that’s, I think the key is like the checkout process for this consolidated list, the combined list of different retailers is seamless and it’s a really good experience and it’s going to make them want to come back and do it again, you know, and it’s really interesting to take that approach.

[00:48:58] Jessy Grossman: Have you seen anything like that? Have you seen 

[00:49:00] Jeanette Okwu: similar? I’ve seen last year, something that was quite amazing. That was. A startup company called Player Card. What they did was not like a marketplace, although I think that could be a good opportunity to combine those things, but it was a layover of the content, and if you decide, if you scroll your Instagram and you see something.

[00:49:30] Jeanette Okwu: You have attached your, your wallet onto it. You can just in two clicks buy from there without leaving the environment at all and just keep scrolling. You just shopped it. That to me was amazing. And if that is being developed further so that there are no kinks and the user experience is fantastic.

[00:49:50] Jeanette Okwu: I think there’s, it’s going to make a big difference. And everything. So 

[00:49:56] Jessy Grossman: I don’t know if people talk about that, right? Like not enough people talk about it. It’s, it’s hugely important, which is just the user experience. And so like you can be doing the best job in the world as a strategist on an influencer campaign.

[00:50:15] Jessy Grossman: But if like, there’s a. Bug in the site. Or like, it’s just like, it’s not a seamless experience or I don’t know. I’ve seen silly things where like, it’s just a weirdly high shipping fee. You know, people are accustomed to free shipping, which is always, of course, just built into the price that nothing’s ever free.

[00:50:34] Jessy Grossman: But you know, these little things that they’re just, they’re not that little, it can interfere with that ultimate. conversion. So just thinking about those things as well, like as a strategist, like if I were like day one, I would go and make a purchase and see what that experience is like before you do all of this work, just to make sure that it’s seamless.

[00:50:56] Jessy Grossman: And also like, Email marketing after you make a sale, you know, keeping them in your funnel after there’s so much opportunity there that we’re very like blinders on focused on, you know, the influencer campaigns and there’s just more opportunities. So I have a feeling that a lot of our community would love to get in touch with you.

[00:51:19] Jessy Grossman: And of course, you’re a member of WIMS, you’re around there, but for anyone who’s listening and isn’t a member, would just love to connect with you, learn more about what you do and just say, hello, what’s the best way for them to get in touch? I 

[00:51:31] Jeanette Okwu: think the best way is always LinkedIn, Jeanette Okwu, J E A N E T T E O K W U.

[00:51:38] Jeanette Okwu: That’s the easiest. And from there we can go and do. Calls or emails 

[00:51:43] Jessy Grossman: or whatever. Perfection. So we will link that in the show notes for sure. Thank you so much for coming on. It’s always just a pleasure to catch up, pick your brain, everything, any closing words, closing remarks that you want to lead up everybody with.

[00:52:00] Jessy Grossman: Just as 

[00:52:00] Jeanette Okwu: first of all, I’m so happy that we got to catch up. I congratulate you on your WIM community. I. I see some great ladies there that I have communicated also outside of WIM, of the WIM environment. I just want our industry to take off, and be professionals because I think there’s so much potential there.

[00:52:22] Jeanette Okwu: It’s only a fraction of the advertising industry, I think like 7 percent or something. I want this to go through the roof and take over. Um, way 

[00:52:31] Jessy Grossman: more. Absolutely. Same here. I think a lot of people, most people listening do. So like, let’s keep having conversations like this so we can share that information and just make it all that it can be.

[00:52:42] Jessy Grossman: So thank you as always. A lovely catching up with you. Thank you guys for listening and we will see you next week. If you enjoyed this episode, we have to have you back. Check out our website for more ways to get involved, including online coaching. all the information you need about joining our collective.

[00:52:58] Jessy Grossman: You can check out all the information at IamWim. com. Leave us a review, or a rating, but the most important thing that we ask you to do is to share this podcast. Thanks for listening. Tune in next week.

Jeanette Okwu

As the Founder and CEO/CMO of Beyondinfluence, a content creator marketing agency, and the Managing Director DACH of Scale Digital, a specialist acquisition agency, I am bringing in over 15 years of experience in developing and implementing innovative digital marketing strategies and campaigns for global brands. I am a seasoned practitioner in influencer marketing, affiliate marketing, mobile marketing, and content creation, with a strong track record of delivering impactful results and increasing brand awareness, engagement, and conversion. I am also at the forefront of marketing and organizational framework implementation of AI in B2B and B2C businesses.

Additionally, I service as a board member, advisor, mentor, lecturer, and speaker for various organizations and initiatives. I am passionate about driving digital transformation, leveraging emerging technologies, and empowering diverse and creative talent. My mission is to help brands and creators connect and collaborate at scale, and to shape the future of digital marketing and social media.

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