ENGAGING THE POWER OF INFLUENCERS

THE rise of social media in its many varied platforms have opened the possibilities for people to connect with others in new ways. This trend has also given birth to a bevy of social media starlets who initially began on their journey as a way to express themselves.

Certainly celebrities, like singers, actors, models and socialites who tweet, make vlogs on YouTube, post on Facebook or Instagram and platforms like TikTok, Tumblr or Snapchat, have pre-existing followers from all over the world.

These global celebs can lead millions of followers – model Gigi Hadid has 51.1mil Instagram followers, singer-songwriter Taylor Swift has 127mil, while media personality Kylie Jenner reaches an even more impressive 163mil Instagram followers.

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Movers and shakers of a new era: Social media micro-influencers represent new marketing opportunities for brands to spread their words of wisdom.

 

Yet there is also a significant number of non-celebrities who attract fans simply by just being themselves, sharing their daily routines, doing what they enjoy or are really good at. Like celebrities, whatever they say or do, impacts their followers, making them social media influencers.

Take Huda Kattan, who has 41.3mil followers on Instagram through her makeup tutorials. Youtuber Cameron Dallas has 21.3mil Instagram followers just by previewing songs and running short videos. While Aussie personal trainer and entrepreneur Kayla Itsines has 12.2mil Instagram followers for her fitness videos and tips.

Most of them would own their range of merchandise, a venture that is very lucrative.

But micro-influencers, who have a smaller pool of followers, typically around 1,000 followers to about 50,000 are also a force to be reckoned with. Dedicated followers find these influencers more relatable and reliable. Fans consider them experts in their individual fields and thus more engaging.

Companies with well-known brands have come to notice this trend and they would directly sponsor or support these influencers who use these brands online or showcase them to their many viewers.

In fact, recently companies have shifted their marketing tactics by carving out larger budgets to include social influencers. In doing so, they serve up a bigger slice of the e-commerce pie to companies.

 

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From left, chief marketing officer Andrew Lee Chin Loon, chief operation officer (COO) Nicholas Ng Chor Ming, business development head Hanna Heng Yih Huei, chief technology officer Law Ming Bin and chief executive officer (CEO) Ben Wong Peng Sim during the Komaci+ launch at Zouk Kuala Lumpur on Dec 5 last year.

 

Leading micro-influencer platform Komaci Network stated that influencer marketing has become a staple element in most digital marketing strategies, with brands wanting quick, “bite-sized” digital content to help build awareness.

Komaci chief executive officer Ben Wong Peng Sim explained that interest in influencer marketing is not new: “As consumers spend more time sifting through social media for news, product tips and reviews, brands in retail, ecommerce and even B2B have felt the need to get into the influencers marketing game to generate greater awareness for their product and services.”

Influencer marketing in Asia has grown 133% since 2018 and according to influencer marketing agency Mediakix, this figure is expected to grow into a US$5bil (RM20.9bil) to US$10bil (RM41.8bil) market by 2020 worldwide.

This new upstart recently turned one-year-old in December last year with a mission to create a vibrant community for brands and influencers to collaborate in a scalable manner. It intends to break down barriers in micro-influencer engagement and provide brands and marketers direct access to over 5,000 micro-influencers locally.

Komaci’s data-driven demand-and-supply platform is backed by a sophisticated, purpose-built system linked to a proprietary data analytics hub, and equipped with best-in-class tools to connect brands with the right influencers.

This year, Komaci expects more brands to engage influencer marketing on a long-term basis, moving away from single, ad-hoc posts, to generate higher quality content and building long-lasting relationships.

Wong highlighted that micro-influencers are able to provide stronger engagement rates and deliver better return on investment (ROI).

 

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Komaci CEO Ben Wong (left) and COO Nicholas Ng during the launch of the Komaci+ platform

 

According to a report published by German statistic aggregator Statista together with Mediakix, over 45% of micro-influencer followers said they have tried something recommended by their favourite influencer. A further 26.9% said they have made purchases after seeing a post.

“One of the main challenges in influencer marketing is finding the right [one] who has an audience that already engages with its profile on those similar topics and is capable of delivering the story effectively,” Wong explained.

He added that many brands now shift towards working with micro-influencers in order to drive more social media exposure, increase brand engagement and to sell more.

“Brands and marketers are selected to work with micro-influencers, using them not just as a marketing tool, but also to gain better insights about consumers’ needs. This helps them build closer connections with target consumers,” Wong added.

Using Komaci’s platform, influencers are able to widen opportunities by connecting with brands locally and regionally, while curating authentic stories that align with the brands’ key message – sort of like a digital “word of mouth”.

A positive uptake on influencer marketing is that brands can do it in a scalable manner.

“Brands of all sizes and budgets, even the small-and-medium-sized businesses can work with micro-influencers to tell their story and build engagement,” Wong added.

Capitalising on this trend, Komaci recently introduced a self-serve micro-engagement platform that allows businesses to target suitable influencers based on the scale and budget of their marketing and brand campaign directly.

Called Komaci+ (www.komacinetwork.com), this AI-powered targeting tool lets novice and experienced marketers identify authenticated micro-influencers based on their audience demographics, such as age and gender.

The engine can also identify micro-influencers based on audience psychographics, which include interests, activities and opinions, such as dining style, gadget preferences, fashion sense, travelling behaviours and more.

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The Komaci+ tool lets businesses to target suitable influencers based on the scale and budget of their marketing and brand campaign directly.

 

This centralised management system highlights the efficacy of this platform in its management of multiple micro-influencers and the tracking of each influencer's reach.

Komaci+ is also able to furnish real-time analytics and payment transparency. Brands can access real-time campaign performance, reporting and measurement to ensure campaigns are executed effectively to drive maximum value from investments.

With the launch of Komaci+, the company is looking to expand into new key markets in Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam and Japan this year.

Komaci is a subsidiary company of ACE Media Network, which is owned by ACE Holdings Berhad, a diversified investment conglomerate.

To learn more about the world of social media influences, visit http://www.komacinetwork.com/

 

Source: https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2020/02/25/engaging-the-power-of-influencers?utm_medium=thestar&utm_source=rosnawidget&utm_campaign=20200225_Komaci

Of Course Your Results Sucked When You Chose Influencers Based On Looks Or Follower Count

The influencer industry has been dragged into the spotlight recently, thanks to a much-highlighted study that looked at engagement rates on Instagram.

With headlines summarising that “influencers are losing their influence”, the Malaysian influencer industry also took a hit. According to the study, Malaysian influencers had relatively lower engagement rates, and some news headlines have not held back, with words like “fake” and “less influential than their SEA counterparts” being thrown around.

We decided to bring up this recent issue to KOMACI, a data-driven influencer marketing platform, and asked for the team’s thoughts.

“We don’t agree with the statement that influencers in Malaysia are ‘less influential’ because Malaysia is a multi-cultured country, and we are very diverse, from race to language, to culture. That complexity and the size of our population could be one of the reasons the metrics are low,” said Ben Wong, the CEO of KOMACI. 

But the issue goes a little bit deeper than that, and the team believes that how many of us see the industry is inherently flawed.
 

The More The Merrier… Right?

“The perception has always been, the higher the followers the better it is, however that’s not always the case,” explained Ben.

In the year that they’ve been active in this region, the KOMACI team has seen it happen time and time again.

“The misunderstanding is that the larger the follower count, the better the influencers get. Or a pretty face has better engagement,” said Nicholas, the COO of KOMACI.

He also explained that some clients confuse social influencers as universal ambassadors, when they should instead be looking for people who are relevant for their brands. 

“You can’t run KOL (key opinion leader) campaigns as if you’re running on traditional media,” he said.

KOMACI has been preaching the same message from day one, and they’re repeating it again: relevance is key.

“It’s all about targeting the right influencers to deliver a relevant content, and also creatively delivering their communication messages through the medium of influencer marketing,” shared Nicholas.
 

Making Data The King

It’s all talk without real-life examples, so KOMACI gave us one of how targeting the right influencer allowed an advertiser to reach their target market.

“For a project with an airline, the platform was able to identify influencers who had travelled to a few ASEAN destinations, without having to send the influencers to the actual location again. We only had 3 days to gather the right people, and the platform was able to do that by getting those influencers to post ‘throwback’ posts, and then bring in the airline’s campaign. This was both efficient and relevant, and also helped the airline save cost,” said the team.

What exactly does looking at data mean though?

Besides the total follower count, engagement, and content niche, KOMACI recommended that potential advertisers should look at the influencer audience demographicrelevance of their overall content, and authenticity of their followers.

On their own platform, KOMACI also has a rating system, and where influencers are rated in terms of their overall performance: from response, to quality of work, and delivery of timeline. 

“In fact, if any influencers fail to deliver, the platform is able to quickly replace them with another influencer,” said Nicholas.

Also, this helps to address any concerns that micro-influencers in particular aren’t very professional, and that it’s a hassle to work with them.

KOMACI’s newest module  to their platform, KOMACI+, divides influencers in category types (e.g fitness, foodie, home and living) and you can also look at individual accounts and see what are their most engaged posts, which will help you decide if they are suitable for your campaign.

Other data points include word clouds that show you the hashtags that the influencer uses the most, estimated cost per post for campaigns, brand sentiments (e.g. whether the comments are positive or negative, how relevant are the comments), averages like counts, and average comments per post.

On top of their current role helping agencies manage their influencer campaigns, KOMACI envisions KOMACI+ as a space where clients can effortlessly buy into influencer marketing. 

“A lot of brands would imagine that influencer marketing is expensive, but we’re making it more affordable now,” said Nicholas.

“For marketers or brands out there, we will be a full-fledged, self-serving platform across Southeast Asia. At the moment, KOMACI is present in Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, and Cambodia. Being a platform, expanding and scaling to other countries is easier as long as we find the right partner.”

“And as for influencers that join us on KOMACI, we will have activities, workshops, collaborations within the community to cultivate influencer marketing as a whole.”

The platform is set to officially launch in Q3 2019, with the beta being open to public by August 2019.
 

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Going back to the study mentioned at the beginning of this piece, Nicholas could only conclude, “The growth of social ‘influencers’ peaked too fast, to the point that we sort of forgot the basics. Everybody wants to be one nowadays; you could, but there’s more to just growing your number of followers.”

“Influencers needs to know that the baggage that they carry reflects on their audience and being engaged with them is the key. But with the changes in the algorithm of reach, influencers will need to find ways to manoeuvre around it.”

And with changes happening once again on Instagram with likes being hidden from posts, the KOMACI team had this to say for the future of their industry, “Engagement will definitely still be the key measurement. It may not come from likes in future, but we believe that there’ll be a replacement for it. Even then, with data, you still can pretty much know who your audiences are.”

 

Source: https://vulcanpost.com/670342/komaci-plus-influencer-marketing-platform-update/

Ace Media Network launches micro-influencer platform, KOMACI

Ace Media Network, one of Malaysia’s key players in the digital media, content and influencer marketing has launched KOMACI, a new micro-influencer platform that works faster, better and harder for brand marketers and influencers. KOMACI delivers focused, cut through influencer solutions backed by a robust app based management system and smart tools for effective campaign implementation, real-time tracking and data analytics.

“Influencer marketing is becoming a prerequisite for a lot a brands today.However, effective use of this platform essentially boils down to zeroing in on the right influencers for each brand. Relevance is everything. KOMACI allows users to sift and match like minded influencers and brand within minutes,”said Ben Wong, Chief Executive Officer of Ace Media Network. 

“KOMACI is largely focused on curating a diverse portfolio of micro-influencers because like brands, influencers come in many different shapes and sizes. Cultivating micro influencers allows us to more effectively segment our influencers in an intelligent and value-added manner. So we can shape precise, relevant and goal specific strategies to get brand or campaign message across loud and clear,” added Wong.

Currently, KOMACI features 3000 local influencers that cover a wide cross-section of lifestyle categories and locations,”

Micro influencers who sign up with the KOMACI application can enjoy a “one-stop” shop for brand sponsorship opportunities that match up with their profiles, personal interests and audience. In addition, this smart mobile tool helps influencers track the status of their brand sponsorships, assignments, archives their performance records and has a built-in payment feature that automatically pays the influencers once their postings are approved. This is a big plus since this means influencers don’t have to wait 60 days from the end of a campaign to be reimbursed. The KOMACI app also provides a statement of accounts so influencers can easily keep a track of their earnings.

“In a pilot project for Air Asia’s Buy Now, Fly Now campaign, we were able to gear up within 3 days of receiving the client brief to deliver a solution featuring 30 influencers – a fast turnaround campaign that generated over 1.7million exposures with an above average engagement rate of 1.39%,” concluded Wong. 


Source: https://marketingmagazine.com.my/ace-media-network-launches-micro-influencer-platform-komaci/

 

ABOUT ACE HOLDINGS BERHAD

ACE Holdings Berhad is an investment holdings company and the ultimate parent to the entities in the ACE Group of Companies. Since 1992, ACE Holdings has built a reputation for pioneering innovative business models, opening up new markets and categories, and pursuing mutually beneficial collaborations with renowned multinational corporations. This is made possible by its vastly talented and experienced team, who are dedicated towards evaluating and carrying out investment strategies founded on five market sustainability pillars – high-growth enterprises, high-yielding capital market instruments, well-defined strategies, sophisticated financial modelling tools, and market innovations.