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Practical guide for a successful influencer marketing strategy – Fashion and clothing sector

Table of contents

Message from the CEO of mmode

Thanks to our partner Global Affairs Canada and the expertise of the Made in agency, the mmode Cluster is proud to contribute to the Practical Guide for a Successful Influencer Marketing Strategy – Fashion and Clothing Sector, which will be a valuable tool for businesses in our sector that want to rely on influencer marketing in their export strategies.

The mandate of mmode—the Metropolitan Fashion Cluster—is to contribute to the growth and outreach of Quebec’s fashion industry in local and international markets. As a key element in commercial strategies for creative businesses in our sector, influencer marketing has a range of innovative possibilities for market development.

What businesses in our ecosystem provide the consumer goes beyond a consumer good: they provide a brand image that is well defined and has a strong history. Influencers are an important vector for communicating the intention of a brand to a target audience in a given territory.

Debbie Zakaib
mmode – the Metropolitan Fashion Cluster

1. Introduction

The fashion sector involves many actors, who form a complex ecosystem. It is made up of a multitude of activities that take place throughout the value and supply chains, including creation, design, manufacturing, distribution, representation, marketing, and retail sales activities. The manufacturing, wholesale and retail industries are all part of this ecosystem.

This 2019 Practical Guide is presented in its first version to help Canadian businesses in the fashion and clothing sector use influencer marketing better. First of all, the guide presents influencer marketing in the United States, supported by key figures and data. It then describes the various existing platforms and tactics used in influencer marketing to detail the step-by-step creation of a good strategy. Finally, the Guide will provide tools that will help businesses to create their own strategies and measure their impact, along with case studies, food for thought, and suggestions for tackling future challenges.

1.1 Background

Businesses are increasingly using the Web and social networks to introduce and promote their products. Whether by AdWords, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and many others, there is no shortage of choices for online advertising. However, an increasing number of consumers are using ad blockers, which inhibit advertisements. Furthermore, it must now be acknowledged that content is king: consumers are crazy for photos, videos, and podcasts. Content consumption is increasing exponentially. In that context, using influencers to create on-brand messages can be a very profitable initiative.

Influencer marketing has become an indispensable approach for both small and large businesses. Having a strong online presence can increase a business’s effectiveness and productivity while reducing its marketing costs. The possibilities are immense, and this approach is taking off for Canadian businesses in the fashion and clothing sector that are seeking to increase their exports, mainly to the United States. However, influencer marketing needs to be an integral part of your marketing strategy, from the very outset!

1.2 Influencer marketing: definition

Influencer marketing relies on the fame of Web personalitiesFootnote 1 (not inaccessible celebrities) in order to transmit a promotional or informative message. The advantage of these influencers is that they have succeeded in creating an engaged community with which they are connected every day. They are a part of the daily lives of their subscribers, who trust their advice. The impact of influencers is thus immense, particularly because consumers are increasingly blocking Web ads by using ad blockers.

The influencer marketing approach consists first of identifying the individuals who create conversations that have an effect on brands, products and services, and then developing a relationship with those individuals in order to establish collaborative agreements.

Marketing initiatives that include influencer recruitment can be used for various purposes: launching a product, increasing its visibility, expanding its online community, developing products or markets, and so on.

By using influencer marketing as an approach in their marketing strategy, Canadian businesses can:

1.3 Why work with influencers?

Influencers (bloggers, Instagrammers, YouTubers, etc.) who specialize in fashion and clothing have for years been major sources of inspiration and information for consumers. They play a role in overall brand perception or how people wear clothing, as well as in decision-making by related purchasers. In that context, influencer marketing strategies provide many advantages, including the following:

High-quality goods and services from Canada are in demand; online luxury boutiques (SSENSE, NET-A-PORTER, etc.) have a strong presence on the Web. There is a clear interest from consumers, but deciding to engage in influencer marketing and working with American influencers is not without challenges and risks. While Canadian businesses very clearly understand traditional marketing, they do not grasp the advantages of influencer marketing and the use of local influencers quite as well. Canadian businesses should first recognize that the American market is extremely competitive, and that using a more targeted marketing approach may be key to their success in the United States.

In this guide, you will find a presentation on influencer marketing in the United States and all the steps for creating an influencer marketing strategy, particularly the essential elements to know before adopting this strategy, such as existing social media platforms and tactics used in the field, as well as advice for implementing a good influencer strategy. You will also find a list of practical tools, case studies, and a lexicon of key terms used in the industry.

2. Overview of influencer marketing in the United States

Influencer marketing has skyrocketed in the past 10 years, and is embraced by the heads of fashion brands, particularly in the United States. According to a study conducted by Simply Measured in June 2017, more than half of brand executives think that influencers are “essential” to their social efforts.Footnote 2

This reference guide is useful for understanding the main mechanisms that govern the use of influencer marketing to develop local and international markets. Local specificities can be applied to types of content, the use of other platforms, the choice of influencers, regulation and so on, but the principles remain the same, in the United States and elsewhere.

2.1 Growing budgets

WhoSay, an influencer marketing business, found that 70% of American agencies and brand marketing specialists surveyed in November 2017 predicted budget increases for 2018. In addition, 18.6% of American marketing specialists who participated in the Linqia survey expected to spend at least $100,000 US per influencer marketing program in 2018, an increase of 13.1% over 2017.Footnote 3

In the more specific sector of fashion, luxury and cosmetics, close to 80% of American professionals stated that they had influencer campaigns in place in 2017, an increase of 13% over the previous year.Footnote 4 The report also revealed that 22% of professionals who had not worked with influencers in 2017 attributed that—in 52% of responses—to budget constraints.

2.2 Target audiences for campaigns

Figure 1 - What is your target audience?

Figure 1 - What is your target audience?
Figure 1: Text version
Between 24 and 38 (Millenials)76.4
Between 39 and 53 (Generation X)19.8
Between 6 and 23 (Generation Z)3.1
Between 54 and 72 (Baby Boomers)0.7

Influencer marketing can be used to reach various target audiences and age categories.

However, 76.4% of brand executives stated that their target audience is mainly the millennial generation (24-38 years old).Footnote 5 (See figure 1)

2.3 Effectiveness of influencer marketing campaigns

Are influencer campaigns effective? The answer is yes. Studies have found that influencer marketing is a good tool for promoting brand awareness, and also for building customer loyalty and boosting sales.

2.4 Main uses of influencer campaigns

Figure 2 - Use scenarios

Figure 2 - Use scenarios
Figure 2 - Text version
User ScenariosPercentage
Product launches41.6
Content promotions24.5
Corporate announcements1.4

Influencer marketing can be used for various goals, including product launches, events, promotion activities, and announcements.

Some 42% of professionals stated that product launches were the most successful scenario for which they used influencer campaigns.Footnote 6 (See figure 2)

2.5 Types of influencers preferred by brands

Micro-, macro- or mega-influencer? That question comes up frequently when it comes to choosing the campaign’s influencer(s). The following are the preferences of professionals in the fashion, luxury and cosmetics sector:

2.6 Platforms preferred by brands

Figure 3 - Preferred platforms

Figure 3 - Preferred platforms
Figure 3 - Text version

In the fashion, cosmetics and luxury sector, the platform that is preferred by brand specialists remains Instagram (35.8%), followed by Facebook (16.3%), blogs (13.1%), and YouTube (12.4%).Footnote 7 (See figure 3)

3. What you need to know before starting

For businesses, especially SMEs, adopting influencer marketing is an issue of scale. The following sections present several important factors to know before engaging in this approach.

3.1 Understanding who influencers are

Influencers are Web personalities who create original content for their communities and generate many interactions. They have gained a great deal of fame and benefit from it (see Introduction – ‘Why work with influencers?’ section), which lets them reach and influence a large number of Internet users.

The contribution of an influencer can thus be an advantage of scale for a business that wants to improve awareness of its brand or its products, all for a lower price than traditional television advertising, for example.

Inspiration: examples of New York influencers

  • Blair Eadie
    • Over 1 million subscribers
    • Mainly very colourful looks, high-end brands and high fashion
    • See her Instagram account
  • Tess Christine
    • Over 700,000 subscribers
    • Wears affordable brands (Mango, Urban Outfitters, etc.)
    • See her Instagram account
  • Sai De Silva
    • Over 299,000 subscribers
    • Mother-daughter fashion account, a mix of high-end brands and more affordable but still very stylish brands
    • See her Instagram account
  • Emily Luciano

Who can work with influencers?

More and more businesses want to take advantage of the opportunities provided by influencer marketing. The reason for this enthusiasm is simple: some 70% of millennials rely on the recommendations of influencers before making a purchase, whether online or in a store.Footnote 8

The good news is that all businesses (start-ups, medium or large) can take their first steps in influencer marketing. There are now many influencers (from micros to megas) who can work with all manner of businesses and their Web communication efforts.

Before starting, it is important to take the time to create an upstream strategy and choose the right influencers (see section 4). We strongly suggest using the services of a specialized influencer marketing agency.

Starting off right with fashion influencers

#1: The most often used expressions

  • DIY: Acronym for ‘do it yourself’. The influencer presents something that is achievable for you, such as personalizing an item of clothing, an object, or a homemade beauty product.
  • From day to night: This is when influencers provide tutorials on dressing, hairstyling and make-up for the day and how to then make a few adjustments for the evening.
  • GRWM (Get Ready With Me): Often using a video clip format, influencers invite their subscribers to get ready at the same time as them. This may include waking up, meals or make-up, along with the choice of clothing.
  • Haul: These videos are very popular with vloggers, YouTubers and Instagrammers. They unpackage their purchases (cosmetics, clothing, decorative items...) and present them on camera, mentioning the brands and shops, and sometimes the prices.
  • Lookbook: An article or video in which an influencer presents a series of ideal clothing styles for a given season, a particular occasion (for example, back to school), or a specific geographical area.
  • Meet-up: Events organized by influencers where they can meet their subscribers. It is often an opportunity for a signing session. Meet-ups can also be an opportunity to promote a brand (for example, the meet-up can take place in a clothing store).
  • OOTD (Outfit of the Day): Influencers present their top outfit of the day.
  • OOTN (Outfit of the Night): Influencers present their top outfit of the night.
  • Review: Influencers give their opinions on products, clothing, events or brands. This may be presented in the form of a blog article, a video, and so on.
  • Try-on: Influencers try on clothing or accessories on camera.
  • Current favourite/favourites of the month: Influencers present their products, items, clothing or other favourites for that day, month or season.
  • Unboxing: Influencers record the unpackaging of their products (bought or received from brand specialists), and comment on them.
  • What to pack: Influencers show their subscribers what to bring in their suitcase, whether for a weekend or for a longer trip.
  • What’s in my bag: Influencers show their subscribers what is in their purses, travel bags and so on.
  • Boyfriend (or other person, such as a grandfather) buys/rates my outfit: A situation in which an outside person (such as a boyfriend) buys or rates clothing.
  • 3 ways to wear: Through an article or a video, influencers explain how to wear clothing or accessories in three different ways.

* Each type of content mentioned above can be adjusted based on the month, season, occasion, etc.

#2: Five popular hashtags (March 2019)

  • #ootd or #ootn
  • #nycfashion
  • #nycblogger
  • #fridaymood or #mondaymood
  • #under50 or #under100

3.2 Assessing the four key platforms

Between Facebook’s likes, Instagram hearts, private messages, instant videos, and so many other possibilities, it can be difficult to make a choice. Here is a summary table of the four most used platforms in the fashion sector. What are they? Who uses them? What types of content are available? What are their pros and cons?

Table 1: Comparative table of Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest

PresentationThe oldest social medium; it is established in the United States and around the world.Owned by Facebook.
Very high engagement rate. Range of functionalities, mainly available on mobile only.
Owned by Google. Second most-used search engine in the world.Allows for favourite ‘pins’ to be displayed, including media, images, or video (with or without description) from outside sources.
Monthly active users (MAUs) in 2018
  • Europe: 377 million
  • North America: 241 million
  • Asia: 873 million
  • Rest of the world: 705 million
  • 1 billion, 20% of whom are in the United States
  • 1.9 billion, 20% of whom are in the United States
  • 200 million (number of members)
Who uses it?
  • Everyone
  • Users under 25 spend an average of 32 minutes per day on the application (Instagram, September 2017)
  • 35% are between 25 and 34, 17% between 35 and 44, and 8% are 45 and older.
  • 150 million users use Instagram Stories every day
  • 2/3 of users go on YouTube several times per day
  • 48% of them are between 25 and 49
  • 49% are women; 40% are parents
  • 85% users are women
  • 30% of users are between 25 and 34
  • Time spent on the network: 16 minutes per month
  • 2 billion monthly searches
Used by Internet users for:
  • Consulting their feed to stay in contact with friends
  • Sharing news, photos, etc.
  • Organizing events
  • Using brand customer services
  • Selfies
  • Sharing slices of life in a unique, artistic or inspiring way
  • Finding inspiration, through friends, brands or influencers
  • Watching videos
  • Following YouTubers
  • Listening to music
  • Adding videos
  • Being inspired
  • Finding new ideas for looks and styles, and saving them
Available content
  • Photos
  • Videos
  • Event creation
  • Public groups
  • Private groups
  • Facebook Live
  • Photos
  • Short videos
  • IGTV (longer videos)
  • Instagram Live 
  • Creation of ‘stories’ (instant 15-second videos that disappear after 24 hours)
  • Choice of filters for recorded videos and photos
  • Short- and long-format videos
  • Inspiring photos and photo montages
  • Short videos
Advertising?Available and increasingly necessary to be seen.Available and increasingly necessary to be seen.Available; called TrueViewAvailable; called “promoted pins”
Pros and consPros:
  • Good loyalty tool
  • Very specific and advanced targeting
  • Paid advertising (in CPC or CPM) to facilitate distribution and visibility of your brand
  • Ability to track number of followers and access to a wide range of statistics
  • Organizing contests and promotions
  • Need to regularly add content
  • Paid advertising required in order to be seen (poor organic reach)
  • Need a resource person for management, as it is important to respond to clients
  • Accurate digital showcase
  • Easy to use
  • Numerous filters available to create high-quality photos
  • Direct interaction with community
  • Reliable statistics provided by the application
  • Numerous functions available: ‘Swipe-up’ possible from influencer ‘stories’ to your site, engagement surveys, etc.
  • Need to regularly add content
  • Limited profile (single URL, little room for information on the business or brand)
  • Account management from mobile device
  • Paid advertising required in order to be seen (poor organic reach)
  • Creating reactions through videos
  • Format used in increasing numbers
  • Costs for creating a high-quality video
  • Very visual, therefore ideal for showing off products
  • Very specific and oriented based on areas of interest
  • Business accounts possible
  • Need to regularly add content
  • Awareness
  • Brand capital
  • Intention to purchase
  • Traffic
  • Brand loyalty
  • Gaining new customers
  • Awareness
  • Brand capital
  • Intention to purchase
  • Brand loyalty
  • Awareness
  • Brand capital
  • Intention to purchase
  • Gaining new customers
  • Brand capital
  • Commitment
  • Traffic
  • Sales
Key performance indicatorsNumber of shares, comments, likes, impressions, video viewsNumber of subscribers, video views, comments, likesNumber of likes, comments, hashtags used, impressionsNumber of ‘re-pins’, clicks, and comments

Want to go further?

Other platforms to discover:

  • TikTok: Application and social network for sharing short videos.
  • Twitter: Microblogging social network that allows users to send short messages—called ‘tweets’— for free.
  • Snapchat: Application for sharing photos and videos that are available to their recipient only for about ten seconds or so; the files are then deleted.
  • Twitch: Social video platform used initially by video game enthusiasts, but is increasingly popular in other industries.
  • YouNow: Free platform that allows users to look at, appreciate and make live videos.
  • 21Buttons: A social platform for fashion lovers in which users can share their looks and win money.
  • Lookbook: Internet clothing style portal

Another way of working with influencers

  • Affiliate platforms (RewardStyle, etc.): Affiliation is a model that sets the influencer’s compensation based on sales made at a merchant site to visitors from the influencer’s site.

3.3 Optimizing various influencer marketing tactics

Your choice of tactics is essential to successfully carrying out your campaigns. This section will show you the various existing tactics for an influencer strategy. You can use many of them at the same time or one after the other.

3.3.1. One-time campaign


As the name shows, this tactic will involve one or more influencers for one occasion in order to promote a brand or product. One of the most current forms is product placement—for example, in a blog article or YouTube video—but it can also be a simple event announcement on the influencers’ social media accounts.

Like ongoing campaigns, one-time campaigns are planned, organized and compensated methods of collaboration. Accordingly, sending or providing a free product or sample is not considered to be a real campaign or a collaboration activity.

Pros of one-time campaigns:

Cons of one-time campaigns:

3.3.2. Ongoing campaign


This tactic introduces the concept of the ongoing campaign, which includes ongoing optimization work and possible one-off or seasonal adjustment work (sales, events, etc.) This type of campaign encourages the use of work plans that are more sustained over the long term. This includes ad placement, co-creation with influencers, and recruiting an influencer to be a brand ambassador.

Pros of ongoing campaigns

Cons of ongoing campaigns:

3.3.3. Product placement


In a marketing campaign context, this tactic consists of placing the product in various platforms, such as YouTube or blogs, or broadcasting it over social media through Facebook postings, ‘looks’ on Instagram or ‘haul’ videos on YouTube. Content that is not exclusive to the brand is often included in more global content.

Pros of product placement:

Cons of product placement:

3.3.4. Product sending


This technique is one of the most often used. These are massive product sending campaigns (which can also involve micro-influencers). Businesses send out a product or range of products to influencers so that they can test them and talk about them with their communities.

Pros of product sending:

Cons of product sending:

3.3.5. Sponsored content


The sponsored content formula can have different meanings in the field of digital marketing. It can mean an amplified post—that is, the brand’s business pays the social network so that the post will surpass the organic visibility algorithms and be displayed on the news feed of an audience that is defined and targeted beforehand by the business. It is thus possible to promote—or ‘boost’—the visibility of products by buying ad space in different formats (carousels, postings and sponsored tweets, video formats, pins, etc.) based on the platform.

In an influencer marketing context, sponsored content means a sponsored social publication (tweets, photos, videos or sponsored article). This is the result of a partnership between the brand’s company and an influencer which promotes the product on its pages in exchange for compensation. In order to respect ethical and transparency standards, the influencer is required to indicate that the posting, publication, photo or video is sponsored.

Pros of sponsored content:

Con of sponsored content:

3.3.6. Media event invitation


A media event is standard practice in the world of journalism, and influencers are increasingly invited to such events, which generally involve product launches.

Pros of media events:

Cons of media events:

3.3.7. Participating in photo opportunities


The brand’s company invites one or more influencers to take part in a photo opportunity (photo op).

Pros of photo opportunities:

Cons of photo opportunities:

3.3.8. IGTV format


IGTV is the new video functionality launched in June 2018 by Instagram to compete with YouTube. It allows for vertical and long-format videos to be uploaded (maximum length: one hour).

Pros of IGTV:

Cons of IGTV:

3.3.9. Facebook or Instagram Live


Facebook or Instagram Live allows users to interact live with subscribers through a smartphone. Users can interact in real time by writing comments or using ‘live’ reactions by clicking on one of the emoticons (Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad, or Angry).

Pros of Live

Cons of Live

3.3.10. Contest


A contest is a promotional technique that consists of offering the members of an influencer’s community the chance to win various prizes if they answer a question, tag one or more friends, or follow the brand on social media.

Pros of contests

Cons of contests

3.3.11. Promotional codes


Promotional codes intended for influencers are codes that allow for a price reduction and are used as part of influencer marketing operations. Each influencer can be assigned a unique promo code.

Pros of promotional codes

Using promotional codes lets you:

Cons of promotional codes

A few tips for amplifying your tactics

  • Media amplification: Sponsoring influencer postings can give the brand greater reach. That can be a few dollars very well spent.
  • Sharing the screen with an Instagrammer during a live video: Not many people know that you can share the screen with an influencer during a live video. The impact? Your communities—both yours and theirs—will receive an alert from the live video that is in progress.

4. How to work with influencers

Let’s cut to the chase. Thinking of using influencer marketing for your content is an advantageous solution if you know how to find the appropriate influencers for your brand and to create an effective communication strategy. The following sections describe the six essential steps for achieving that.

4.1 Define your goals

Influencer marketing is a very effective method for amplifying the results of content marketing. However, before starting, it is important to determine your end goals, so that you can address your influencers with your goals in mind.

Some examples of possible goals are:

Before making contact with influencers, be sure that you have clearly determined beforehand what you want to ask of them, based on your goals. For example, if you want influencers to participate in your blog’s content, be sure that you give them enough information about you, such as a detailed description of your audience, a list of the topics that may interest them, and the tone that your readers are accustomed to. Another example: If you want them to share your content, you will need to provide them with the appropriate images and message, along with a good reason for sharing. Giving them free products is rarely enough nowadays. Specify all the benefits they will receive from working with you.

Always keep your goals in mind. This will make it easier to tell influencers the direction to take and to get the best collaboration.

4.2 Identifying the appropriate influencers

Finding the right influencer and maintaining relations can sometimes be difficult, but it is well worth the effort. To find new potential collaborators, you can contact a specialized agency (Made in, IZEA, Influicity and INF Influencer Agency, etc.) or use the tips found in this Guide.

4.2.1. Who are your clients?

In order to find the appropriate influencers for your marketing strategies, you need to have a clear understanding of your clients’ needs, goals and aspirations.

Ask yourself:

The answers to those questions will help you to identify the people who will really influence your clients.

4.2.2. Types of influencers

Nowadays, the industry benefits from many influencers. However, bear in mind that successful influence is not necessarily synonymous with popularity, as it can be context- or topic-driven. The main categories of influencers are as follows:

Table 2: Comparative table of types of influencers

CategoryWho are they?Associated goalsPros/Cons
  • Over 1 million subscribers
  • Often public personalities who are known from somewhere other than the Web (music, TV, etc.)
  • Awareness
  • Brand credibility
  • High visibility
  • Very expensive
  • Not necessarily experts in creating content
  • 300,000 to 1 million subscribers
  • Major Web personality, well recognized and has been creating content for a long time (such as Garance Doré)
  • Awareness
  • Brand credibility
  • Quality of created content
  • High visibility
  • Long-time loyal communities
  • Expensive
  • 100,000 to 300,000 subscribers
  • Awareness
  • Quality of created content
  • High visibility
  • Lower rate of engagement with the community
  • 10,000 to 100,000 subscribers
  • Awareness
  • Content creation
  • Good visibility
  • Pretty strong engagement rate
  • In high demand
  • Affordable
  • 1,000 to 10,000 subscribers
  • Content creation
  • Sales
  • Local or niche awareness
  • Very closely engaged with the community
  • Affordable
  • Approachable
  • Less visibility

4.2.3. Criteria for determining the perfect influencer for your brand

When trying to find the perfect influencer for your brand, you need to categorize influencers based on three main indicators:

You can make a list of your influencers in an Excel spreadsheet and assess each of them based on these three criteria. Through that classification, which considers all of their content on various platforms (blogs, YouTube, Instagram, etc.), you can easily pick out those who fit with your campaign and rule out the rest.

Best practices

  • Choose influencers whose images and comments are in keeping with your brand’s message: take the time to look at their news feed and their ‘stories’, read their articles and all of their postings.
  • Collaborate with several influencers at the same time; this will let you reach several communities; analyze and optimize your strategy based on the results.

4.3 Communicating effectively with influencers

Influencers are increasingly in demand. According to a recent study, influencers answer only one in four requests.Footnote 9 So, how do you know which is the right one for you?

4.3.1. Take your time and pique their interest

First, gain the influencer’s interest and inspire them to collaborate with you. Explain your mission, vision and values. This will allow you to humanize your business and pique their curiosity.

4.3.2. Personalize your message

Don’t give the impression that you are mass emailing. Explain why you chose them and why you would like to work with them specifically. Do you like their aesthetics? Their photos? Tell them!

4.3.3. Tell the influencer what’s in it for them

Emphasize the quality and relevance of the content you are offering to create with them as added value for their subscribers. However, keep in mind that most influencers now no longer accept free partnerships or ones that involve a simple exchange of products. Tell them flat out how you are willing to commit to them financially.

If they don’t answer your emails, private-message them through Instagram or Facebook.

4.3.4. Communicate in a professional manner

Let’s go! The influencers you chose want to collaborate with you! Be sure to provide them with all the material necessary for creating their content:

What is a deliverable?

There are several ways to work with an influencer (see section 3.3). Examples of possible deliverables are:

  • 2 Instagram posts, including 1 carousel of 3 photos
  • 1 IGTV + 1 ‘story’ to announce the IGTV video + 1 unpacking video on YouTube
  • 1 Instagram post + 1 Facebook post + 1 blog article
  • 1 Instagram ‘story’ with a promo code + 1 Instagram post

Be sure to precisely describe the deliverables in the contract between you and the influencer.

4.3.5. Build a lasting relationship of trust

Once you have a well-established relationship with the influencer, be sure to maintain it by:

Frequently used terms

  • Media kit: Package of information that lets a business or agency assess the characteristics of an influencer. It includes the history, development, audience profile (size and description), rates, a list of key advertisers, and case studies.
  • Social media engagement: The likelihood of consumers to interact with an influential person or a brand. The engagement can be reactions to posts about the brand, and thus can be measured using an engagement rate (total number of interactions to a post divided by the number of individuals exposed to that post). The engagement can be positive or negative for the brand.
  • Interactions: Actions of communities with respect to a post on social media or a blog article. They include likes, comments, shares, favourites, re-postings, clicks, and views.

4.3.6. Define the influencers’ compensation

As we have seen previously, being a modern-day influencer is a real living. They are called upon every day by numerous brand representatives, and compensation for collaboration has become almost mandatory.

What is the average influencer compensation for a collaboration?

There is no set price for work done by influencers. However, you can estimate the cost of a post by looking at various factors. First, ask an influencer for his media kit and his rates for the deliverables you would like him to produce as part of a partnership with you.

Take Instagram, for example. According to AdweekFootnote 10 , the cost of a post is estimated by calculating it at a rate of $100 per 10,000 subscribers. However, based on other factors, that cost can vary. For example:

Other factors:

Frequently used terms

  • CPM (cost per thousand impressions): This corresponds to the cost for every thousand times an ad or post appears in a subscriber’s news feed. Each time an influencer’s post appears in the feed of its subscribers corresponds to one impression. We recommend calculating and comparing the post CPM for each influencer by using the following formula: cost of the post/number of impressions x 1,000.
  • Engagement rate: This corresponds to the total number of interactions (likes + comments + shares)/number of subscribers. This rate lets you see the level of subscriber interaction for the post sponsored by your product or brand, and thus be informed about the resonance of the post with the influencer’s audience. To better assess your own performance, we recommend comparing the engagement rate of your posts with the average engagement rate for the influencer’s last 10 posts.
  • CPE (cost per engagement): The cost of each interaction with the post (likes, comments, shares), calculated using the cost of the post/number of total engagements. We recommend comparing the CPE of each influencer over the course of the campaign to assess the performance of posts based on the costs of each one.
  • CPV (cost per view): In the context of a sponsored video, this corresponds to the cost of each view generated. CPV is then calculated using the following formula: cost of the video/number of views.
  • CPC (cost per click): This corresponds to the cost of each click generated by the sponsored content partnership. CPC is calculated using the following formula: cost of the post/number of clicks. For example, the number of clicks on a link in a Facebook post or an Instagram story or the number of swipe-ups that redirect traffic to your Web site.
  • CPA (cost per acquisition): This corresponds to the cost of each sale generated by an influencer. It is calculated using the following formula: cost of the post/number of sales generated. In order to calculate the CPA, you need to use the personalized Google Analytics URLs (see section 4.4) or promotional codes that will let you attribute each sale to the right influencer.

Influencers generally provide rates based on a package that also includes the creation of content and organic distribution of content to their community by posting them on their social platforms. It is then up to you to ensure that the expected CPE, CPV or CPC corresponds to your performance objectives.

4.3.7. Signing contracts

Some businesses see contracts in a negative light and think that that they can be an obstacle to collaborating with an influencer. However, contracts are essential to protect you and the influencer, and keep a situation that was initially enticing from turning into a nightmare.

The following are items to include in a contract to ensure that you have a trouble-free campaign:

4.4 Measure the results of your campaigns

Do you want to invest in influencer marketing? Be sure that it is worth your effort by measuring the effectiveness of your campaign.

4.4.1. Before launching your campaign

4.4.2. After launching your campaign

Advertising and competition laws

Keep in mind that, like in Canada, American federal regulations on advertising and competition will apply to both your business and the influencers with whom you choose to work. If the rules are not followed, either by you or the influencer, you may be held responsible for the violation. The key word is transparency.

When you do business with influencers, be sure that they:

clearly state that they have been compensated to present your product or brand (examples of hashtags: #ad, #sponsorship, #sponsor)

report any compensation in each post (whether on Instagram or in a blog article)

report that the product was received as a gift (examples of hashtags: #gift, #gifted, #produitreçu)

do not make any false or misleading statements

5. Tools for building your campaigns

At last, you are ready to set out on the adventure of influencer marketing. Check out a few free tools that will assist you throughout your campaigns and help you to maximize performance:

6. Case studies

6.1 J3L Lingerie

Jeanne & Laurence
Owners of J3L Lingerie
Jeanne: 514-318-2593/Laurence: 514-799-1620

The business

J3L Lingerie was founded in 2018. The business is committed to the inclusive fashion movement. Its two founders, Jeanne and Laurence, offer lingerie that advocates body diversity, with models who range from XS to 5XL. J3L Lingerie is sold exclusively online and is present in Canada, the United States and France.

Their influencer campaign in the United States


Jeanne and Laurence chose to use the Instagram social network and to benefit from its reach to make their brand known. They chose influencers who agree with their cause: plus-sized women with a message to send.

The owners chose very short campaigns, which they call “pop-up campaigns”.

They also chose to work on product exchange-style campaigns. They contacted around 50 influencers.


Persons responsible for the campaign

The two owners, Jeanne and Laurence.

Number of American influencers who participated in the campaign

Between 5 and 10 influencers, most of which have fewer than 30,000 subscribers.

Budget invested

Around $500, including products and shipping costs.

Their main obstacles


Their advice

6.2 Katherine Karambelas


The business

Under the Katherine Karambelas emblem, we find high-end Quebec jewelry and a wonderful family history. Launched 10 years ago, the brand underwent a repositioning in 2015 to then become Katherine Karambelas. The business now has around 150 points of sale across Canada and the United States and also sells its collection online through its Web site. Their difference? Unique jewelry that can be worn both day and night.

Their influencer campaigns in Canada


For Faith, one of the owners of Katherine Karambelas, social media are the future of marketing. This is why the business has been collaborating with influencers for the past five years.

The business has developed two types of campaigns:


Persons responsible for the campaign

Number of Canadian influencers who participated in the campaign

Budget invested

In total, around $300 per influencer, or $3,000 per product-sending campaign.

Their biggest obstacles


Their advice

  1. “Never give up! It takes time.”
  2. Work with regional influencers to start off, then move up to higher levels.

“The subscribers of smaller influencers are much more loyal and more engaged.”

7. Directory of New York fashion influencers

The City of New York has thousands of influencers, whose popularity ranges from a micro-audience to celebrities and millions of subscribers. To guide you while undertaking your first influencer marketing campaign in the New York market, we have a list of 30 New York influencers in various fashion styles for both men and women. This list will let you see their visual identity, their number of subscribers, and give you a short description that will help you to make your choice. This list is also meant to be a starting point to make the rest of your research easier. You can use these profiles and the tool for suggesting similar profiles provided by Instagram.

At the end of this section, you will also find a summary table of influencers.

7.1 Celebrity (over 1 million)

Blair Eadie

Blair Eadie is a very popular fashionista who has been making her name for a long time. Her account is ideal for following all the latest high-end trends.

Style: High-end

Instagram: 1.3 million


Olivia Palermo

Olivia Palermo is an ‘it girl’ and native New Yorker. She was discovered during the famous reality-TV show The Hills and is known for her high-end look and for always being on the leading edge of trends.

Style: High-end

Instagram: 6 million

Facebook: 1.1 million



Johannes Huebl

Johannes is the husband of Olivia Culpo. He is always perfectly dressed in stylish casual clothing that is perfectly suited to New York men. Johannes and Olivia unquestionably share a love for high-end fashion.

Style: Men

Instagram: 1 million

Facebook: 101,000


Danielle Bernstein

Entrepreneur, fashionista, and podcast host, Danielle wears many hats. She shares her latest finds and current trends by adopting an accessible style. If you are looking to transform high-end trends into everyday style, Danielle is the perfect inspiration.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 2.1 million


7.2 Mega (300,000 to 1 million)

Emily Luciano

Emily is a dream-weaving content creator who reveals the latest fashion trends during her travels. She has an incredible style and wears the New York businesswoman style well.

Style: High-end

Instagram: 410,000


Facebook: 1,202


Tess Christine

Tess Christine is the classic girl next door, with a style that is relaxed, but always impeccable. She shares all the latest trends that can be adjusted to any budget, and shares her fashion finds on her YouTube channel.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 745,000

YouTube: 2,424,666

Facebook: 80,985

7.3 Top (100,000 to 300,000)

Ashley Brooke

Ashley Brooke shares her accessible style on several platforms (Instagram, blog, Facebook and YouTube). She is also a lover of second-hand clothing and vintage clothing.

Style: Ethical/accessible fashion

Instagram: 118,000

YouTube: 439,344


Facebook: 14,606


Sai De Silva

Sai is a mother who is always on the leading edge of trends. On her profile, you will see ideas for mothers and ideas for children.

Style: Family

Instagram: 298,000

YouTube: 26,223

Mustafa Kacar

Mustafa has an incredible style! He shows us his many colourful looks and is always on the leading edge of casual style. He is also a big traveller, showing us all of his style through the countries that he visits.

Style: Men

Instagram: 283,000

Alina Frolova

Alina is a young fashion student, a model, stylist and personal shopper for anyone who wants her fashion advice. With a career in fashion, she shares her rather high-end looks, which are still very inspiring for anyone who would like to create similar looks at lower prices.

Style: High-end

Instagram: 104,000


Malu Vanni

Malu is an architect and fashion enthusiast who has just announced that she is pregnant with her first child. She shares her high-end looks, which she is now adjusting for maternity. Her looks are inspiring and very colourful.

Style: High-end/maternity

Instagram: 104,000


Facebook: 5,661


Leo Chan

Leo is a former financial analyst who now works as a fashion and travel content creator. His style is quite original and different, with a more relaxed than stylish side. On his YouTube channel, he provides advice to his subscribers so that they can find designer clothing in second-hand or lower-priced shops.

Style: Men

Instagram: 118,000

YouTube: 4,227

Facebook: 3,405


Essie Golden

Essie is a content creator and designer for plus sizes. She is an advocate for body diversity and encourages people to feel comfortable with their own bodies. She has her own blog where she often discusses diversity and self-acceptance.

Style: Plus size

Instagram: 160,000


Facebook: 32,332


Nicolette Mason

Nicolette is the co-founder of a boutique for women size 12 to 30. She encourages style for women of every size. She goes between Los Angeles and New York, which lets her present styles that are adapted to various temperatures and all tastes.

Style: Plus size

Instagram: 178,000


Facebook: 7,917

Brianne Manz

Brianne is known for her family blog Stroller in the City, where she shares her style and her children’s, her family activities, and travel ideas. She often presents the style of her three children in her posts.

Style: Maternity

Instagram: 163,000


Facebook: 14,731


7.4 Mid-tier (10,000 to 100,000)

Gail G

Gail is a young mother of two children and a fashion blogger. She has a style that is very relaxed and accessible to everyone. She is always current and connected to the season’s trends. Her photos, like her looks, are colourful and original.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 73,300


Facebook: 439


Mary Gui

Mary is a feminist blogger and an enthusiast for vintage looks. She shares the finds she has made at second-hand shops and provides advice for adjusting a vintage style to current trends.

Style: Ethical/accessible fashion

Instagram: 55,400

YouTube: 395


Mari Padilla

Mari is a communications professional who also works as a fashion content creator. She has a very accessible style that is adapted to everyday life. She perfectly matches the description of simplicity, but with style.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 15,200


Facebook: 4,468


Konrad Sliwiak

Konrad is a content creator for men. His style is very athletic and relaxed. However, he is not afraid of sporting bold colours, tribal motifs and prints.

Style: Sports attire

Instagram: 15,400



Dary York

Dary is originally from Russia and now lives in New York. She describes her style as an American style par excellence. Her style is adapted to every facet of life, whether it is a relaxed look, an athletic look or a stylish look, based on the seasons.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 23,800

YouTube: 46,535

Facebook: 2,114

Erica Lavelanet

Erica is proof that it is possible to dress in athletic clothing and still be stylish. She presents finds and her styles on her blog, and shares her knowledge of digital technology by offering courses and workshops.

Style: Sports attire

Instagram: 21,100


Facebook: 3,458


Julia Giaimo

Julia Giaimo is the co-founder of the podcast We’re the Ladies, which addresses subjects like self-esteem, trends, travel, and life in general. Julia gets the attention of teenage youth thanks to her activities and her style.

Style: Youth

Instagram: 11,100

Facebook: 170


Jessica Torres

Jessica is a fashion blogger who is dedicated to plus sizes. She has a YouTube channel and her own podcast. Her style is quite diversified. She likes exploring fashion and trying new trends, regardless of her weight.

Style: Plus size

Instagram: 108,000

YouTube: 34,826


Hailey Sewell

Hailey describes herself as a woman with a ‘boho’ and relaxed style that can be adapted to any budget. She is just as comfortable in a 1960s-era style outfit as in a classic white sweater and jeans. She shares her essentials for each season through her YouTube channel.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 20,500

YouTube: 1,942


Carrie Murray

Carrie is the second co-founder of the podcast We’re the Ladies. She has a very accessible style, with a slight European influence from the 1990s. On her YouTube channel, she talks about fashion and every aspect of her life.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 24,500

YouTube: 26,261

Facebook: 170


Victor is a fashion content creator who is an enthusiast for luxury accessories, such as various styles of watches. His style can be summed up by the words ‘connected’ and ‘relaxed’.

Style: Men

Instagram: 34,600

Daniela Cadena

Daniela is a Web editor for several well-known magazines, including the popular site BuzzFeed. She uses Instagram to show the finds that she has made in New York second-hand shops.

Style: Ethical

Instagram: 16,900

7.5 Micro (fewer than 10,000)

Michelle Dufflocq

Michelle is a fashion blogger who also has a YouTube channel. She shares her accessible style and her discoveries in New York. She loves sharing new places to go for brunch.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 2,678

YouTube: 14,100


Kellyn McMullan

Kellyn is a young content creator whose boundless energy comes across in her photos. Her style is cute and always adjusted to every occasion. Kellyn is also a brand ambassador for Lulus clothing.

Style: Youth

Instagram: 7,847

Facebook: 299


Ruthy Gascot

Ruthy has a very New York street-style look, in both her clothing and the decor that can be seen in her posts. Her style is different and daring, but always very accessible.

Style: Accessible fashion

Instagram: 5,482

7.6 Summary table of New York influencers

Table 3: Comparative table of a sample of 30 New York influencers

Name of influencerInstagram nameNumber of subscribersLevel of influenceStyle
Blair Eadieblaireadiebee1,300,000CelebrityHigh-end
Olivia Palermooliviapalermo6,000,000CelebrityHigh-end
Johannes Huebl johanneshuebl1,000,000CelebrityMen’s/high-end
Danielle Bernsteinweworewhat2,100,000CelebrityAccessible fashion
Emily Lucianoemily_luciano410,000MegaHigh-end
Tess Christinetesschristinexo745,000MegaAccessible fashion
Sai De Silvascoutthecity298,000TopMaternity/family
Mustafa Kacarmustafakacar283,000TopMen
Alina Frolovaalina_frolova104,000TopHigh-end
Malu Vannimaluvanni104,000TopHigh-end/maternity
Leo Chanlevitatestyle118,000TopMen
Essie Goldenessiegolden160,000TopPlus size
Ashley Brookeitsashbrooke118,000TopEthical/accessible fashion
Nicolette Masonnicolettemason178,000TopPlus size
Brianne Manzstrollerinthecity163,000TopMaternity/family
Gail Gsimplygailg73,300Mid-tierAccessible fashion
Mary Guilayersofchic_55,400Mid-tierEthical/accessible fashion
Mari Padillatheeccentricmisfit15,200Mid-tierAccessible fashion
Konrad Sliwiakwellitskonrad15,400Mid-tierSports attire
Dary Yorkdary_york23,800Mid-tierAccessible fashion
Erica Lavelanetericalave21,100Mid-tierSports attire
Julia Giaimojuliagiaimo11,100Mid-tierYouth
Jessica Torresthisisjessicatorres108,000Mid-tierPlus size
Hailey Sewellhaisewell20,500Mid-tierAccessible fashion
Daniela Cadenadanichain16,900Mid-tierEthical/accessible fashion
Carrie Murraycarrie__murray24 500Mid-tierAccessible fashion
Michelle Dufflocqmichelledufflocq2 678MicroAccessible fashion
Kellyn McMullankellyn_mcmullan7 847MicroYouth
Ruthy Gascotruthybydesign5 482MicroAccessible fashion

8. Conclusion

Although some people think that influencer marketing is a trend, this industry is growing quickly. Because consumers are increasingly aware of content and use ad blockers more and more, businesses need to find new ways of communicating with users. Be sure to stay on the lookout for future changes, as the sector is still new and in constant flux.

The reach of the global market for influencer marketing should exceed $8 billion US in 2020, based on the current value of posts sponsored by advertisers.Footnote 11 Because the sector is experiencing such rapid growth, costs may increase in the years ahead.

What to look out for in the future? First of all: regulations. Expect newer and stricter legal measures to protect consumers. Next: transparency. Consumers are now fully aware of the financial relationship that exists between influencers and brands, so you have to be as credible as possible. Finally, always be looking for new functionalities in existing and emerging platforms. For example, Instagram just announced a direct shopping function (only in the United States at this timeFootnote 12 ), which should strengthen the e-commerce potential for brands that are active on the platform.

9. Lexicon

10. Checklist

This list includes tasks to perform and questions to ask yourself before launching your influencer marketing campaign.

Campaign pre-launch checklist

  1. Define your goals
  2. Identify the appropriate influencers
    1. Who are your clients?
    2. What type of influencer fits best with your goals and your clients? (Mega, Top-tier, Mid-tier, Micro)
    3. Draw up a list of potential influencers
    4. Analyze each selected influencer based on resonance, reach and relevance
  3. Contact the selected influencers
    1. Is your message personalized?
    2. Did you clearly tell the influencer the advantages of working with you?
    3. Did you create an inspiration chart to convey the spirit of your brand and your
  4. Build a relationship of trust: Organize a meeting, think about monthly compensation, etc.
  5. Creating a contract
    • Do you want to check the content beforehand?
    • Add requirements and posting dates
    • Mention your right to receive campaign statistics
    • Do you have exclusivity?
    • Will the content be re-used?
    • Include protective clauses
  6. Measure your results
    • Did you create a campaign URL?
    • Have you thought about your performance indicators?
    • Monitor social media every day and every week.
    • Check on statistics using Google Analytics or statistics from platforms like Facebook and Instagram—every day and every week
    • What was the conversion rate and amount of reach?
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