Shoop Germany (previously known as Qipu) works with over 2,000 retailers, including Germany’s most popular brands, to help customers earn cashback every time they shop online. Shoop Germany is a brand of the Maple Syrup Media Group, Europe’s leading Cashback and Rewards Platform. Other brands of the Group are Quidco in the UK, Shoop France and CheckoutSmart also in the UK.
We talk with Sebastian Atanassov, Head of Business Development at Shoop Germany, a longterm business partner for Tradedoubler, about his experiences with influencer marketing.
What is your experience with influencer marketing and tell us about some interesting campaigns.
We have been actively involved with Influencer Marketing since 2015 and have done more than 100 campaigns. The three campaigns with the highest impact so far were Bibi’s Beauty Palace (2.8 million views), Emrah (2.6 million views) and Shirin (2.5 million views). In addition, we successfully work together with some others on a regular basis (eg Chameen Loca).
How do you currently assess the importance of influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is becoming an increasingly important part of the marketing mix. In recent years, the number of influencers has risen rapidly, which is certainly also due to the increased media attention and increasing social media offerings. This has led to a clear professionalization – on both sides. Initially influencers proactively approached potentially suitable companies or products were presented with missing / inadequate visibility of promotional content. Today this is handled professionally either via networks or platforms, that market bloggers and / or connect companies with bloggers. Meanwhile, social media channels are recognized both socially and politically. As a result, more and more “older” people are discovering these channels for themselves, and for marketers who are targeting people at the age of 30+, there are now a decent number of influencers who can serve them successfully.
What added value do you see in influencer marketing for promoting products?
Influencer marketing has the advantage of communicating complex interrelations of our business model in an authentic, simple and entertaining way. Another added value is of course the targeting as well as the long-term visibility of the content (at least on YouTube). Campaigns thus have a positive effect for us over a very long period of time.
Are there any topics and customer groups that are particularly suitable for influencer marketing in your opinion?
Selling electric blankets via influencers will certainly continue to be difficult. The same is true for topics such as alcohol or gambling (albeit for other reasons). Otherwise there are influencers for almost every topic. The question is rather about their reach and diversity. You would think about fashion & beauty first of course, but there are also successful influencers in the investment or DIY sector. At the end of the day there is hardly any topic that cannot be covered by influencer marketing and with relevant reach. Social media channels are socially established and no longer just for “teenies”. Even though there are substantial differences in the age of the target group between the individual platforms, a generation is growing up that thinks the TV is more weird than the Internet and that will not change over time. So, cheer up! Influencer marketing has more platforms to offer than just Facebook, YouTube, Instagram or Snapchat and can do much more than just handbags and lipsticks 😉
Does influencer marketing have special advantages for you compared to other channels?
The main advantage, of course, is the high credibility. Despite the high number of product placements, it is always a question of good storytelling, and by that I mean authentic entertainment, which may sometimes include some criticism or probably even should. Otherwise, of course, we appreciate the effectivity of reach and the cost efficiency compared to TV or partially Google.
Do you have any tips for running a successful campaign?
- Clearly communicate your own expectations, but do not interfere too much with the creative implementation. A good briefing, a good pre-selection and a degree of confidence that the person will execute that well.
- Reach does not mean success. For example, we have run several campaigns with Chameen Loca, that have repeatedly managed to integrate content in a credible way, and that have generated click-through rates of over 20%.
- Appear in the first third of the video.
What should be considered in advance to become active in this area and what should be avoided?
- Set your goals for the outset: Increase brand awareness, number of registrations, increase sales, etc.
- Work out how to make this measurable, for example by a coupon code (if yes: generic or unique?) or a special landing page. This is the only way to compare campaigns in the long run and to see who / what worked well and what did not.
- Don’t be dazzled by the sheer number of subscribers or reach, because somebody with “only” 10,000 followers can be more useful than somebody with 500,000 – if 80% are under 18 years old.
- Don’t be inflexible in terms of how to approach a TV campaign. Adapt to the channel and the language of the channel. It does not help to force your own words upon the influencer and you should leave the tonality up to them.
- Do not focus too much on short-term actions as the content may stay live for years to come. So don’t communicate in a “Only this weekend …” way.
What are your predictions for the future of influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing has already arrived in the mainstream. Provided the professionalization of the industry continues to progress, prices will continue to rise and there will hardly be an area in B2C that will not be able to service this channel. The relevance of other channels (TV, radio, print) will continue to decrease, because a) certain target groups cannot be reached through these channels anymore b) you cannot build the same credibility in the same time and c) TV by comparison is massively overpriced. Unfortunately, very few people are able to create or afford such an original TV flight, which is broadcast often enough and linked to an online campaign. This is the only way – if any – that TV advertising still makes sense. Unfortunately, many companies didn’t understand that yet.
Of course, there will continue to be influencers who make a snap from waking up in the morning with, for example, a bottle of detergent or who think putting a product in front of the camera and saying “hello my dears …” would come across in a credible way … this might still work out, but it’s getting harder and harder to grab the attention of a specific audience, and what influencers really have, is the followers’ attention. The most important requirement of any campaign should always be a meaningful link in storytelling.