Written by Hannah Sears

You know you need an influencer marketing program and you have the approval to get started, which means it’s time to start thinking about your gifting program. Sending gifts to influencers can be confusing and stressful–especially if you’re trying to do it at scale.

What kind of gifts should you send and when? How do you manage fulfillment and shipping, so your influencers get the right products on time? Luckily, with some planning and the right resources, you can send gifts to your influencers and start generating reviews in no time.

Influencer gifting 101

If you already have a slate of influencers who’ve agreed to partner with you, congratulations! You’re over the first hurdle. If you’re starting from scratch, you’ll want to identify the right influencers before you start sending out gifts. Look for influencers who are using similar products, follow similar brands, or who are already posting about your brand organically.

Once you’ve identified influencers that want to partner with you and have started the relationship, you want to start your campaign off on the right foot. Creating a plan for getting gifts to your influencers can help streamline the process so that you can expand and scale the program.

You want to have a strategy for sending out gifts so you can build relationships with your influencers while keeping your own processes and inventory organized. When should you send out products? 

  • Launching a new product is a great time to send out gifts to influencers so they can help promote brand new items and generate interest.
  • Seasonal gifts of holiday bundles are another good opportunity to send out products to your influencer partners.
  • Create loyal ambassadors by sending gifts at key points in your relationship with an influencer–at the beginning of the partnership, on an anniversary or milestone, or as a “thank you” for doing a good job.

How do you decide what product to send? You want to stick to your budget and avoid wasting product, but you don’t want your influencers to feel underappreciated. Newer influencers might receive smaller gifts or receive them less frequently than your most committed partners, but you should always stick to a product with, at minimum, a $20 value (including bundles). No matter the size of the influencer, this is a good baseline to keep in mind.

It’s important to have a minimum in mind but it’s also a good idea to show a little extra love to your biggest and most successful influencers. Loyal brand ambassadors or influencers with audiences that are larger or really engaged should qualify for larger or more expensive gifts.

Gifting at scale with Octoly

Sending gift boxes to one or two influencers is no big deal, but nobody wants to deal with the hassle of shipping 100+ gifts to one hundred different addresses.

Not only is going to the post office a pain, but you have to get all the right addresses and manually package all the products in-house. If you don’t have seamless shipping set up through a warehouse, it’s easy to see how fast a gift campaign can fall apart. Aside from shipping logistics, you want to make sure the influencer receives the gift and, if it’s part of their agreement, whether they post about the product once they get it.

Luckily, Octoly can take care of your whole gift campaign–from finding the right influencers to shipping and fulfillment. Once you launch a campaign on the Octoly platform, our network of vetted influencers can view it in their “store.” Octoly lets you determine how much of your product you want to ship and when you want to send it.  If the influencers are interested in partnering with your brand, they can then apply to your campaign by ordering a product with one of their credits.

These influencers are motivated and interested in your brand, so you don’t have to spend time hunting them down and exchanging DMs back and forth until you feel comfortable sending them a gift. You can decide to ship the product yourself and Octoly will source the addresses from the influencers when they “order” your product from the campaign. If you accept their application, you’ll receive their shipping address and all the necessary information without having to chase it down.

If you decide to have Octoly handle all the shipping, all you have to do is send your products to our warehouse. Octoly will handle everything from packaging to addressing to shipping. After you accept an influencer who has applied to your campaign and placed an order, the product will be automatically shipped to the influencer from Octoly’s warehouse within 24 hours of the influencer placing the order.

Manually shipping out hundreds of products is time-consuming and there’s too much room for error. If you want to start an influencer marketing campaign that’s scalable and sustainable, you need to have the right plan and resources in place.

Octoly helps take care of shipping and fulfillment so you can focus on building your influencer marketing campaign and make sure it’s successful.

Sign up for a free demo today to learn how Octoly can help connect you with the right influencers and create influencer marketing campaigns at scale.

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