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So much goes on behind the scenes when influencers and brands get together for content collaboration. From strategy to reporting, here are the words you need to know.

Strategy & Execution

1. Always On: A phrase that describes an “evergreen” or ongoing campaign, meaning the campaign is occurring over a longer period of time, without a campaign or seasonal-specific timeline.

2. Content Reviews: When a brand or agency requests to approve influencer content before it goes live.

3. Creative Brief: A high-level concept or set of ideas that provides key messaging and direction for content creation. Collectively creative briefs guide influencers to ensure their content meets brand standards and generates optimum engagement.

4. Exclusivity: Refers to specific rights or restrictions a brand or agency might enact at any point during a collaborative effort. For example, an influencer may be asked to refrain from posting about other beauty retailers while partnering with Sephora.

5. Influencer Recruiting: The process of gauging influencer interest and/or availability for a current or upcoming collaboration, and contracting influencers to participate in a project. Depending on the scope of the collaboration, this process can take anywhere from 1-4 weeks.

6. In-Kind Collaboration or Sampling: A campaign in which goods or services are provided as a form payment, as opposed to money, in exchange for branded content.

7. Instagram Takeover: When a collaborator or influencer assumes responsibility for a brand's Instagram account for a short period of time, to share content with the brand’s audience from their perspective.

8. Licensing: The process of acquiring the right to use influencer content, or likeness, based on permissions or usage rights. The licensing process varies in complexity based on the specific permissions a brand requests, including use of content for paid digital advertising, social media boosting, and other forms of digital repurposing and promotion.

9. Multi-tiered Approach: An activation that strategically leverages various influencers across different audience sizes to ensure all key performance indicators are addressed and high-level brand goals are met. We wrote more about developing a multi-tiered approach here.

10. Off Brand: When an influencer's content lacks alignment to a brand, from an aesthetic perspective or based on their actual content themes.

11. Product Integration: When a brand’s product is explicitly introduced, included, mentioned, or displayed within influencer content.

12. Social Only: A campaign in which content is posted on social platforms only (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc), and no long-form content (blog posts or YouTube videos) is created.


1. Conversion: In this context, whether or not a link or URL within a piece of content leads directly to sales. Conversion is measured most directly by requiring influencers to use trackable or affiliate links. Other conversion goals may include website visits, brand channel follows, etc., as defined by the brand.

2. Cost Per Engagement (CPE): The cost associated with each engagement (like, comment, or share). CPE is calculated by dividing the cost of content by the total engagements the content generated.

3. Click-through Rate: The rate at which a link or URL that an influencer shares is clicked on. Influencers who generate high click-through rates have hyper-engaged and interested audiences who take action on their content.

4. Earned Media: The engagements (shares, likes, and comments) and impressions generated as a result of audience members sharing influencer content. Earned media is the natural affect of influencer content, and the measured amplification, exposure, and organic advocacy that develops as a result.

5. Engagement Rate: A key metric that is a proxy for the quality of content based on the number of interactions. The general formula is total engagement divided by total impressions.

6. Impressions: The number of times a piece of content is displayed. Each platform reports on impressions differently, with slight variations according to specific platform algorithms.

7. Influencer Return on Investment (ROI): The measurable return a brand receives from their investment in influencer content. Measuring ROI varies, as there is no industry standard. In order to begin to truly measure ROI, marketers must: 1) know what role influencer marketing plays within their organization’s larger marketing strategy and 2) have a deep understanding of how content strategy, campaign goals, platform nuances, and influencer types affect campaign outcomes.

8. Key Performance Indicator (KPI): A trackable metric used to guide the goals of a project, help measure its success, and uncover the need for a particular activation.

9. Sentiment Analysis: The process of computationally identifying and categorizing opinions expressed within the comments posted in response to influencer content, in order to determine whether attitudes towards a particular topic, product, etc., are positive, negative, or neutral.

10. Total Content Engagement: The sum of all shares, likes, and comments. This serves as an input for Engagement Rate, a key metric that is a proxy for the quality of content based on the number of interactions.

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