In this UA-driven, data-minded mobile economy, marketers and game developers will wonder how effective their influencer marketing really is.
If you care deeply about measuring ROI of every marketing dollar you spend, influencer marketing may not be for you.
Think about influencer marketing as a mix of performance marketing and brand marketing.
Your goal is to generate downloads but you also benefit from brand awareness and association with the influencer.
An interstitial ad from your UA campaign has little to no emotional impact on the viewer, but a viewer watching their favorite YouTuber play your game can make a lasting emotional connection.
There is also a long tail value of a YouTube video, because it's permanent and remains visible in search results.
All above board
With sponsored content the most common arrangement is a flat fee model where you pay a fixed amount of money. What you get in return is negotiable and can range from a series of dedicated videos all about your game, to a single segment within a larger video.
It's important to work with the creator to come up with content that will appeal to their audience. Not all sponsored content is equal. It works best when it feels organic and natural because the creator plays similar games and has advised you on what will resonate with their viewers.
Of course all sponsored content must be clearly noted as such and the sponsor must be disclosed.
If you're not comfortable with paying a flat fee to the creator, there are alternatives. Roostr works with creators on a CPI-model, where they get paid for each install they generate for your game.
This aligns interests well between sponsor and creator and gives them an incentive to create great content. This method allows greater tracking and accountability for the ROI of your influencer budget and is more like paid UA.
Generally you will want to pay attention to a few metrics including: subscriber/follower totals, video views, likes/thumbs up, and engagement via comments and clicks.
Use a unique tracking URL in the video description so that you get some sense of how many clicks and downloads your video or stream is getting. But keep in mind that not everything is captured.
Viewers may hear about your game from a YouTuber and then decide to download it a few days later.
Famebit's Matt Bruen offers this comparison, "YouTube in particular is a bit of a blend between traditional TV advertising and digital marketing. Advertisers can obtain some attribution by using trackable links…but there will always be non-attributable value provided by the campaign.
"Companies spend millions of dollars on TV commercials with no attribution. At least with YouTube, there is some visibility into performance."