38 minutes | Aug 14th 2019

How to cultivate long term collaboration with influencers? | Podcast S01E05

Finding the right influencer is similar to meeting the love of your life – it’s about compatibility. We need to connect with someone who not only share the same values but who is willing to compromise on mutual terms towards collective growth. Time is gold and you got to know what you’re investing in and why. This is an important element to any relationship building especially if you’re cultivating long term results.

We live in times when everything is instant and what a lot of us don’t realize is that a short term mentality will only lead to temporary solutions. If we’re looking to create sustainable growth, we need to start looking at ways to assimilate your passion and beliefs in whatever you invest your time with. This is most true when establishing an influencer marketing strategy. This episode reaffirms our belief at Wavemakers – influencer outreach is an organic approach to marketing and there’s no one size fit all model to determine an exact conversion.

“Make generosity a part of your strategy”

Once there’s clarity, there’s also trust and certainty. This is a primary pillar for any influencer program to succeed. If you’re going to approach an influencer for the sake of getting one message out there just for the sake of reaching your KPI then it’s almost a recipe to failure. At the end of the day, brands need to realize the importance of going beyond surface-level numbers (likes, followers) and to value any influencer through their quality of content. Is it really just about sales and conversions or is it about how your brand is being represented? Think about your end goal and whether or not if an influencer can help you achieve it. Influencer marketing is essentially about reach and awareness, and so giving your brand that human touch to bridge a lot of things that your audience may not understand. They can help break down key messages in a way that makes sense to the receiver.

“Build your brand with authenticity and integrity”

You got to lay the right foundation for influencers before you engage with one. For Sarah Lian, she empowers her Suppagood team by getting a shortlist of their desired clients including brands they dream to work with. This getting an idea of what they like, where they are headed and more importantly, to understand the WHY of any influencer you engage with. Alignment is key. Whether a brand shares the same values or not, there are always ways to find similarities on how to work together. It’s up to both parties to shape the direction towards mutual success.

“Negotiation is about not being afraid to speak up and to ask (as many) questions”

Get the right information, ask as many questions. And this goes to both brands and influencers. Once you know what to expect and lay out the terms, you surpass the grey areas and avoid any potential confusion. A lot of negotiation terms are not transparent and that’s when things go wrong. Sarah Lian believes in managing expectations from both client and influencers, where they try to find a fair middle ground before any agreement. They champion the power of dialogue as the key to working towards a successful campaign. Brands need to understand why they are doing what they are doing before putting the responsibility on influencers. Be open to discussing what has worked and hasn’t, being open to education and knowledge before deciding on an approach.

S01E05 Guest: Sarah Lian

Emcee, entrepreneur and celebrity, Sarah Lian is a prominent figure who is an inspiration to a lot of women. She runs a talent and PR agency called Suppagood, a boutique agency based in Kuala Lumpur that offers out of the box thinking and creative strategies. Representing a collective of influencers from diverse backgrounds, they are focused on nurturing the potential of talents and developing their professional careers.


Don’t skip this bit:

  • Be kind to the people you work with and the people you work for
  • Brands need to understand their initial goals and be honest with expectations
  • Transparent dialogue is key to any successful influencer campaign
  • The compromise depends on the perceived value of the influencer you work with



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