Social Media Link, the corporate parent behind the Smiley360.com influencer platform, has teamed up with Incentive Targeting, a Web-based retail promotion company, to integrate its sales data research and analytics to brand advocacy programs.
Under the partnership, brands can now access anonymized retail sales insights from participating retailers in Incentive Targeting's national retail network. They can for the first time measure social media advocacy programs, delivering the exact dollar impact of the "influencers" (those who test and review products) and impact on the "influenced" (those exposed to the reviews) in driving in-store action and purchase.
"When a brand engages 'brand advocates' to try their products and write reviews, the immediate question asked is 'when consumers are exposed to a review, are they more likely to purchase?' We are thrilled this partnership answers that question, with real sales data. Until now, brands have been missing the opportunity to measure the ROI of advocacy programs," said Susan Frech, CEO of Social Media Link, in a statement.
SML owns Smiley360.com, a community for influential consumers who experience products and services, and use their Single-Click Sharing Technology tools to publish recommendations to their social networks. By anonymously linking the online social behavior of Smiley360 users and their followers to in-store purchase data, Incentive Targeting can track brand and category usage before, during, and after a Smiley360 influencer program at participating chains.
Incentive Targeting's co-founder and vice president of marketing, Ben Sprecher, said, "Brands intuitively know how powerful a trusted recommendation can be to trial and purchase consideration, but when it comes to dollars and cents, no one has successfully measured that impact. Incorporating our technology and shopper-centric analytics, brands can finally answer the question: how much is a recommendation really worth?"