Influencer marketing is now dominating the online world. Businesses are leaning on it to promote their products and services. What is influencer marketing? And how do you work with social media influencers?
Working with social media influencers is the most critical scheme that you should master when you jump into influencer marketing. The goal is to not only promote your brand and grow your business but also to create lasting partnerships. In this guide, we will tackle the different ways to select an influencer for your brand and what to do when you already have a connection. We will also discuss briefly the benefits that your business can get from bloggers and influencers. But first, let us have a quick tour of the influencer marketing world.
Influencer Marketing Overview
As the term suggests, influencer marketing is a form of marketing that involves a partnership between an organization and an influencer. Most influencers are paid for a collaboration, but some accept ex-deals and barter agreements. The perks of influencer marketing can be pretty overwhelming, especially when you work with the right people.
To effectively do influencer marketing, there are steps that you need to take. And one of these is to know how to find and work with the right influencer for your brand. How do you get an influencer to work with you?
Understand the World of Social Media Influencers
How do influencers use social media? The most widely used platform of social media influencers is Instagram. Since this site focuses on creative content, it’s no wonder it’s the favorite of creators. Next to Instagram is Facebook and YouTube, while some also use Pinterest as an extension of their Instagram account. More so, influencers are exploring fun ways to promote content on Snapchat and TikTok.
Various influencers specialize in different niches. The top influencer marketing niches are health and fitness, beauty, travel, online business, and fashion. If your company belongs to any of these niches, your influencer marketing campaign will likely have a bright future.
Let’s look at the top social media influencers for each niche:
Health and Fitness: Michelle Lewin
Michelle Lewin has over 13 million followers on Instagram and an average of 200,000 content likes. This Venezuelan fitness model and bodybuilder began gaining attention when she started modeling for big companies and became a cover girl for Playboy magazine.
Beauty: Huda Kattan
Huda Kattan has over 47 million followers and an average of 100,000 content likes. Huda achieved popularity on Instagram when she released her first beauty product, the false eyelashes, in 2013. Getting praise from Kim Kardashian has helped her earn a reputation on the beauty biz.
Travel: Louis Cole
Louis Cole is best known for his every day vlogs about his life and travel adventures. This British influencer has gained over a million fans by creating fun, interactive, and authentic content on social media.
Online Business: Arianna Huffington
Arianna Huffington has more than 600,000 followers on Instagram. Huffington rose to prominence when she became a reliable supporter of the Republican Revolution. She is also the founder of HuffPost, which has over 2 million followers.
Fashion: Chiara Ferragni
Chiara Ferragni has over 20 million followers on Instagram and an average of 500,000 content likes. Chiara became a famous global influencer when she built the Blonde Salad empire—a blog where she documented her unique lifestyle.
Find the Right Influencer for your Business
As mentioned above, your influencer marketing campaign’s success starts with the influencer hunt. You don’t necessarily have to reach out to the most prominent influencer—the more famous, the bigger the budget. Look for one who would suffice for your campaign goals and business needs, and matche your budget. Here are tips on how to do it right.
Be visible on Instagram
This platform is the creators’ top choice so you might as well know how to work with Instagram influencers. Always check your notifications, post comments, and direct messages. If you’re a top-rating brand, influencers will most likely comment on your posts or drop you a DM for possible collaborations.
Always engage and interact
Apart from responding to comments and messages, some businesses practice reposting. This is done by uploading a guest post or a client’s content on your page, which can be traced through tags, mentions, and geolocations. Every time you repost, make sure to look at your client’s profile. Who knows, you’ll most probably bump into an influencer who happens to be your client.
Believe in the power of hashtags
The moment social media was born, hashtags also evolved. Look for the right influencers by using hashtags that are relevant to your niche. You can type it on the “Tags” button on Instagram Search, and you can also see which hashtags are popular.
Use social media influencer tools
Sometimes, manual searching can be too tiring and time-consuming, even if you have a dedicated Instagram Manager. Utilize influencer research tools like SocialBlade, HotSpot, and People Map to broaden your connections.
List, evaluate, and select.
Once you have a list of prospects, evaluate each influencer’s profile. Check their online presence, followers, the type of content they create, and their engagement rate. Review also their target demographics and audience reach.
Set Up Your Influencer Marketing Strategy
Now that you know the techniques for finding the right ambassador for your brand, let’s move on to the next and most critical stage: setting up your influencer marketing strategy. Follow these steps and reap successful results!
Set campaign goals.
The pre-requisite for every campaign are your goals and objectives. Make a list of expectations and back-up plans (in case your tactics won’t work). Create a timeline and specify whether it’s a short- or long-term campaign. Will it be for a season only or suitable for a year? Or will it run for at least 2-3 more years? The key is to be clear and specific in your objectives.
Your goals should also include the message that you want to deliver to your audience. Are you creating a campaign for brand awareness or sales drive? Or are you up for lead generation and new connections? When you identify the message, also agree on your campaign style and stipulate the desired results.
Connect with the influencer
Suppose you have already evaluated your prospects’ profiles. Reach out to your chosen influencer via email. Most business accounts have contact details on their profile, so you can easily call or email them. If not, send them a direct message. The tricky part about DM’s is they are filtered on the “Request” tab if you are not yet connected with the influencer. So, it might take time for them to read it. If this happens, do not hesitate to comment on their posts (do it politely, not in an irritating way).
Do not bombard your influencer
This is a common mistake that companies commit, especially those who are new in the influencer marketing field. Once your chosen influencer has responded to your email or direct message and has shown interest in your campaign, acquaint them slowly about your brand. You can do this by:
- Giving a short background of your business. It is important to discuss your niche when you give your company profile.
- Allowing them to scan through your profile. If you have other social media accounts, let your influencer know. They might also be active on different platforms, and this will help them analyze your business better. Do not forget to share your target demographics.
- When you and your influencer have already created a sense of familiarity, you can now discuss your campaign. Explain your goals and objectives, tell them your expectations, and state your offer if they agree to collaborate.
Discuss and share ideas
This is where the creative part comes in. After acquainting them with your campaign, the influencer will now decide on the content, style, and the method it will be promoted. Always give them the authority to adjust your goals and expectations – this will make them feel that they are part of the campaign. Influencers are experts in creating compelling and engaging content, so trust them on the creatives and enhancements.
Come up with an agreement
Some influencers may not agree with your proposed offer or deal, hence, it is essential to be flexible and open-minded. Famous personalities often have established rates, so you can decide whether you will go for it or not. But you can always meet influencers halfway—explore the possibilities and make that collaboration happen!
Track your influencer marketing campaign’s success
Measuring influencer effectivity is the most challenging part of your campaign. How do you use influencers effectively? Ensure that they hit your goals—business growth, increased engagement, website traffic, online visibility, and, most importantly, sales and revenue. There are a variety of ways of tracking these analytics, which could greatly contribute to the success of any campaign.
Build a lasting relationship with your influencers
Always. Capital is not the sole foundation of a business, but more importantly, connections. Never make your influencers feel like they are taken for granted. Build trust and friendship with them so you can reach out easily in the future and create a sense of loyalty to your influencers. When you stay connected, your influencers will continuously promote you to their connections, even if your collaboration has ended. You can also recommend them in return, or post a testimony on their blog sites. After all, it’s a give-and-take situation.
If the influencer is the one who tapped you first, you can still follow the same steps above. Review their respective profiles and social interactions, see what they can create for your brand, determine if it fits your business’ niche and goals, and come up with an agreement. This scenario happens when your business becomes popular online.
The Benefits of Social Media Influencer Marketing
Working with worthy influencers to promote your brand can bring many benefits to your business. These include brand awareness, follower growth, and a more targeted audience. Influencers can also elevate your reach, bringing you more potential customers and buyers. Moreover, influencers will help you establish a social media reputation and drive organic clicks to your website. Influencer marketing campaigns can increase your sales, improve your lead generation, and grow your business revenue and ROI.
All these benefits come at a little cost and effort. Just work hand-in-hand with your influencer and be open to suggestions so you can achieve a successful campaign. When you fail on the first attempt, do not be afraid to try again. Evaluate what went wrong and work on your mistakes. Study more about the different influencer marketing examples and see what else can fit your brand. Revisit your influencer marketing strategy and get better at it. Nothing starts easy, so take a little risk.
Learning how to work with influencers is an exciting and challenging task at the same time. Social media influencer impact on your business could either be negative or positive. The results can be rewarding or daunting. The secrets to a successful collaboration are flexibility, open-mindedness, and determination. Business owners must learn how to deal with different personalities and make clear objectives. Always maintain excellent communication and establish a notable online reputation to attract more influencers to promote your brand.
While it is fruitful to work with highly-popular people, an influencer with 10,000-100,000 followers can already go a long way. What matters is they understand your campaign goals, and you have a mutual niche and audience. Instagram may be the top platform for influencer marketing, but don’t limit yourself there. Go where you feel you can gain more customers, sales, and revenue. Explore, innovate, and maximize your marketing strategies.
And in case you’ve been engaging in influencer marketing but have yet to reap the fruits of your campaign, check out our guide on How to Make Influencer Marketing Work for You.