You’ve probably already heard about influencer marketing, or have at least considered it for your brand. Maybe you’ve read the tons of data floating around about how influencers can impact your bottom line and grow brand awareness. But, a lot of people are left scratching their heads and wondering just how to get started finding the right influencers and the right strategy.
Spray & pray is not an effective strategy…ever.
I learned this in my college marketing 101 class: if you’re marketing to everyone, you’re basically marketing to no one. With an audience so broad, you won’t gain the interest of the right audience. That means you need to take time to curate the right personas for your audience. This takes some time and some resources.
You don’t need to invest in expensive influencer management tools at this point. A simple hashtag search on Instagram or topic search on Facebook can land you in the right place. Start by searching keywords or hashtags that are related to your brand. Once you begin to uncover influencers, realize that they don’t all have to be celebrities with millions of followers. You can get more engagement with down-to-earth and relatable micro-influencers, who are more likely to work with smaller brands.
What can the influencer DO with your product or service? What are your trying to accomplish? Sure, you can hand over some free product and watch them type up that they liked your product. But, let’s be real…testimonials are boring. Ask them to show how it improved their life or made something easier. Get creative, do a how-to, unbox your product, make a recipe, create emotions and drive action with your product.
Build Meaningful Relationships
Influencers are more than just billboards. They are living, breathing human beings. Engage with your target influencers first – don’t show up out of nowhere. You can start by casually connecting through social media. When you do reach out, they may be more familiar with you then and you can speak more on how their content is a match for your brand, as well as theirs.
Also, keep it personal, write a personal note to them. Don’t send a form or start with “Dear Influencer”. Even if you just personalize the first part of the note, let them know you care.
When the promotion is finished, thank the influencer for their participation and let them know you’d be interested in working with them again (if it was a positive transaction). If the influencer has a positive relationship with you, they may be thrilled to work with your brand and add more value to each post they create for you.
Measure Your Results
What’s the point of marketing without results? You might have to get creative to measure your results, but consider using some of the following:
- A promotional code with a small discount to track orders either online or via phone.
- UTM parameters on sources that allow links. Create goals.
- A branded hashtag (always check first) and monitor for an increase in mentions. Brand awareness is a great measure a well.
Influencer marketing can work for you. Start small and choose 2-3 influencers per month to work with. You don’t have to launch a giant campaign to move the needle. And of course, if you need help, our Social Media team is ready to help you tackle and develop a stellar influencer program to meet your needs.