Influencer marketing is a relatively new trend that has emerged to market products or services by working directly with specific key individuals known as influencers.
An influencer is someone who has an above-average ‘influence’ in a particular industry or specific niche. They can spread the word about your brand to individuals who are interested in buying what you have to offer. An influencer’s high demand is due to their ability to deliver a message in a way that connects directly with people. And as social media has made it easier for influencers to increase their reach, their appeal is stronger than ever.
Trust is a big issue when it comes to brands and influencers, and is something that other ways of marketing or advertising cannot buy. When a well-respected influencer shares a brand they like, then others will take note.
Choosing the right influencer to work with your business can be difficult.
So how can you make sure that the influencer matches your product or brand?
Focus on quality of engagement
While a large number of followers and likes is a great sign, bear in mind that the quality of engagement overrides a lot of followers. Look at past posts and focus on comments on the product.
- Are viewers seeking more details?
- Do they want to know where to buy the product?
Active engagement is a great sign and indicates that the influencer has quite a bit of pull with their target audience.
Don’t pay for passion
The influencer should connect with your product or brand immediately. If they don’t, then it may affect your campaign. Your money should be used to pay for the audience rather than try to convince the influencer that what you are selling is indeed worth its weight in gold. If it is a struggle for them to identify with your brand, move on.
Let them have control about how things are communicated
The whole point of letting the influencer share your product with their network is because of their target audience’s willingness to listen to them. Don’t make their pitch sound like an infomercial. Try to avoid the urge to micromanage the influencer. Let them take control and do the talking.
Be clear about your aims
If they do not understand what you want, then your marketing will flop. If you need the influencer to sell to a niche, introduce your product or enter a contest, make sure they understand this before your campaign gets underway.
Monitor the performance of posts
Don’t just let the influencer post about your brand and then ignore the chance for follow-up comments and questions. Help their fans find you, provide useful advice and take the opportunity to connect with the influencer’s audience.
Leverage their post
Once the influencer has done their part, one way to leverage their post is to share it with your followers.
Another way is to connect with those that engage in the post. Like their comment and connect with those that are interested.
Having the influencer talk about your brand may just convince prospective customers to take a look further into what you have to offer and either buy or start to follow you to learn more and buy.
A great post needs a broad and varied audience, so spread it far and wide to maximise the impact.
A large following is not necessarily better
Remember, even some of the smaller influencers can have just as good an effect as the bigger names. Just because you are not familiar with their work, doesn’t make it less valuable. A less well-known influencer may also have more of a dedicated audience than say a person with a greater reach.
Watch out for click farmers
It is important to be aware of influencers who buy likes. Also known as click farming, there have been many social media personalities and businesses that have taken to buying likes just to increase the number of followers.
The reality is that these fake ratings are not going to do much to grow your business. If you see brands getting millions of likes in a short period, then chances are they may not be as popular as they like to think they are.
Take a look at the video below to see what happens with click farmers…
Ensure a great fit between your brand and the influencer
Reach out to a selection of influencers and ask for a media kit to see if they would be a good fit for your brand. Contact other businesses and ask how they felt about their experience. Do your research carefully as bad fits between brands and influencers do occur on a regular basis. Follow the influencer on social media and monitor their effect on others before you sign. Check to see whether their brand complies with your basic code of conduct.
When you find the perfect influencer, you will know it immediately. The person will be in tune completely with your message and understand your product inside out. They will listen to you and identify fully with your brand. When that occurs, your company will benefit from the authentic message, and your success rate will soar.