4 Steps To Working With An Influencer

Would you rather buy a product or service after seeing a scripted advertisement orchestrated for profit, or based on the recommendations of the people you trust?

What if the person recommending the product or service to you had an impeccable reputation and a large social following? What difference would that make to the level of trust you place in your purchase decision? 

A Nielsen report found that about 84%  of consumers prefer to buy on the basis of word-of-mouth recommendations from their social network. 

Word of mouth marketing - today’s social media marketing - is a powerful thing!

In case you’re not aware, influencer marketing primarily focuses on utilizing the social reach of influential people to build your brand’s image, reach a larger audience and attract new customers, who value brand authenticity. Research has indicated that for every $1 invested in influencer marketing can produce up to $6.50 in revenue. It’s no surprise that it’s one of the fastest-growing marketing channels available for businesses! 

Businesses can tap into the tons of benefits of influencer marketing and create massive awareness for their brand. To do so, you need to adopt a clear-cut strategy to implement effective influencer marketing. 

Step 1: Identify The Ideal Influencers For Your Small Business

The most important step of an influencer marketing campaign involves discovering the right influencers to promote your business. The ideal influencer for your business should be someone who can relate well to the product or service that your business offers. 

The deeper the connection, the more likely it is that the influencer will promote your product or share your content. 

You also need to consider the influencer’s audience. If your content, product or service is relevant to an influencer’s audience, you’ll be on the right track. For instance, if you’re in the business of selling pet products, an influencer who owns and maintains a blog about pets is a much better choice compared to a Hollywood celebrity. 

Who is an influencer?

For your influencer marketing campaign to seem convincing, you will have to choose the right person who’s already connected to your target audience. You can connect to potential influencers based on what your target audience is drawn to, your existing customers, and local celebrities on social media. 

While you’re shortlisting, it’s vital for your campaign that you do not consider followers to evaluate your influencers. Even with a large number of followers, the influencer may not be able to engage them. Look for likes and comments on their posts and if they hold Lives, check to see how many people join and comment.

You will want to consider everything that the influencer could bring to the table for your business, their audience, their way of connecting with their audience, and the content they post. Then pinpoint the influencers who connect to your target audience and actually drive action.

Step 2: Reach Out to Your Influencers and Build a Relationship

Creating a mutually beneficial relationship with your ideal influencer will boost the chances of the success of your marketing campaigns. Start by interacting with them on social media, lead to talking to them about your campaign via email.

Look to build a relationship before you propose a deal.

Apart from social media, you could also consider traditional methods to interact with your influencers by commenting on their blog posts, contributing to their discussion forums. You could also ask for a guest post by the influencer for your company’s blog, or invite them to a webinar or as a guest on a promotional video, primarily engage the influencer.

Once you have your ideal influencer engaged in your business, you can go forth and build a business relationship with them. You could send them a personal email to check if they are willing to participate in your marketing campaign.

Step 3: Ask Them To Share Your Content

Once you have built a relationship with your influencer, ask them to spread the word for your business’s products or services as a part of a marketing campaign. If done right, your influencer should be able to generate awareness for your brand among several customers online.

Give your influencer free publicity by mentioning them in your posts. If you highlight a positive trait, people are most likely to share it or comment on it. It may be an article about your product or service, but for the influencer, it is a post that highlights what they have stood for. Generate high-quality posts that involve the influencer in a positive way and they would be happy to share it and encourage their own followers to purchase your product or service.

Contribute to their blog through symbiotic guest posts. If your content and the influencer’s interests are relevant, you could ask for permission to contribute to their blog and encourage your audience to support them. You can also involve various influencers and create a collaborative post. Such posts tend to generate a lot of social engagement.

You can also send free products to your influencer and request them to write a review and recommend your product to their followers if they find it useful and fit for use. For consumable product lines, you can ask the influencer to upload photos or videos of themselves using your product on social media.

If your influencer is an artist or a celebrity, you can introduce incentives on social media like product giveaways with the theme of promoting the artist’s latest works, like a new album or their new movie/show.

Step 4: Measuring the Success of Your Influencer Marketing Campaign

To evaluate the success of your marketing campaign, you’ll have to look at the bottom line of it all. Statistical data, like Return on Investment, could only serve as a partial measure. Influencer marketing is all about creating brand awareness in an effective manner, and to understand the extent to which it was able to do so, you need to look at your goals.

As a business, you can measure your influencer marketing campaign based on three goals related to brand awareness, impressions, reach and engagement. You can measure the effectiveness of your campaign by comparing the data after the campaign to before the campaign. 

Here are some goals you might want to use:

  1. Increase In Sales: The number of new viewers or the number of new buyers for your website directly associated with your influencer’s reach. If you can’t track which purchases are from your influencer campaign, you can see if your audience has increased if your purchases increase.

  1. Public Sentiment: An increase in positive reviewers to negative reviewers, or an increase to reviews altogether.

  1. Public Awareness: The increase in your online following, but mainly your interaction and engagement online.

Influencer marketing, unlike other marketing channels, will involve a lot of deep research to get your small business on the map. But this research will enable your business to grow at a faster rate!

Supporting this statement is the fact that influencer marketing has become one of the highest revenue generators for most marketers as they are making $20 or more for each dollar invested. 

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Ryan Gould
Vice President of Strategy and Marketing Services
Elevation Marketing
From legacy Fortune 100 institutions to inventive start-ups, Ryan brings extensive experience with a wide range of B2B clients. He skillfully architects and manages the delivery of integrated marketing programs, and believes strongly in strategy, not just tactics, that effectively aligns sales and marketing teams within organizations.

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