Influencer marketing is one of the hottest marketing tactics to date for getting a brand in front of a large yet targeted audience. This style of outreach allows the brand to connect with its audience organically compared to traditional forms of digital marketing. Influencer marketing focuses on working with influential people to help promote a brand through digital marketing, whether that’s on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, a personal blog, etc. As companies implement influencer marketing into campaigns, there are efficient processes to identifying influencers, strategies for successful implementation and importantly, tips for measuring every campaign’s success that can make or break your campaign.
Why influencers? People trust other people
There are many times when direct marketing may not feel as authentic to a potential customer compared to a recommendation from a peer. Someone who is interested in your business is more likely to trust a person who has used the service or product rather than relying on what the brand has to say. With an influencer, people tend to take their reviews or comments more seriously, even if it’s nearly the same message that the brand pushed out. It will be the influencer’s spin on that message that resonates and makes it feel real.
How to identify influencers who fit with your brand
Your brand is unique, and those helping you market your brand should fit right in. As you identify social influencers, keep your brand top of mind. There are thousands of powerful influencers out there covering a variety of topics and it’s easy to get distracted and go after an influencer who has the most followers or the flashiest personality, but think of their demographic, style, and interests and if that influencer truly resonates with your brand. When beginning your search to identify the right influencer, first try organically searching Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Searching through social media gives businesses the opportunity to review the influencer’s previous work and check his or her credibility when it comes to influencer marketing. You should also look inside your brand and see if you have any current customers who are social media influencers – that is sometimes the easiest place to start.
What you get: Authentic content
A reputable social influencer will be picky about the brands they partner with because their reputation is on the line. To become a well-known influencer takes a lot of hard work as they have to build a large following and strong personal brand. With that said, an influencer wants to provide their following with compelling content that fits well with the brand they have established. Once you identify reliable influencers that make sense for your brand and they agree to work with you, you’ll start to see authentic and unique content that you can’t possibly replicate on your own. You must repurpose this content in every way possible to make sure you get the maximum exposure.
Measuring success is key
For influencer posts to be seen as valuable and successful, adding a trackable link is key. This link will help the business identify how many leads, sales, etc. are coming from the social influencer and the post or content they share. Chances are good that you will have to invest to get the right influencer on board, whether it’s through product or service trade or cash. Make sure you track the success so you can understand what you paid for, and if you should do it again. Sometimes your goal is simply “brand awareness” which is hard to track, but find some kind of measurement that works for you whether it be an increase in website traffic, calls, or something else.
The reality is: if you aren’t jumping on to the social media influencer bandwagon, you are missing out on a major opportunity to build your brand and gain new customers.
Author Melissa DiGianfilippo is the co-owner and president of public relations at Serendipit Consulting, where she leads the firm’s clients’ public relations and communications efforts including traditional media relations, crisis communications, internal communications, community outreach and more.