Influencer marketing is fast becoming the new ‘in thing’ among brands and marketers. currently regarded as the most effective marketing channel with reports showing that it delivers as much as an 11% higher ROI than other traditional marketing channels.
Brands, big and small, are taking advantage of this effective marketing channel to grow their brand awareness and drive sales.
But, what does this mean for your business?
With an increasing number of people revealing that seeing an influencer use a product directly influenced them to buy the product, it is very clear that influencer marketing is the new way to go for smart ROI-focused brands.
Before we go any further, let’s talk about who influencers are anyway.
Who is an influencer?
A couple of years ago the answer to that question would be simple; Hollywood stars and TV personalities. But over the years social media has allowed more ordinary people to create and build highly-engaged communities of people with similar interest. Thus, positioning themselves as influencers.
A great benefit of this ‘democratization’ of influence is that it has allowed people with diverse interests to build tight-knit communities of people who share the same interest. Working with an influencer who has your target audience as followers ensure that your message reaches your target audience in a less ads-y way.
Having established who an influencer is, let’s talk about why you need to work with one.
Why do you need to work with influencers?
To reach your target audience
Doing due diligence before choosing an influencer to work with ensures that you reach your target audience and get them to know about and buy from your brand without necessarily giving off the regular market-y vibe.
To build social proof
Working with influencers serves as social proof, especially for new brands. People don’t buy things from strangers and working with an influencer is one of the fastest ways to go from being the ‘strange brand’ to being the brands people want to buy from because their favourite social media influencer is using the brand’s product.
To be trendy
Reports have shown that influencer marketing works best on millennials and Gen-Zers, with one study showing that as much as 49% of US millennials rely on social media recommendations to make purchase decisions. These demographics are the most sensitive to trends and working with the right influencer can set your brand up to be the trendy new brand that people love.
Now to the meat.
How do you find the ‘perfect’ influencer for your brand’s influencer marketing campaign?
Working with influencers can rapidly increase your brand’s awareness and lead generation, but how do you make sure that your efforts (and money) are getting your message in front of the right audience?
Two important factors will help you identify the right influencer for your brand viz:
Know Your Target Audience
If your brand is for everybody then it is for nobody. Knowing your target audience provides the standards by which to judge potential influencers. An influencer must have the people you’ve identified as your target audience as their audience to be added into your list of potential influencers for outreach.
Know Your Influencer
Just as important as knowing your target audience is knowing your influencer. Some metrics by which to know how influential an influencer can be for your brand are:
You should work with an influencer who has built an audience in your niche. And it’s a no-brainer because you need to work with an influencer whose audience aligns with your brand to get maximum results.
This goes without saying. Any influencer you want to work with should have a substantial number of followers on the platform your campaign is to run on.
While follower count is important, the rate of followers who actually ‘engage’ with a prospective influencers content matter even more. Engagement also gives an insight into how much an influencer is capable of influencing her audience’s purchase decision.
Authenticity is what makes an influencer’s recommendation trustworthy. You can check previous sponsored content on the page to see how their followers interact with it.
Having explored how to find influencers for your business, we now move to:
Where do you find influencers for your business?
Searching relevant hashtags like #sponsored, #ad, or #influencer can help you find influencers on social media. You can use HashtagForLikes to find influencers in your niche.
Influencer Marketing Platforms
Some platforms make it easy for marketers and brands to find the right influencers just by searching their database. You can sort the result by pre-set metrics like niche, reach, engagement, et cetera.
You may also have, through the use of social media, noticed some influencers whose message and audience aligns with your business, that’s another great way to find the right influencer for your brand’s influencer marketing campaign.
Having found some influencers you’d like to work with, what’s next? How do you get them to actually work with you?
How do You get Influencers to Work with You?
Shooting an influencer a cold mail or a dm asking them to work with you might not be the best way to ‘influence’ an influencer to work with you. It pays to first get acquainted and engage with the influencers you’d like to work with on social media, this puts you on their radar and saves you from coming across as a stranger when you eventually make the ask.
The next thing to do is to craft a compelling proposal outlining; who you are and how you found them; your purpose for reaching out; what you’re offering in return and a call-to-action for them to take the conversation forward.
If you do not get a response after a couple of days, you might want to send follow-ups as it is possible that your mail got lost in the clutter. You can use the popular 3-7-7-4 formula to send a couple of follow-ups before crossing the influencer off your list.
Influencer marketing offers an invaluable way to increase brand awareness and sales, but working with the wrong influencer can greatly undermine your efforts. Having the tips shared above in mind whenever you’re looking out for influencers ensures that you’re set up for success.
There you have it: How to find the right influencer for your brand’s influencer marketing campaign
What are your thoughts on finding the right influencer for your business?