As mentioned in our previous blog post regarding the top digital trends, influencer marketing is one of the best ways to gain exposure on social media platforms. There has never been a time where social media has such a massive following as right now in 2019. Big brands are using current trends to enhance their social media content to bring in a broader audience. The excellent thing about influencer marketing is that these people already have a large following of their own with people who view them as a trusted source of information.
A successful influencer strategy helps you increase brand recognition, establish authority, and connect with new people in a meaningful way. It also drives traffic to your website and leads new potential customers to your products and services.
While it can feel like a daunting task to set up, there are many benefits of influencer marketing. To help you execute an effective influencer marketing campaign, we have drafted up an extensive guide explaining what influencer marketing is and how you can use it to benefit your small business.
WHAT IS INFLUENCER MARKETING?
Influencer marketing involves using a well-known social media personality to give exposure to your brand. These influencers customarily have a large and engaged following, so brands benefit when an influencer shares or mentions their content. An influencer’s audience trusts them, and that is the key to gaining those followers as your own. People are more likely to believe a social media personality rather than a business. The exposure creates long-lasting relationships.
In an influencer strategy, a brand forms a partnership with a social media personality. The influencer then agrees to present their audience to the overall brand’s message and content. The whole concept is to work with people who have the right targeted audience so you can make connections with the right people.
DEFINE YOUR GOALS
To get success out of your influencer campaign, it’s essential to define your goals. Once you have a clear idea of what you are trying to accomplish, finding the right influencer will be much easier. Establishing your goals will also help you shape a consistent strategy throughout your campaign. Once you have your goals set, you can measure your success with the appropriate metrics.
Here are a few some you may want to consider for your influencer marketing strategy:
- Brand Awareness: Getting a broader audience to recognize and show interest in your brand’s product and services.
- Engagement: Receiving more shares, comments, and likes on your social media posts. You want to have an ongoing dialogue with the people who follow you.
- Building Brand Identity: You want your audience to have a clear sense of your message and company values.
- Sales: Increasing sales is generally a goal for most companies. You want your followers to purchase your products or services.
- Customer Loyalty: The goal here is to attain a loyal following, so they stay connected with your brand.
CHOOSE A CAMPAIGN TYPE
Once you have determined the goals you want to achieve, it’s time to figure out the type of influencer marketing that will benefit your business. Here are a few types of strategies you can consider:
- Sponsored Content: This involves paying for your brand to be featured on an influencer’s blog or social media page.
- Gifting: You can give free products to an influencer in exchange for a review or mention on their social media platforms.
- Social Media Mentions: Having a social media icon or brand to share your content.
- Giveaways: Giveaways are great for audience engagement. You can run a contest and ask an influencer to share your giveaway event with their audience.
- Influencer Takeover: With an influencer takeover you can have an influencer take control of your social media accounts for a specific period.
- Discount Codes: One way to entice people to follow your brand is to give an influencer a discount code for your product that they can offer to their audience. Many influencers on YouTube use this strategy.
- Brand Ambassadors: Brand ambassadors are essential to successful influencer marketing. These loyal consumers enable your brand to establish long-lasting relationships with their followers. They mention your brand to their list of followers, and you give them free products or exclusive offers.
DEFINE YOUR AUDIENCE & FIND AN INFLUENCER
Next, you want to determine who your target audience is. It’s an excellent idea to take the time to gather specific details about the type of people you want to connect with your brand and make a purchase. You can get a stronger sense of who you want to communicate with by creating a buyer persona. Your buyer persona will include demographics such as gender, location, and interests. It will be easier to decide which influencer and content to use once you have a comprehensive understanding of your target audience.
Now that demographics and psychographics clearly define your audience, you can begin searching for the influencers who will help broaden your audience. Here are the type of influencers to consider:
- Social Media Personalities
- Industry Experts
- Noncompeting Brands
- Knowledgable Leaders
Once you determine the kind of social media influencer you want to use, start researching individuals that encompass your values and intended audience.
With such a large cluster of the population active on different platforms of social media, it’s important to make sure your message reaches them. Influencer marketing takes established audiences and introduces them to your services and products. Make sure to define your goals beforehand so you can easily measure the results and make changes as needed. Once your goals are identified, you can choose the most effective campaign strategy. Using the list of goals you created, your brand can establish who your audience is to select the appropriate influencer. It takes time to come up with an influencer strategy that works for your brand, but the time put in is worth it.