The last few years have seen the rise of the influencer in the world of marketing.
You see, as algorithms muddle our feeds and the price of advertising rises, businesses are looking for new ways to connect with their clients and potential clients. Increasingly, that has been through influencer marketing.
The concept is simple: find someone who has a built-in audience that they have already grown, someone who aligns with your values as a business, and get them to post about you, thus introducing you to their (and a new-to-you) audience.
It works on another level as well: we tend to make purchases based on the recommendations of people we trust, and influencers, if they are doing their jobs right, will be that.
As a business, how can you connect with influencers?
- Research. Start with a simple google search of “subject matter + your location.” If you don’t find anything, you may need to expand your search in both areas.
- Evaluate. Create a process for evaluating the influencers. This should start with a look at their numbers and engagement on all platforms. I like to use an excel spreadsheet for this.
- Engage. This is a crucial step, and it’s often overlooked. Create a twitter list with your influencers on it, and begin to interact with them. Comment on their blog posts and instagram posts. What you are doing here is creating a relationship with the influencer, so that when you get to the next step, they are going to know who you are.
- Pitch. Start by addressing them by their name, and make sure you get the spelling right. Then mention a recent post of theirs, so that they know you are actually familiar with their work. Finally, follow up with the pitch. Your pitch needs to be specific, and it needs to offer something of value in return. The influencer may come back to you and say that they would be happy to do a sponsored post for you for x amount, and that’s fine. It’s up to you to decide if you have the budget and if you think it’s worth it, based on your evaluation.
- Follow up: thank them publicly on your social media, and be sure to share the crap out of any content that they do create on your behalf.
Have you used influencer marketing in your business? I’d love to hear your successes and failures in the comment section below.