The word is out. Consumers won’t only take your word for it when it comes to how amazing your product, service and company is. Influencer marketing is taking the lead as a tactic for increasing revenue and brand awareness. When it comes to finding the right influencers and how to benefit from their prowess in your market, don’t be hasty and make sure to do your homework. With thousands of bloggers and influencers online, concentrate your efforts on those who align with your brand and message. And naturally, remember that influencers are people too. Let’s review the ways in which to find your top influencers and the myriad benefits of those relationships.
Free download: Before you begin driving influencers to your website, make sure you’ve recently completed a thorough content inventory. If you’ve never done one, or could use a refresher, make sure to download our free guide, How to do a Content Inventory.
Where are the influencers you speak of?
Putting so much importance on someone outside of your company may seem odd. But trust us, it’s become word of mouth for the digital age.
Let’s look at the the dollars. Earlier this month, Kimberlee Morrison for Ad Week reported on an influencer marketing study conducted by Burst Media. They found that “On average, marketers who implemented an Influencer Marketing program in 2014 received $6.85 in earned media value for every $1.00 of paid media, according to the report.”
You can begin to see that if an influencer puts their name behind your brand, it’s very likely that increased revenue will follow.
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With the word, influencer, sticking to the walls of conference rooms, let’s revisit what makes someone an influencer:
“Influencers are people within your niche that have insta-access to your target market – they engage with them regularly, build trusting relationships and ultimately shape their buying behaviors,” explains Lauren Jung in her PR News article, PR Insider: Influencer Marketing is Essential to Building your Business.
Where to start the hunt for great influencers:
- Networking events: You should have your dance card filled with industry-related conferences and networking events. Keynote speakers and panelists alike should be at the top of your list. Sit in on the right sessions and strike up meaningful dialogue. If need be, send a follow-up email or DM.
- Ask your peers: Chances are that many influencers are orbiting your inner circle. Ask colleagues or peers who their favorite industry bloggers are.
- LinkedIn Groups: So many meaningful conversations are opened in LinkedIn Groups. Join the right ones and pay attention to the bloggers and professionals who voice their expertise.
- Google Hangouts and Tweet-ups: Again, great places to join conversations led by industry experts. Influencers are constantly socializing within their industry, which is no surprise!
Once you identify the influencers who you want touting your brand, be diligent in approaching them. The tactics will be similar to those of approaching a reporter.
Your brand will be in stellar hands
Once you receive coverage from an influencer, your brand will reach the audience you may have trouble reaching with internal efforts. Influencers have earned not only a sizable following, but the respect of said following. Influencers don’t maintain their reputation by sharing random factoids on social media. By proxy, your brand’s reputation will be strengthened.
“The job of the influencer is to direct the flow to you so you can utilize the trust and authority that the influencer has already built up and leverage it as your own,” explains Douglas Karr in his Marketing Tech Blog Post, Why Influencer Marketing May Just be your Next Strategy.
As a marketer, you are constantly building relationships with your audience. It’s time to use that perseverance to build relationships with your future brand liaisons.
Bonus Download: Your content needs to be directed towards individuals. Check out our free guide, Intro to 1:1 Marketing, to learn the best methods for effectively reaching your audience and rising above the digital noise.