How to Utilize Influencer Marketing
No matter what industry you're in, there's no doubt you've come across an influencer or two (or maybe 10). From mega-influencers to micro-influencers, utilizing these accounts for marketing is becoming more and more popular when it comes to your digital strategy. Why, do you ask? Three words. Third. Party. Validation. Similar to user-generated content, influencer marketing is basically just having someone else brag on your awesome brand! Throw in a special discount code for their followers, and BOOM! You're in business. So, now that you know what it is, how do you do it? We'll tell you.
Find Influencers That Share Your Audience
The first step is to start your search. Find accounts that share a similar audience with your brand. You can do this a couple of different ways. The first is to search with a hashtag. For example, if you own a dog treat company you might search the hashtag #dogsofinstagram and find an account that matches your brand aesthetic and type of content. Once you've narrowed it down to a few people (or pets), send them an email if they have one available, or shoot a direct message letting them know how and why you would like to partner with them!
Define Your Strategy
When crafting the message you would like to send to an influencer, make sure you clearly state what kind of partnership you are looking for and what your expectations are. This is a business partnership, after all, and you want it to be the best experience for both of you! We've outlined a few ways you can do this:
Gifting: Giving content creator(s) some of your products in exchange for a review or mention is a great way to dip your toe into influencer marketing.
Sponsored Content: Whether you're selling a tangible product or a service, paying for a featured post on a blog or social media page is a great option when working with someone who has a large following. When doing a sponsored post, you can co-create the content along with them, ask them to create content and send it to you for approval first before posting, or you may opt to create the content yourself!
Discount Codes: Asking an influencer to become an affiliate with your brand is another popular way to utilize this strategy of marketing. Oftentimes, this works by creating a discount code that is specific to them like 'KLEIN20' that gives their followers 20% off. They then will make a percentage of every sale that uses their discount code. Similar to a referral fee!
Giveaways: Contests and giveaways are another great option! Team up with an influencer to give away some of your products or offer to be a part of their next giveaway. Influencers often team up with each other and giveaway big ticket items or boxes with some of their favorite things. If you're part of a big giveaway like this, your products or services will be seen on multiple content creator's accounts!
Takeovers: Influencer takeovers are the perfect way to steer traffic over to your own profiles. Ask them to take over your account for the day and even give them some ideas of what you would like for them to share. In this type of strategy, it's super important to make sure you choose someone with a similar audience. They'll invite their followers over to your feed or stories for the day and you'll drum up some new business and engagement!
Before you hit 'go' on your new influencer marketing campaign, make sure you have clearly defined what kind of results you want to see. Do you want more website traffic? New sales? More engagement? Share what you are looking for with your influencer as well so they can help. Remember, they know their audience and what they will respond to - ask their opinion!
While influencer marketing is still new, it's definitely here to stay. Social media is becoming a more and more powerful tool for businesses and using it to your advantage can be extremely beneficial! Creating brand partnerships with influencers and content creators is a great way to modernize your strategy and stay in the game. Plus, you'll be ahead of some of your competitors who haven't tapped into these built-in audiences yet.
Looking to refresh your strategy? Want help managing your very own influencer campaign? Contact us today!
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