Influencer marketing, or “word-of-mouth” marketing, is when your biggest advocates are also your valued customers. With the popularity of social media, many brands have turned to influencer marketing strategies to target specific audiences and increase awareness of their brand. With advertisers earning 6 times ROI on average, it’s no wonder why more companies are searching for innovative ways to incorporate regular people into their marketing campaigns.
The best methods for acquiring an influencer for yourself may vary depending on your product, but the first step in identifying potential leads should be through social media. Sites like Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook are good for determining the reach of specific individuals. The best influencer should be a trusted professional who provides updated content regularly, is an active member in an online community that you want to reach, and uses and understands the value of your product.
When you ask for restaurant recommendations from a friend, you are familiar with their particular tastes and know how their opinions align with your own. A strong influencer works the same way. These are regular people who are promoting your product and explaining how they use it in their professional and daily lives. Their audience knows which brands the influencer values. By adding yourself to that list, you can begin gaining the trust of their audience and growing potential advocates for your brand.
So how do you gain an influencer? The first step is to establish a personal relationship. Send them an email, find out what they value in the products they recommend, and see how you fit in. You want someone who is familiar with your product. The more invested they are in your brand, the more likely they are to promote it. Maintaining a good relationship with an influencer will go a long way towards promoting a positive image about your company and product. The success of this marketing strategy relies on the influencers’ reputation and, if done correctly, can produce some amazing results.
Finding strong influencers is important for smaller companies who may not have the capital for large ad campaigns on traditional channels. Whether it is through the visual Instagram or the more professionally themed LinkedIn, the type of audience you will reach and the potential communities to engage with over social media are vast and unique. If you use social media the way your audience uses social media, they will be more likely to trust your product and the influencers who are promoting you. Your goal should be to talk with your customers, not at them. By following this rule, you will continually be surprised by the results.