The concept of influencer marketing was only limited to some celebrities and to some bloggers a decade ago. In this era, we have all seen the rise of the influencers! If you research on influencer marketing, you might get caught up in conflicting information. You will come across conflicting information like influencer marketing will help your brand and you might also read about how influencers are not necessary for your marketing strategy.
Let’s start by getting to know influencer marketing!
Influencer marketing is a type of marketing that is done by the prominent leaders or popular personalities on social media who have a large and loyal network. The influencers portray your brand’s message to the market and to your audience. Instead of directly marketing to a large number of customers, you can hire and pay the influencers for putting in a word for you or for recommending your products/services.
Influencer marketing usually comprises of : social media marketing and content marketing. Most of the influencer marketing campaigns have some kind of social media promotion component where the influencers have to spread a word about your brand through their personal social media channels. Many other influencer marketing campaigns also contain a content element wherein either you create the content for the influencers or they create the content by themselves. This content provides information or benefits about your products/services. As the influencers started getting brand partnerships, they became more popular and influencer marketing became a full time career.
How to create an expert influencer marketing campaign that works wonders for you?
Here are the important elements that go into making a great influencer marketing campaign:
Research & Explore
Similar to any other marketing strategy, research is the first step to influencer marketing as well. First, you need to select the network that you want to focus on. You can always expand to the other networks but first you need to start on just one network to get the right hold. If you are operating your business for quite some time, your brand might already have a presence on the social media network that you have chosen.
The industry you are operating in also makes a huge difference. If you are interested in some influencers, study their activity closely. Do you want to go for celebrities who have a massive following? Or would you like to opt for microinfluencers with less than 2000 followers? Perhaps the right choice for you would be to opt for influencers having a follower range of 5,000-10,000. The type of influencers you choose will determine the budget of your influencer marketing campaign.
Compensation to be given to the influencers also varies widely. Make sure to have a look at the common rates for the type of influencers that you have chosen. The microinfluencers usually focus on a few topics and take up product recommendations as well. There are some microinfluencers who are freelancers and work independently while the others come through some agency or network. If you opt for influencers with larger social accounts or celebrities, you might have to give compensation to them and you might have to reach out to them through a talent agency.
Researching well about the type of influencers you would like to have for you brand is an extremely important step that will simplify the further process for you.
Create A Budget And Determine The Compensation
After you have researched about the influencers, you will have an idea about the sum of money that you have to pay, so now you need to work on creating a budget. Setting up an influencer marketing campaign is not something that you can set easily and it will start running, you have to put in the time for planning, implementing, reviewing and follow up.
You have to take this fact into consideration that unlike an automated ad strategy, influencers are human beings and they are balancing multiple product partnerships at a time. It might happen that some of the influencers might not be able to deliver on time as per the commitments, and at times there might be some mistakes in the tags that you requested them to use or the call to action. You have to be very patient when it comes to working with the influencers, you must work towards developing a good relationship with your influencers. While dealing with the influencers, it is important for you to clarify and streamline your approach in order to have a better idea about what works and what does not work in your niche.
If you can work with one influencer its good but if you have a brand that requires a wider pool of influencers, ideally, you must get in touch with an influencer marketing agency that will perform the research on your part and handle your influencer marketing perfectly.
Decide On Your Goals And The Message That You Want To Give Out
The two most common aspects for which influencer marketing is used are:
- Increasing the brand awareness
- Increasing sales
However, in place of considering these two targets alone, it is a good idea to know the needs of your brand and set goals accordingly. For instance, your goal may be to increase the customers of a younger demographic or you might want to expand your business and cater to a completely new user group with some new products or services.
The message that you would like to send out to your audience is as important as your business goal. Although you wouldn’t want to hamper the creativity of the influencers you are working with, you also wouldn’t want them to portray something that you don’t want to tell your audience. Therefore, it is important for you to plan first about how you would like to reach out to your audience and what message you want to convey to them before you discuss this with the influencers.
Find Your Influencers And Get In Touch With Them
Now that you have a definite plan for your influencer marketing campaign, it is time to find the right influencers to get in touch with them. When you search for influencers, you must consider the important aspects mentioned below:
- It is important to know if the influencer that you have finalized posts about similar things related to your products/services. For instance, if you have a web hosting company and if you wish to promote some services, you need to look for influencers who post reviews about web hosting companies.
- You need to know if the influencer that you are planning to work with is legit or not. How can you do this? You can go through the influencer’s posts and click on the links given in them. If you find that there is a poor engagement ratio or if there are a lot of spam comments, then it can be a fraud account.
- You must also find out if the influencer has worked with similar brands before. This depends on the type of influencer you are looking for. If you get in touch with an experienced influencer, he/she will show you a portfolio of work done.
Your next step is getting in touch with the influencer! In case of microinfluencers, you can directly reach out to them by sending a private message on any social media website. If you would like to opt for more expirienced ones, go through their profile as they might have mentioned their contact information for inquiries in their profile bio. At times, you might also find a link to a website that displays all their brand partnerships.
Be Prepared For Effective Implementation
Once you get in touch with the influencer, once the influencer is ready to go and when the content is ready, it is time to go live with your influencer marketing campaign. It is important for you to keep communicating with the influencers on a regular basis during the implementation of the campaign. You must be available for any queries, issues or comments made by your customers or influencers.
It is also crucial to track the views on the posts made by the influencers, keep a track of the number of likes, comments and shares. Monitor your campaign regularly so that you know if any changes are to be made. You must be able to figure out if any of the influencers are not driving traffic or not delivering the kind of results you wanted. In this case, you might want to exclude those influencers or replace them.
Influencer marketing has gained momentum and it is here to stay. This guide will help you to get started with your influencer marketing campaign. You might have to go through a little trial and error when it comes to finalizing the influencers and getting in touch with them but it will all be worth it once your influencer marketing campaign gains momentum. Ideally you must start with just one influencer marketing campaign first and when you get a hold of it you can have multiple campaigns, but it is important to make sure that you don’t complicate things for yourself.