May 19, 2022
Influencer Marketing 101: Seven Ways to Start An Influencer Marketing Campaign
Today, there is little to no doubt that marketing has evolved and adapted to modern times.
Back in the day, potential customers relied only on conventional advertisements to learn about brands and businesses. But with the rise of social media, the landscape of advertising has begun to evolve and change and is continuously evolving as we speak. If you are a brand or business that wishes to get recognized, you need to jump on the bandwagon and create a marketing campaign that would entice audiences.
Keep in mind that social media is rife with users and prospective audiences—so much so that failing to have an excellent social media marketing strategy in place can potentially have you falling behind your competitors. That said, your brand may want to tap into the influencer marketing trend.
WHAT IS INFLUENCER MARKETING?
While influencer marketing may be a relatively new buzzword to some marketers, it has actually been around a decade ago. However, the industry was primarily limited to celebrities and a few dedicated bloggers. Today, however, it seems like brand influencers are on the rise on social media platforms. In fact, they have saturated the market insomuch that some audiences take their word as gospel.
To word it succinctly, influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing that utilizes endorsements and product mentions from influencers. You might ask, “Why influencers of all people?”. Well, influencers have a dedicated social following. As a result, they are viewed as authorities and experts within their niche.
WHY DOES INFLUENCER MARKETING WORK?
When done right, influencer marketing can be effective because of the established trust social influencers have with their following. Trust is something every brand needs, and when you partner with brand influencers, you are essentially borrowing that trust. That said, any recommendations from them will serve as social proof to your brand’s potential and prospective customers. By leveraging their reputation and the trust they have built, you can achieve not only brand recognition but potentially profit from it as well.
SEVEN WAYS TO START AN INFLUENCER MARKETING CAMPAIGN
Some brands and businesses make the mistake of arbitrarily partnering with a brand influencer who has a high following and simply letting their influencer marketing campaign run its course. However, this is an oversight that needs to be addressed. Starting an influencer marketing strategy is not as straightforward as it may seem. Apart from knowing its importance, brands need to know that it involves understanding the process and the required results as well. If you wish to utilize this type of strategy and bring it to its full potential, you need to do it right. Otherwise, you may be doing your brand more harm than good.
Also, it is worth noting that influencer marketing strategies have significantly changed since the COVID-19 outbreak and a series of global lockdowns. While influencers can still make money from the income they get on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Youtube, and the like, the market has shifted. As a result, brands and businesses have adapted to the current economic climate.
In this article, we will discuss the ways you can start an influencer marketing strategy while simultaneously considering the effects of the pandemic. Today, maintaining trust among your audiences and growing your social proof on different social channels is paramount. So, if you wish to have an effective influencer marketing campaign for your brand in place, below are just some of the ways you can do that:
1.) Get the current picture
Ideally, if you want to build a viable influencer marketing strategy, you need to do proper research. This means that fact-finding and proper analysis of the current market conditions are required. To do this, your brand may need a dedicated marketing team or marketing manager to get the right information and metrics. Salient things that should be included in this information are a review of consumer behavior, leading innovations, and the impact of external social forces.
Keep in mind that you also need to take the COVID-19 pandemic into account. While brands are still capitalizing on influencer marketing campaigns to connect with people, you also need to cultivate a feeling of well-being.
2.) Define your target market
Once you have made up your mind about creating an influencer marketing strategy, your next step is to define your audience. In a nutshell, your audience is a group of people to whom your products and services best appeal. One oversight most brands make is targeting their products and services to a wide and general audience. You may want your brand to have the broadest reach, but starting with the right people is paramount. After all, you do not want to market your product to the wrong audience.
To maximize your marketing efforts and convert them to sales, you need to discover who your best customers are. This includes determining their geographic location, identifying their interests and what appeals to them, and when the right time to target them is. Most importantly, you need to know which social media platforms to use in order to reach them.
3.) Partner with the right influencers
There are brands, especially those that are new to the industry, that make the mistake of presenting the wrong influencers to their target audience. This may be because they have not done enough research, or they arbitrarily partnered with an influencer that has a massive following. Do not make this make, and choose an influencer that knows your brand’s objective is pivotal to the success of the strategy.
Choosing the right influencer means selecting someone your target audience admires, trusts, and respects. Do not simply choose the popular influencers; and go for the right ones. Below is a brief guide to help you find the best influencers for your brand:
Before partnering with a particular influencer, determine whether they and their audience are the perfect partners for your brand.
Essentially, an influencer’s number of followers is a good indication of whether they can boost your brand’s awareness. Needless to say, the higher the number of followers, the bigger their influence is. Keep in mind, however, that it is vital to find out whether their follower count is grown organically or purchased and partner with the former.
Partner with an influencer whose followers are actively participating in the content they post. Good influencers call their audiences to action whenever needed. As a result, you can achieve the results you require.
You may start your search for the right influencer by going through your contact list. It might be that the person you are looking for is already right in front of you. Know who your contacts are and who they are following. Alternatively, you can do it with a simple Google search or contact search using tools such as Awario, Buzzsumo, and the like.
4.) Take advantage of micro-influencers
Influencers can be quite expensive to partner with, and with the impact of the pandemic, they are even more costly to hire. As a result, micro-influencers have become more popular.
While they do not have a massive following like celebrities, they can be very effective as they are famous bloggers, vloggers, or social media authorities who cater to a specific niche. In this way, they have the ability to generate a greater engagement through the content they regularly post. Do not be quick to dismiss micro-influencers as they are easier to deal with and are more effective in generating sales. If you wish to have a specific call to action, they are the ideal solution.
5.) Reach out and partner with influencers
Once you have found the right influencer, your next step is to convince them to work with you. To impress them, you need to come up with compelling reasons why they should. This means you need to be well-prepared with your pitch.
Typically, brands do this by reaching out to them through a personal message on their social media platforms or through their email. Keep in mind that to entice them, you need to state what you are willing to pay. However, you do not always have to do this. Alternatively, you can offer your influencers free products in return for shout-outs or brand endorsements.
6.) Craft your campaign
When it comes to creating a campaign, an excellent question to ask is, “Who creates the posts of influencers?”. You can go about this in two ways: By allowing your influencers free rein in giving shout-outs on a post you have made or one they have made themselves. Both are proven to be effective as the post will be seen by the influencer’s entire audience.
Another tactic you can try is to ask the influencer to include a link to your product page on their Instagram bio link. As a result, anyone who views their bio will be exposed to your product through a direct link which is one of the surefire ways to monitor results with real-time metrics.
7.) Monitor campaigns
One last thing to keep in mind when it comes to starting an influencer marketing campaign is to monitor how well they did. Some goals you should set for yourself are increasing brand awareness, improving brand advocacy, reaching new audiences, and directly increasing sales.
Once you have your goals, identify the metrics you need to measure them, such as the number of impressions, brand mentions, follower growth, clicks, increase in brand engagement, revenue, and user-generated content.
If you wish to launch your brand and get it out there, tapping into the benefits of influencer marketing might just be the answer. By partnering with the right influencer, you can double the sales of your brand while achieving maximum visibility on multiple social media platforms.