When you have a product or service to sell, you need a marketing strategy to increase awareness of what you have to offer.
Most companies put aside a substantial budget for advertisement. Influencer marketing can be a relatively inexpensive, highly effective way not only to make potential customers aware of your product or service, but also to persuade them to purchase it.
Essentially, everyone with a substantial number of social media followers can be potential influencers who drive traffic to your website and encourage people to buy from your company.
The trick is to find the ones who are going to reach people specifically interested in what you are selling.
Define Your Target Audience
The first step to finding people who can influence your target audience is to define precisely who makes up your audience.
Several factors can help you pinpoint the people to whom your most successful marketing can be directed:
- Characteristics that current customers have in common
- The target market of your strongest competitors
- Specific demographics (e.g., age, gender, family status, occupation, etc.) that your product or service is designed to serve
- Lifestyles into which your product or service seems to fit best
- People who may benefit from your product or service the most
Knowing your target market can help you hone in on the specific goals you want to set for your marketing campaign.
Define Your Goals
It's common sense that one of the main goals of your marketing efforts is selling the products or services that you offer.
If you are only looking at sales, however, you may be missing some of the critical goals that ultimately lead to higher sales outcomes in the long run.
One possible goal is building your brand. The more recognizable your name is, the more profits you are likely to see.
It's not enough, however, that people know who you are. They also need to like who you are. Seeking out customers whose values coincide with those your company exhibits can help you build a stronger brand.
Another possible goal is increasing traffic to your website. Influencer marketing works as a digital word-of-mouth campaign.
Content creators can help send new people your way by including links back to your site in a blog post. You can also get new followers if an influential user tags you in his or her Instagram post.
There are many ways creative individuals can direct attention to what you are doing. Once you decide what your goals are, the next step is finding the right influencers to help you achieve them.
Find Your Influencers
Not every person who has a lot of followers on Twitter is going to be the right influencer for your product or service.
Once you know your target audience and goals, however, you are better equipped to choose the type of influencers who will be the most effective.
Look for those who share your audience. If your ideal customer spends a lot of time on certain sites, find influencers who are regulars there as well.
You can also use hashtags to spot popular users who use the same keywords. Once you have found the people who can help you reach your ideal customers, you can start to build relationships with them.
Your influencer marketing campaign begins by fostering relationships of mutual respect with those who can best reach your prospective customers.
There are many ways to build a relationship with a social media influencer:
- Providing Content - You can offer to create content for a blog or work with them to co-create a post for either your website or theirs. You can also sponsor posts on their accounts that mention your company.
- Giveaways - Have a contest and ask an influencer to share it. Offer them product samples in exchange for an honest review. Share discount codes with influencers that they can then offer to their followers to encourage them to try your product or service.
- Affiliate Codes - Pay popular social media users by giving them affiliate links that let them earn a percentage of every sale they influence.
- Symbiotic Sharing - Let the influencer take over your social media account for a day or two. Feature them as an ambassador on your website.
While you don't want to forget your goals or target audience, you should pick a strategy that is fun for both you and the influencers you choose.
Building a genuine connection is ultimately the best way to achieve your goals and reach new people.