Marketing on social media is big business, and never before has there been a better way for brands and organisations to stay in direct touch with their followers and target audiences. It’s instant. It’s widespread. It’s impactful. It helps your business grow and scale.
The success of social media on the business world has spawned what is now referred to as ‘social media influencers’; everyday people with social media accounts who have built up a large following in a niche and are now an authority figure. These influencers have large audiences full of people who could be interested in your business, products, and services.
Learning how to use social media influencers and incorporating them into your business marketing strategy seamlessly is critical if you want to succeed. Today, I’m going to talk you through how to work with them properly. There’s a lot that goes into creating influencer-related content, so let’s dive right in.
There’s no time to waste!
Pro-Tip #1 Why Should You Use Social Media Influencers?
First things first, should you even spend time looking at social media influencers? Can they benefit your business? Is it worth investing your resources into this form of marketing? The answer is ‘Of course’. Influencer marketing used to be massive a year or so ago, but consumers have become increasingly savvy when it comes to who they choose to follow and what they’re trying to sell.
That being said, it’s big business.
As of July 2020, the average business is making $5.20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing, with 63% of marketers looking to increase their spend in this area next year. It’s estimated that by 2022, around $15 billion will be spent on influencer marketing worldwide, and the profits that businesses will receive will be five times that.
These are not statistics to be ignored. Followers on social media tend to trust influencers with what they’re saying more than they do the recommendations from their own friends and family, especially in younger sub-25 audiences. For many businesses, it’s well worth investing in influencer marketing, but only if you do it right.
Pro-Tip #2 How to Find the Right Niche
The first thing you need to do is – find the right influencer for your content marketing strategy. This means researching who’s in your niche and who’s available to work. Let’s say, you’re a small jewellery business. It could be tempting to look for the biggest fashion blogger and influencer you can find, but is this really going to be beneficial?
Getting your brand in front of 100k people is very exciting, but perhaps starting small, maybe with a fashion influencer with 50k followers and a high engagement rate could be even better for you. It’s all about weighing up the pros and cons of each influencer you’re interested in.
The best thing to do is to find and list down influencers in your niche and research them thoroughly. Keep your goals in mind. Are you trying to spread awareness of your brand, or drive out awareness of a new product you’re launching? Are you trying to build your own following and brand, or are you trying to make connections?
Different Influencers will be best for completing different goals, so always work around these, and don’t just jump in with the biggest influencer because you think it’s going to have the biggest effect.
Once you’ve chosen the influencers you want to work with, now is the time to get creative with the content you’re creating with them.
Pro-Tip #3 How to Create Impactful Social Media Content
When it comes to influencer marketing, it’s all about creating engaging content that gets people excited. This is, of course, what influencers do best, but it’s up to you to make relevant content at the same time.
In this part, we’re going to be looking at some ideas of the kind of content you can create that’s going to make the influencer happy, as well as getting you some results.
Of course, the first approach you can take is creating the content with the influencer themselves. This means both you and the influencer will be in the content creation process and you’ll both be featured. This is a great approach if you’re a personal brand and have a face to your business you want to include in the imagery.
This content will then be cross-posted on both your social media profiles and the influencers’, thus, drawing attention to both your brands and getting people excited.
If you’re selling a specific product or service, you can get your influencer to feature what you’re offering on their pages. This is normally done by sending your influencer a sample of the product, and then they’ll do what they want with it. For one, creating content using your products or services in their own creative style.
Statistics show that marketing in this way can pique interest in a product or service by as much as 2.7x times what it would normally be, so don’t underestimate how powerful this form of marketing can be.
Create Influencer-Ready Discount Codes
Everybody is always looking for a new and amazing deal, and people who follow influencers are no exception. By offering your influencer exclusive discount codes, you’re making the community of that influencer feel like a privilege to be a part of because they’re getting something special that nobody else has access to.
says Nick Anderson, an influencer marketing blogger at DraftBeyond and Last Minute Writing.
Get creative with your codes. If you’re working with Scarlet Taylor, for example, then creating a code like Scarlet15 makes the code personal and so much more exciting to use because the followers feel as though they got something for nothing.
Host Contests and Giveaways via Your Influencers
Another extremely popular way to get people interested in hosting giveaway contests and competitions with the influencers. Let’s say you sell gaming computers. You can create a gaming computer setup and let your influencer know who will then market it to their followers however they want.
Because people want to win the gaming computer setup, courtesy of you, they’ll follow the entry requirements. These criteria tend to include following your brand’s page, the influencer’s page, liking and commenting on an image, and sharing it with other people, thus massively spreading awareness of your brand.
Create Influencer-Orientated Content
Just like influencers can feature you in their content, you can feature them in yours. People love seeing ‘famous’ people in your content, and they’ll think ‘oh wow, I know that person and they’re working with this brand. This brand must be legitimate, and now I want to know more’.
Don’t forget to get creative with the content you’re creating because you want it to be exciting, and you want it to start out. If you made basketballs and had Michael Jordan as a part of your marketing campaign, you wouldn’t have him sitting around doing nothing; you’d have him doing what he does best.
Influencer Interview-Format Content
Knowledge is power, and sharing knowledge with your followers is a great way to get them excited about what you’re offering and to see you as an authoritative source of information in your niche. You can do this easily using the interview-based model.
By having the influencer interview you and your business, or interviewing them, you can easily tell your story behind your brand, or the story behind their journey. At the end of the day, people love hearing stories and seeing the journey of those brands, businesses, and where their products have come from, especially when they’re shared in an engaging way.
“A great way to do this form of social media is if you can get onto a podcast and have a chat with someone, or create some fun interview format, such as Vox’s 75 Questions series, or celebrities answered Google’s most commonly suggested questions,” shares Angel Harris, a social media marketer at Writinity and Researchpapersuk.
Do You Need a Brand Review?
A brand review is pretty self-explanatory. Just like customers can go on Yelp or Google and leave reviews on your business, you can get an influencer to come and do the same thing, and then people reading the review will see it with some authority, rather than it being just a random piece of information.
Imagine if you owned a restaurant and you had a famous TV chef come to your restaurant, have a meal, and then wrote about their experience. This is the kind of coverage you’re trying to encourage.
Pro-Tip #4 Collaborating with Influencers and Building Relationships
The final point you need to be thinking about is the relationship you have with the influencers you’re working with. For many influencers, it’s not enough to simply pay for some sort of content and then never work with them again. Both influencers and businesses want long-lasting relationships that grow and benefit each other over time.
By building relationships, this means both sides of the contract win and can scale over time, creating a collaborative relationship, rather than just trying to get as much as they can out of each other and then leaving.
This means you can’t just hire an influencer, send them some products, hoping they just get on with it. It means investing time in creating relationships, and working together to create something great that benefits everyone involved and provides real value to the followers you’re promoting too.
Working this way creates a positive and rewarding experience for everyone, and it’s an approach well-worth considering if you want the maximum degree of success to come from this kind of content marketing campaign.