Choosing the right social media influencer may seem tedious to a first-timer, so I want to share the selection process I use on behalf of my clients.
First, let’s define influencer:
Influencer [in-floo-uh n-ser]: A person highly engaged with, and respected by, a large community of your targeted potential customers
In addition to the “popular influencer” defined above, “micro influencers” have emerged as a sub-category of this social media marketing arm because of their niche popularity.
Micro influencers are people who don’t have a “large” community (>5k), but are expertly connected to their followers. Many people think follower count is all that matters, but that’s not true.
Oftentimes, these micro influencers are specific to one location (for instance, think Miami-based foodies vs. an international food bloggers). They offer higher ROI potential for location-based products and services.
So, how do you choose the right social media influencer? Here’s how.
Social Media Influencer: Choosing Wisely
Determine A Measurable Goal
Most importantly, you must understand why you’re partnering in the first place. Consider the following:
- What is the specific intended outcome of the campaign?
- How many influencers do you want to involve?
- What are you expecting the influencers to do on your behalf?
- What can you afford to pay/what perks are you willing to offer?
- How long will the campaign run?
- How will you measure the success of the influencer’s involvement?
Research How Others In Your Field Are Using Influencers
Do some digging and make sure you’re on the right track:
- What kinds of influencers are your competitors working with?
- How much of their marketing efforts include influencer marketing?
- Does it seem genuine and effective, or would you do things differently?
Look for these qualities because there are a lot of fake profiles out there:
- Consistent with posts, replying to comments, answering DMs.
- Has a website and blog that is updated regularly.
- Is easy to reach (if you can’t find their contact info easily, move along).
- Does not already promote too many products and is not over-saturating.
Create a Pitch
Prepare your initial contact and make it simple to understand:
- Introduce yourself and your product/service.
- Explain why this person’s community benefits from your product/service.
- Clearly and concisely explain the benefits of the partnership (perks you’re offering, etc.)
- Most importantly, ask if they are interested in discussing further.
In short, make sure your social media influencer is upholding their end of the partnership:
- Note responsiveness and professionalism of those who reply to your pitch.
- Request a media kit and/or examples of past campaigns.
- Clearly outline the expected deliverables for both parties (what are you offering them and what are they doing for you).
Make the Most of Your Social Media Influencer Partnership
Follow these social media influencer guidelines and ensure your influencers are working hard on your behalf.
- Firstly, prepare the content in advance and make it foolproof! As a result, your partners will have an easier time getting the right message out. I create a Dropbox folder with a variety of images, post ideas and the official press release.
- Secondly, throw in extra perks to keep your influencers feeling valued, and if you’re working on trade, make them good. For example, my event clients often host “media-only previews”. Get creative with perks because you want to build long-term relationships.
- Thirdly, be reliable and available. Set the tone for the kind of working relationship you expect. You’ll find that some of your influencers just aren’t cutting it, and that’s okay. Your network will grow and evolve effectively if you remain easy to work with!
Above all, you should know cultivating a successful influencer network is tons of work. But, I can promise you that it’s worth the time if you invest in building the right relationships. I hope these tips help you choose the right social media influencers and increase your visibility.
In conclusion, remember:
- Determine a measurable goal and ensure maximum ROI.
- Research how influencers are being used by others in your field.
- Vet them to make sure their community is real, engaged and in line with your brand.
- Create a concise and easy pitch to open up a partnership conversation
- Manage the partnership closely and follow up regularly.
For more on social media marketing trends, keep up with me @bellestrategies.
Belle Strategies is a boutique Digital Marketing company with offices in South Florida and South Carolina. We pair data-driven strategy and attention to detail to produce revenue-based results. For assistance growing your brand, contact us!
Rachel is a digital marketing strategist, and CEO of Belle Strategies. She spends her time helping clients convert their digital communities into lifelong customers.