At a party, some friends were talking about a certain slimming tea. It had been recommended by a local celebrity. She had lost quite a few pounds in three months. Within one week, all my female friends had bought that particular brand. That was a social media influencer.
This was a micro influencer as she only had about 800 followers. Still, her blog post influenced potential buyers to buy a certain product. I’ve bought shoes, electronics, and gone to a particular barber shop or dined at some restaurant simply because someone I looked up to endorsed it in his/her social media account.
Just this morning, I was going through my Instagram feed and I came across a video by Diamond Platnumz, a popular East African musician who has 5.2m Instagram followers. He was endorsing my favorite tour operator Bountiful Safaris who I have had the pleasure of travelling with in the past.
Does your B2B business need a social media influencer for branding? The goal of digital branding and having a social content strategy is to increase the number of consumers. Influencers have a ready and loyal social audience that trusts their choice. They have that personal connection that your brand needs.
According to Forbes contributor, Tom Ward, “influencer marketing has proven to be the most effective form of advertising…and will continue to be a focus of smart marketers in 2018.”
Note that not all influencers are fit for your brand. As inbound marketing specialists, Inbound Biz Kit is always looking for the right fit for your B2B brand. You need the right influencer to target your specific market.
Choosing an Influencer
The type of influencer depends on your company goals. Influencers include
- Recognized industry experts
- Bloggers in a particular niche
What’s Your Target Audience?
Katy Perry has over 68 million followers on Instagram. However, her audience might not be the target audience for health care plans after retirement.
Your target audience should be part of her followers.
What’s Your Preferred Platform?
The channels available include Facebook, SnapChat, YouTube and others. The influencer you choose should have a large reach on the platform. You can use sites such as Klout or Kred to measure and track their reach and social influence.
Does Your Digital Content Match The Influencer’s?
An influencer will be more successful if her storytelling is authentic. This happens when their content already matches yours. A gardening blogger will sell gardening tools better than hair conditioner.
Their content should also match your brand’s tone of voice.
How Dependable Are They?
An influencer who has only one post per month will not have high engagement metrics. One who gives positive reviews on similar competing brands is not credible.
The influencer needs to be honest and credible. They should also be constantly visible.
5 Top Tools For Finding your Potential Influencer
Consider the influencer as your partner. They love your brand. They are your creative team. They build relationships for your brand. Their success is your success. Finding that person who gives the right impression is crucial. These are some amazing blogging and content tools you can use to find your potential partner
This allows you to create a list of industry-specific influencers with niche-relevant targeted topics. You can also filter by finding topical authors with the highest engagement metrics. You can create a spreadsheet of sites to monitor. Add this to an ongoing project.
You can also check on and analyse your competitors’ backlinks. If your brand is new, Buzzsumo has content analysis to assist in building your content. You can monitor and compare with your competitors’ RSS feeds.
You can easily find the influencer by narrowing your search in the Klear social influencer tool. Search by type of network, influencer category and skills.
The best thing about Klear is that it covers various platforms. These include Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and blogs. You can also narrow your search to a particular location on Klear.
This is a Twitter analytics tool that helps you connect with influencers. You can create your social graph on the platform. Compare it with those with similar interests. You can then connect with influencers with relevant Twitter bios.
This site is great for finding out the top content to drive engagement in your brand. It has an interesting influence scoring. You can thus compare an influencer’s engagement with those of her peers.
5. Your Own Social Circles
Use the followers in your social media accounts. They are your fans so they will not need a lot of convincing.
Search for those with similar interests in google. You can do this through hashtag research. For example, I searched for #gardening. From the top search, I found @GretaBrinkley. She has a good reach at 15.9k Twitter followers.
You can also do a google search for bloggers in your niche. It is best to use those in your locality. Use relevant keywords in your search.
7 Ways Collaboration With A Social Media Influencer Works
1. Content Creation
Social media influencers in Kenya and all over the world are usually creative in their approach. They have a personal connection to their audience. They use language that resonates with them. This saves you money you would have used on audience research. It is the best way to reach out to potential buyers as it sounds more honest.
2. Sponsored Posts
The influencer can be paid to write about your brand in their blog. You can advice on what you want, but the post should be in the influencer’s voice. This makes it original and sounds real to her followers.
An FTC disclosure must be displayed.
3. Give Gifts
You can give gifts such as merchandise or tickets to an event. This does not always work. A celebrity might not want their name attached to your product. The influencer may not like the product. You can encourage the influencer by including monetary compensation with the gift.
The opening night of a hotel was graced by the appearance of a local celebrity. She gave positive reviews in Instagram, Facebook and SnapChat. By the end of the next day, the hotel was fully booked for the next week.
An event gives the influencer a chance to sample the products for her audience. A tech expert can write about your technology at a tech expo. The expert review will gain the trust of the consumer as it is more credible.
5. Brand Ambassadors
You have a customer who is very enthusiastic about your product. Her social media engagement is quite good. Why not turn her into a brand ambassador? According to the TapInfluence report, ongoing ambassadorship is the most effective influencer marketing strategy. This is according to 70.6% of marketers.
Give the ambassador special offers, gifts or VIP access to events. This will keep them talking. A vocal ambassador will definitely increase brand recognition and awareness.
6. Product Lines
Use the influencer’s creativity. Let them create their own line for your brand. They know what their audience likes. They are enthusiastic about your brand. They have used your product and know what they can improve on. Let them work with your creative team. They will ‘own’ the product. This will make it easy for them to advertise your brand.
7. Sponsored Contests
Allow the influencer to come up with exciting competitions. Become the main sponsors of these contests. Provide your products as giveaways. The influencer should be the judge in these contests.
Have I made a wise investment? Of course, you need to know whether your objectives have been achieved. The influencer reach is not the most reliable method of measuring success . 100,000 followers does not mean all of them will buy the product. You need to measure the engagement of these followers. Like any other investment, you need to measure ROI.
You can use these sites to measure performance.