Influencer marketing is the act of building relationships with specific individuals who have a large influence and following in your industry. Instead of focusing on directly promoting your content to large audiences (whether through social media marketing or email marketing, as examples) influencer marketing emphasizes growing your small business’ brand through getting to know target key players (such as industry leaders, analysts, and journalists) who will then advocate for your business or product.
In order to engage in influencer marketing activities, it starts with the following 4 step:
The first step is to create a list of some of the industry influencers in your space. In order to this, ask yourself:
If you’re looking for quick way to begin, there are influencer list-building tools, like Traackr that can help get you started.
Once you have a list, the next step is to reach out to them. Many influencers have strong social presences, and prefer a Twitter or LinkedIn message. Others respond best to an email. When reaching out, it’s important to introduce yourself without being salesy. Instead, think about what the influencer might want from you. Oftentimes, influencers do their own marketing and are looking for promotion of their own content. Offer to promote some of their content on your website. Building a relationship with an influencer, whether through emails, phone meetings, or in-person conversations, is an important first step.
Once you’ve built close ties with influencers, you will finally be able to leverage their networks to market your business or product. By showing the influencer that you care enough to promote their content, it is then appropriate to ask that they do the same. Oftentimes, this will come in the form of an influencer writing social promotions for you, hosting your blog post or eBook on their website, or even writing a story about you in their publication.
Because influencer marketing is all about building relationships, it’s important to stay in touch with your influencers. A continued relationship of back and forth advocacy and promotion can be a huge driver for brand awareness of your small business.
In part 7 of this blog series, we will discuss how to use surveys and data in your marketing plan. Have questions now? Contact us for a complimentary consultation.