If you haven’t already decided to use influencer marketing in your digital strategy, here are some compelling reasons why you should:
- 70 percent of millennials are influenced by peers in buying decisions
- Non-celebrity bloggers are 10 times more likely to influence a purchase than celebrities
- 60 percent of consumers have been influenced by a social media post or blog review while shopping
If you’re new to influencer marketing, we’ve outlined the basics of influencer marketing here. When you understand the value of influencers for your business and want to get started, use these eight steps to find influencers who can bring more revenue to your brand.
1. Reach Out to Your Staff
Your employees know your product or service inside and out, so they’re a great resource to start with to find influencers. Who are they reading, watching and paying attention to? Gather a list of websites, blogs, video creators and other influencers to potentially consider for your brand from your staff.
As you narrow down your search out of your staff-recommended list, look for individuals or brands with engaged audiences. Comments on content, social media discussions and other interactions signal that an influencer has authority.
2. Scan Your Socials
Your current following likely has some influencers who would be great to connect with. The benefit of diving into your social following to find influencers is that you already have built some sort of relationship with the potential influencer. They follow your brand, so they’ve indicated they trust and respect your business.
Twitter is a great place to start, since many journalists and bloggers have a presence there. Click on your followers, and look for keywords like “writer,” “blogger,” “content creator” and even “influencer” in bios. Take a closer look at these accounts by seeing if the type of content they share aligns with your brand values. Click on the Tweets & replies column to see how much they interact with their followers. Look at Retweets of their content to gauge whether their followers are engaged with their content. Be sure to follow any brands who seem like great potential influencers so you can show your support and foster the relationship.
3. Use Influencer Tools
If your business is fairly new and is in the early stages of building up a social media following, influencer marketing tools help you quickly identify influencers. Klout is a free tool to use that allows you to type in keywords and see Top Experts for each keyword. Click on the expert to see links to their social media accounts you can follow to build relationships.
Buzzsumo is another influencer marketing tools that allows you to search both influential content and influencers themselves. The Content Research tool allows you to find top content, which can lead you to connecting with creators of content that garnered a lot of engagement. Paid plans on Buzzsumo enable unlimited searches and results.
4. Delve into Reading Materials
You probably follow influencers related to your industry yourself. Industry-related publications are a great source to find influential journalists. Most web articles link to author bios with contact information, or you can search for the journalist on social media.
Valuable influencers aren’t just traditional journalists. They’re creating content for niche blogs and websites. Use a tool like StumbleUpon to discover content related to your business, and look at author bios to find potential influencers.
5. Conduct Keyword Searches
Simple search engine searches of “influencer” plus keywords related to your business can bring up some interesting results. Or, use Google News and Google Alerts to find the latest influential content related to your industry as a starting-off point.
Using keyword searches on social media channels is also vital for finding influencers. LinkedIn, YouTube and Twitter can show you top individuals and accounts related to keywords. Make sure to connect with the influencer if the potential relationship is valuable and genuine. Interacting with the brand in a natural and thoughtful way on social media helps to build a relationship.
6. Connect in Person
You might be using influencer marketing online, but in-person events are still a valuable way to get introduced to influencers. If you attend an industry conference, follow up with speakers by connecting with them on social media or sending them an email detailing why you enjoyed their presentation. You can also follow conference hashtags throughout an event to connect with other attendees who are talking about the event.
Attending smaller events like blogger gatherings or networking events can also help you learn about the influencers in your industry. Attending a blogger event is an easy way to connect with the blogging community. Bloggers often have rich networks among themselves and can help introduce you to those who create content about your industry.
At networking events, ask thoughtful questions of attendees about their recent influencer marketing successes. Ask for insight about influencers they might recommend working with.
7. Look on Forums
Information-sharing sites can be a gold mine for influencer potential. The key to success on these sites is to be an authentic, active participant. One place to start is Reddit, a link-collection site whose users fervently engage in passionate discussions about their favorite topics. Make sure to subscribe to subreddits related to your industry. Build up a respectable Reddit presence by submitting valuable and relevant links and participating in discussions. You can use Reddit to find content users are engaging with, which can lead to finding new influencers.
Quora is another site that can help you find influencers. The site is presented in a question-and-answer format, and users can search for any niche topic they want. Each answer contains a link to the user who answered the question. Quora allows you to discover individuals who are highly knowledgeable about topics related to your business, which can lead to influencers.
8. Browse the Competition
You likely conduct competitor research for business models, product development and the like. You should also do this for influencer marketing. Influencers enjoy working with brands who provide value. Many influencers don’t limit themselves to working with a single brand in an industry. Influencers’ ability to compare brands or bring the best of the best to their followers is more important.
This means that the influencers who are working with your competitors may welcome working with you, too. Look at competitor blogs and social media content to see what kinds of influencer marketing campaigns have been successful. As long as you’re presenting a potential influencer with a valuable reason to do a campaign with you – free products, inside access, first looks, etc. – they might be willing to work with you, too.
Contact AlphaMind Studios for Influencer Marketing Strategy
Influencer marketing is about building high-quality relationships with the right people, and giving them the tools they need to bring value to their brand and yours. Finding the right influencers for your business takes time and focus. If you need help with executing influencer marketing campaigns that bring you revenue, contact AlphaMind Studios for a free influencer marketing consultation designed uniquely for your business.