Influencer marketing can be a great way to get your product to a new audience in the digital age. It can be more budget-friendly than traditional advertising, and it is very effective because people view influencers as friends who can be trusted to suggest the right products.
If all of these benefits sound great to you, you probably want to rush out and find Instagram influencers right now. However, companies new to influencer marketing can make mistakes that harm them instead of helping. If you want to get things right, you need to take the time to research and plan carefully. Follow these steps to build your influencer marketing strategy.
Step 1: Create Clear Goals
The first thing you need to do is think about what you hope to achieve from your marketing. Is your main goal getting more people to visit your stores or do you just want to raise general brand awareness on social media? Some people want to gain more followers for their business, increase profits, or expand their market to a new area. Think about this carefully so that you can develop the right approach.
Step 2: Find Influencers to Work With
Step 2 is essentially the most important part of this whole guide. No social media campaign can run smoothly if you are trying to use influencers that are a poor fit for your brand. Of course it is helpful to find Instagram influencers with a high follower count and a strong presence in your desired industry, but there are more metrics to consider. Check to see how engaged the influencer’s audience is, and consider the influencer’s type of follower to make sure they can market to your desired audience. Some companies find it better to work with smaller influencers that have a very devoted following in a specific niche while others do best with bigger celebrities that reach a more general audience. You may also want to research the influencer to ensure they do not have any past controversies.
Step 3: Consider How to Reach Your Audience
It is important to remember that “influencer marketing” is actually a broad subject. When you decide to increase your social media presence, think about how you actually plan to do that. Do you want influencers to show themselves using your product in passing or do you want them to do an in depth review? Things like having an influencer run a contest where their followers win your products or getting an influencer to collaborate with you and create branded products can generate a lot of interest.
Step 4: Get the Influencers Onboard
If you followed step 2 correctly, then you should have a substantial list of influencers you would like to work with. However, finding Instagram influencers is only half the battle. You also have to get them to work with you. Many influencers are very selective, so you need to craft a pitch that appeals to them. In general, it is helpful to make a pitch that acknowledges the influencer’s worth to your company and shows how your company aligns with their own personal brand.
Step 5: Stay on Brand
Most influencers want a lot of freedom in how they will promote your product, but this does not mean you should just give them money or perks, walk away, and hope for the best. Instead, you may want to craft a general marketing guide to give to influencers. Let them know about key parts of your product or service they should highlight, and give them lists of topics, words, or other brands you do not want mentioned in the post. You may even want to craft a mood board that captures the general style of post you appreciate. Give the influencer plenty of freedom to discuss your product in a way that works for them, but provide gentle guidelines to ensure all influencer marketing remains on brand for you.
This might sound like a lot of work, but it can actually be very simple when you have a good marketing team. Taking the time to properly plan your marketing strategy can ensure that you build an online social media presence that benefits your company.