In today’s fast-paced digital world, influencer marketing is more than just a buzzword. As social media becomes even more integral to our daily routines, this marketing strategy is becoming more popular than ever.
But what is influencer marketing all about, really? Why should businesses even care about it? And what does it take to get started? In the following article, we’ll be unpacking all these questions, covering all you need to know about this marketing tactic.
What’s The Deal With Influencer Marketing?
We’re all familiar with the concept of marketing, where the goal is to promote a service or product. Now, when you delve into influencer marketing, you’re essentially leveraging the following of a person who’s viewed as an expert in their field – that individual is the influencer and they will be the key resource with this type of marketing approach.
Why Should You Care About Influencer Marketing?
For starters, think about your favorite influencers – those people you follow and trust. When they endorse a product or service, you’re more likely to give it a try, right? It turns out, you’re not alone. A whopping 56% of young Americans bought something they saw their favorite influencer recommend. And the figures are only going up…in 2016 influencer marketing was only a $1.7 billion industry, but in 2023 it’s exploded to a mind-boggling $21.1 billion. That’s a lot of products and services being vouched for by the people you admire!
Editor-in-Chief at NoDepositFriend explains this phenomenon quite well:
‘Today, businesses – whatever the niche or vertical – need to keep one thing in mind: you’re either gonna stay relevant or remain behind. It’s really that simple. Gone are the days when a marketing strategy is a standard ‘one size fits all’ kind of thing. Influencer marketing works precisely because you’re listening to what the people want, and more importantly, targeting the people who will ultimately buy your product or service. Once you get them on board, you’re golden.’
Besides reaching your target audience, with an influencer you can even gain access to high-quality, engaging content that you can use on your own channels. Plus, this type of marketing provides a higher ROI compared to traditional ads. It’s a cost-effective way to reach a large and engaged audience.
How Can You Get Started With This Marketing Strategy?
Okay, so now you’re all fired up and ready to go. But where do you even start from? Here are five important steps to help you kickstart your influencer marketing strategy.
Set Your Goals
Before you even start thinking about which influencer to partner with, you need to be clear about what you want to achieve as a business. The following questions can help you gain a clearer picture of your goals:
- Who is your target audience for this influencer marketing campaign?
- What specific metrics will you use to measure the success of your campaign? (e.g. engagement, website traffic, sales)?
- Are you looking to build brand awareness locally, nationally, or internationally?
- How do you want your brand to be perceived by the audience after this campaign?
- What’s your budget for this campaign?
These questions can help you refine your influencer marketing goals and ensure your campaign aligns with your broader marketing strategy.
Find The Right Influencer
Not all influencers offer the same assets. Now that your goals are set, you can find the type of influencer that fits your needs.
- If you’re after a huge exposure to your brand, then a celebrity influencer is just what you need. But keep in mind that enlisting a celebrity to promote your brand might be very expensive. Besides, their engagement rates may not be as high as influencers with smaller, niche followings.
- If you’d be happy with a substantial reach and are more interested in engagement, then a macro-influencer is your best bet. With a following that typically ranges from 100,000 to 1 million, macro influencers can offer a more targeted approach as their influence would be niche-specific. Macro influencers can also be relatively costly, depending on your budget.
- If you’re on a tight budget and seeking personable content and authentic engagement, you should invest in a nano-influencer who would have fewer than 10,000 followers. Despite the limited reach you get when partnering with a nano-influencer, these can be excellent partners for businesses looking to target specific communities and demographics without breaking the bank.
Reach Out To The Influencer Privately And Personally
When you’re reaching out to potential partners, start by engaging naturally with their content. Like their posts, offer appropriate comments, and maintain a friendly, appreciative tone without being too salesy.
When the time is right to propose a partnership, consider starting with a direct message, or, if possible, reach out via email. Avoid sending generic mass emails or impersonal direct messages. While it might require extra effort, crafting personalized messages for each influencer shows your commitment to the potential partnership, increasing the likelihood of successful collaboration.
And here’s a tip: Some content creators prefer to not be called “influencers” as they see the term somewhat belittling. It would be better to address them as “creators” to show respect for their work. It’s a small but respectful gesture that can make a big difference in how they see you and your proposal.
Clarify Your Expectations With The Influencer
Establishing clear expectations beforehand enables a smooth, productive collaboration. To make sure both parties are on the same page, clarity in contracts is key. In particular, make sure you agree on the following points in advance:
- Tasks and deliverables – Define what the influencer needs to do, including the type and number of posts, content creation, and when to post
- Compensation – Specify how much, when, and if there are any bonuses involved
- Content usage rights – define who owns the content, and if it can be used again later
- Timeline – Set the dates and deadlines for the campaign
- Disclosure and transparency – Ensure the contract includes language that mandates proper disclosure of the partnership in line with advertising regulations
- Cancellation – Lay out the conditions for ending the collaboration and any penalties involved.
- Indemnification – Make sure both parties know their responsibilities and liabilities when it comes to legal issues, such as who’s responsible for intellectual property and defamation claims.
When launching an influencer campaign, it’s easy to focus on metrics such as likes and comments. But to measure the effectiveness of a campaign, you need to measure its value in terms of ROI. Luckily, there are multiple ways to measure your campaign’s success.
- You can track the visitors that an influencer sends to your website by using UTM parameters and unique links for each influencer, helping you to calculate the campaign’s impact on your bottom line.
- Assigning influencers unique discount codes is another way to monitor their sales contribution.
- If you’re running influencer campaigns on Facebook and Instagram, consider using their branded content tools. They offer insights for both feed and Stories posts, accessible via Facebook Business Manager.
- Alternatively, you can request detailed reports from the influencers themselves, covering the reach and engagement levels of their posts.
With a well-thought-out influencer marketing campaign, you can increase trust and credibility, reach your target audience, and ultimately achieve your business goals. Now that you’ve been briefed about the how and why of adopting influencer marketing as part of your business strategy, you might want to take the plunge and kickstart your campaign to make your brand relatable and relevant in the age of social media.
CHECK THESE OUT:
- Facebook Influencer Marketing – Facebook Influencer Marketing Ideas
- The Best Influencer Marketing Tools
- Facebook Influencer Platform – How to Become a Facebook Influencer | How Much you can Charge as an Influencer on the Facebook Influencer Platform
- Influencer Marketing Platform: What Are The Top Influencing Marketing Tools
- Tips to Increase Your Social Media Influence