Influencer marketing has experienced staggering growth in the past year. In 2016, a study by Pardot revealed that 94% of marketers believed influencer marketing to be effective. Fast forward to 2018, and 39% of companies are now planning to increase their influence marketing budget (Linqia, 2018).
And why is this?
Influencer marketing can deliver an ROI as much as 11x higher than that of display marketing.
The rise of influencer marketing
Influencer marketing isn’t a new concept. It’s been around for as long as celebrities have been accepting money from brands to put their name on products or appear in adverts. What’s new about the latest breed of influencer is that being a celebrity is no longer a requirement. Anyone can build a social media following that puts them on a par with the rich and famous. Often, these self-made social media stars will also have a much more engaged following, which makes them more enticing for brands looking to partner with them.
Who can use influencer marketing?
While the majority of coverage over influencer marketing has focussed on B2C partnerships, but there is evidence that B2B partnerships can be just as powerful. The search for the right influencer might be more difficult for niche B2B industries, but this isn’t to say it isn’t worth exploring. After all, micro-influencer marketing is a powerful branch of influencer marketing that is gaining traction.
Where do I find influencers?
If you are planning to carry out your search on your own, then the workflow would look something like this:
- Browse Instagram for the right influencers, checking follower counts and engagement rates manually.
- Reach out to potential users to discuss the possibility of a collaboration.
- Negotiate the fee
- Decide on the creative and watch it go live
- Measure the results
If you’re working with micro influencers on a one-off campaign, this might be the easiest option. There are plenty of free ways you can go about finding influencers.
- Start by looking at your own followers. You might have high-profile followers who are already fans of your business.
- Use hashtags related to your industry to find the people already posting about your topic.
- Sign up for free access to an influencer network. Many of these sites will allow you to view influencers and basic stats but you will have to pay for enhanced access.
If you’re serious about supercharging your influencer marketing, there are tools you can use to help you sort through the potential partners.
Paid tools to help you find influencers
If you discover that the free tools aren’t sufficient for your needs, then there are plenty of paid influencer marketing networks you can take advantage of.
Social Blade – This platform allows you to vet potential influencers by looking at the analytics behind your favourite influencer accounts. This data can help you to negotiate with influencers and land on a price per post.
Influence.co – This platform will allow you to search influences based on topics. Influencers have to sign up to this service, so you will know that they are actively searching for partnership opportunities.
Influencer Networks – There’s no shortage of influencer networks for every niche out there. This list is fairly comprehensive and should help you on your search to find the right one for your campaign.
Tips for a successful campaign
- Tell your own story first. There’s not much point in paying influencers to tell your story if you aren’t using your own social media platforms to share threads of the same story. Make sure your own social media platforms are up-to-scratch before starting a campaign.
- When deciding on the creative, don’t focus on selling. Consumers are savvy and can see through a weak advertising campaign. Don’t settle for simply selling and instead find a way to bring value to your target audience.
- Make sure your influencer follows guidelines. The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) has been cracking down on influencers who break the rules by not marking their paid posts as such. Instagram made this easier to manage with the “Paid Partnership” option, so there is no excuse for ignoring these rules.
- Measure the impact. There’s no use setting up a campaign and then not paying attention to the results. Use the Google Campaign URL Builder to make unique URLs for your campaign and track the results in analytics. You might see residual benefits for up to a year after the campaign has run, so don’t be too quick to stop paying attention to the results.
If you’re interested in building your influencer marketing campaign with us, get in touch to find out how we can help.