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5 Steps to Develop an Influencer Marketing Campaign

An influencer marketing campaign uses people with networks and interests that can help share your brand message. There are five steps to develop an effective influencer marketing campaign.

Set the Goal for Your Influencer Marketing Campaign

To build a successful influencer marketing campaign for your business, know your marketing goal and define a campaign goal that supports that goal. You will want to tap into what influencers do best – influence.

Influencers can help:

  • Content promotion
  • Product
  • Product advantage
  • Content creation
  • Event management

Identify Your Influencers

Social media influencers are social media users who have an established credibility and audience. These are users who persuade others.

Influencers typically:

  • Have a large and engaged audience
  • Active on social media and post frequently
  • Authentic, credible, respected
  • Relevant to your brand or industry as evidenced by the content of posts and/or the people in their audience

Know what you are looking for and then find the influencers that fit. The easiest way to find your brand influencers is to use search tools on various social media channels to explore who’s already posting about your brand online.

Also look for recommendations. Social influencers tend to know other influencers. Once you’ve identified influencers , ask them to recommend others who are similar. Some social media networks will give you recommendations when you follow an influencer on the platform.

Reach Out to Influencers

To start these relationships off on the right foot, make sure you focus on building a strong relationship. Reach out directly to influencers and get to know them. Give support and information before you start to ask for anything.

Provide Rewards

Offer appropriate incentives for influencers you partner with. Influencers are not necessarily looking for monetary rewards. Consider their interests:

  • Increase their reach/grow their audience
  • Quality content
  • Perks like insider scoops, product previews
  • Unique experiences

Measure Your Marketing Results

Define your measures of success and take periodic assessments. As with all social media, influencer marketing should be viewed over the long-term. If you take time to create healthy relationships with influencers, you should see results over time.

Adjust to do more of what works well and less of the activities that aren’t showing results.

Throw Out Your Influencer Strategy

New research shows that people continue to crave authenticity online. And, they want it from other people, not brands and not influencers.

Brands need to shift their time from creating their own content or getting influencers on board. Time is best spent getting your customers to talk about you.

Slackla surveyed 1590 consumers and 150 B2C marketers from the US, UK and Australia. Here’s what they found:

  • 90% of consumers say authenticity is most important
  • 51% of consumers say that less than half of the content brands create is authentic
  • 79% say that user-generated content highly impacts their decisions (13% said brand content has an impact and just 3% said influencer content matters)
  • 56% want user-generated photos and videos above all other types of content

The research showed that experiences with travel, dining and new car purchases are all highly likely to be shared on social media. Such posts are highly influential on the decisions of the people that see them.

Measuring Influencer Influence

Think you need an influencer campaign for your marketing and communication efforts? This seems to be a common tactic lately.

Saying you are going to leverage the influence of one of more people who have a strong audience in your field or among your target audience is easy. Figuring out who is really an influencer may take time.

Here’s some help if your goal is to leverage influencers.

Four Measures to Pick the Right Influencer for Your Marketing Campaign

1. Audience Demographics

You need a deep understanding of your target audience to determine if an influencer is a fit. General demographics like gender and age are too broad to help you find the right influencer.

Layers like location, interests (including interest in your area of effort and your brand), income, language and more can help you to hone in on the best influencer for your needs.

You want to find a good intersection of your target and the influencer’s audience. You want enough people in an influencer’s audience who would also likely be interested in your brand or product.

2. First-Hand Awareness

Speaking of target audience, you ideally want the influencer to be in that audience. Someone who knows your brand first hand will be in the best position to talk about it.

At the least, you want someone who meets the major criteria of your target audience. That person is most likely to have influence over others in the same group.

3. Follower Growth

The degree of influence is measured by social media influencer follower growth. You pick an influencer based on their following. It makes sense to pay attention to how that following grows during your engagement with that person.

You want to see a steady, consistent rise. Dramatic increases could mean the influencer is buying followers or using some other means to artificially boost their following.

4. Social Content

Even if your focus is one particular social platform, look at the content an influencer publishes everywhere online. This will give you a complete view of where they actually wield influence.

Take time to review conversations, noting topics and who is engaging.

Follow the Data

As you consider these four factors, don’t ignore any other insights you gain. There are dozens of data points you can consider. Effective influencer marketing requires both data science and creativity.