With lots of marketing techniques and thousands of brands have made online competition extremely difficult. Building online reputation and driving your brand on the top over the internet is not less than a battle. It’s true that online presence and online marketing of any business is the need of the present time, but if everyone follows the same promotional strategies to market their business. Then no one or maybe one or two among you will win the race. And even if you win the ranking race, it is not sure that your customers take you seriously.
From nothing to something and then from something to everything demands time, effective and proven strategies. In order to become a recognizable brand in this big and overcrowded online market, you need to think out of the box to influence your potential customers by following influencer marketing.
Influencer marketing is a practice which involves industry experts or key leaders to drive your brand’s message and achieve measurable business goals through active networks. Rather than marketing directly to consumers, you instead hire influencers to get out the word for you. Influencer marketing is followed synchronously with two other forms of marketing, i.e. social media marketing and content marketing. Brands that are following influencer marketing have witnessed exponential growth in their business over the past few years. The interest of the businesses has risen significantly since 2013.
Using influencer marketing as your marketing strategy would be a good idea to apply at the moment. With influencer marketing, many brands have observed an increase in ROI and improve in business as compared to traditional marketing. This increase in ROI is 11 times greater than before. There are many who reported that their sales have increased 5.2 times when their business was exposed to promotional content from influencers. Approximately 40% people have accepted that they have purchased a product online by being influenced by the influencer on social channels.
How to implement influencer marketing?
It seems very easy and interesting to apply influencer marketing to your business, but there is a lot involved in it. It can be broken down into 3 basic steps:
1. FINDING A SUITABLE INFLUENCER
It is the easiest step, but it demands extensive research. If you are new in the business, then you must be aware of very few influencers related to your industry. These influencers could be:
Bloggers with sizable followings
Writers who contribute to popular publications on a regular basis
But if you don’t know how to find a particular person and how likely a person is to share. Finding it manually would not be possible. You can make it possible through BuzzSumo. It is a website where you can enter topics, keywords, and even author names; you will get the top and most popular 10 results in return to your query. It has one more feature of “View Shares” and you will get a list of people and companies that have shared that particular article. You can also gain the knowledge of a number of twitter followers, their retweet ratio, average retweets and reply ratio. This information will help you make a decision whether they could potentially be an influencer or not and whether you should connect with them or not. Apart from BuzzSumo, you can find similar information using Little Bird and Traacker.
The most important decision that you need to take is whether you should go with the influencer with hundreds of thousands or millions of followers or you should choose an influencer with say 16000 followers. Getting in touch with micro-influencer with 16k followers would be suggested to work with as those with millions of followers may not even respond your emails regarding being an influencer. It is always advisable to choose the path that makes more sense to you and your business.
2. REACHING OUT TO INFLUENCERS
This is the most difficult part of the whole process as you have to find out the way to get in touch with the influencer and build a bond with them. You can either send them an email requesting them to be your business influencer or contact them through contact box present on their website.
Every influencer has a means through which people can contact them unless they are huge celebrities. You need to do research until you find an efficient means of doing so. If you don’t find the contact information of your first influencer, then move to the second option and start searching for their contact information.
How should you approach them?
You need to make an offer that they can’t refuse. This offer may comprise of a well-written email showing your interest and requesting a telephonic call or personal meeting. There are other ways as well through which you can try your luck connecting to the influencer. You can send them a sample of your product, give them a publicity on your blog, or even try t compensate them – whatever you think can help you get their attention.
It is necessary that you should interact with the influencer through one platform or the other. By this, we mean that you should start interacting with them on their blog through comments. If you are already a follower of the influencer and interact quite well, then the chances would increase that you will get an instant reply to your requests.
There are some bitter realities associated with this whole process. Rejection is a very common thing you might have to face very frequently. It is not reasonable to expect that you can get an immediate response from the influencer to your request. Most of them are busy and already have their inboxes flooded with similar requests. That’s why you are recommended to create a list of at least 10 influencers to get going. In order to gain success, you have to be very patient and you have to keep this patience until you finally make a breakthrough.
3. CONVINCING THEM TO SHARE YOUR CONTENT
If you have requested an influencer to post your content on their blog, you have to make sure that it is of top quality, highly relevant and content is A+. You have to make sure that you are providing influencer with information which is genuine and offers them value. A nicely written content would definitely help you to build solid relationships and bring down more opportunities.
Influencer marketing seems simple, but it is not. Try to get in touch with some of the influencers and convince them to promote your brand. It seems simple, but it’s full of twist and turns. Influencer marketing is tricky, but it is not at all impossible. You can do it successfully if you take the right approach and have enough persistence.