Influencer marketing is the hot new industry buzzword, but what does it mean for your brand or business?
Simply put, influencer marketing is the new social media. If you're not utilizing this important tool now, you need to start. In this post, we'll explore the different types of influencer marketing and how they can help you increase sales, boost your SEO, and expand your audience.
Who are influencers?
Influencers are people in your community and online who are influential. Meaning, people care about what they have to say and make purchasing decisions based on their recommendations. These influencers may have a blog, a large social media following, or are the need-to-know people in your community who people turn to for advice and info on the latest trends. When they speak, people listen.
What makes influencer marketing unique?
Consumers are tired of traditional marketing tactics. They can tell right away when you're trying to sell them something, and it turns them off. Influencer marketing is different. Living somewhere between the realm of PR and advertising, influencer platforms offer something most magazines and ad placements can't: an honest, trustworthy review that readers will actually pay attention to.
How do I find the right influencers for my brand?
Research, research, research! When we are searching for influencers for projects, we spend countless hours researching bloggers and influencers who have an audience that matches the target customer for the brand. After all, there is no sense in putting the time and money into working with an influencer who doesn't have the audience that would purchase your product or service. Once we have a good list of potential influencers, we contact them to find out their rates and more about their audience/reach. Most bloggers have media kits prepared for these types of inquiries and will provide them upon request.
What is the cost of working with an influencer?
The cost varies depending on how many posts you want, what types of posts you want, and some additional add-ons like photo rights. Pricing also varies between bloggers depending on their number of page views, social media followers, newsletter subscribers, etc. We recommend determining your budget first, then deciding how to break your budget up from there. Many influencers are happy to negotiate pricing for other benefits like brand reposts. Trades can be negotiated as well, depending on the product or service offered.
Any size business can work with bloggers. It's all about finding the right ones to partner with.
What type of exposure can I expect to gain from influencer marketing?
The most basic form of marketing influencers provide is a social media post. Typically, they will post a photo with your product or using your service and use the caption to share their experience and link to your account, sending some of their followers over to your page.
Depending on the type of posts you've negotiated, you can also have a full blog post review dedicated to your brand with links back to your website, a feature on Instagram stories or Snapchat, or any other kind of combination you want to come up with.
Many influencers will also host events, do a Snapchat or Instagram takeover, or serve as a brand ambassador.
If you're interested in a series of campaigns, you can also negotiate some kind of group bundle for regular posts, like a quarterly Instagram post, for example.
Most of this information can be found in each blogger's media kit. Once you've decided what kind of exposure you want to gain, it's a good idea to draft a contract so both parties understand what is expected of them. Be sure to clearly state when payment will be issued.
How is influencer marketing better than buying ad space?
Influencers spend a great amount of time growing their following and driving traffic to their website because they are passionate about what they do. Every post they create is carefully prepared with professional photography and copy that is not only keyword rich, but also enticing to their audience. They have a built-in following that is excited to read about their recommendations and their reviews on the newest trends in their industry.
Additionally, their content lives on their websites permanently. So, unlike an online ad that you may purchase for a month or so, a blog post will last forever.
Most importantly, influencers are all about forming relationships with brands. They are excited to share their experiences and want to create posts that are honest, but also benefit the brands they partner with. They see the value in a long-term partnership and want to work in a collaborative way rather than just sell as many one-off ads as they can.
Influencer marketing provides the best ROI available
For most brands, the benefits gained from influencer marketing are more than worth the associated cost. When the right influencer and brand combine, everyone wins - including the consumer!
If you're interested in influencer marketing and want to learn more, be sure to contact us.