An influencer is someone who has the power to affect others’ purchasing decisions because of their authority, knowledge, position, or relationship with their audience. An influencer is also someone who has a niche following with whom they regularly engage. Being an influencer is not just a marketing tool, but a social relationship which allows the influencer to collaborate with current and potential customers to achieve their marketing objectives.
According to a recent report, the influencer marketing industry is set to grow to about $9.7 billion in 2020. The average earned media value per $1 spent has increased to $5.78. Nearly 90% of all influencer campaigns have Instagram as part of their marketing mix. 55% of all successful companies acknowledge they have a stand-alone budget for marketing.
There are several different types of influencers. The most common is by types of content and level of influence. For example, a sports or music star will influence potential buyers interested in their niche. While you can group influencers by the niche in which they are known, it is essential to note they may appear low in one niche (in which they have little knowledge) but will look more influential in another. As you begin, you may not have a large following, but you can increase your influence with consistency in your messages and the timing that you release them. This is particularly true of social media influencers.
Mega influencers are those (generally) with over one million followers. These are typically celebrities. Only major brands (think Coca Cola) have such high power influencers, as they are cost-prohibitive.
Macro influencers generally have between 40,000 and one million followers. They may fill a niche market or be regional celebrities. Often considered to be B-level celebrities, the macro influencer may also have followings because they are knowledgeable in a particular niche. Macro influencers are generally used to working with smaller audiences.
Micro-influencers do not have many followers but are recognized as a specialist in some niche. As a result, they have a sizable following (think of YouTube star). These may be promoting your product or service without even realizing it. Micro-influencers currently have the most significant impact on Generation Z consumers, who spend more time on the internet than watching television or going to sports, concerts, or movies.
Most influencer marketing today happens on social media. Bloggers tend to have the most authentic and active relationships with their fans. While many brands want to partner with these influencers, it is sometimes better to have them participate as a guest with their posting. While blogs are currently the most popular form of influencer, they are not the only ones.
Everyone is aware of the power of YouTube, but there are also podcasts, and we cannot forget about social posts.
To become an influencer, you first need to determine your niche and your target audience. Once you have established your niche, Elon Musk suggests using the First Principles Thinking Approach. This approach allows you to disregard the status quo and look at the possibilities rather than making decisions based on the past.
It is vital to choose the right social media channel. Last year the two most prominent channels were Instagram and LinkedIn. Instagram influencers target millennial and Gen-Z groups by posting videos, tutorials, and other videos or pictures that may relate to a brand or product. LinkedIn influencers, often referred to as Thought Leaders, have strong expertise in a particular industry that attracts business leaders. As you consider your channel, you must give serious thought to the content you are going to create.
As with all marketing, you need to develop a strategy. To be effective, you need to include content that is both informative and personal to your audience. An easy way to do this is to follow the 5-3-2 principle. Out of every ten posts you publish, five should be informative, three should be informational, and two should be personal about your business (or the people in it).
Plan when you will be sharing your content. If you bombard your feeds with multiple posts at the same time, they become noise. Create a clear signal by knowing the different times in the day your customers may be looking at that channel.
Stick to one theme per channel, regardless of the channel. Focusing on one specific topic for each of your social media channels allows you to give your followers a more holistic picture of who you are, what you do, and what you stand for. That way, you can publish more diverse content while still keeping your profiles very sleek and cohesive.
While establishing your credibility as an expert, you need to grow your audience. Blogging is the most effective way to do this. It may seem slow, but you are attracting attention without them having to “join” as a follower.
Finally, you have to be consistent. As more people see you as an expert, they will await your next post. Whether it is every day or once a week, do not let them down.
Let people know who you are. Have a strategy. Share what you know–and thrive.
If you think Influencer Marketing would help your business grow, Raine Digital can help.