When I started doing inbound marketing, the thought of working with social media stars seemed like taking a cruise with Oprah. What is the likelihood of that ever happening unless you’re Barack Obama or Tom Hanks?
I thought that influencers were this exclusive clique of popular kids that would never mix with the geeks of my sort. Well, I was wrong.
It turns out that influencers are super approachable. An influencer is anyone that has over 1,000 followers on social media, and that’s a pretty easy number to hit nowadays. The second important metric is engagement, the number of likes/comments/shares that each post gets.
If an influencer has a lot of engagement, then it doesn’t matter how large or small their audience is. They are a great person to reach out to.
Influencer marketing is proven to have 11 times higher ROI than any other form of marketing out there (source: Tap Influence). Wow.
So how do you find the right influencer for you? What can they do for your brand? How do you work with them?
I’m going to answer all of those questions in this post.
How do you find the best influencer for your brand?
Influencers are great, but they have to be a good fit for your brand. Before you start picking influencers to work with, you have to narrow down your requirements for good influencers.
What makes a good influencer?
Size of following is 1,000-250,000 (more than that and your engagement goes down)
Good engagement on every post
The influencer and their audience care about your niche
That’s pretty simple right? If you are a restaurant you want to find a foodie that regularly visits and writes about restaurants.
Sometimes it doesn’t have to be such a direct link. For example, if you are a healthy snack company you can find a mom-fluencer that promotes healthy lifestyles. That would be a great fit, even if she has never posted any content about snacks before.
The association goes beyond the topic, the type of content has to fit as well.
If your content is written, then you should reach out to bloggers of all types. Here are some top places to find bloggers in your niche:
Search on Medium for the top articles on any topic
Find top blog lists for your industry
Look for the top articles on AllTop
What do you mean by audio content? I mean podcasts. Podcasts are huge. There are 112 million people in the US that have listened to a podcast this year. That’s as big as LinkedIn and Pinterest were two years ago.
For sure podcasts won’t catch up to the number of users on social media, but they are still a really good tool to use to market your product.
Who uses podcast influencers?
Authors, marketers, businesses, social media coaches, the travel industry, you name it.
Video is by far the most popular form of content. There are so many great influencers that use video to create content.
The top places to look for video influencers are on Instagram, Snapchat, Vine and Youtube.
For a really good example check out this video that Mercedes Benz made with the Instagram star Loki the Wolf Dog. The car company got 200,000 views on Youtube for two videos and were able to reach out to a much younger audience.
How do you use social media to find influencers?
Regardless of which content type you choose the best place to look for influencers is on social media.
And it’s not because everyone is on social media these days. It’s because there are established ways to search for people.
Here are the three best ways to find influencers on social media:
1. Look through your own followers
If you are a brand and you have a following on social media, chances are some of your followers are influencers. Looking through your followers might be time-consuming but It’s super beneficial if the influencer that you are working with already knows about you and loves your brand.
I tried this out on my company’s Twitter page (@eclincher) and sure enough, I found several influencers within my followers. One of them was Neal Schaffer.