Written by Shane Barker

Andrea had been struggling to find an eyeliner and mascara set for a long time. Relentless searching on ecommerce sites and Google confused her even more. It was then that her sister suggested that she follow Jkissa and check out her e.l.f. x Jkissa collection.

Image via Instagram

After browsing through JKissa’s Instagram profile and checking out her exclusive collection, Andrea made up her mind about what she wanted to purchase.

Influencers like JKissa have the power to sway buying decisions through their social media posts and product reviews. This is the reason why influencer marketing has become so popular. In fact, it’s become even more popular than print marketing, according to Google Trends.

Image via Google Trends

Before we go any further, let’s try to understand what exactly influencer marketing is.

What is Influencer Marketing?

To learn about influencer marketing in detail, you must understand the basic meaning of the word, “influencer.”

An influencer is a person who can sway the minds of other people based on their specialized knowledge and authority in a particular niche.

Influencer marketing is a tactic that leverages this very characteristic of influencers for brand promotions. By employing it, brands can boost their sales, credibility, and ROI.

They can further create awareness within their target audience, reinforce customer loyalty, and drive conversions.

Influencer Marketing: Should You Consider Investing in it?

To gauge the potential of influencer content and marketing, consider the following statistics:

  • Nearly 50% of marketers believe they acquire better customers through influencer marketing.
  • 89% of marketers also feel that influencer marketing gives them the ability to create authentic content about their brand.

Any brand that isn’t implementing influencer marketing stands the chance of losing a major chunk of business to their competitors.

How to Create an Influencer Marketing Strategy

This segment covers some quick hacks to get the best of your influencer marketing campaigns. Read, understand, and implement these tactics to drive more conversions, and simultaneously, expand your business.

1. Identify the Right Influencers

Identifying the right influencer is vital to improving your brand awareness, and social media reach. Influencers are seen as extensions of your brand and if you partner with the wrong influencers, you might end up harming your reputation. You might also encounter some fake influencers, partnering with whom can waste your marketing budget.

There are various types of influencers you can partner with. Some of them are:

  • Micro-Influencers - With a modest count of followers (thousands or tens of thousands), micro-influencers leverage the principle of “Less is More” to bond with their followers. They tend to have high engagement rates, and that can be very useful for brands.
  • Macro-Influencers - They are renowned celebs with millions of followers. Their popularity and power to influence your audience makes them a perfect fit for your reach and engagement.

So, to grow your brand’s reach, you may want to collaborate with celebrity influencers. With 861k followers, Ron Boss Everline is one perfect example of a fitness macro-influencer.

Image via Instagram
  • Blog Influencers - They write for well-established publications and blogs with thousands or millions of subscribers and readers.

    Hannah Bronfman, for example is a respected lifestyle blogger who writes about health, beauty, and fitness on her HBFIT blog.
  • Key Opinion Leaders - Partner with Key Opinion Leaders (KOL) if you want your business to engage with a specific audience within a specialized domain.
Image via YouTube

For example, Kandee Johnson’s expert knowledge of makeup and beauty has helped her garner nearly 3.9 million subscribers on YouTube alone.

2. Find Influencers

Finding genuine influencers can be a tricky job. You need to analyze their profiles well to understand if they’ve got legitimate followers and have good engagement rates.

Here’s how you can look for influencers:

  • Google Search: Run your Google search in the given format to quickly find top influencers in your niche:

<your niche> + <influencer>
Example: “health and fitness” + “ influencer”

You can also run a search on Influence.co to find influencers based on their category, location, follower count, and many more filters.

Image via Influence.co
  • Social Media Platforms: Today, maintaining a good social media presence is critical for every influencer. This makes it easy to find them on different social media platforms. All you need to do is search using the right hashtags and keyword combinations.
  • Blogs/Authority Sites: All major publications and authority sites cover top influencers in their respective niches. Keep a tab on these websites to improve your chances of finding a reliable influencer.

3. Connect With Influencers

Connecting with your influencers is as important as finding them. Some quick strategies that you can adopt to strengthen your relationships with your influencers include:

  • Engage with their social media posts and leave insightful comments on them.
  • Share interesting content related to your niche with them. This can help them come up with new content for their audience.
  • List your expectations clearly and be completely transparent with them when you’re pitching a collaboration.
  • Give them enough time and space to explore their creativity and create original and engaging content.
  • Don’t pitch the idea for a partnership in the very beginning.
  • Discuss what the influencers wish to get from the collaboration.

4. Focus on Creating Engaging Content

Quality content is an integral part of different marketing strategies. You can use the following methods to create engaging content and boost your conversion rates:

  • Use relevant and unique hashtags in your content strategy. Share these with the influencers too.
  • Ask them to create interactive content in the form of giveaways, contests, etc. to woo your audience.
  • Shape the content based on the preferences of your audience to increase their likelihood of engaging with it.
  • Include more visuals in your content design to improve engagement.

For example, Caterina Triant, a beauty influencer, uses powerful visuals and content to engage her audience. She frequently organizes giveaways, such as the one below, to generate more engagement on her posts. Note how the post has got over 4000 likes and 100 comments.

Image via Instagram

5. Amplify Your Influencer Content

It’s important to regularly share your influencer content to get the most out of it. You can share it on your social media accounts or repurpose it to increase its impact even further. For instance, you can use it as a testimonial for your business.

Note how Daniel Wellington, the famous watch brand, shares photos created by influencers on their Instagram profile. While the content created by the influencer generates engagement and sales, repurposing it helps the brand make the most out of it. This post, for example, has got more than 38k likes and over 100 comments.

Image via Instagram

6. Analyze & Measure Your Marketing Outcomes Through Dedicated KPIs

Track your campaign’s progress regularly to understand how your audience is consuming your influencer content. By monitoring your campaign performance, you can figure out what’s working for you and what isn’t.

Measure important key performance indicators (KPIs) such as reach, engagement, cost per lead, etc. to ensure that you’re meeting your goals. Based on the insights that you gather from this, you can modify your influencer marketing strategy and increase your ROI.

Future Prospects

Over the years, influencer marketing has emerged as a great way to market your brand. The growth of social media has provided a perfect platform for organizations to connect with their audiences, enhance brand awareness, and boost conversions.

According to a study, nearly 65% of multinational brands will increase their expenditure on influencer marketing in the next 12 months.

From this compelling statistic, it becomes all the more imperative for business organizations to consider incorporating influencers into their marketing strategies.

How do you plan to incorporate influencer marketing into your business plan? Let me know in the comments section below.

About Author

Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, content marketing, and SEO. He is also the co-founder and CEO of Content Solutions, a digital marketing agency. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.