Influencer marketing is the new face of brand marketing.
That is because it does not only drive brand awareness but it encourages action.
In fact, 49% of people say they rely on recommendations from influencers they trust when they are making purchasing decisions.
Combine that with $6.50 made for every $1 that businesses spend on influencer marketing and it is a no-brainer.
Before you get started, make sure you know what you should not be doing when you approach influencers.
A lot of people who are not yet familiar with how an influencer works with their audience may easily confuse influencer with celebrity.
You do not want to target a celebrity or someone who only has a big following because they may or may not actually have any influence on their audience.
Instead, you want to target influencers who can actually impact the purchase decisions that their audience is making, even if it is a small audience.
These people are called “micro influencers“.
While size does matter, you will likely have better luck building relationships with an influencer who has a smaller audience than a celebrity with no influencing power for purchases.
Pitching with cold
If there is one main thing you need to know about influencers, it is that they will not respond well to an email blast or a mass marketing campaign.
They are influencers because they have taken the time to get to know their audience and they have built up some trust with them.
They tend to not back anything that they do not believe in themselves.
Because of this, you really need to take some time to get to know them, consider letting them try your product or service, and make sure it is something they can get behind before you even present your pitch to them.
Start by following them on social media, reading their blogs and posts, and simply listening to them and how they interact with their audience.
Doing this will actually attract the wrong kinds of influencers.
You will do much better with these pitches if you put some thought into what your company can offer to these influencers to really develop a relationship with them.
Some things you may want to consider would be a free trial of your product or service, offer them some experience, or even have them host or speak at an event of yours.
This can come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
You simply need to find what will work for your target influencers and your business, and usually money isn’t the best way to start a strategic relationship.
Failing to make it a relationship
You would be making a huge mistake if you were to think of this as a transactional relationship.
You want it to be a friendly relationship that has a long term potential to help both parties out.
Try to think of ways that you both can get something out of this relationship so it has the potential to continue for more than one instance.
For professional landscapers and arborists, Sensei marketing created an online community called ECHO Means Business, where pros can share tips, upload videos, participate in forums, and even gain access to special offerings.
There’s even an ECHO Means Business app.
Keep your influencers engaged, and they’ll keep you top of mind.
Trying to take all creative control
One of the best things about influencers is that they have their own voice that their audience has grown to trust.
If you are looking to control everything that an influencer says about your company, it will likely come across as fake to their followers.
It needs to be in their own voice and with their own creative take on your business if it is going to be successful.
You can provide some guidelines but let them speak in their own voice and tell their own story.
Whether it’s letting influencers upload their own videos, write their own blogs, or write their own product reviews – let them have creative freedom.
And if you don’t like what they have to say, that’s an opportunity for invaluable learning 🙂
For more information on how to do this the right way and have the most success, be sure to reach out to us today.