These accounts are like the popular kids in high school, everyone looks up to them, they’re the trendsetters and what they say goes. With thousands, or millions, of followers, immaculate content, charismatic personalities and high-profile reputations, influencers are the power players of social media. But despite why they’re popular, what’s important is that they have influence over large audiences and if you’re savvy, you can use that influence to your advantage.
Leveraging the power of influencers can fast track you to achieving your social media goals. According to The Shelf, content shared through influencers in your industry increases conversion by at least a 3x-10x higher rate. Whether you want to sell more products, build your audience or improve your reputation as a leader in your field, influencers have the power to immediately action these goals. One mention of your brand by an influencer can bring an inundation of interest to your doorstep.
Why are social media influencers important?
The greatest benefit of influencers is by far their audience. They have captured the attention of an enormous number of people, all usually with a shared interest in a particular topic or lifestyle. If you find an influencer who shares the same ideals as your brand, then you’ve basically found your target audience gathered nicely in one account waiting for you to reach out to them.
Other benefits of working with influencers:
- Increased awareness: A mention of your brand or kind words about your product act as the most powerful form of advertising: word of mouth. A study by The Shelf reports that 92% of consumers trust recommendations from other people over branded content.
- Greater traffic: Endorsement of your brand from an influencer should cause their followers to flock to your social media accounts or website in search of more information.
- Credibility: An influencer’s referral is often all an audience needs to trust your brand; no questions asked. These people have the power!
How to harness influencers?
- Do your research: The influencers you approach must be relevant to your brand and your brand must be relevant to the influencer. Don’t approach an account if you have nothing in common.
- Engagement: Now that you have identified the influencer/s relevant to your brand, start building a relationship with them. Interact with content that they share and participate in conversations that they start, show that you are genuinely interested in them.
- Approach: Once you’ve developed a relationship with the influencer you can ask for a little help with your social media. Most influencers are willing to help others in the industry, provided that there is no conflict of interest. A growing number of influencers have managers who handle their promotional requests, this is usually stated within the bio of their accounts or blogs.
- Collaborate: If working together is proving beneficial for your brand and your chosen influencer, consider business opportunities together. Perhaps a competition that requires entrants to like both your brand and the influencer’s social media page to cross promote each others accounts.
- Maintenance: Don’t use and abuse your influencer. If you’ve benefited from their help, be thankful and return the favour. Continue engaging with the influencer and their content even if you’re not currently working together, you never know when you may need their help again!
Remember, research your desired influencer, build relationships and make reasonable requests. Don’t be afraid to approach influencers, if you get knocked back revise your strategy, be patient and in the meantime continue with other strategies to grow your audience.
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