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Influencer Marketing Strategies and Tips

Influencer marketing is a new trend in advertising whereby companies get so-called “influencers”, social media stars, for example,to endorse their brands. These “influencers” wield massive influence over their followers, and their approbation of a particular product will greatly conduce to sales. Whether you’re a big business or a small business, “influencers” are a great way to attract attention. Gone are the days when attention was focalised on the TV.If you’re in marketing, you’ll know as well as anyone that the internet has become the major showground. And this new medium poses a whole new set of challenges. Statistics prove that almost half young adults use ad-blockers, which means that marketers must think outside the box if they wish to attract attention. Simple display ads aren’t going to be enough in the current climate.

Influencer marketing is an important new tool in the toolkit and—unlike basic display ads, increasingly overlooked—offers a great return on investment.  “Influencers” have established real relationships with their viewers, and viewers trust them when they plug a particular product. But influencer marketing isn’t easy. Here are five tips to help organise your influencer campaign.

  1. Pinpoint a person closely related to your product. The great thing about influencer marketing is that it lets you connect with your specific demographic. Unlike standard celebrity endorsements, which get some average athlete to talk up some unrelated product, influencer advertising lets you talk to the right people. Don’t necessarily go for the big names: a smaller name who connects with the right people is preferable (and also cheaper). Influencers have already assembled the demographics, and you need only use them as megaphones with which to get yourselves heard. If you’re selling running shoes, for example, you can get in touch with an established fitness blogger.
  2. Personalise your emails. When contacting “influencers”, make sure not to just to copy-and-paste the same information over and over. Remember: “influencers” are human beings, and you have to talk to them as human beings, not as robotic business professionals. Personalise each email to the specific person, make sure it seems like you’re actually familiar with their work, flatter them a little, though not too overtly, and give them reasons why your brand especially deserves endorsement. Big-name “influencers” will be inundated with requests, so make sure your email stands out from the crowd.
  3. Give the “influencer” freedom. Don’t give them a script comprising an exact arrangement of words you wish them to speak. This kind of an endorsement will come across as wooden and unnatural. New audiences are so immunized to wooden marketing that, unless it feels organic, they won’t pay attention.
  4. Use women. As all advertisers know, most of the household purchasing decisions are made by women. On average, women are much more likely to read blogs by other women. So it seems only logical to contact female “influencers”.
  5. Go into it with a clear business plan. Make sure you know what constitutes success, and make sure you track the data. Set goals regarding views, sales, increase in Facebook followers, and let your “influencer” know these goals when pitching the idea. This way they will feel more involved in the process.

Ultimately influencer marketing is an integral tool in the modern advertiser’s toolkit, and a great way to get your brand out there. But don’t overestimate the good it can do. Remember: there are a lot of people trying to do exactly the same thing as you, and “influencers” are endorsing more and more products. The more products they endorse, the less likely audiences are to find their endorsements natural. So just be warned: influencer marketing is a tricky thing to get right. Don’t put all your marketing money into influencer marketing. There’s still a place for good old-fashioned adverts.

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