Word of mouth is still the king of marketing. Consumers continue to trust referrals from people they know thru online and offline channels. It effectively transforms your loyal customers into brand ambassadors. Recent key drivers in word-of-mouth marketing are social media influencers.
Consequently, global and local companies–regardless of size–are asking influencers to lend their hands. These improvised brand advocates can wield enough power to sway people’s purchasing decisions thru social media.
Today’s consumers trust influencers like friends of family. A 2016 Twitter study shows that one out of two consumers hinge on social media influencers before closing a purchasing decision.
Integrating social media influencers
Marketing thru social media influencers does not necessarily mean you have to reach out to celebrities with millions of followers. The best influencers are those that have a voice in your chosen industry.
You partner with influencers who, despite a smaller following than celebrities, can promote your business locally thru authentic posts of sponsored ads.
These people are those who focus on specific verticals and often share content within their interests thru social media.
Some influencers may have smaller followings than yours. But these accounts have more potential to grow, as they target interests that are specific to your industry and in the local scene. They also have high engagement rates.
Why choose a celebrity who owns dogs rather than someone or an organization that specifically caters to dog lovers? The latter has a better chance to lead conversions. They have the best interest of your target audience as their priority.
Collect and select
Undoubtedly, you will spend time to find influencers who align with your image and content. And you will ask yourself if they will tell your brand’s story or if they will use your product or service regularly.
The selected influencer has an amazing appeal and good grasp of your narrative. Forget about how large their following is and start thinking how effective they are for your marketing campaign.
You also have to go around social media communities to determine where the bulk of your target audience are actively participating. Then find your influencers within that social network. Do not waste time and money on channels that disconnect with your target audience.
To save resources, look for influencers among your existing fans. They are easier to convince, since you already share the same interests.
You can start by creating a shortlist of potential social media influencers. But be prepared that not all of them will agree to your terms and say yes.
To show sincerity, send them a personalized email or a message on social platforms they regularly use to connect with their followers. Introduce your brand and team first, and then highlight how a mutual partnership can reap benefits for both parties.
While this is cheaper than celebrity influencers, you may have to shell out cash before they close the deal. If the agreement gets to this point, offer your product or service for free in return for their endorsement or sponsored content. Or come up with a better win-win offer without conceding to all their demands.
Image courtesy of Saleh Dinparvar