Digital Marketing 101: Influencer Marketing

Think you know everything about influencer marketing? Maybe not. Here’s what you need to know!

It’s Just Too Damn Loud

Over the course of an hour, I received 50 emails, three friends got married (according to pictures on Facebook), and an overwhelming number of cool articles and blog posts went through my Twitter and RSS feeds. Oh, yeah, I still have a couple hundred more of said cool articles Pocketed for later. And, though, I’m not entirely sure, there’s a Pinterest account in my name somewhere…

As the web continues to churn out content at an ever-increasing pace, now more than ever we are in need of filters for all the noise. We no longer have the patience for nor the trust in ads thrown in our direction. Instead, we turn to people we do trust for their recommendations and thoughts.

Enter influencer marketing.

What is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer marketing is the process of partnering with influential individuals in your industry to co-create and distribute content that is engaging and valuable to your customers. Your goal is to drive brand awareness and engagement in an authentic way that consumers trust.

To accomplish these goals, you must identify, engage with, and learn from influencers who have your audience’s willful attention.

1) Identify

Influence is more than just a large Twitter following or a ton of monthly unique page views. To connect with your customers, you must find influencers who regularly post quality content relevant to your customers where your customers exist online.

What do your customers want to read or view? Are they going to be on Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest? Does Influencer A post content that will resonate with these customers on their preferred online destination, or will Influencer B? Answering these questions takes a bit of work, but will ultimately lead to more efficient campaigns.

2) Engage

Once you’ve found the influencers who matter to your brand, it’s time to build a relationship and develop some awesome content. Trust influencers to tell an authentic story. Provide them with general campaign guidelines (“top party planning tips” or “summer outfits”) and include a few details you’d like highlighted, but do not be overbearing with your content requirements. Otherwise, you run the risk of co-producing something that feels inauthentic and contrived.

3) Learn

Now that you’ve got some content up it’s time to measure audience engagement and listen to your customers’ responses. Track metrics such as shares, retweets, comments, etc. to understand what resonated most with consumers and incorporate this data into future campaigns, product iterations, service offerings, and more.

Final Thoughts

Influencer marketing allows you to get your message to a group of people without forcing it down anyone’s throat. You just have to find the right people to say it for you in an authentic and compelling way.

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