Although influencers are known to be extremely effective at generating ROI for companies on social, many marketers don't take advantage of their ability to reach niche audiences. In addition, companies often struggle to identify the right influencers that align with their brand image and are effective at making marketing feel less like marketing.
Regardless of the industry or region, companies are increasingly interested in incorporating influencer marketing as an inherent part of their digital strategy. According to a survey conducted by the content marketing platform Chute, 75% of companies will be leveraging influencers by the end of 2017, which is a 20% increase compared to 2016.
The growing popularity of influencers for marketing purposes is not surprising, considering how they can effectively help brands reach their audiences. Influencers already have devoted followers who are often expecting purchase advice. Twitter revealed that nearly 40% of Twitter users bought a product because an influencer Tweeted about it.
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Influencers are relevant to your target audience and can help present your product in a personalized, "non-salesy" way. This allows your company to cut through the noise on social media and appeal to communities that are often bombarded with ads and sponsored content.
An even more powerful segment are micro-influencers, which typically have between 1,000 and 100,000 followers. Brands are increasingly becoming aware of micro-influencers' ability to tap into very small niche markets, while remaining authentic. At this year's Engage Prague, the world's largest social media summit, micro-influencers were one of the key topics. For instance, Steve Bartlett, CEO of the digital advertising agency Social Chain, said:
Aside from being able to reach niche audiences, micro-influencers generate a high number of interactions. In fact, campaigns involving micro-influencers generate almost 7x more engagement compared to influencers with a large following.
Yet, many marketers fail to get the best from micro-influencer marketing and have trouble finding the right influencers for their brands. Here's how to easily find influencers and micro-influencers with Socialbakers Suite:
1. Use Socialbakers Listening
Socialbakers Listening is an easy to use solution for finding micro-influencers in your area on Twitter and Facebook public pages. Start with creating queries that are tied to the topic of your campaign and select the platform you want to monitor. Then, add keywords, hashtags, and mentions related to your specific products. Lastly, narrow down your search by selecting your default region and language.
After creating your query, head to the Listening Dashboard where you'll be able to see the overview of Top 5 Mentions by Audience Size and Top 5 Authors by Number of Mentions. This is where you’ll find the profiles of key influencers. Take a look at their social media activity to identify those that post about a particular subject most frequently.
Listening is a real-time search tool that allows you to discover influencers currently publishing content around a given topic. However, preparing seasonal campaigns often requires looking back to see which influencers were most effective during a specific timeframe. To get the most from occasion based listening use Socialbakers Content Inspiration.
Just like in the case of Listening, start with typing in the keywords you're interested in. Then, define your platform and time range.
You will instantly see a collection of top-performing content that you can filter by industry, interactions, and post type. Content Inspiration is based on historical data, meaning you'll be able to discover the most prominent influencers - not only by monitoring the conversations starting from the time of inquiry, but by searching those posted earlier in time as well.
3. Use Socialbakers Analytics
Once you identify the right influencers for your company using Listening or Content Inspiration, add their profiles to Analytics. This will enable you to gain a deeper insight into their performance on social media and and learn more about their content strategy.
By leveraging Analytics you’ll be able to measure their posting frequency and times, and uncover how well their content performs and when their audience engages with it most. It will also allow you to see if the influencer’s tone of voice aligns with the language of your company.
We also suggest taking a look at their posting frequency. Ensure that the influencers post with consistency and that their content always generates high engagement. If you intend to work with them for a period of time, their consistency will be instrumental to your goals. You can also study how their interactions are distributed. The differences in the number of Retweets, Likes and Replies can be the key to meeting your campaign objectives.
The data you gather in Analytics will not only help you gain insight into how an influencer is performing on social media, but also it is a valuable starting point when opening a conversation with them and negotiating a better agreement. Socialbakers Suite allows you to quickly generate clear visual reports with a click on the "Export" button. Use these detailed reports to show influencers that you took time to understand their social media strategy - you might even know where they need to improve.
Without a doubt, influencers have become an integral part of social media marketing. They offer a shortcut for companies to reach their audiences by cutting through the social media noise and deliver your content to an audience who is already seeking purchase advice. If you want to take advantage of influencer marketing, get Socialbakers Suite to find hundreds of the most effective influencers that can become one of the main drivers of your social media ROI.