How to Grow Your Business with Influencer Marketing

Have you been putting an influencer marketing campaign on the back burner? You hear great things about it, like how in 2019 80% of marketers say influencer marketing is effective and in 2020, it’s rapidly growing. But is it really the right way to go for your business? 

After all, your current marketing strategies already keep you on your toes and not to mention, are time consuming. It’s true, it is an investment of both your time and money – but it’s worth it. 

When done correctly, influencer marketing will help you drive traffic, engagement, and conversions all while building trust with your target audience. It’s not just for the big brands either, small businesses can absolutely leverage influencer marketing to fit their budget. It’s a matter of identifying the right influencer to represent your brand and a clear goal of what you want to get out of it. Consider the following information when implementing your new marketing campaign:

Types of Influencers 

Hubspot recognizes 5 types of influencers:

  • Micro-influencer – Typically has a smaller audience of thousands to tens of thousands of followers and uses social media platforms, blogs, websites, and forums. These influencers tend to have high conversion rates due to the size of their following and the fact they are focused on one industry, allowing them a closer relationship with their audience. Expect them to write a post, share a picture, or share a review of your product and engage directly with their audience by answering any questions. 
  • Celebrity influencer – Followers are usually in the millions and across many industries, giving them a wide reach. Celebrities often post a picture posing with your product with a discount code. You can also expect use of social media, blogs, commercials, and print or online ads. 
  • Blog influencer – Have an established blog with thousands to millions of subscribers. Writing guest posts, being mentioned in their blog, and sponsoring a post on your chosen product are common ways to work with blog influencers.
  • Social media influencer – Followed by thousands to millions of people and use social media platforms such as Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. These influencers promote a wide range of products. They typically promote an image of your product and tag your business or, in the case of YouTube, share a video of themselves using the product. Sharing coupon codes is common.
  • Key Opinion Leader (KOL) – Experts on a specialized topic and trusted in their industry. KOLs have a presence across many channels and typically have a wide reach, making your approach on working with them flexible. 

So, there are a few options for you to choose from but it’s important to remember that just because they can reach a wide audience, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for your business. 

How to Find an Influencer

Unless you’ve had your eye on somebody prior to this, finding an influencer can be overwhelming. The influencer should be relevant to your brand and what you want to achieve. For example, if you want to build trust and focus on conversions, a micro-influencer or KOL would be appropriate because they are niche influencers with a more intimate following. If your goal is brand awareness, go for the celebrity. 

Start with a google search and use social media to search for influencers by typing in keywords. If they’re successful they shouldn’t be difficult to find! Use your network and ask around for suggestions. BuzzStream and BuzzSumo will help you with your influencer search. For a celebrity, you’ll likely have to contact an agency.

Your Budget

For small businesses and startups, your marketing budget may be a little tighter. It still doesn’t have to break the bank. This guide will help to break down the different parameters. The number of followers is typically the main determinant for cost per post:

  • 1,000-10,000 Followers – $2- $250 
  • 10,000 – 50,000 Followers – $20 – $1250
  • 50,000 – 500,000 Followers – $100 – $12,500
  • 500,000 – 1,000,000 Followers – $1000 – $25,000
  • 1,000,000+ Followers – $2,000 – $25,000+

These costs are the lows and highs between Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and Twitter. 

Starting the Conversation

Influencers receive endless amounts of requests, spam and advertising every day, so it’s important you stand out. Doing the influencer a favor first is a great way for them to notice you and start collaborating.

Share their posts, review their blog, or ask for an interview. It’s always easier to start a conversation with your desired influencer if you are consistently active in the community. 

Make sure your pitch is personalized and start mentioning the influencer in your posts.

Contract & Reward

Review all expectations for both parties and be considerate about how influencers prefer to communicate from this point on. Make sure everything is written in a contract to avoid any issues and avoid confusion. Remember, influencers are going to put your product into their own words, which is important to protect the authenticity of this strategy. 

Be sure to reward your influencer. There are few different suggestions beyond their standard payment. Product samples, free trials or free products, access to discounts, and promotion on your website are great rewards. 

Bottom Line of Influencer Marketing

Keep your original goal in mind. Did you achieve it? Thankfully you can easily measure the success of your influencer marketing strategy. Have your likes, shares, comments increased to improve your overall engagement? Measure your conversions with those coupon codes you sent out to track the number of followers you’ve gained. 

Influencer marketing is an amazing way to connect with your audience and it’s clear that word of mouth is a powerful marketing tool. Start planning your influencer marketing strategy and build lasting relationships.