The influencer marketing industry is set to be worth $15bn next year, and the future of this growing digital sector is only heading one way.
Consumers, including your potential customers, are spending more time on social media than ever before and are increasingly likely to turn to influencers for tips and recommendations on the brands they should choose. This presents a phenomenal opportunity for businesses like yours, but only if you align yourself with the right content creators.
Feel a little unsure about how to find influencers or connect with the creators that can actually drive customers to your business?
We’ve got you covered.
Considerations Before Looking for Influencers
Acknowledging that your business needs to work with influencers, like those available through the Popular Pays platform, is one thing, but actually building a winning strategy is another altogether.
The journey to finding influencers begins with understanding how they can integrate or redefine your existing marketing strategy.
In short: you need to find influencers that can deliver results.
So, before doing anything else, you must first consider:
Goals / Objectives
First and foremost, you need to decide what a social influencer partnership is supposed to accomplish. You want to avoid setting simple growth goals and avoid being too generic or broad (e.g. “Increase Instagram Followers”).
Influencers can be used to help increase brand awareness, directly promote products, establish brand loyalty, and more. Selecting a clear, quantitative goal that aligns to the types of campaigns that you’ll be running will help you find an effective influencer.
No two businesses are identical, and you need to ensure that any marketing strategy is built to deliver optimal efficiency and effectiveness for your company. Knowing your place in the market and understanding the habits of your target audience is vital.
For example, different social media platforms appeal to varying age groups. Understanding this data helps you find an influencer on a platform that works for you.
The term “business optics” has become increasingly important over the past decade or so. It essentially describes the way that an action taken by a company (in this case, the action stemming from an influencer partnership) makes the company look to the public – especially your target audience.
You don’t want to work with influencers that will alienate your customers through contrasting values or a lack of resonation. Be sure to vett influencers.
Timing is everything in modern marketing. As far as launching a new campaign with an influencer is concerned, you need to ensure that it won’t detract from any initiatives that are already in-flight. This is especially true when looking for a short-term agreement.
It’s great if an influencer can get involved with an existing initiative to strengthen its appeal and maximize its reach. If not, make sure that new projects are built with influencers in mind so they are as effective as possible.
Finally, you cannot ignore the need to set a budget. I’m sure all beauty and fashion brands would love to work with Kylie Jenner, but at over $1m per post, your subject-matter-expertise isn’t quite ready to establish that partnership.
The right influencer will be affordable for your budget and pay for themselves in the long-run by generating increased revenue (directly or indirectly) on your behalf.
Influencer Characteristics: What Should You Look For?
Influencer marketing is primarily used by brands that have B2C products and services to sell. That’s not to say that B2B businesses, non-profits, and those working in public sectors can’t work with content creators. However, in most cases, influencers are used to influence a consumer’s perception of a brand and its products.
As already mentioned, no two businesses are identical.
So, your vision of the perfect influencer will be determined by your industry, and niche business vertical. Nonetheless, with half of all consumers actively turning to influencers for advice on products, you will naturally want to ensure that any influencer you use has the credentials to help you amplify your brand.
Recommended Reading: B2B Influencer Marketing: Your 2021 Guide To Success [+ 3 Examples]
When vetting independent talent on your own, be sure to analyze the following:
Every business owner wants to work with big names, but it is pointless if you share completely contrasting audiences. To use the Kylie Jenner example again, she’d be the dream partner for a beauty brand but would be a disaster for a men’s fragrance brand.
Aside from the demographic, you need to consider their type of content (video, live stream, photo edits, audio, etc.) as well as the social media platforms that they utilize. It should sync with your brand for better opportunities.
The quality of an influencer’s content is a moot point if nobody sees or hears it. While engagement rates are an integral feature to determining the value of a creator to your brand, their overall audience size is vital too.
Essentially, an influencer that has a 1% engagement rate with one million fans will bring more value than someone with a reach of only 10,000, even if their engagement rates are 10x higher than the bigger influencer.
People don’t simply look to influencers for their opinions. Stats show that 61% of consumers turn to influencers that they feel have similar tastes and interests. Therefore, any influencer you choose needs to have character that is clear and authentic.
Aligning with your brand is great, but you must also ensure that the influencer is similar to your audience. Therefore, having a clear vision of your ideal consumer profile can be a key step to finding an influencer for your next campaign.
Choosing an influencer that shares a similar audience lays a solid foundation to build upon, However, if you want them to become an authoritative voice that can reflect your business in an effective way, they need to know what they are talking about.
A little knowledge about your brand and the product in question is critical. Meanwhile, insights into your industry as a whole can become a powerful tool that allows them to create value-adding content for your audience.
The influencer’s credibility shouldn’t be limited to their niche and verified reach. If you are planning to partner with a creator, you need to know that they will be reliable – even if it’s a short-term campaign rather than a long-term association.
Social influencers with a good, provable track record should be your priority. Of course, some new creators are great too. But for a hassle-free partnership, especially when dipping your toes into the water, the credibility factor is key.
10 Tips For How To Find Influencers
After identifying what you want from an influencer, your next step is to know how to find influencers for your campaigns and ongoing marketing initiatives.
Here 10 quick tips that will streamline the process and help you find the best talent available for your brand and budget.
#1. Use A Dedicated Network
When you want a convenient way to connect with influencers and content creators, Popular Pays helps you discover some of the best talent in one place. The network has over 60,000 individuals that you can connect with.
So, finding one that satisfies the above considerations and characteristics should be a pretty simple task.
#2. Reach Out To Influencers You Love
Influencers have become a central part of the way we consume media as the shift from traditional TV to digital screens continues to gain momentum. If you consider yourself to be a member of your brand’s target audience, it’s likely that your customers will love the same content creators that you do.
So, drop them a message.
#3. Look At An Influencer’s Friends
It might not be possible to work with the influencer you love (timing, budgets, conflicting interests, etc.), but there may be an opportunity to work with their friends and network. The magnetic law of attraction means that creators in similar niches often flock to each other.
So, have a browse through their networks and reach out to the most suitable candidates.
#4. Pick Up A Competitor’s Old Partners
In most aspects of marketing, you want to stay one step ahead of the competition. However, following in a competitor’s footsteps by working with one of their ex-influencers can work very well. If the analysis shows that they brought value to the competitor, it’s likely they can do the same for you. Moreover, you might be able to pick up some of their followers.
#5. Search On Google
Google is the answer to many of life’s problems. Unsurprisingly, it can be a great tool for identifying influencers. Any search that includes the name of your niche along with terms related to influencer marketing will drag up thousands of entries. It’s a very good option when you want to find a local influencer.
#6. Check “Promoted” Accounts
When logged into your social media accounts, it will promote accounts you should follow. Some will be influencers, and the algorithms show that they could be a good match. Stats show that 56% of brands use influencers across multiple campaigns, and you may use yours across multiple channels. So check to see if they are active on other platforms too.
#7. Browse Relevant Industry Blogs
Blogs, news websites, and online magazines can all recognize that influencer marketing is a trendy topic, which is why they want to cover it so frequently. As such, there are hundreds of listicle posts that detail the top influencers in a chosen niche. Likewise, you may be able to find interviews or features on individual influencers.
Hashtags are the key to social media and growing the outreach. Checking out the latest topic (that’s also relevant to your brand) will allow you to scout out authoritative and cultural voices that actually inspire strong engagement. If they are attracting attention in this way, think about what they could achieve for your brand.
#9. Ask Your Audience
It may seem like an obvious option, but it can also be one of the most effective. Asking for recommendations from your existing customers doesn’t only encourage engagement from them, but it can be used to build excitement when the partnership is announced. Besides, if some members of your fanbase like an influencer, it’s likely others will too.
#10. Check External Content
Influencers need to promote themselves as part of their personal brands. Therefore, they will appear on podcasts, radio shows, interviews, and other media. This is a great way to check if their content aligns with your brand. The fact they are actively building their audience is naturally a huge positive signal that should not be underestimated.
Tools For Finding Great Influencers
While the above tips help provide some insight into where and how influencers can be found, you may be a little concerned about the time that you’ll need to invest.
Thankfully, several tools can be utilized to make the process easier.
Some of the best are:
The SparkToro platform is a tool that allows you to instantly analyze your audience’s online habits to find out what they read, watch, and listen to. In some cases, it will directly help you find an influencer. Even when it doesn’t, it provides clarity on the circles you should look to target.
Millions of marketers use BuzzSumo to discover what content performs best in their chosen topic or keyword. Simply input the keyword, and the platform will instantly deliver the insight you need. From here, you can focus on finding an influencer that provides this type of content to ensure you reap the best rewards.
The Followerwonk platform includes several tools. However, the most impressive resource is the audience breakout tool. It allows you to break them down into categories (location, gender, etc.) and see who they follow. If they tend to follow the same influencer, that’s someone you should reach out to.
When using Ahrefs, you can achieve a wide range of SEO goals. The Keywords Explorer and Content Explorer tools are particularly useful for discovering the best content currently online. This should allow you to accelerate your progress when looking for influencers using the tips mentioned above.
How To Find Influencers Quickly On Social Media Networks Directly
The purpose of a marketing campaign and the brand’s target audience will have a huge influence on the type of influencer you want to use. Perhaps most tellingly, it dictates which of the social media platforms you will focus on.
Here’s some quick advice on finding influencers on each.
The vast majority of influencer campaigns use Instagram in some shape or form.
You can find influencers on Instagram by;
- Using hashtags to find influencers that have popular posts on relevant topics.
- Find friends or similar accounts of your dream influencer.
- Check your followers to see if a potential partner is already following you.
Pinterest is another visual platform in which the best influencers gain very good exposure and engagement.
Here’s how to find the right Pinterest influencers;
- Check the latest pinboards in your chosen topic to see what performs well.
- Use Popular Pays marketing partner program.
- See which influencers your customers are tagging or talking about.
Facebook remains the number one social media platform and also carries a broader audience than others.
Use it for social media influencing by;
- Search a keyword in the search bar and see which influencer profiles show.
- Look for any influencers that other brands have used for one-off campaigns.
- Get your fans to tag people they want you to partner with.
YouTube is one of the longest-standing social influencer platforms.
Here’s how you can find creative content creators on YouTube;
- Look at the channels you follow to see if any suitable influencers are there.
- See if any influencers show up in the ads that play before your vids.
- Check out the topic hashtags relevant to your industry.
TikTok is probably the fastest growing social media App of the past two years and boasts excellent engagement for influencers.
You can find the best TikTok influencers by;
- Joining a network of over 500,000 creators.
- Looking at new accounts that are already starting to gain lots of views on relevant tags.
- Searching the influencers followed by other brands in your field.
Twitter is another very popular platform for finding influencers but a lot of brands struggle to find influencers.
Here’s how you can find influencers quickly on Twitter;
- Use Google as the algorithms will naturally show popular accounts.
- Check the ‘who to follow’ section of Twitter.
- Look at trending topics and see which posts have high engagement
Tools For Managing Influencer Marketing Campaigns
Finding an influencer that you can trust to provide quality content and value for money is essential for influencer marketing success.
Recommended Reading: Influencer Management: Everything You Need to Know [+ Tools to Help]
It always pays to work with a content creator that shows initiative too. Nonetheless, businesses are still required to manage their influencer marketing campaigns to unlock their full potential.
Using Popular Pays’ filter tools, you can quickly identify suitable candidates for influencer relationships. Meanwhile, the verified visual reports allow you to make a more calculated choice when navigating through different options.
Once the partnership is formed you can collaborate on campaigns while tracking software and a content library powered by Google Vision will allow you to maximize your ROI and evolve the partnership throughout the campaign. Managing all aspects of the brand-influencer relationship from one platform will make life far easier.
Moreover, Popular Pays offers multiple packages that can be tailored to your needs, ensuring that you gain optimal value for money.
Unlock The Power Of Influencer Marketing Today
The power of influencer marketing is clear, which is why 91% of companies using it believe that it is a successful part of their overall strategy. When done well it can increase your reach, engagement, and traffic from a targeted audience and associated secondary markets. In turn, this will translate to increased conversions and profitability.
There has never been a better time to embrace this type of digital strategy, but it can only be achieved when you align yourself with the right influencer. Form a winning partnership, and success is virtually assured.