In the last years, since social media developed and expanded their audience, a new group of opinion leader took the lead on the web (among them bloggers, youtubers, Twitter accounts and Facebook pages) influencing people, their actions, thoughts and purchase preferences.
Many companies realized this and saw the potential of cooperating with influential figures to enhance their activities, revenues and visibility. This is why we talk about Influencer Marketing, which is a strategic part of a marketing plan focused on the use of social media opinion leaders to influence their audience in favour of their business.
How to properly plan an Influencer Marketing campaign
As every marketing strategy, the influencer marketing campaign must be properly planned to have a successful effect.
How can you do it?
First of all, you have to identify what are the different types of influencers to understand which one suits best your needs. Currently, we can distinguish three kinds of influencers:
- identified: are all those influencers considered relevant for a brand according to the ranking, their role and position. Among these we can include celebrities, everyday advocates (they review products and services) and the altruistic activators (considered impartial and independent, therefore trustworthy);
- engaged: these are the influencers who already got in contact with the brand (sharing content or reacting to it). In this case the first step in the construction of a long-lasting relationship took place by now making it easier to develop a connection with them;
- active: the influencers directly engaged in influencer marketing campaigns, cooperating actively with brands and companies to promote their products and services, turning into proper ambassadors when adopting their vision and mission.
Once you know the players in the influencer environment, you must set the communication goal you want to reach through the campaign, which are the needs of your company and, consequently, who are the influencers that can help you fulfil your mission.
Our suggestion is to look for influencers also on non-traditional channels in order to expand your audience since the target following the influencers who are closer to your business may already know your company and find it attractive.
When choosing the influencer you want to cooperate with, you must take into consideration the 4R rule:
- reach: number of followers the influencer can communicate with on social networks;
- relevance: the relevance of the influencer communication for the brand and for its audience;
- resonance: is the ability to engage the audience conveying emotions and values when communicating to them. This is fundamental because is the key to influence people’s habits and actions;
- relationship: this consists in the type of connection the brand or company wants to create with the influencer.
Influencer won’t cooperate with you for free, therefore, you must think about the proper way to remunerate them. The “Cash Only” logic is not always the best one; nowadays the most effective way to reward influencers is through a set of incentives.
Choosing the right influencer is crucial. Be sure you pick wisely, since getting a negative review from one can be a serious problem for your business and your reputation. On the other hand, establishing a positive and long term collaboration with an influencer can take your content and your visibility to a whole new level.
The Micro-Influencer Marketing approach
The most recent trend of Influencer Marketing is the Micro-Influencer approach. It consists in collaborate with micro-influencers instead of opinion leaders with a huge number of followers.
Micro-influencers are people who work in a specific sector, or just have a great passion for it, so that they know everything about it. They understand this particular world turning themselves into authorities with a consistent number of follower. Specifically, from 5.000 to 20.000 followers.
These users have a smaller community, which results in more engaged followers naturally opened to like posts, to comment or to share their content. This narrow community, other than being more active, is also more homogenous. This means that is more interested in the content and in the sector promoted by the influencer.
Micro-influencers have a greater ability to involve their audience turning themselves into ambassadors of the product, the service or the brand.
Furthermore, the reduced public creates a more intimate relationship with the influencer. This means that the audience will perceive his or her content as more credible and authentic than other influencers with huge amount of followers.
Implementing a micro-influencer marketing strategy offers you also quantitative benefits. As a matter of fact, micro-influencers cost less than macro-influencers. This is a key factor, since with a same budget it would always be more fruitful to invest in micro-influencers than macro-influencers in terms of cost, engagement and conversions.
Choosing a micro-influencer is not easier than choosing a big influencer. There are many factors you should carefully take into considerations to identify the best partner or partners: the community engagement, the conversion rate, the nature of the fan-base, the relevance of the micro-influencer contents with the brand or the product, and so on.
Tips to better choose the best micro-influencer for your business
- first of all, identify advocate micro-influencers, those users that want to become ambassadors of the brand or the product;
- second, make them tell a personal story where your product, service or brand is the key tool that helped them solve a problem or improve their life;
- finally, think about a long-lasting partnership.
At this point, you have all the information you may need to choose which kind of influencer marketing strategy you want to implement.
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