How to Use Influencer Marketing to Grow Your Business

Influencers looking at their smartphones

Jenny Force Jenny Force, VP of Marketing

Influencer marketing is one of the best ways to grow your audience, build credibility for your brand, and engage with customers. Social media provides many opportunities to partner with well-known experts as well as micro-influencers who are respected in your industry. In order to make the most of influencer marketing, however, you need to follow certain guidelines.

Why Influencer Marketing is Effective
It is more challenging than ever to connect with your customers with so many competing ads and posts. Influencer marketing is a way to cut through the noise and deliver a more compelling and relevant message to your audience. While traditional advertising still has its place, it’s not as effective as word-of-mouth or personal recommendations.

Advertising and other traditional promotional methods are getting less effective all the time. What’s getting more effective are tactics that involve building social proof such as reviews and testimonials. People trust reviews and recommendations from trusted strangers as much as those from friends and families. One study, for example, found that 84% of people trust online reviews as much as recommendations from friends. Influencers who are known and respected in your industry can provide a business with valuable recommendations, especially when the message is delivered in an authentic manner.

The Current State of Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is still powerful but it is no longer new. In fact, it has become quite competitive as the number of influencers continues to grow. In some verticals where there is an abundance of influencers, audiences may become more skeptical of the content they share. If they bring too much hype to the message, they are seen as less than authentic. With that said, here are some of the most relevant points to keep in mind about influencer marketing in 2020 and beyond.

  • Audiences want to see that influencers are truly knowledgeable and impressed with the products they endorse. Otherwise, their messages just come across as social media versions of TV commercials.
  • Don’t choose influencers simply because they have lots of followers. It’s more important that they have engaged and loyal followers. Additionally, you want to find people who are the right match for your audience.
  • Authenticity is essential. Messages delivered in a canned manner do not come across as persuasive. This speaks, once again, to working with influencers who are genuinely enthusiastic about their message. The most persuasive messages are more spontaneous and involve storytelling. For example, an influencer explaining exactly how they use your product or giving a live demonstration.

How Do You Work With Influencers?
If you haven’t done influencer marketing, you may be wondering how difficult it is to get started. You can start partnering with influencers in a few steps. Some of these are easier if you have the right tools or work with an experienced agency.

  • Look for influencers who are already talking about you. The most organic type of influencer marketing happens when trusted people discover you on their own. You can also search for influencers who are talking about your competitors. They may also be interested in your products.
  • Identify influencers who your audience will respond to. If your budget is limited, look for micro-influencers who may have popular blogs, YouTube channels, Twitter followings, or Instagram accounts.
  • Build relationships with influencers. Take the time to reach out to those with whom you want to connect. Follow and support them, share their content and show them that you’re interested in a mutually beneficial relationship.
  • Decide on the best platform. You need to consider both your own audience and that of the influencer.
  • Collaborate on the message and approach. You want to make sure you are on the same page so there’s no miscommunication. The influencer doesn’t need to provide you with a word-for-word script. As noted, spontaneity is always good. However, you should have a general idea of what they will be saying and doing. Above all, it’s important that you don’t lose sight of your branding. Even the most popular influencers aren’t a good match if they aren’t in line with your brand’s message.
  • Track the results of all your influencer campaigns. You need to know how your followers and customers are reacting to your content.

How Sysomos Boosts Your Influencer Marketing
Sysomos, has products for analytics, social listening, brand management, and offers many features that help you get more consistent results from your influencer campaigns.

  • Obtain valuable social insights. Discover the latest trends in your market, niche, or industry. Find out what your customers are talking about, buying or complaining about. Perform unlimited searches to gather data on any topic.
  • Identify and engage with key influencers. Find out who is discussing your brand and products as well as those of your competitors. Discover well-known as well as micro-influencers with whom you can build relationships.
  • Improve your results with campaign insights and customized reports. Sysomos makes it easier to measure your most important KPIs and easily share data with your team or throughout your organization.

Sysomos helps you take your influencer marketing to the next level by giving you access to more comprehensive research and insights so you can learn more about your customers, competitors and influencers.

Influencer Marketing is Essential for Building Your Business
Getting your posts and ads seen on social media platforms is not getting any easier. Influencers can help smaller businesses level the playing field by building visibility and trust. In its rather brief history, there have already been changes in the way influencer marketing is done. Customers are getting more discerning about messages coming from influencers. Businesses are getting more selective about the influencers whom they partner with. They are also realizing that they need to map out a strategy for influencer campaigns and track their results.

The key to succeeding with influencers today is paying close attention to every aspect of the process such as your audience’s needs, your budget, choosing the right influencers, and tracking your results. In order to do this, it helps to have the right tools. Sysomos helps you get the most out of influencer marketing by giving you access to extensive data, research capabilities, reports and other resources.