Influencers have become a force in shaping consumer opinion and purchasing patterns across industries. The challenge for brands is to cut through the noise and find appropriate personalities that align with their audience.
The right influencers can effectively compel narrators for your brand values. Before you engage with influencers, clearly identify brand values so you can find an authentic way for all parties to clearly communicate your vision. Work with them in a way where you’ll be operating alongside them as partners to engage an expanded audience, rather than them simply reciting a laundry list of talking points. Construct the type and tone of content, target audience, demographics and have a good idea of which channels work best. Influencers need both clear direction and also freedom to add their personal spin to appear as a natural extension of the brand’s core spirit and message.
There is no shortage of influencers to choose from, so before the selection process becomes overwhelming, consider your key target audience, geography, channel strategy and content as you review your options. Important to note that influencers work across brands so you will want to review any other sponsorships that your influencer of choice has already undertaken. Also important is to be aware of any other work that they are doing that may appear in the same time period as your project so as to avoid any potential conflicts, confusion or oversaturation issues.
Speak the right language
Influencers connect to their followers by creating aspirational or relatable content. Whether it’s a big name with millions of followers or a micro influencer with just a few thousand, the purpose is to create a direct link with the target audience.
Remember that you decided to work with these influencers for a reason. Don’t smother that in the creative process. There should be clear direction, but let them use their voice, creativity and expertise. You can hire anyone to read to the camera, but you’re looking for an authentic voice, so lean on authenticity. Work with the influencer (and sometimes their team) to see what they come up with. They know what works for their audience. If an audience perceives that they are getting something forced, there could be some backlash for the brand. Nobody wants this.
Choose each influencer by considering some key factors: social reach, brand affinity, content development, relevancy, audience and personality fit. Maintaining this checklist helps us stay consistent and allows more strategic partnerships as we work with multiple influencers around the world.
Choose the right people
Consumers are influenced, intrigued and inspired by people they trust. Good content needs to be something that starts a conversation. Since there’s so much competition, you want to make sure that people see the content and think, “Hey, I love this—let me share!”
One way to do this is to pair your customers directly with influencers. This recipe allows the talents of the users to play off of the influencer’s strength and fit it into the brand’s narrative. Choosing people with chemistry to make the connection easy, which ensures that the message is authentic and easily benefits all parties. Again, lean on expertise. Have conversations and brainstorms that involve the customers and influencers. Companies are pairing influencers through various avenues, including trade-specific conferences, targeted videos and experiential programming. This is becoming more noteworthy within sales, where teams are finding micro influencers that can help them acquire new clients through promotional events.
These programs not only remove the sales pitch from the talk but also create an avenue for people to see some of the individuals they admire directly engaging with their communities and the brands. Not only does this demonstrate authenticity but it also increases brand trust among consumers.
All about the brand
By aligning micro and macro influencers, brands can develop an ecosystem that builds authenticity, engaging core customers while reaching new audiences.
Or experiment and pair successful customers with influencers to give everyone a chance to shine. In the end, it demonstrates exactly what you can accomplish with inspirational influencer marketing, connecting all elements for a big brand win.
By developing an ecosystem that harnesses new leads through your core audiences, brands are better able to find leads that not only align with their business but also learn more about brand resonance. It creates an alignment that spreads in a trusted fashion where it is individuals who hold prominence in their communities verifying the brand or product and thereby creating the type of engagement marketers aspire for.