Most businesses now know that influencer marketing is one of the best areas to invest for their marketing strategy, and companies from small startups to massive brands are collaborating with influencers for incredible results. From Instagram to Snapchat to YouTube, all sorts of businesses and non-profits are learning about the endless potential of working with influencers in their marketing strategy.
One of the main reasons why influencer marketing is so popular and successful is that social networks will always put the focus on people over businesses when it comes to monetizing their user base. Not only that, but nothing appeals to people like other people. According to Rick Steele, a tech blogger at Draft Beyond and Research Papers UK, “when it comes to looking at the best social media tools to use for influencer marketing, there are many different options. By far the easiest thing you can do is taking a step back and using social media to find influencers as though you were a regular user who wanted to be influenced.”
Once you’re ready to take a step forward and invest a little more in your influencer marketing, you should use a social listening tool. These will help you find out the factors that matter most to your brands and finding out what’s an influence in your industry. Put simply, social listening tools help you with searching through social media in an organized and comprehensive way and get actionable data. Here are the steps for using a social listening tool in your influencer marketing strategy:
1. Identify influencers.
A social listening tool can be programmed to find influencers based on the keywords or hashtags you use, just like you would search yourself in sites. In this step, you want to track not only your company and brand name but also your competitors.
If a person is reputable within an industry, they will eventually use a keyword or hashtag relevant to that community. When that person says something that fits with your company’s products or services, that’s where there is the possibility of starting a relationship with an influencer.
2. Choose the right influencer for your company.
Using a social listening tool lets you filter through all the users you found in step one to determine who might have more influence than another.
As Maria Wilson, a marketing writer at Writinity and Last Minute Writing explains, “this involves analyzing the size of the community, how much reach their posts have, how often they’re mentioned in the community, and how much engagement their content gets.”
3. Learn about each influencer.
Once you’ve narrowed down your list of possible influencers from step one and two, you now need to prepare to reach out to them and start building relationships. The worst thing you can do at this step is send a blanket message to all of them.
Influencers want to build a relationship and collaboration, so you need to make your pitch stand out.
Personalize your approach to each influencer by finding out what they posted recently and how you can use that to break the ice. A social listening tool is great for this because you can get a full profile of each user, and you may find out that they might not be as relevant to your brand as you originally thought.
In fact, looking at their recent posts, you might find that only a small percentage of their posts mention the keyword you looked at for your business, and all their other posts are irrelevant to your industry and your company. This means that step 3 is important for preparing to reach out to your chosen influencers but also can help you narrow down your list even more.
Two of the most common reasons brands fail at influencer marketing is because they either find the wrong influencer to represent their brand or they do not personalize their outreach to the influencer. When a business treats the influencer as a marketing tool or transaction, instead of a creative human being, they’re missing the boat completely.
While social listening tools won’t help you collaborate better with influencers, they’ll give you the data you need to find the right influencer and learn how to best reach out to them.
Ashley Halsey, a professional writer at Lucky Assignments and Gum Essays, is involved in digital and social media marketing projects. She is interested in the phenomenon of influencer marketing and has written many studies on this new trend. In her spare time, she travels the world and attends seminars on marketing.