Putting Your Brand Advocates to Work with Influencer Marketing
By Liz Papagni
This year, 87% of marketers plan to launch at least one influencer marketing campaign. Social proof is huge for Millennials and the up-and-coming Generation Z, and influencer marketing is one of the most effective ways to provide that validation they seek. All you have to do is find the right influencers and put them to work.
Believe it or not, you may already have the perfect influencers lined up. You’re probably well aware of your most loyal brand advocates—those cheerleaders who have been a fan of your company and products for so long that you even know them by name. What if you let them do what they do best: sharing the benefits of your brand with the world?
No Celebrities Needed
While celebrity endorsements do tend to reach a larger audience, they’re not always the best option for your brand. Millennials and Generation X crave authenticity, and they can tell when an influencer’s heart just isn’t in it.
That’s why your brand advocates may just be the best people for the job. Relevancy and authenticity will always win out over follower count. As an added bonus, your cheerleaders may not cost as much as a celebrity.
Identifying the Right Influencers
With the stress of finding a celebrity off your plate, you can now identify the right influencers from your current brand advocates. This is actually a pretty tough job, as 73% of marketers say finding the right influencers is the hardest part of this type of marketing.
That doesn’t mean it’s impossible, though. You’ve already won half the battle by identifying people who genuinely love your brand. Now, you have to determine if your brand will love those influencers. Investigate their current social media and other online presence to ensure they mesh with your brand standards.
Can they also support and reflect your brand’s mission and vision? If so, then you’ve got a bona fide influencer on your hands.
Keep an Eye on the Ball
However much you may trust your cheerleaders to always cast you in the best possible light, you can’t simply set your influencer marketing campaigns in motion and then let them go. You’ll have to keep an eye on everything to make sure things are going smoothly.
Track your metrics often to gauge your success. Are your influencers reaching your target market? Do your buyers react well to the messages they receive through your advocates’ social media pushes? By tracking Google Analytics, you’ll always have a good idea of where your traffic is coming from, so you can know for sure your influencers are doing the job.
You’re well on your way to driving awareness and affinity for your brand.