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Defined as a person or group with the ability to influence the behaviour and opinions of others, influencers can make up a significant part of your marketing strategy by helping to market your products or services.

For example, if you are marketing makeup products to your customers, engaging the help of popular beauty bloggers who will talk about your product on their social media sites will help increase the reach of your brand resulting in a new customer base from the influencer’s online audience.

When deciding to adopt influencer marketing into your strategy, it is important to know where to start. Primarily, which community or influencers should you align your business and marketing with and which will have the most success or return on investment (ROI) for your business?

How to Identify Your Community

Identifying your community is the first step on your influencer marketing journey. Your ideal community should have the following components in order to generate success.

1)    Their Interests Should Closely Align with Your Product or Service

An effective community is one that will provide benefit to your marketing campaigns and whose interests closely align with your product or service.  As demonstrated in the makeup example, a more effective campaign will result from forming relationships with beauty bloggers and influencers whose knowledge of your products and the makeup industry as a whole will provide credibility to your campaign.

Having closely aligned interests and goals will ensure that you and your community stay on the same page and work together to increase the reach of your product or service.  Choosing a community that has misaligned goals will only lead to trouble and cause disconnect in your marketing message.

2)    Should Be Prominent in Areas You Want to Target

The right community should have a large reach in areas of the market you want to target.  For instance, if you are looking to market to men and women between the ages of 18-30, it is important to choose a community of influencers who have a lot of reach in that demographic.  This will ensure that your product or service is reaching the right people.

Before reaching out to specific community influencers, marketers need to make a firm decision on which audiences they want to target.  Reaching out to community members and influencers is counterproductive if you are not sure what your target audience will be.  This causes you to run the risk of marketing your product to the wrong audience and failing to realize the full extent and reward of your campaign.

Take the time to research your previous success and conduct some market research to see to which audience your product/service was most successful.  Doing your due diligence will ensure that when you reach out to your community you will create an effective and successful relationship.

3)    Should be Mutually Beneficial for Both Parties

Any good relationship should be mutually beneficial for both parties.  Working with influencers or a community should not solely be based on your ability to bring in more sales and revenue for your business. Simply focusing on your needs will only alienate your influencers and community who are speaking on your behalf and can effectively sour the relationship.  

When engaging a community for your marketing campaign, ensure that they will be receiving some benefit as well.  The phrase “what’s in it for me?” especially applies.

Providing discounts on products or services or promoting your community‘s or influencers’ social media pages and websites is a great way to say thank you to your community for their hard work and dedication to your company and brand.

Where to Look For Your Community

Online and in-person networking provides opportunities to meet new people.  Attending events in your industry or targeted to you audience, can expose you to people who are interested in your industry and could potentially work with you to help build your brand.

If you already have a community or influencer in mind, reaching out to them on their Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter page could be one way to engage them.  LinkedIn, especially, provides the ability to connect with like-minded professionals and allows you to leverage existing connections who might know the person you want to speak with and who can introduce you.

Whichever method you choose, reaching out to your ideal community and influencers will go a long way towards getting your products, services, and brand message to where it needs to be.

The Right Community Can Do Wonders for Your Marketing

Relying on the kindness of strangers to help you in your marketing efforts can pay off in more ways that you can imagine.  By engaging and forming relationships with your ideal community and influencers, you are able to introduce your brand to a larger, and more specialized market that will respond to your products and services.

When identifying your ideal community it is important that their interests and yours are closely aligned, the community should have a significant foothold in your target demographic in order to make the most impact, and creating a mutually beneficial relationship will ensure loyalty and success all around.

Courtney Rosebush, Content Contributor

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/courtneyrosebush

Twitter: https://twitter.com/cmrosebush?lang=en

 

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Defined as a person or group with the ability to influence the behaviour and opinions of others, influencers can make up a significant part of your marketing strategy by helping to market your products or services.

For example, if you are marketing makeup products to your customers, engaging the help of popular beauty bloggers who will talk about your product on their social media sites will help increase the reach of your brand resulting in a new customer base from the influencer’s online audience.

When deciding to adopt influencer marketing into your strategy, it is important to know where to start.  Primarily, which community or influencers should you align your business and marketing with and which will have the most success or return on investment (ROI) for your business?

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