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Guide to Influencer Marketing

5 things you need to know before hiring an influencer

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If you're thinking of working with an influencer as part of your marketing strategy, make sure you read this first. We'll tell you everything you need to consider before making a decision.

Social media influencers are people who have built up large followings on one or more social media platforms. And because they have such large followings, businesses often turn to them for help with promoting their products and services. But before you hire an influencer, there are a few things you need to know.

What is an influencer, and what are they used for?

An influencer is a person who has a large following on one or more social media platforms. They are often hired to help promote products and services, as their followers are likely to trust their opinion. Influencers can also be content creators, and can be found on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, and even through channels such as bloggers and streaming channels such as Twitch.

What should you consider before hiring an influencer?

Before hiring an influencer, make sure your product or service is proven in the market. If you are a company with few customers or introducing a new product to the market, instead of hiring an influencer, consider collecting testimonials, reviews, and case studies. Turn these case studies into website content. This will help so that when influencers drive people to your business or website, you can display the testimonials and case studies front and center on your website.

It’s also important that you have your sales process down. You do not want to be figuring out your sales process when customers come to you, wanting your product. For example, if you’re in the home services industry, such as HVAC or flooring, make sure you have a system to schedule appointments. If you are selling physical products or fashion, test your checkout process. Make sure you have all your costs figured out, including boxes, shipping, and taxes. If you have an online course, make sure your web server can handle the influx of new customers.

Along with your sales process, it’s also important that you make sure you have the right price. Make sure to do market research on what users are willing or expecting to spend.

And finally, test your website. Make sure your site loads quickly. Test the checkout process, test lead generation forms, and even test the contact forms.

The best marketing campaign can send you people all day – make sure your price, process, or website isn’t preventing visitors from converting into customers.

How do you find the right influencer for your business?

You have customers, and collected reviews, testimonials, or case studies and placed them prominently on your site. You have completed a website audit and made sure the visitors can easily convert into customers. You’re ready to hire an influencer.

There are many services out there, such as GRIN, that has tools to help find influencers. Providers such as Grin start at $30k/year just to use their full platform. One recommendation is to simply seek out influencers on your own, especially if you just want to test to see if influencer marketing is a good marketing fit for your product or service.

The easiest way to find influencers is to jump on social media. For Instagram, here’s a quick way to find influencers:

Check Most Popular Posts for Specific Hashtags

One of the easiest ways to find influencers on Instagram is by using hashtags. Hashtags categorize posts and stories so you can easily discover content that relates to what you’re looking for. If you’re having trouble thinking of which hashtags to use, consider your industry or niche and look for trending hashtags. There are even websites, like All-hashtag.com, where you can search for popular hashtags all in one place!

To find Instagram influencers for your brand, first search relevant hashtags and look at the Top posts. Most of the time, brands or influencers will be featured here. By scrolling through an influencer’s profile, you can get a sense of their collaborations, engagement rates and if they are a good image for your brand. When you’ve found someone who seems like a good fit, reach out to them via private message and clearly state your proposal.

Request an email before sharing any delicate information about your collaboration. It’s more professional than Instagram, and you can use it for other marketing projects or PR campaigns in the future. You never know what opportunities will come up.

Look at Your Brand’s Followers

The people who follow your brand are obviously interested in it. At some point, they liked something about the brand, which means you’re doing something right. You should take advantage of this situation by looking for Instagram influencers on the list of people who followed you. Browse each influencer’s profile to see what kind of content they share, how often they post, their engagement rates, and how they communicate with their audience through comments (i.e., is it offensive or safe?)

The number of followers is another vital metric. Instagram influencers are grouped together based on the size of their followings:

  • Mega-influencers – more than 1 million followers.
  • Macro-influencers – influencers with between 100,000 and 1 million followers.
  • Micro-influencers – between 1,000 and 100,000 followers.
  • Nano-influencers – someone with fewer than 1,000 followers who has great influence over a small market.

Then make a list with all the data you collected and start to contact them.

Monitor Brand Mentions to Find Top Fans

There are some great tools out there that can help you find people who have mentioned your brand on Instagram, even if they haven’t tagged you in their posts. These tools can be really useful for finding hidden gems – posts that mention your brand but aren’t easy to find because they don’t include a tag.

The Top Fans section of the tool is where you can find a list of people categorized by their number of followers and mentions. This feature makes it easy to connect with your most engaged fans.

By monitoring your brand’s mentions and hashtags, you are opening up a direct dialogue with potential influencers. Plus, they’ve already taken the first step by mentioning you- so half the work is already done!

Search Instagram Influencers on the Explore Page

The Explore page on Instagram is not only helpful for finding similar accounts to follow, but also for identifying potential brand collaborations.

Instagram’s algorithm shows you content on the Explore page that it thinks you’ll be interested in based on your past interactions. This is different for every person, meaning that each person sees a unique version of this page.

If you come across accounts while scrolling that would be a good match for your brand, add their details to your list so you can reach out to them as part of your Instagram influencer marketing campaigns or social selling projects.

Conduct a Search on Google

Search engines are becoming more and more intelligent each day, and can now offer a few directions on how to find Instagram influencers. Just search “top Instagram influencer” in the country you want or specify the niche, then look through the results. There are plenty of websites that collect influencers or have databases with lists of them.

Google is a great way to find prospects for influencer relationships. Keep an open mind while exploring – you never know where the best opportunities will come from.

When conducting a search for potential influencers, be sure to set some ground rules and expectations; build a spreadsheet to log all data points related to each social media profile found during your research process. After filtering out those that won’t work for your current campaign, save the rest of the names/data for future reference (so you don’t have to start from scratch next time!). Add labels or tags beside each name denoting why they were filtered out, this will help narrow down your focus later on when trying again with different parameters.

Stay updated on social media movements and how they’re faring. Manage social media platforms and search for Instagram influencers with reliable engagement (no purchased followers and posts without any comments, for example). Don’t hesitate to ask prospective influencers more questions about their brand–if they’re authentic, they’ll have no problem sharing data or metrics from an Instagram analytics tool.

How much should you pay an influencer to promote your business?

Before we get into how much to pay – let’s discuss how many should you budget for? Dwayne Waite, Jr, who leads the influencer marketing, advertising, and event efforts for Schell Games, recommends working with 30-50 smaller influencers, such as micro influencers (1k – 100k followers). He finds that it’s much more effective, and you can stretch your dollar even further, when working with smaller influencers rather than spending all your influencer marketing budget on a Mega influencer.

How much does an influencer cost per post?

Here is the average cost of an influencer post (source: Grin, The State of Influencer Marketing, 2022)

  • Instagram – $10 per post per 1,000 followers
  • Facebook – $25 per post per 1,000 followers
  • YouTube – $20 per video per 1,000 followers
  • Twitter – $2 per post per 1,000 followers
  • LinkedIn – $30 per post per 1,000 followers
  • TikTok – $10 per post per 1,000 followers
  • Twitch – $250 per month per 100 subscribers (this is only for Twitch partners)
  • Pinterest – $500 per sponsored pin per million views

What is product gifting/seeding in influencer marketing?

Paying influencers isn’t your only option. You can try product gifting/seeding. Product gifting, or seeding, is a technique used in marketing where a company provides products or samples to social media influencers with the hope that they will promote the product on their channels.

This type of marketing can be very effective, as the influencers have already built trust with their followers. When they promote a product, their followers are more likely to trust their opinion and consider purchasing the product.

There are a few things to keep in mind when using product gifting/seeding as part of your marketing strategy. First, make sure you are providing products that the influencers will actually use and enjoy. If they don’t like the product, they won’t be likely to promote it.

Second, be sure to track the results of your campaign. This will help you determine whether or not the campaign was successful and whether or not you should continue allocating resources to it.

Finally, be prepared to pay for sponsored posts if the campaign is successful. As mentioned earlier, paying influencers can be quite expensive, but it may be worth it if the campaign is successful.

How do you track the ROI of your influencer marketing campaigns?

Engagement Rate

Engagement rate is a metric that is used to measure the success of an influencer marketing campaign. It is calculated by dividing the number of interactions (likes, comments, shares, etc.) by the number of impressions (the number of times the post was seen).

This metric can be used to determine whether or not a campaign was successful and whether or not it is worth continuing to invest in.

Shares and Impressions

Shares are the number of times a post is shared on social media. Impressions are the number of times a post is seen.

Website/Store Analytics

Tracking the number of website visits or store visits is a valuable way to measure the success of an influencer marketing campaign. This data can help you determine whether or not the campaign was successful and whether or not you should continue allocating resources to it.

Earned Media Value (EMV)

Earned media value is a way to determine the monetary worth of all exposure your company gains from third-party sites or social media content. This metric quantifies the engagement your company has won through these channels.

Revenue and Sales (affiliate links)

You can give links and coupon codes to influencers to track how many sales they generate when sending people to your site. Higgens Media has a dashboard for generating unique affiliate codes to track link engagement from your influencers.

Brand Lift Surveys

A brand lift survey is a way to determine the impact of an influencer marketing campaign on a company’s brand. This type of survey asks respondents about their awareness and perceptions of the company before and after the campaign. This data can help companies measure the success of their campaigns and determine whether or not they should continue allocating resources to them.

Social Listening

Social listening is the process of monitoring social media channels for mentions of your company or specific keywords. This can help you track the success of your influencer marketing campaigns, as well as get feedback from customers. There are a few tools that can help you with social listening. Hootsuite is one of the most popular social media management tools and it offers a built-in social listening tool.

If you’re looking for help tracking the ROI of your influencer marketing campaigns, or if you need a website that is ready to handle a successful campaign, Higgens Media can assist. We have years of experience in both digital and traditional marketing and we know how to make sure your campaigns are successful. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you drive sales with effective marketing campaigns.

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