Influential people used to become politicians, business people, and motivational public speakers, but in 2017, they can make money simply by posing in brand-specific clothing and posting pictures on social media for their followers.
Brands are taking advantage of this new-found power by employing influencers – people who can take a selfie and turn a brand into a statement – directly from social media. If you’re considering an influencer for your brand, we’ve broken it down into four steps, and it starts with your brand.
The first and most important step towards selecting your ideal influencer is defining your brand. Your brand personality is more than how you want your brand to appear to consumers, your actions, or your communications. It’s a feeling, and it comes through at every touch point with the brand. It’s the way your potential customers feel when they walk into your store, and when they walk out. It’s the feeling they get from wearing, eating, or using your products. When you’re scoping out potential influencers, look for someone who embodies that feeling and conveys it through their social media presence. Ideally, you’re searching for someone who embodies the brand itself in an authentic way, so understanding your own brand personality is essential.
Once you know how your current and potential customers feel about your brand, it’s time to think about who they are. Who are the people following your brand on social media and buying your products? You want to know about their likes, dislikes, attitudes, and any other element of their personalities you can use as part of a definition. When it comes to selecting a potential influencer for your brand, consider their online following. Before making a choice, think about how many followers they have, why those people are followers, and who they are. The ideal influencer is someone with a decent number of followers who lives within the demographic area your brand services. Amongst those people, look for someone whose following aligns well, and has a lot in common, with yours – that way, there’s a good chance your following will expand as a result of employing that person.
In order to choose an influencer with longevity and the ability to develop a loyal following longterm, you need a vision for the future of your brand. Consider your main target market and typical customer, and where they might be over the coming years. Are they still likely to be looking for the same kind of products five years from now? Are they likely to be interested in a different brand persona? How loyal are they?
Ideally, your influencer should also be adaptable to these future possibilities. Flexibility around brand products, personalities and followings would make them the best possible long-term investment, but at the same time, you shouldn’t be afraid to make a change if after time your chosen influencer is no longer the right choice. Moving with the times is best practice if you intend to stay afloat.
If you manage to find someone whose personality, following, and future outlook align with your brand, there’s only one thing left to consider: what is unique about that person? In other words, what is it that has the potential to keep them from going underwater in a saturated market? A successful influencer needs more than an abnormally large group of friends from high school who follow them on Instagram. Make sure they have something special that defines them before you enlist them to define your brand online.
For more insights on influencer marketing and social media, get in touch with us today.