How To Connect With Digital Influencers and Super Charge Your Brand

Word of mouth has been shown to have a big influence on purchasing decisions. In fact, 50 percent of the time, buyers base their purchases on the recommendations they receive from someone they trust.

So how can brands leverage digital influencers for greater visibility and customer engagement?

How to Find Digital Influencers

influencer marketingThe first step to working with digital influencers is finding the actual people with whom to engage. There are several tools you could use to find the most suitable influencers for your brand:

Followerwonk: This Twitter Analytics tool lets you search individuals’ bios on Twitter, undertake an analysis of their account and determine who your competitors’ followers are so you can decide the influencers that might have the biggest impact on your brand.

BuzzSumo: This tool lets you search for the most powerful influencers in any niche and location. Searches can be done based on reach, engagement, authority and influence.

Little Bird: With this tool, you can identify influencers who are already validated by their online connections. Influencers can be identified in any given topic and can be found through the customers and competitors with whom you are connected.

When determining who the right match is for your influencer marketing campaign, consider the following:

Relevance: The right influencer should be one that is sharing content and building a following in a niche that is relevant to your business.

Reach:  Reach pertains to the number of consumers in your influencers’ circle that you can potentially reach that would be valuable to your business.

Resonance: This takes into consideration the extent to which the influencer can create meaningful engagement with an audience that is relevant, to bring value to your brand.

How to Connect With Digital Influencers

In your search for suitable influencers, you will come across different types of individuals. Each of these will need to be approached differently so you can truly realise your campaign goals.

Social media influencer:

This type of influencer has thousands of followers on key social networks and their posts receive a high level of engagement. They ‘like’ brands, mention, repin, tweet and tag them.

Tips for connecting with the social media influencer

  • Engage with their content across their different social media profiles. This includes liking their posts, commenting, retweeting, adding them to your favourites or repinning their pins.
  • Ask them to participate in chats or contests that you host whether these are offline or online. Give them an opportunity to take the limelight for example by becoming a co-host or a guest speaker at an offline or online event.
  • Incentivise them so they can have a taste of your brand. For example, give them free products to review or allow them to enjoy generous discounts. This gives them something interesting to talk to their online community about.

influencer marketingThe celebrity blogger:

This type of influencer has a popular blog that attracts hundreds of thousands of unique visitors each month. What this influencer brings to the table is a wide network of media contacts, expertise in brand partnership, a wildly solid content strategy and an active audience base.

Tips for connecting with celebrity bloggers

  • Become an active commenter of their blog posts and share their content widely with your own network. Your commenting should be genuinely focused on driving discourse as opposed to being promotional. The more meaningful your engagement with their content the more the blog owner will see you as a valuable potential partner.
  • Bring bloggers together by hosting a meetup, conference or even an online contest. Celebrity bloggers are always on the lookout for branded partnership opportunities and creating such a platform can strengthen your own brand’s relationship with them.
  • Top bloggers frequently host giveaways as a way of encouraging their followers to share their content. Leverage such opportunities by asking popular bloggers to partner with you for their giveaways—this is an excellent way to gain visibility for your brand even if you have to give some products or service for free.
  • Offer them your product and ask them to review it. Admittedly, top bloggers get many review requests so you really want to position your own request in a way that makes your product unique, irresistible and relevant.

Top forum influencers:

Niche forums are increasingly becoming popular platforms for likeminded people to get together and discuss about issues that interest them. Forum participants are often up to date with what’s happening in their particular niche and the most active ones are leaders who have mastered the power of persuasion.

Tips for connecting with forum commentators 

  • Get their attention by participating in discussions they are active in. Comment on their posts and ask them engaging questions.
  • Once you have built rapport, ask them to participate in important milestones such as a product launch. The forum influencer is especially good at creating buzz around a product among their community.

digital influencersMedia Personalities:

Connecting with with a well-known media personality can significantly boost your brand’s visibility. This type of influencer is often inundated with pitches requesting brand coverage so you want to ensure that yours is absolutely unique to give them a reason to want to work with you.

Tips for connecting with media influencers

  • Check out their public profile on places such as social media platforms or blogs to find out how they prefer to be contacted, the guidelines for submitting a pitch and the kind of partnerships they are looking for.
  • Engage with them online on their social media pages or on their blog/website if possible. This will help build rapport.
  • When you get around to pitching your story, find out the kind of story they have already covered to ensure the angle of your story is unique and relevant. Your pitch should show the journalist how your product or service will be valuable to their audience.

It goes without saying that leveraging the power yielded by digital influencers can help to rejuvenate your brand by making it more visible to those who matter the most… your target audience.

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