It is common knowledge that leveraging influencers can help drive brand awareness and reach a wider audience. But the process of selecting the ‘right’ influencer is not an easy task.
Amongst the clutter and noise on social media, it is becoming increasing difficult to recognise credible influencers who can truly add value to a business. And while influencer marketing can be a great strategy to strengthen a brands online presence, when done incorrectly it can also have detrimental effects.
So, before diving into the lucrative world of #sponsored posts, here is a 3-step guide that can help ease the process.
1 – Recognise the different types of influencers available
The internet is home to a plethora of social media superstars. Before agreeing to work with any of them, take the time to understand the different types of influencers available.
Typically, influencers are categorised based on the number of followers they have.
Mega-influencers: 1M+ Followers
Kylie Jenner, Kim Kardashian, Selena Gomez, are all examples of mega-influencers. They are established celebrities who can help your brand gain recognition on a global scale. Of course, they demand a hefty fee, with some charging upwards of £800,000 per sponsored post.
Macro-influencers: 100K – 1M Followers
Usually macro-influencers are those that gained recognition through the internet itself. Such as vloggers and bloggers who rose to fame by building a follower base over time. Similar to mega-influencers, they can be very expensive to work with. But for businesses with a substantial marketing budget this is an effective way to increase brand awareness to a mass market FAST.
Micro-influencers: 1K – 100K Followers
A micro-influencer as opposed to others has a significantly lower number of followers. Typically, they focus on a specific niche and so are more suited for brands that want to target a certain type of customer. Unlike the other two, micro-influencers charge considerably less and maintain an extremely loyal fan base.
Nano-influencers: Less than 1K Followers
They are comparable to a start-up business. This type of influencer tends to have very little to no experience of working with brands. Despite having a small audience, nano-influencers attract a high engagement rate as they are most relatable for consumers. More often than not, they will accept products in return for social media coverage.
2 – Check for fake followers
As influencers battle for the social media spotlight, some can be tempted into buying fake followers. This black hat tactic can instantly grow an influencers audience from a few to thousands.
This is a huge problem on Instagram, where advertisement is becoming more and more important. Users can even buy interactions such as likes and comments from fake profiles to give a false impression of high engagement.
Collaborating with influencers whose followers and engagement is not genuine is not only a waste of time but can essentially be detrimental to a brands integrity. Fortunately, there are several online tools and programs available for detecting fakes.
3 – Identify any risks and red flags
Followers and engagement play a significant part when identifying the most appropriate influencers for a campaign. But, what’s equally important is reviewing the influencers social media channels to check for any red flags.
In today’s media landscape, nothing is ever private, especially on the internet! This is especially true for influencers who are constantly under the social media microscope. From inappropriate personal thoughts to controversial opinions and pictures, everything is visible.
So, before approaching an influencer, it is absolutely vital to make sure that ALL of their social media channels are thoroughly reviewed, and any risks are immediately identified.
Ultimately, influencers have the power to make or break a brands reputation. Finding the right person is less about who’s trending or has the highest number of followers and more about finding someone who represents your brands personality and values.
Influencers are certified social media butterflies and experts in creating engaging content who can help bridge the gap between a brand and its target customers. Working with them is an effective method to drive awareness.
If you are thinking of switching from traditional advertising to influencer collaborations remember to do the leg work and to make the choices that will deliver the value you are expecting.