With the increasing competition, it has become difficult for businesses to attract the attention of potential customers. This is why brands big and small alike are evolving influencer marketing to break through the noise of advertising. In fact, according to the report Business Insiderbased on Mediakix data, companies are poised to invest $ 15 billion in influencer marketing by 2022 because they estimate that for every dollar spent on influencer marketing, on average, they generate $ 6,5 in revenue from effective promotion through opinion makers. Moreover, experts predictthat the size of the influencer marketing market will grow by an average of 30,6% to reach $ 26,4 billion by 2025. It makes sense to actively develop the KOL partner network in order to stand out in the competitive market.
But how to choose your own opinion maker from the myriad of niche influencers and bloggers with varying follower sizes - from 1000 to several million. Should we focus on quantitative indicators? What will work and what will not? Collaborating with which people will give you a real effect?
Influencers: This category includes those opinion makers or bloggers who have over 100 active social media followers or readers on their websites or blogs. They are familiar with their niche and are widely known for their large audience reach. For example, if your online sales do not matter what, you can search for influencers or bloggers who have in-depth knowledge of the consumption of goods similar to your product. By partnering with such influencers, you can easily build the trust of your potential customers, which in turn will improve your sales and profits.
Micro influencers: This category includes those influencers who have between 10 and 50 followers. Although their audience reach is smaller than that of influencers, they are popular for their vast knowledge and honest reviews. For example, if you sell cosmetics online, you can search for bloggers who have done an in-depth review of cosmetics or beauty products on their social channels or websites. Once you're done looking for future influencers for your brand, invite them to use your beauty products and provide compelling testimonials to drive potential customers to your store.
Nano influencers: This category includes those influencers with 1000-10000 followers. Partnering with them can not only speed up your likes, comments and promotions on social media, but also increase your website traffic, sales, leads and conversions. For example, if you sell clothes online, you might find local stylists who have previously collaborated with other brands. This way, you can increase your brand presence and take your sales to the next level.
Tips on How to Find the Best Opinion Maker for You
Depending on your tasks and the characteristics of the advertised product, we must and select the appropriate KOL, while the number of subscribers will not always be a key factor in choosing for you. The quality of the purchased audience and the degree of its involvement are much more important. For example, if we are promoting a conditional Rolls-Royce through an opinion maker, whose account has only 1000 subscribers, but almost all of them are potential customers, we will not need more. Conversely, you can hire a blogger with 15 million subscribers who will never be able to afford a Rolls-Royce even up close. The numbers in your report will be convincing, but the result is definitely zero.
The trend of influencer marketing is moving from quantity to quality and focusing on sincerity. Those simple solutions that worked 5-6 years ago, when it was possible to place one advertising post from a millionaire influencer and your product was dismantled like hot cakes, have almost lost their effectiveness. The audience is tired of the dominance of commercial posts, outright advertising and imposing - everyone is waiting for the honest stories of those whom they trust and whose lifestyle they follow. In this regard, influencer marketing has changed its trajectory towards the formation of the KOL network, including micro- and nano-influencers, who are building the most effective, personal and trusting relationships with high audience involvement with their small local subscribers.
We buy quality, not quantity. Quality in our case is the degree of trust and involvement. So, where do you start to find those who are right for you among the huge variety?
If you are going to find the perfect influencer, you first need to define the target audience you want to reach and develop avatars (detailed profiles with deep descriptions of personal portraits). The same principle of building archetypal models applies to influencers through whom you will reach your potential audience. We need influencers with a philosophy, values and lifestyle that are close to us, since they concentrate around themselves an audience with the necessary profile.
Search for influencers
Now for the fun part: finding influencers that match your designed avatars. How and where to find potential opinion leaders who fit the archetypal models we have developed?
You can significantly narrow your search, for example, on Instagram, using several basic methods. The easiest and fastest is using directories and specialized services such as GetBlogger. But with this seemingly simple method, you can face an overpriced and winding up subscribers, likes and comments from professional recommenders. Therefore, it makes sense to spend more time and effort to independently find influencers to whom you can entrust an important task.
Another quick option is to follow the lead of the competition. Someone likes to work with conditionally verified sources, carefully monitoring all the activities of direct competitors - wherever they go, we go there too. This is, of course, an option to make your search easier, but it's important to make sure your competitors aren't wrong. In general, if you do decide to work with competitors' influencers, don't do it right away. You can take note of it and pause so that for the audience of the blogger you have chosen, his advertising activity on your topic does not become too obvious, intrusive and, as a result, less effective for you.
If you are looking for influencers yourself, you will be helped by: thematic groups, descriptions (social status, profession) and hashtags, subscriptions (niche influencers themselves, as a rule, subscribe to colleagues with similar topics), geolocation by places and events where your the audience and agents of influence close to it. Of course, if you want to find relevant opinion makers, you will have to take the time to research their profile. As a rule, in small accounts with an active audience, the work is much more effective. Building your own "army" of influencers is not an easy task, but definitely worth your time and effort.
Before you look at follower count, website traffic, or other important static metrics for your preselected influencers, it's important to examine the content they publish and determine how well it fits your brand perfectly. Check out some of their recently published posts or check out the archived section on the site to get an idea of what audience they are targeting. A common theme alone may not be enough. Just because a blogger posts makeup tutorials on their social media or websites doesn't make it inherently suitable for your cosmetic brand. Therefore, it is wise to look for influential people who have not only a topic that is close to you, but also a similar audience that you plan to target.
Engagement is a vital factor that you should consider before partnering with an influencer, as it is an indicator of how their content is affecting the audience. Analyze the mechanisms of influence that are used by the personalities you have found. How do they use the content? Are their posts convincing? Mostly spam? - Well, I do not. Minimum likes? - Doesn't fit. Or hundreds of real comments from an engaged audience? Your influencers must not only engage their audience well, but also target the triggers that lead people to take certain actions. Take a close look at the number of likes, video views, comments, shares, and other engagement metrics. For example, when checking Google Analytics, it is advisable to look at metrics such as bounce rate, percentage of new visitors versus returning visitors, average session duration, etc. Taking these metrics into account when looking for an influencer will surely help you.
Another important factor that you should keep in mind when looking for opinion makers for your brand is authenticity. It is generally believed that influencers with a lower ratio of sponsored posts are more reliable and trustworthy than those with a high ratio of sponsored content. Blogs or stories that genuinely use or mention a product, service, or brand are considered more reliable than direct stories that talk about products. In addition, it is important to verify that the number of likes, comments and shares appearing in the stories of influencers or bloggers is genuine and not generated by bots or some kind of software.
Take advantage of influencer marketing by partnering with the right person. Take a close look at the content and audience engagement of the influencer you want to trust. This is the key to your marketing heart!