There was a time when big brand names battled one another for the prime commercial spots knowing that it was their opportunity to grab the attention of a huge audience. These days, brands aren’t just knocking on the doors of television stations but also putting their brand marketing efforts towards social media.
A survey conducted on Twitter showed that 49% of consumers had sought guidance from social media influencers in making a purchase. Furthermore, 20% went on to say that they were inspired to tweet their own product recommendations after an influencer they followed started raving about their finds on Twitter. And to the surprise of marketers, 40% of Twitter users admitted that they made a purchase after an influencer had tweeted about the product.
The impact that influencers have on their social media followers is undeniable. Large companies are knocking on the doors of celebrities hoping for some strategic product placement in their next post or a mention of their brand. Some brands have moved passed celebrities who are less accessible than influencers who also have an impressive following.
Brands, big and small, now also want a slice of the influencer pie. But as a small business, you wonder if you can compete or if there is an influencer who’ll want to collaborate with you despite your limited marketing budget.
Here are 3 steps to growing your small business by leveraging influencer marketing strategies:
1. Finding the right influencer for your business
Realistically speaking, your small business is not likely to get the attention of any celebrity or big social media influencer just yet. But don’t be discouraged. Influencers don’t always have the largest follower base nor do they need to have superstar status. Anyone who has the power to sway your target market is your influencer match.
There are 3 factors you should consider: relevance, reach, and resonance. Is the potential influencer sharing content that is relevant to your business? Do they have the potential to reach your target market based on their follower base? What is their level of impact with an audience that would be interested in your product and how frequently do they post?
Tweepsmap can help you analyze the influencers in your industry to determine if they are the right match for your brand. Tweepsmap can help you target an audience and influencers near you. This is particularly important if your small business is local and sells a product that isn’t shippable. For example, if your small business is a family-owned restaurant or if you are a small nail salon, then you wouldn’t exactly benefit from an influencer who is in another state or country.
2. Connect and engage
Once you’ve connected to your influencer prospects by following them, it’s time to start building a meaningful relationship by engaging. Start with liking their Tweets, commenting on their content, or tagging them in one of your own Tweets.
Once you’ve built rapport, send a Tweet that mentions them directly. Offer them something of value like a freebie if they drop by your shop. You can even offer to send them a sample. Keep the conversation going and you’ll soon find a way to benefit each other. One of the most effective was an influencer can promote your business is through the Tweepsmap DM Campaign tool, where they can send targeted DMs to a segment of their followers based on location, age, professions and more. This obviously requires deep engagement between you and the influencer.
3. Track your success
Once activated, you’ll notice the impact of influencer marketing by a growth in your followers, more mentions of your business, and more content engagement such as likes and retweets. You’ll want to track your success by checking the analytics. Use a tool like Tweepsmap that can help you track those metrics and make sense of the data.
Monitoring your progress is essential to creating future influencer marketing strategies. Remember that there is more to success than growth in followers. Engagement is the bigger indicator of success. With more people talking about your business, you are guaranteed more sales.
It may be challenging to determine which results are thanks to influencer marketing vs. your own efforts. However, it certainly couldn’t hurt your brand to have an industry influencer to leverage with whom you’ve made a meaningful connection.