Influencer Marketing: How To Develop Your Strategy
How do you form QUALITY partnerships with influencers to promote your products or services? This question has come up more and more as you converse with direct response marketers. It’s not so much WHY influencer marketing can be a powerful sales tactic in your business, or even HOW to find influencers.
It’s WHAT they need to do, to work with influencers that actually care about getting you ROI. Because let’s just address the elephant in the room – influencer marketing can be really successful but can also be a big, fat waste of time and money. (we will explain why and how to avoid this in a second).
It’s a weird marketing world. It sometimes feels like the wild west. you get it. This is why we know as well as anyone the bad reputation surrounding “Influencer Marketing”.
We see a lot of people are like, “We paid her $850 for one post and never heard from her again”, “He posted some generic video and we didn’t see a single sale from it”, or “She’s got a 200k followers and wants to charge $5,000 for one shoutout!”
It grinds their gears, we are sure yours too. Because you’re getting the shit end of the deal blowing time and money. And many savvy, business-minded influencers then get the distrust of business owners in return.
So how do you mitigate the roadblocks, time-sucks, and financial mistakes with influencer marketing?
Well, we don’t have the all-encompassing magic solution…
But we do have a few tips that will help you weed out the bad eggs and find someone who actually cares about delivering results for you as the client, and potentially partnering long-term so it’s a win/win for both of you.
*** NOTE: We do not have advice on what influencer networks or agencies to turn to when looking for the right people. This post is intended for those who may have found a few key influencers and want to ensure they are the right fit for the job.***
Ready? Let’s begin.
#1. Have a budget. It’s unrealistic to assume someone with a substantial following or great engagement will work for a free product (or even a small affiliate commission). The best way to get attention is to tell them you have an influencer budget and they’ve been identified as someone you’d love to have a working relationship with.
#2. Reach out to the influencer(s) through their DM’s or email, and express interest in a collaboration (using the verbiage from tip #1). If comfortable, tell them the type of budget you have. Influencers often get ‘hit up’ with brands that will ask us to post engaging, curated content that takes anywhere from 2-6 hours to create, for a measly $100. They’ll probably assume you’re one of them, so if you have a substantial number in mind, tell them!
*** Yes, We know it sucks to have to dangle the cash carrot to get attention, but that’s business and just the first step to truly vetting so stick with us…***
#3. This step is very important so you do not get burned!! Once interest is established on their end, ask them for the following screenshots:
- Reach in their stories or reels/content within the last week
- Most recent examples of link clicks (again, they can screenshot this) for the last three campaigns they’ve done
- Any examples of direct feedback from other brands on performance (give them a way to court you a bit, just like you are with them)
- What is their MAIN vessel for connecting their audience to brands (is it through stories? Reels or Tik Tok videos? Lives?)
- How will your direct link be communicated to their following (Link sticker in stories? Link in their profile? Link in the caption? Tagging of your brand?)
If they can’t answer every single one of these questions with ease, you have two problems on your hands:
#1. They aren’t the right person that knows how to deliver ROI for the work they do…
#2. Your budget is too low and may require a follow-up to directly ask for their rates so you can potentially meet them.
And don’t underestimate the micro-influencers (those with under 100k followers). Oftentimes their reach and engagement are better than those of larger followings due to:
- The likelihood of them growing completely organically.
- Niching down to a very specific and engaged audience.
Influencer marketing is a powerful marketing tool as long as you are smart and strategic! We hope you found this helpful