So you’ve filled out your campaign template and now it is time to match with influencers!
If you’re on our Hey Influencers platform, this step not only involves scrolling through your ‘hey’ feed (influencers who want to work with you) but also the ability to actively ‘find’ and reach out to influencers. Before you dive right into it, you might be stuck on which influencers to work with.
Don’t worry, in this article we’ll go through each of the following steps:
Define your ideal customer
Evaluate whether the influencer is a good match
Match with your targets!
STEP 1: Define Your Ideal Customer By Creating Customer Personas
Successful influencer marketing, just like any good marketing, first begins with understanding who you’re marketing to, that is, who your target audience is. We want to find and collaborate with influencers who can speak to your target audience on your brand’s behalf. So before you can find the right influencers for your brand, you first need to understand who your target audience or ideal customer is.
1. A. How to Identify Your Target Audience
One way to identify your target audience and their wants and needs is by creating customer personas. A customer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.
When creating your customer personas, consider:
The more detailed you are, the better.
Your customer personas will help you determine where to focus your time to attract the most valuable customers to your business. In addition, they’ll help you understand what to look for in an influencer and their audience, which we will explore further in the next couple of lessons.
You can either use a persona card or Hubspot’s persona templates to start creating your customer personas. Try to create at least one core customer persona before moving onto the next lesson but three would be great. Go into as much detail as you can with these.
STEP 2: Decide which influencers are right for your brand
Every successful influencer campaign starts with selecting the right influencers and the results of your influencer marketing campaign will depend significantly upon your influencer selection. But what exactly constitutes the ‘right’ influencer for your brand?
Remember not to confuse an influencer’s audience as having the same attributes as the influencer themselves. e.g. just because your influencer is a 30 year old male from London does not necessarily mean his audience will be 30 year old males from London. Depending on his content he may have a larger female following, they could be a lot younger than him and because he speaks English his audience could be based predominantly in the US for example.
We recommend you perform an analysis of
A. The influencer’s ‘influence’
B. The influencer’s audience.
We’ll step through the formulas for each.
2. A. Evaluate their influence by using this formula
Instead of simply looking at followers, a better equation for brands to consider is the 3 R’s formula.The 3 R’s formula is the way that I go about calculating influence.
Reach refers to both the influencer’s social following as well as the number of views they get on a post. In this formula, reach is the easiest to quantify as it’s a quantitative figure.
Relevancy is a little harder to calculate, as it’s a qualitative figure and contributes to an influencer’s alignment with your brand. Take into account the influencer’s niche, including their main areas of expertise, interests, skills and hobbies that they’re actively posting about.
Think back to your buyer personas here and analyse whether the influencer shares similar interests to your brand and your consumers. As well as whether they’d be a good fit for your brand in terms of their personality, values, tone of voice and aesthetic. By understanding this, you will be able to leverage influencers to create a much deeper connection with their followers.
And finally ‘relationship’ in this formula, refers to their relationship the influencer has with their audience. This is their form of brand affinity, which is directly related to their credibility, authenticity and engagement with their audience. You can tell a lot about the relationships an influencer has based on their post engagement. And this isn’t only in terms of likes. Ask..
Does their audience respond, comment or share their content frequently?
Does the influencer respond to their audience aka is there two-way conversation occurring?
Does their audience ask for the influencer’s advice and recommendations?
You can also compare the amount of engagement that the influencer receives on both their normal, organic posts vs their sponsored posts, as engagement rates can sometimes drop significantly when influencers post sponsored content. This might indicate a lack of authenticity in their branded content or maybe even a weaker relationship with their audience. The very, very best influencers have an almost cult-like following that hang on their every word and both actively seek out and take their recommendations.
2. B. Perform an audience analysis on the influencer
An audience analysis will allow you to identify whether an influencer’s audience is a good fit with what we know about our target audience, not just the influencer themselves. Outside of audience similarity there are a large number of other factors we can consider when identifying an influencer for a campaign.
Areas to look at are:
Reach and relationship
Credibility and expertise
Content and portfolio
When conducting the analysis, you can constantly return to the following questions when considering if an influencer is right for your campaign:
Do they have a large, engaged social media following?
Do they have credibility or an expert status in a specific subject area? Have they built a brand around their personality, interests, hobbies or skills?
Is their content appealing, does it stand out? Is their content on brand for you (aka does it share a similar aesthetic with your brand? Are their followers actively engaged with their content?
Do they feature brands in their content? Have their sponsored posts received as much engagement as their regular posts?
Are they persuasive? Do they have the ability to encourage their followers to take certain actions?
Do they have a strong relationship with their audience? Are they able to speak to them in a language they trust and understand?
A tip here is to not get distracted by an influencer’s large following rather than understanding whether the influencer and their audience are a good fit for your brand. The truth is, that while an influencer’s reach is important, a large following is useless if the influencer is not aligned with your brand.
Now that you have some expert tools under your belt, go ahead and start to ‘hey’ influencers! Or if you’re not on our platform yet, apply for a free trial here.