Monday, December 4, 2017

Creating Content for Influencer Marketing

If you've been involved in your organization's marketing efforts for long, you know by now that "If you build it, they will come" works better for baseball movies than it does for self-promotion or brand awareness. Creating content for your own website or social media pages is a must, but it isn't the whole story. If you want your target market to latch onto that content as quickly and as massively as possible, you need to get the attention of the movers and shakers that these people follow, listen to and obey. You can do this by aiming your content directly at those movers and shakers through a strategy called influencer marketing.

What (or Who) Is a Key Influencer?

Key influencers have been with us since as long as there have been human beings to influence, from gurus and great thinkers of the past to modern-day celebrities such as Dr. Oz and Oprah. (Yeah, we've come a long way.) As social media has blossomed on the Internet in the past decade, a new medium of influence has come into being -- and this medium has turned into a powerful soapbox for both bona-fide celebrities and for countless other individuals who have built up a great deal of authority and sway among their followings. These folks are key influencers. If they recommend a course of action, plug a product or service, or profess their love of a particular brand, their followers listen. some of them will take those recommendations to heart and become loyal customers. They may even evolve into key influencers in their own right, spreading the word about their favorite products and companies.

Wouldn't you love to have some influence over the influencers? Well, you can -- if you aim the right content in the right directions.

Putting Those Eyes on You

The first thing you have to is figure out which key influencers your perfect clientele is paying attention to, and which websites and social media channels they're frequenting. LinkedIn Groups, for instance, is a natural home base for pundits in the B2B realm, whereas Facebook might be more likely to attract the B2C crowd. (You can then drill down into into key demographics; for instance, teens seem to have a special love for Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram.) Once you've identified which channels attract the lion's share of your target market, you can figure out which of those users are getting the most views and seem to have the most influence here your particular industry, products or services are concerned.

Now it's time to catch those key influencers' eyes. You might achieve this by:

  • Making endorsements or other positive statements about the key influencers in question, complete with links to their blogs, websites or social media channels
  • Contacting the key influencers and offering them an opportunity to contribute a guest article or video to your website
  • Joining relevant conversations on your key influencers' social media channels so your brand has a clear and active presence there
  • Making helpful, insightful comments on key influencers' blogs or other online articles
  • Quoting their comments in your website and social media content

Influencer marketing isn't a magic wand, and it needs to be employed with a certain amount of subtlety if you want eyes on you instead of just eye-rolling. But if you create high-quality content aimed at just the right people, and then bring that content to where those people live, you'll soon be wielding some influence of your own.