This article is contributed by Mr. Sumit Gupta, Founder Whizard API and The Viral Pitch.
Influencer marketing as a new-age marketing strategy has gained prominence over the period of time. Influencers are considered a beneficial medium that helps boost traffic generation in today’s times. However, what is often goes unnoticed is that not all are relevant or impactful for your marketing strategy!
Factors to be kept into consideration before associating with an influencer
For a brand, the follower base of an influencer is only the tip of the iceberg. It is imperative that brands know the influencer in-depth before planning to associate with them. It is trust that forms the foundation for any association. Since brands will be collaborating with them for their brand communication; it is essential that they know the influencer well so that they can trust them with their campaigns.
Hence, a brand should keep various aspects into consideration before finalizing on the influencer for collaboration:
Knowing the influencer’s follower base
Every influencer boasts of a strong and diverse follower base. However, it is important that you analyze the influencer’s target audience first since you will be tapping them via your campaign. Apart from the influencer's content feed and storytelling format, followers’ insights should also be taken into consideration. Their age, preferences, interests, etc. are of prime importance when you are conceptualizing your campaign and choosing the influencer.
Gauging engagement rate and relationship with the audience
It is advised that you do not finalize the influencer basis their face value. Other factors such as their engagement rate and their relationship with their audiences are equally important. The influencer's personal connection and rapport with their followers are relevant points and should be kept in mind while selecting the influencer for your brand campaign.
Ensuring the values and core beliefs are aligned
Your association and campaign will reap benefits only when your beliefs will be in sync with those of the influencer you are opting for. The collaboration will turn out to be advantageous and authentic if they believe in your brand and its core ethos. Hence, you should choose the one where this coordination and alignment are either present or can be worked out in the future post discussions.
Numbers do count
Indeed your decision should not rely only on numbers but the fact of the matter is that they do count! The amount of the follower base and the audience composition hold relevance before zeroing down on the influencer. The authenticity of the influencer is also one of the major factors to be considered while selecting the influencer for your brand communication. Hence, it is important that you look out for fake followers specifically.
Analyzing past associations
It’s always advised to do a thorough check of the influencer’s brand value and their past associations. The kind of collaborations they had, the brands that they partnered with, the reach, engagement, and clicks garnered, that is the campaign success are important points to be kept into consideration. If the influencer does not meet these criteria, then probably they aren't the right fit for your brand and your campaign!
Associations are best formed when there is a personal connection. Hence, apart from communicating via texts or DMs, set up a meeting where you can interact and get to know each other well. This informal interaction will give you an idea about the persona and personality of the influencer, their ethics, morals, ideology, etc., and will help you in eventually building a fruitful relationship.
Influencer marketing is one of the effective ways to expand your social media presence. However, a one size fits all approach won’t work. For every communication, a unique campaign and associations with diverse influencers would be required. Content relevance, reach of the influencer as well as resonance (potential level of engagement the influencer can build with the audience relevant for your brand) should ideally be considered before you narrow down on the choice of the influencer for your brand campaign!