by Diedra Taylor
The great thing about influencers is that they are organic endorsements for your brand, that is, they choose to work with you because they believe in what you’re doing. Influencers can draw larger audiences to your website and social media feeds, potentially increasing conversions. But, because influencers are not paid to promote you, how can you show them that your message is worth paying attention to? Here are the three tips your business needs to attract influencers.
1. Be authentic.
Before you start looking for influencers, you ideally have already spent time building an online brand for yourself. That means you post regularly on the platform where you hope to gain reach, either your blog or a particular social media platform , or a combination of the two if you use social media to promote your blog. The best way to build your presence is to offer your authentic views, injected with your individual personality.
You may have a business persona that is more subdued than the “you” you show to closer friends and family, and you certainly should be professional online. But people are more likely to listen to someone who sounds like a real person rather than an anonymous voice of a business. If people can’t tell what you and your brand stand for, they can’t tell if they are a part of your community.
What does community have to do with influencers? The most important step to connecting with an influencer is connecting with the right one. And that means finding someone who appeals to your targeted niche, not someone with the widest reach. Remember, wide reach is not the same as heavy influence.
2. Engage smartly.
Once you know who you are trying to reach out to, there are a few best practice guidelines for making the right impression. First, you don’t want to seem desperate to gain their attention—i.e. don’t stalk them on Twitter. Instead, take some time to read the kinds of messages they are currently posting without trying to comment or get noticed. Pay attention to what their current projects are.
Second, do not start liking, sharing, retweeting, or responding to every post they put up. Your goal is to make them aware that you see what they are doing, but you should appear to be responding in an intelligent manner. Rather than filling their feeds with your name, choose the messages that resonate the most with you, and provide a thoughtful response to just those few.
Third, be consistent in your efforts. Continue to be an intelligent voice in your target influencer’s community. By doing this, you carve out a place as a peer, not someone tagging along on their coattails.
3. Show what you have to offer.
After you gain an understanding of the type of content that is relevant to your target influencer, try sharing links that may be beneficial to them. If you get a positive response—they interact with your message—then you know you have succeeded in establishing yourself as a peer. At this point, you can attempt an email query requesting a particular action from your influencer. Be sure to propose a request that is mutually beneficial. For instance, you could offer to write a guest post for their blog on a topic on which you are an expert and that would be useful to their audience.
They key takeaway is that attracting influencers to your brand is a slow and steady process of building relationships within your niche, not something you accomplish with a few quick gimmicks. Make a plan and start connecting with key players in your field.
Diedra Taylor is a Content Writer at BookingAgentInfo.com, an online database for entrepreneurs, businesses, and non-profits looking to connect with celebrities. She loves helping small businesses and start-ups to actualize the full potential of their marketing campaigns with targeted content.