Marketers have been talking about influencer marketing. Instagram, being one of the most active social media sites right now, has become an important influencer marketing platform. With more than 700 million active users, it’s not hard to understand why brands, big and small, are searching for authorities and celebrities on the photo-sharing social site.
Instagram has even become friendlier to influencers because of its new algorithm, which favors content with high engagement. It shows content based on engagement, not newness.
All right, first, what is influencer marketing?
This has been tossed around and talked about a lot, but many still don’t understand it. Influencer marketing isn’t as simple as many think it is. It’s marketing with and through influencers. That’s the simplest way to explain it. However, to get to that stage you have to first find and court these people. Influencer targeting is an essential part of the process.
Influencer marketing entails an influencer promoting your brand on your behalf. This works because people trust and respect them, their opinion, and their choices. People listen to their recommendations and even tune in to what they wear or use. In some ways, influencer marketing works like word-of-mouth marketing. Consumers think of Instagram celebrities, for instance, as their popular peers who know more than they do.
Who are the Instagram influencers?
When you’re doing influencer outreach on Instagram, take note of what it means to be an influencer. It’s a broad term. Anyone who has bigger following than the average Instagram user may be an influencer. But what sets a true influencer apart from any social media celebrity is their ability to change people’s opinions and affect their choices and decisions.
It’s hard to identify people who can change the disposition of their followers, but this skill is usually found in people like bloggers, niche experts, professionals, and thought leaders. That is why an influencer marketing agency may look around for these people. We at Expaus use influencer marketing tools to identify key people in your niche.
Can I choose just any influencer?
Not all people with huge numbers of followers are worthy of your attention. Influencers come from all walks of life. Each has a specific niche and style. It makes sense to choose influencers from your niche and find ones whose content are relevant to your brand. Moreover, find influencers who most likely would be willing to work with you. Thus, if you’re a couturier, you should find amateur Instagram models who are willing to wear your creations either for free or for a minimal compensation.
How do I collaborate with an influencer?
There is no single way to collaborate with influencers. However, if there are five things you should talk about, they are as follows:
- Time frame – Both of you have other things to do on your own, so planning when to do the collaboration is important.
- Content and how the content will be used – You have limited choices on Instagram. Obviously, you can’t post articles. But you have endless opportunities with regard to images, animations, and video clips. How you present the message and what to do with the material should be agreed upon by you and the influencer.
- Compensation – Expression of gratitude is important in keeping influencers. You don’t have to pay them money. Many companies pay influencers through exclusive discounts and promos and free supplies or free services. How much you compensate your partner depends on the amount of work you want them to do and the nature of your partnership.
- Hashtags – Wrong hashtags can sabotage your campaigns. An influencer can help you decide on which hashtags may work, but keep your brand’s keywords in mind.
- Future plans – Partnering with influencers can be project-based, but it can be a long-term partnership. Thus, set future marketing plans early on. Avoid making campaigns out of your whim.
How often should the influencer publish posts?
Part of influencer targeting is taking note of how often a potential influencer posts on Instagram. People who become popular on Instagram post content at least once a day. Posting once or twice a day should suffice your brand’s Instagram presence. How often he or she posts about your brand may depend on your agreement. That means you both should agree on each other’s responsibilities in your partnership beforehand.
What can I do with the influencer’s posts?
When an influencer promotes your brand, the promotion becomes a powerful marketing message, which you can use as a proof that someone trusted by many is talking about your brand. Use this piece of content on your product pages. You can also publish content on Facebook. Posting influencer content as a Facebook is not a bad idea. It can drive conversion rate and add value to your Facebook content as well.
Should I sponsor influencer content?
Sponsoring content is a good idea, but do it sparingly. Only sponsor key posts, so they gain more reach. Don’t sponsor many posts at once. Doing so can hurt the reputation of the influencer as well as that of your brand. Their followers will eventually figure out someone is funding them to promote brands. Their followers tune in to them because of their honest feedback about certain products, not because someone’s funding their posts to gain social media mileage. Besides, honest influencers will not approve of you sponsoring most of their content because they know it’s a shady tactic.
Should I chase huge Instagram celebrities?
If you’re a huge company with enough resources to compensate Instagram personalities with more than a million followers, by all means do so. The bulk of brands aren’t that lucky. If you’re a small- or medium-sized business owner, especially if you’re just starting up, target micro-influencers. Even big brands target micro-influencers because of their high engagement rates. Here’s a fact: people with more or less 1,000 followers enjoy likes from 8% of their followers, while those with more than 1 million followers only get likes from less than 2% of their followers. Also, users with following count of around 1,000 get comments from 0.5-0.6% of their followers. In contrast, those with a million followers get comments from less than 0.1% of their followers, and that rate hardly changes beyond a million followers. The data suggests that engagement rate per number of followers is highest in micro-influencers.
Working with huge Instagram celebrities also come with other disadvantages. One, they most likely work with other brands. Two, they demand bigger compensation. Three, they may be busier than their less popular counterparts.
Influencer marketing on Instagram has challenges, all of which can be tackled through planning. Don’t hesitate to contact Expaus if you wish to explore opportunities for brand growth on the social site with the highest engagement rate.