July 13, 2018

10 steps to build your influencer network

Influencers are becoming an increasingly hot
topic in the marketing industry

The principle of linking influential people because of their expertise or popularity to a brand is as old as the road paved to Rome. More and more Influencer marketing campaigns are becoming a basic need for brands and companies. On top of that, people are becoming immune to traditional advertisements and are sometimes even actively ignoring them.

Brands have seen the benefits of utilizing the power of influencers, from all platforms, and have seen how brand awareness and traffic has increased by the relationships they have built with Influencers.

How to create an Influencer Network

There is no denying, building an influencer list and network is an investment that requires time, effort, work, and energy, but when done correctly, it can boost your brand enormously. Influencer marketing works best when a brand owns their relationships and brings the strategy in-house. This overwhelms a lot of marketers in theory, and they resist adopting this type of marketing when, really, every brand is capable of building a network of influencers right now.

If it was easy, everyone would do it, but Influo is here to help you reach your best ability! As to any healthy relationship, it takes time to build a valuable mutually beneficial connection, that is no different than your partnership with an influencer. Brands seek to create genuine relationships with the influencers that are the best fit for their brand and therefore need to customize and tweak their strategies.

Let’s have a look at some tips as to how to build your own influencer network.

1. Know your audience
It’s the no-brainer that every marketer needs to repeat over and over again.
First of all, you need to know who you want to work with. You need to map out your goals and metrics, and after that you can begin your road to success and create your influencer network. It’s important to segment your audience and create strategies specifically for your product or brand. What do you want to get out of it? Getting name recognition, engagement with existing target groups, tapping new target groups, product development, generating leads, creating thought leadership position? It’s necessary to narrow down for your specific marketing purposes, this way you can find the perfect influencers for your network. To create a successful influencer list, you’ll need to understand your audience and who speaks to them in their own language.

2. You already know more than you think
You are already in touch with a lot more influencers than you might realize. People know people, that’s how networking works. And that isn’t any different for an influencer network. So go talk to your team, because they might already know some loyal customers, industry leaders, CEO’s, co-founders, fans, etc. These indirect relationships could possibly be a goldmine for potential influencers and result in key opportunities. And unless your brand is new to the scene, you should already have a list of happy customers. So also gather up these influential people because they might just have already shared your good name ‘offline’ which can be extremely valuable.

3. Create a niche
If you have defined a clear goal and audience, then it is important to find the right partner. Find people who are active in your field. Like we just disclosed, you can establish this through the following of other influencers; however, you can also have a look at your buyer personas. Consider which type of influencers these consumers would follow on a regular basis. Influencers tend to specialize in a specific niche, and thus have influence in that particular topic. Potential future customers and influencers are also in that niche, so once you get in that network, you find yourself a great possibility to expand your brand.

4. Share each others’ content
You can follow new potential influencers and share their content relevant to your audience as a sort of first interaction. This simple action opens opportunities to create conversations, so you can start engaging and getting to know them. An extra bonus to cultivating relationships with influencers who partner with you is content distribution. Once you have a solid network of people you can lean on to help promote your product, brand or service, you can help one another out by sharing each other’s content with your network.

5. Shoot your shot
After doing all that, it is time to spill the beans. Reveal what you came for and reach out to make a collab. By doing so, make sure to be clear about what you’re looking for and what you expect from the influencers. Don’t forget to mention the mutually beneficial advantages for your possible new collab. Make your request personal, confident and to the point. Tell the person why you think this collab could be interesting for them and their audience.

6. Give your network a voice
Influo gives influencers a voice by letting them opt-in to be a part of your network. Influencers can decide for themselves if they want to pitch for your campaign. If they see their friends posting things about your brand, or see Influo post about your new campaign, they can reach out to you and apply to be in your network themselves. This way, it is very easy for people to work with your brand.

7. Reflect your brand in your campaign
The more fun you propose your campaign, the more excited influencers will be to participate. Find ways to captivate their interest by integrating your brand to their niche and create a creative campaign. If they are excited about the product or service, this will reflect in their story; instead of a boring post that simply mentions your brand. Once you start to develop ongoing, long-term relationships with influencers, product launches and campaigns become easier than ever. Plan ahead and prepare for the different seasons, holidays, and different influencer affinities to create the most creative campaigns possible.

8. Keep your influencers happy
Happy wife, happy life, am I right? As we’ve already said, influencers have a mind-blowing impact, which is excellent if they’re happy with your brand; but once you’re on a blacklist it’s hard to get off. Reach out to your network personally, keep them satisfied, keep them up-to-date about your brand, ask them for feedback, share news and each others’ content and be involved. You can even surprise them with a bare minimum effort by sending them a surprise for their birthday such as your latest product. Don’t forget to nurture your relationship and let it grow.

9. Come together
Building a network definitely doesn’t happen overnight, growing takes time. But sometimes, growing overnight (literally) is possible too. Create an event, throw a party, propose a conference, bring people together. This way, people will interact, invite other possible influential people and more seeds will be planted. Above all, trust the process and believe in the progress.

10. Follow the following
Another way to expand your network is to look at already existing customers and followers. This can be done by having a look at who they’re following and engaging with. If they’re in the same community, their followers and the people who they follow could be potentially interesting for you too.

Feel free to contact Influo to discuss the best practices for your influencer marketing strategy.

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