Marketers that have been doing it for a while will find this a problem. Sure, you may have a network of people who are interested in your material and a few VIPs who can assist market it, but they’re getting busier as more businesses try to work with them.
The key is to continually follow the proper procedures in planning, research, and relationship nurturing.
Paul May, co-founder of BuzzStream, recently joined us for a webinar to guide us through the comprehensive influencer strategy they followed as part of the launch of one of BuzzStream’s eBooks to demonstrate the entire process from start to finish.
Here are the actions they took, as well as Paul’s essential advice.
1. Make a list of your objectives and key performance metrics.
All of your research and preparation should be focused on your objectives and KPIs.
BuzzStream’s eBook was created with the goal of attracting qualified leads to their offering. Trial sign-ups, email subscribers, shares, and eBook downloads were all part of their KPIs. This addressed every step of the funnel involved in driving social conversation and producing leads from it, which are the two primary objectives.
2. Compile a list of influential people.
You must first study the influencers in your sector and map out the distinct categories before reaching out to them or establishing a list.
They discovered three different types of influencers reaching their target demographic in Paul’s case. The BuzzStream team then divided them into influencer profiles they were searching for, such as link-building thought leaders and search marketing journalists.
When mapping the landscape, you must consider the following questions:
Where do people talk about your issue and share what they’ve learned? What is the market’s level of socialisation?
What drives people in your industry to promote information related to your topic?
Is the market increasingly fragmented, or is it concentrated among a few publishers?
For major publications, what is the author model? Do they employ in-house journalists, regular contributors, or guest bloggers, or a combination of the three?
What is the history of the well-known authors in your area?
To properly understand your influencers, you must first grasp what motivates them to say “yes.” What drives people to say such things?
Because each sort of VIP you’re targeting will have different needs, it’s critical to segment them and ask specific questions about “what’s in it for me?” from their perspective.
It will also assist you in identifying problems. Journalists and high-profile bloggers, for example, are less inclined to write about gated material, and social influencers are more likely to link to a blog post rather than a landing page, according to Paul.
BuzzStream made up for those criticisms while planning the material itself, as you’ll see below, by knowing that from the outset.
3. Create an influencer marketing strategy that aligns with your goals and KPIs.
BuzzStream chose to use their various influencer segments at different times.
Reactions from one section may assist persuade others, overcoming the barriers we discussed before – for example, people may be more ready to share gated information from an influencer they admire.
Influential content providers were enlisted to help with the eBook’s creation. When other targets are more difficult to persuade, these relationships may persuade them to promote. Each collaborator was carefully selected based on the target audiences BuzzStream wished to reach.
BuzzStream provided early access to its peer influencers, advocates, and consumers in order to assist market it during the launch. They also collected input and incorporated it into the final product, providing those whose suggestions were used an added incentive to share their knowledge.
4. Identify and investigate influencers
To find influencers, you can utilise a variety of technologies.
BuzzStream Discovery is a new influencer search engine that is currently in beta and is available for free. You can use it to locate partners and learn about their engagement levels, audience size, and the type of material they produce.
You can always utilise Google, but drilling down far enough to locate what you need will require some complex search operators and approaches. Using the Mozbar plugin to improve the findings will also allow you to examine the links’ web footprints.
After that, you may include it into a marketing CRM or another outreach platform, such as BuzzStream or Salesforce.
5. Prior to making the request, nurture your relationships.
Don’t be the person who introduces himself by asking someone to promote his or her content.
To engage with and cultivate influencers talking about a specific issue, Paul uses Twitter lists in TweetDeck and Mention’s influencer dashboard.
By following or tweeting to people from the dashboard, Mention allows you to quickly interact and begin nurturing influencers who are talking about a specific issue. And after you’ve found influencers you wish to follow, you can add them to a private list to keep track of them.
What was the most important thing I learned from Paul’s strategy? It’s no longer adequate to ask someone who has completed a piece, “hey, want to’ share?”
You should engage with influencers and opinion leaders before and during the content development process, incorporating them in the actual content, and utilising their input if you want them to promote your content.
Influencers need a compelling reason to pay attention to you in their congested inboxes.