For small-business owners, the idea of influencer marketing can be daunting. When you see big name celebrities charging upwards of $1million per post it can be hard to know where to start.

However, influencer marketing can be a great way to deepen existing customer relationships, enter new markets and ultimately drive sales, if you get it right!

Understand your goals

Influencer marketing is most beneficial when it is included in a long-term, multi-facet strategy that includes more than just 1 or 2 random posts but, consistent posting overtime. Understanding the goal of engaging the influencer and their role is key to positioning the campaign for success. You can begin with an awareness campaign “hey, check out this new product”, then focus on the features of the product and finally a call to action.

Do your research

Data and metrics play a huge part in every influencer/brand ambassador strategy. If you were considering a campaign with a digital advertiser, they will transparently provide you with everything you need to know to make a decision on the value they provide as well as, and what the potential ROI could be. These include viewability, readership and audience demographics. There are platforms allow influencers to do the same, for free. Allowing brands to validate their audience authenticity and reach before investing time or money. Would you hire someone without seeing their resume?

Curate and track content

Campaign content is generally curated in line with brand guidelines and the objectives of the campaign, but going the extra step to curate content specific to each influencer’s audience has a huge impact on the campaign’s success. This can be as basic as using photo content instead of video or editing a black and white version of the same image if the influencer’s audience doesn’t engage with colour. And of course, track the campaign.

Influencer marketing works because it’s human to human and because of that, it’s impossible to make blanket rules for what works and what doesn’t. Credible data plays a key role in informing spending decisions ensuring brands aren’t left out of pocket so ensure you know where the data has come from.

Originally published via Inside Small Business.

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