What is a social influencer?
Simply put, it’s someone that has the trust of an audience. Often, but not always, it’s an audience within a specific industry or interest in a certain topic. It’s also usually a large one, but that can be subjective based on the area.
They can be “traditional” celebrities like athletes, actors, musicians who have an active social presence. But there are also thousands of influencers that you won’t see on the field or in the theaters. However, they still have a massive fanbase on one or more social media platforms. These influencers are creative and often, but not always, young and attractive. They excel at posting engaging and helpful content and communicate effectively with their audience.
Why are they important?
Though influencers are often paid by brands to create entertaining content promoting their products and services, the audience still trusts them and their opinions. Twitter says that 49% of users rely on influencers for recommendations. That ranks just behind the 56% that count on friends for recommendations.
With numbers like that, it’s easy to see how connecting with one influencer can market your product to thousands. This is more efficient than a traditional word-of-mouth approach that uses thousands of customers to influence one or two of their friends.
How do I find one?
Companies like Opendorse, Ninja Outreach and BuzzSumo can help you locate influencers based on a number of factors. But, a little human touch works wonders and partnering with an experienced agency can drive greater results for your influencer campaign.
Before you tie your company to an influencer, make sure the fit is right for both brands – theirs and yours. For a start, follow the same rules we laid out in hiring a celebrity endorser.
The power of influencers is growing daily and shows no signs of slowing up. Just ask your kids who they follow on Instagram or Snapchat and you’ll likely hear about dozens of accounts with millions of followers that you’ve never heard of. Just as social media went from the fringe to being baked into every marketing plan, social influencers will be a must-have when promoting your business sooner than later.
Forbes is making it easy to keep track of who the most powerful influencers are in each category as they’re rolling out top ten lists across several categories through the end of the year. We also made it easy for you with our sportsbiz and esports social influencer lists. Check back later this week for part 2 of using social influencers for your business!