How to partner with influencers

When it comes to partnering with influencers, there are a few important qualities you should keep in mind. For starters, seek out creators with content and values that align with your brand and customer base. You can find these creators by searching for your most enthusiastic “brand fans” and the people who frequently tag your brand in their social content. These will serve as authentic voices who are excited to work with you.

Next, remember that creators don’t need millions of followers to work effectively. In fact, micro- and nano-influencers are highly effective in reaching audiences. Starbucks, Airbnb, Glossier, and California Pizza Kitchen are just a few of the major brands that partner with micro-influencers. That’s because even nano- and micro-influencers boast high engagement rates and can help brands target consumers based on interest or location.
Additionally, it’s important to consider what you are trying to achieve with your influencer strategy. Do you want to spread broad national awareness about a product with a multi-tiered influencer campaign, or is it wiser for your brand to start small by testing and learning with micro- and nano-influencers in specific markets or by interest?

What is your budget?

Here are some more things to consider when you’re getting ready to select and work with an influencer:
Create an influencer strategy that aligns with your business goals. Want to drive retail in a specific region? Look at content creators who have worked with that retailer on other brand partnerships.

Define the structure of your influencer program. Are you looking for mass awareness or targeted activation? You may want to take a tiered approach that includes mega-influencers, as well as the aforementioned micro- and nano-influencers.

Create an influencer brief with clear goals and CTAs. Be careful not to get too prescriptive. You want the creator to be able to tell their story with your brand in an authentic way, but you also want to convey important talking points, calls to action, and website links.

Thoroughly vet your influencers.In your selection process, make sure your influencers have a good balance of unbranded and branded content to ensure authenticity. You’ll also want to make sure that their content steers clear of explicit nudity or other questionable content that doesn’t align with your brand. Also, look at their followers to ensure that they are real and engaged.

Develop a solid contract. Your influencer contract should spell out expectations on both sides of the relationship, including post requirements, payment terms, and other important details. If you intend to use creator content on your owned social channels or other digital media, make sure you negotiate those terms upfront so there are no surprises.

Partnering with an influencer can be intimidating if you’ve never done it before, but this checklist will help to ensure that you and your influencer(s) are on the same page.

Strategies for an Effective Influencer-Brand Partnership

Now that you know how to select the right influencer(s) for your brand, it’s important to get the most out of your collaboration. Here are a few strategies to keep in mind when you are working with an influencer to drive brand awareness, sell products, and increase engagement:

1. Develop a creator relationship.
Ideally, you’ll want to start a long-term relationship with creators. As with any relationship, communication is key. If possible, meet with influencers to explain the brief and answer any questions they have about the brand so they can tell your story effectively.
2. Avoid being prescriptive.
You are paying the creator to do what they do best—create. As such, it’s crucial to let them do their job. They know what will resonate with their audiences, so give them the freedom to do that. Trust in the process.
3. Pay influencers on time.
This goes back to developing the influencer-brand relationship, as influencers who aren’t paid on time may avoid working with you in the future. This should go without saying, but you expect to get paid on time––so do they.

Don’t make creators chase you for payments.

There are so many types of creator programs to choose from when considering what works for you, including unpaid user-generated content all the way up to working with celebrities. If you’re selective, think critically about your strategy, and build meaningful relationships with creators, influencer outreach can be an incredible tool in your marketing belt. Don’t miss out.

Written by Jeff Snyder, Founder and Chief Inspiration Officer at Inspira Marketing Group

Source: Advertingweek


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