Leveraging influencers to market your online products is a great way to sell more stuff. But what strategy do you take?
When it comes to marketing your product, do you struggle to cut through the noise of the internet?
For any eCommerce owner, this can be a daily struggle.
The problem is, it's no longer enough to simply pay to get your product in front of your audience. Consumers want a personalized experience, they want value, and they want to connect with your brand – so it's hardly surprising that content marketing is so darn popular.
So how can influencer marketing help?
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Did you know that 92 percent of global consumers trust earned media more than paid advertising?
Earned media is an effective tactic that involves gaining publicity through promotional efforts, rather than paid-for advertising. And influencer marketing is one of the best ways to achieve this.
An influencer could be a person with a large following across social media, a well-known blogger or even a journalist, and they're always on the look out for new content. So if you manage to get them to share your content, you're far more likely to see a significant increase in ROI.
But with so much competition out there, getting influencers to notice your product is a tough gig. Take a look at these steps to find out how you can improve your strategy for better results...
1. Find Influencers in Your Niche
Searching for the right influencer is crucial to the success of your campaign. Sure, Katy Perry may just be the most followed person on Twitter, but are her followers going to care about buying your office chairs? Probably not.
Do your research to find those people that have a great influence within your industry.
Some of the best tactics include:
- BuzzSumo – Use this tool to search for influencers using specific keywords.
- NinjaOutreach – Use this platform to search for key bloggers within your industry.
- Hashtagify.me – This tool can help you research hashtags so that you can target people who tweet about your product.
- Google Alerts – Set up an alert on Google so you can find out the minute a story breaks within your industry.
Top tip: Look for those influencers that have a high engagement with their followers. Check out their shares and comments so that you can gauge how likely it is that the promotion of your product will work with them.
2. Build a Solid Relationship
Next step is to connect with those influencers. This is where many marketers get ahead of themselves because they ask for the favor, before building a relationship.
Influencers will receive hundreds of requests each day asking for content to be shared, so you need to make sure that they know who you are first, before you asking them to check out your product.
It may take a little longer than you'd like, but if you follow these steps, you're far more likely to build that all important relationship that will last...
- Follow them on social
- Share their content
- Comment on their blog posts
- Ask them questions
- Join in with their conversations
The aim is to get on their radar so they recognize who you are when it comes to pitching your idea to them. You should aim to lay the groundwork for at least two - three months before you ask for their email.
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3. Create the Perfect Pitch
Now that you've built the foundations of a solid relationship, you can finally start pitching your ideas to them. When approaching them with a pitch, you'll want to make sure it's personalized and shows that you have done your research.
There are a few options that you can do here:
- Offer to update their outdated content
This is a great little tactic. Whether it's an old research statistic or a broken link, contact them and let them know that you've got brand new content that could be used in place of their outdated content.
Pitch it in a way that shows that you appreciate what they do, and you thought it would be helpful if they had the latest content on their site.
- Create exclusive content
Exclusive content is a sure-fire way to get noticed by an influencer, and some of the most popular types of content that influencers like to share include infographics or videos.
If you are offering an exclusive, you need to make sure that it's worth it to you. Aside from building your brand reach, one of the biggest advantages of influencer marketing is to build links back to your site from a highly authoritative domain.
Top tip: Take a look at tools such as Moz to research domain authority. You'll typically want a domain that's higher than 50. And make sure that you pitch your idea first, before setting the terms of your partnership.
- Write a guest post
Guest posting is another popular tactic and this again can help build more exposure to your product and valuable links back to your site. When pitching a guest post idea, research the type of blogs that they currently post so that you can keep it relevant and add to the conversation.
Top tip: If you type the URL into BuzzSumo you'll be able to see the most popular content on that site. You can then use that high-performing content and base your article around it.
- Send over product samples
The great thing about selling a physical product is that you can send samples to those influencers so that they can review it on their blog, or, at least, talk about it on their social platforms.
Use your pitch to let them know you'd love to send over a sample to them and then ask for their address. Everyone loves a freebie, so it's likely that you'll be successful with this tactic.
When crafting your pitch, it will differ depending on which route you decide to take but make sure that your pitch is:
- Short and concise
- Less about you, more about how your idea can help them
- Points out that you've read their content
- Asks if they would like to see your content or product, rather than assuming they do
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Over to You
The key with influencer marketing is to build the foundations of a long-lasting relationship. By showing that you respect their work and sending them quality content, or even your products to review, you can continue to leverage their influence to connect to a wider audience. Good luck!