You probably spend a lot of time and effort making content for your social media profiles, which you absolutely should! But is your content generating the engagement your brand needs? Remember that no matter how valuable your content can be, your social media efforts will be ineffective if the content is only reaching a very limited audience.
So, how do you get more people to see and engage with your content?
Influencers are people who have high numbers of an active following online. These people can be celebrities, bloggers, or industry leaders who have a high influence regarding their fields of expertise. With such big networks, finding influencers and getting them to share your content will increase your brand’s reach, and help your company establish itself as a thought leader in your industry.
Here are a five useful tips and tricks for finding and keeping your influencers:
Define Your Influencers
To narrow your search down from the millions of people online, create a list of qualifications so you can more effectively weed through profiles and find the right people to tap. There are some basic qualifications for you to consider.
- Find people who are relevant to your business.
- Their experience, interests, and social media content should match your brand’s industry.
- See if they are already engaging with your network to have a better chance of leveraging their influence.
- Target influencers who have a high number of followers to better optimize results.
Finding Your Influencers
Doing a quick Google search about your industry can give you numerous results. Look for the top results of blogs, websites, or even direct profiles when using a variety of search terms related to your industry. If you’re dealing with a very small niche market, you can find popular posts using tools like Topsy or Realtime, then find out who shares those popular posts with Bitly.
If you want to make your life easier, you can also utilize paid platforms like Traackr and Klout. These do an excellent job connecting you with industry influencers, and can aid in creating targeted engagement plans.
Engage With Your Influencers
The whole point is to engage with influencers so they share your content, but you wouldn’t want to be too forceful. Start with liking a post or two a day, then move to sharing and providing a genuine comment or insight on their post. Give them free publicity through mentions on your blog posts or social media chatter. And, if you do give them free publicity in a blog post, be sure to let them know on social.
To step up your engagement game, start or join conversations they are interested in without directly communicating with them. They will see your name in other places and begin to regard you as a thought leader, leading to content shares. Having your content posted on websites they already trust helps build yours. Research your influencers’ favorite sites and pitch content. Once you’ve established rapport, don’t be afraid to send them a simple message asking for shares on a specific piece of content. It’s very important that you make your email short and sweet. Remember that the shorter your message is, the higher chance of response you will get.
Maintain Your Relationships
Winning over your influencers doesn’t end when they do share your content. You have to maintain the relationship. Thank them for sharing your post in a comment on their share. Keep track of what your influencers are posting about and keep engaging with them by joining conversations or mentioning them in shared content you think they would find value in. This allows for a relationship that is highly beneficial for both of you.
Always Be On The Look-Out
Keep looking for opportunities to grow your network. There are many people out there that can one day be part of your influencer network. While you can make great strides finding influencers on social, traditional public relations is extremely beneficial in finding you influencers. Attend industry events, conferences, or seminars to meet as many people as you can that can help boost your online presence. When you make a connection, give them your business card and social media information. Additionally, you should reach out to them on social following the event to make an online connection.
Your social media efforts do not stop at creating and posting great content. You have to be able to promote it and get people to see it. Finding and building relationships with influencers is a more effective and less expensive way to do this. Moreover, understanding what makes your influencers share will help you generate more relevant content in the long run and will make you a trusted influencer as well.