Influencer marketing is all the rage in today’s social media savvy world.
While it has been a trend that has been picking up steam for the last few years, this year though, influencer marketing has reached new heights and has managed to become an integral part of the digital marketing strategies of brands all over the globe.
It’s no surprise that the industry is estimated to reach $10 billion in the year 2020.
And almost all of its success can be credited to the ever-increasing preference of people towards influencer content and their growing ignorance for branded or traditional content.
The tactic has quickly become one of the hottest online customer acquisition methods and 67% of marketers are already making use of this amazing strategy to push purchases for their businesses.
And out of those, most of them do it to promote their products by soliciting product recommendations and reviews from relevant influencers in their industry.
E-commerce businesses are at a great advantage here, because they usually have a myriad of products to sell and as much as 80% of consumers depend on product suggestions from friends, family, and influencers before making the final purchase decision.
But which is the ideal platform you should choose to focus all your influencer marketing campaigns at and sell like crazy?
This post is all about that and a lot more.
The best influencer marketing platform
Before we begin talking about how to find the right influencers for your e-commerce business and how to approach them, I think it’s important to talk about your preferred choice of platform for all your influencer marketing campaigns.
Which should definitely be Instagram.
Instagram is the platform of choice for as much as 70% of influencers, and it should be yours too if you are looking to garner great return from your influencer marketing efforts.
But before you do so, make sure you have a well-established presence on the platform otherwise you’ll be leaking a lot of potential customers through the back door.
If you already have an established presence on the platform and are actively marketing your products there, here’s how you can begin your influencer marketing efforts today –
Find your perfect influencer
It’s kind of obvious that you need a bunch of influencers on your side to kick-off your influencer marketing campaign.
You’ll have to find the kind of influencer on the platform that resonates with your brand image, is relevant to it and has a huge engaged following that is most likely interested in buying your products.
But how to find them?
You can easily find the influencers in your industry by searching for relevant hashtags on the platform. Say, for example, if you run an e-commerce store selling fitness products, you can easily find influencers in the fitness niche by searching for hashtags like ‘#fitness’, ‘#bodybuilding’ or ‘#aesthetics’.
Other than that, you can use Google or Youtube to search for influencers as well by searching for relevant keywords. Like, if you sell beauty products through your e-commerce store, you can easily find the most talked about influencers in your niche by searching for the keyword – makeup tutorials.
By doing this, you’ll easily get a list of top influencers in your industry and then you can closely access the number of following they have, how engaged they are and if the influencer has a history of doing brand promotions or not.
I would suggest you go for an influencer with a highly engaged audience rather than an influencer with a huge following that is low on engagement because huge followings can be faked but real engagement can not.
Look for the likes, comments, and shares of your selected influencers to further narrow down your list.
Next thing to look for is the interest of their audience in buying what you have to offer. To see if the audience of your chosen influencer matches yours, you can have a look at your influencer’s demographic information in Instagram Insights.
You’ll have to ask for that in your pitch, which brings us to the next step…
Send them a pitch
The next part is asking your chosen influencers to collaborate with you and promote your products with their respective audiences.
You have to be really authentic here with your pitch, so a standardized template would really not work. You need to tell them in your pitch why you are approaching them in the first place, why you think the collaboration would work great for you and the influencer and what’s in it for them.
Usually, freebies work great. Just offer to send your chosen influencer a bunch of free products that they can use and post on their Instagram profile.
But influencers, knowing the game, often ask for monetary benefits as well along with the freebies, which I think is completely fine on their part because it takes efforts to think of a creative way to promote products in a non-branded way on the platform.
See what your influencer asks for and collaborate with the ones that fit your budget.
Sit back & relax
The best way to collaborate with your influencers is really to do no collaboration at all.
Don’t get me wrong here! But think about it in this way, the influencers in your industry have reached that position in their particular niche because they know how to engage their existing audiences on the platform and attract new ones at the same time.
Let them use their own creativity in finding an angle that puts your product in the best light. GIve them that space and it can work wonders for your collaboration.
Moreover, influencers would be interested in working with you again if you are fine with giving them that creative space. Who knows, they’d become your brand advocates that way and start promoting your products on their own. Wouldn’t that be great?
So, there you go! Use the above-mentioned steps to kickstart some rewarding influencer marketing efforts for your e-commerce store and watch those new customers come in! Just don’t forget to use Instagram as your target influencer marketing platform and you’ll be good to go.