When Followers Don’t Matter


Aligning your brand with influencers that share your audience and values

Recent times have given rise to a new type of marketing and for good reason. In a world where we are often overstimulated by multiple brand messages on any given day, influencer marketing provides a relatable and credible opportunity to drive real results.

But, it has to be done right.

Before we lay out how you can get the most out of influencer marketing and what it takes to get it right, let’s look at what an influencer marketing deal could look like:

Flat rate - This is an opportunity where the influencer is paid a flat rate per post to feature a product or service. Flat rates can range from 3-5 figures with some influencers being paid 6 figures or more per post.

Affiliate commission - With this arrangement an influencer posts about a product or service with a link to a purchase gateway. Every time a viewer buys the product by clicking on the link or using the promo code, the influencer earns commission.

Both types require businesses to give the products that they want the influencer to share at their cost, known as gifting in the world of social media.

Now, this is the important part…Choosing the influencer that is right for your product or service. This is where the numbers don’t matter as much as you might think. Yes, followers are important, but the most important thing about choosing the right influencer is making sure that they align with your brand. An influencer who aligns with your brand will share your target audience and values - and that is what you need to get real results.

How to find influencers that are not well known but in your space?

Every influencer has an aesthetic and “brand voice”. Their brand voice is made up of the type of content and messages that they share with their audience. People follow them for what they show and say, and their audience will be made up of people who want to see their life updates and hear their take on products. This is why it’s important to find influencers that share your brand's message as well as the aesthetic. It’s also important to check their previous endorsements and brands that they’ve worked with to make sure that they are trustworthy. An influencer that shares a different skin care product advertisement each week would not be considered a credible source by their audience.

Influencers may in themselves be personal brands but they are also people, giving them a strong advantage in a world where trust in brands has deteriorated over the years. Influencers are seen as relatable because they let people see their lives, their day to day activities, lifestyle choices and family, something a brand cannot do. However this is also where issues can arise when an influencer's opinions or actions do not align with your brand. We’ve seen influencers get themselves in hot water over racist comments, drug use, body shaming and anything else you can think of. When you have an active relationship with an influencer these actions reflect on your brand, and your brand will need to take a stand with or against the actions of an influencer. Of course, a brand embroiled in any form of controversy is never a good thing (all press isn’t good press) and so choosing your influencer wisely helps to ensure you stay clear of negative press.

Another reason why it’s important to do your research is because finding and using influencers can be costly and time consuming. Spending the time engaging the right influencer and sending them products are both expenses to your business that need to be well thought out to avoid choosing influencers that either won’t share your products or won’t do them justice if they do.

So, how do you actually find the right influencer for your brand?

Choose 3-5 influencers that match your aesthetic and industry

  • Follow them for at least 2-4 weeks, paying close attention to:
  • The content they share
  • The brands they promote/endorse
  • The people commenting on their posts

Finding the right influencer isn’t always easy but it does pay off. An influencer that shares authentic and genuine content, recommendations and reviews provides valuable social proof.

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