Influencer recruitment is a hot topic for brands who want to leverage this marketing approach to get their messages out and attract more customers. Here are three best practices for influencer recruitment and relationship-building.
Seek authentic connections
Look for an influencer who has a true passion for your brand and your offerings. Audiences are smart, and the more authentic the connection, the more appeal the influencer will have. If the influencer already knows and loves your brand and your products, they may already be talking about them.
Similarly, choose an influencer whose values align with yours. Brands get into hot water when they team up with an ambassador who sends out social media messages that fall outside the brand's values. Off-brand messaging can be damaging, so use care.
And don't overlook micro-influencers. Although they may have smaller followings, they can be truly influential among their devoted fans.
Cultivate healthy relationships
Creating successful and sustainable relationships with influencers involves give and take. Don't ask too much, and continually think about what you can offer your influencer in return. To that end, consider co-creating content that both the influencer and your organization will benefit from sharing. Weave them into your content planning, advises influencer marketing expert Lee Odden.
While it only makes sense to give influencers specifics, allow them to make the message their own. No influencer wants to be so tightly constrained that they stop sounding like themselves. If they do, they risk becoming disengaged — and worse, audiences will see straight through the facade. If it's too difficult to find a balance between on-brand messaging and the influencer's authentic voice, you might have a bad fit.
Follow through for success
As with any marketing initiative, set measurable goals for your influencer partnership. Being clear about these goals will mean that if you're having trouble meeting them, you can have an actionable conversation with both your own team and the influencer about next steps.
Finally, follow and interact with your influencers on social media. They appreciate you sharing their content with your own followers and engaging with them in a natural rapport.