All the top brands have a content marketing strategy, and a lot of them integrate some form of influencer marketing into that strategy. The benefits of influencer marketing are well-proven, and even as a solopreneur, you may find there’s a place for influencer marketing in your business, especially if you sell products or services online.
Carefully implemented influencer marketing campaigns can significantly increase online sales, in almost any niche. They’re worth considering, whether your end product is hand-made jewelry, a cool app, or a healthy eating program.
So what exactly is influencer marketing?
If you’re new to the concept, influencer marketing really isn’t that complicated. You simply find online influencers whose audience is interested in what you have to sell, and strike a deal with them to promote it. Payment is often in cash but can sometimes be in the form of free products or services. Some brands allow influencers to become affiliates as well, meaning they get paid a commission for each sale they make (tracked by affiliate software, through the links they post, or through discount codes specific to each influencer).
Influencers might post a full product review on their blog, write a post that mentions your brand, or post photos on their social media of them wearing or using your product. It just depends on what you and the influencer agree on. So why exactly is influencer marketing a good idea for solopreneurs and other small businesses?
Influencers have the trust of their followers
You’ve probably heard that to make sales online it’s important that people know, like and trust you. By using influencer marketing you’re effectively leveraging the influencer’s know-like-trust rating with their followers. These people spend time and effort growing a following and posting content that their followers love, so when they post about your product, their audience is likely to pay attention. According to a piece on influencer marketing in Forbes, 92% of consumers trust influencer marketing over traditional advertising.
People buy through influencers, a lot
Influencer marketing can generate direct sales, and plenty of them. 40% of consumers report that they have purchased something online after seeing it used by an influencer on Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube. Some niches, such as beauty and fashion, seem to lend themselves to influencer marketing more than others, but whatever your product, you can probably find niche bloggers and social media influencers happy to promote it. Even throughout the Coronavirus pandemic, successful influencers, who were careful to remain authentic, empathize with their followers, and adjust their messaging, continued to keep sales flowing in to the brands they work with.
The benefits of influencer marketing are far-reaching
It’s always great to make sales, but there are side benefits to working with influencers too. They can boost awareness of your brand, help you run a contest to get subscribers onto your email list, or improve your SEO by providing lots of links to your website. They can even send their followers to your social media channels (especially if you’re running a giveaway or special offer) often increasing your follower count in the process.
You don’t have to find those influencers alone
There are sites you can join, that introduce business owners and influencers, help you find the right influencers for your brand, and even take care of the details, like record keeping and payment systems. Intellifluence is one site that offers those services, and regularly highlights influencers you may want to work with through their influencer spotlight series.
The commitment is low
As solopreneurs, we often don’t have a huge budget to work with, and may not want to make any long-term commitments until we’re sure a particular strategy will work for us. You can strike a deal with an influencer to do just one product review, make one video, or create one Instagram post, and see what the results are. You can also make deals with a handful of influencers, see whose audience seem most responsive to your brand, and then choose to work with him or her again. With a careful strategy and close monitoring, it’s possible to develop an influencer marketing strategy that is fairly low cost and potentially high on ROI.
If you’re a solopreneur, influencer marketing is a strategy well worth considering. Working with the right influencer might just be the tipping point your business needs to take you to the next level.
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