Wondering how to increase your business's reach on social media?
Have you considered partnering with an influencer?
To explore how to develop business relationships with influencers, I interview Neal Schaffer.
More About This Show
The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social Media Examiner. It's designed to help busy marketers and business owners discover what works with social media marketing.
In this episode, I interview Neal Schaffer, author of three social media books including Maximize Your Social. He teaches social media strategy at Rutgers University and is the founder of PDCA Social, an agency that specializes in helping Japanese businesses leverage American social media platforms.
Neal explores the difference between paid and earned influencers.
You'll discover how to use influencer marketing to scale your social media results.
Share your feedback, read the show notes, and get the links mentioned in this episode below.
Here are some of the things you'll discover in this show:
Why Influencer Marketing?
Social media is a noisy place and the days of 100% organic success are over. Brands, companies, and practitioners need to use paid social to get noticed. In this environment, Neal believes other people can accelerate your social media marketing efforts. Put simply, you need to consider other users on social media who might be able to help spread the word about your brand and amplify your message.
Neal identifies three different types of "others": your employees or partners (employee advocacy), your fans (brand advocacy), and influencers (also known as influencer marketing). Each type is powerful in its own way, and in 2017, influencer marketing is the most mainstream. It can help you cut through the noise in a different way than paid social. Plus, influencer marketing is ideally more authentic and leads to more engagement.
I ask Neal to explain what influencer marketing is, for people who are new to the concept. Neal says influencer marketing involves partnering with people who have influence over others. In the old days, newspaper writers and television broadcasters had tremendous influence. Now, in certain online or social media communities, people on YouTube or Instagram are famous and influential in a way that's similar to big-name media celebrities.
Some social media influencers focus on one network, such as Instagram or YouTube, whereas others have appeal across several platforms. With influencer marketing, you work with an influencer who talks about your brand, and those mentions of your product or service have a positive effect on your business.
People become influencers on social media because they're creating their own valuable content. They have a regular audience that cares about the influencer's tips, recommendations, or other content.
However, unlike a true celebrity, a person doesn't need a million followers or subscribers to be an influencer. They need to have relevance only in their community. For example, a YouTuber may have never heard of a podcasting influencer. That's okay. The podcaster needs to have influence only within their specific podcasting community.
Listen to the show to hear more about how social influencers compare to big-name celebrities.
How to Discover and Evaluate Potential Influencers
To begin, use listening tools and do keyword searches to learn who in your industry is talking about topics or products relevant to your business. For instance, a consumer brand selling to moms needs to know which mommy bloggers are talking about products similar to theirs, or which Instagrammers are taking photos and using hashtags related to their products. A B2B company needs to seek out tech bloggers who carry a lot of weight.
Remember, influence isn't only about the number of followers. Find people who are producing content that seems to have an effect.