How to find the right influencer for your brand

Working with influencers should be on top of everyone’s list right now. It is incredibly ROI positive, and you should take advantage of it before it’s too late.

If you have never done it before, it can be a little bit intimidating. You’re probably wondering, how do I go about doing it?

There are 3 main steps that you should follow:

Step 1:

Always have a goal:

What do you expect out of the campaign? Are you trying to promote a new product? Do you want to drive conversions? Do you want to raise awareness for your brand?

For example, if you want to drive conversions it’s best to work with an influencer who’s majority of followers are as close to your target audience as possible.

If you want to raise awareness then it’s best to choose an influencer with a big reach.

Step 2:

Understand influencer metrics. What exactly are you looking for in an influencer? How do you know which one is the best for your goal?

Relevance:

This is the most important metric you should be looking at, especially when working with micro-influencers. You want to make sure that they produce high quality content which is related to your niche. For example, it wouldn’t make sense to work with an influencer who specialises in guy’s fashion if you are selling women’s clothing.

Another thing to consider is their audience. This ties in with the previous point. You want to make sure their audience is as aligned with yours as possible. There is no point marketing to 40+ year olds if your main audience is 18–24 years old.

Then you would want to know whether they are an expert in your industry. It’s great if they are as that will mean their followers trust them with whatever recommendation they make, therefore increasing the engagement with your brand.

Engagement:

This is another very important metric you need to pay attention to.

Nowadays a lot of people buy followers from websites as they are wanna-be influencers, but when you look deeper you see that their engagement sucks. What this means is that when you pay them to promote your product/service, not many real people will actually see it. Many brands fall for this as they are not familiar with what to look for.

A good way to check the influencer’s engagement is to take the average likes and comments of their last 6 posts, then divide this by the number of followers they have and times the result by 100.

For example, Silje has an average like/comment of 2,705 and around 19,800 followers. This works out as (2,705/19,800) x 100 = 13.66%. Her engagement is great, and this is the type of influencer that you should be using if you are trying to drive conversions. In general, 5%+ engagement is considered pretty good. If you find any with 10%+, you’ve hit a goldmine.

I strongly encourage you to make a list of influencers with good engagement rates so later you can pick easier and quicker.

Reach:

After you have a list of influencers who are relevant and have good engagement, take a look at the number of followers they have. Naturally, an influencer with 15,000 followers will provide you with better visibility that one with 5,000.

Location:

Depending on the type of business you have, this is important. If you are a restaurant in London, it just wont make sense to work with an influencer in New York as most of their audience will either be from there, or expect content from there. However, if you are a business which ships worldwide, then the location of the influencer wont really matter.

Step 3:

Begin your search. There are many different ways to find influencers, some more effective than others.

Find micro-influential fans:

If you are already an established brand, chances are you will already have some followers or fans. They are great to work with as they already like your brand so when you approach them, they will be much more open to work with you.

Go through your followers and check out their profiles. That can be quite time consuming if you have thousands of followers but it is worth it. The goal is to see if any of them fit your micro-influencer criteria.

Conduct a branded hashtag search. If you have been doing social media correctly, you would have made a hashtag which your followers know to use when posting content about your brand. Since you want the best influencers, check the top 9 posts as they have received the most engagement.

Conduct a relevant hashtag search:

You can also find influencers who aren’t fans of you yet. This is a great option if you do not have a big following already. You do this by searching hashtags. There are hundreds of hashtag options available which are relevant to your niche.

For example, if you search #OrganicFood, you will get a huge list of posts. All you have to do is find the top posts with lots of likes, click on the profiles of those people and evaluate whether they are the correct micro-influencer for you. You can also get an idea of other relevant hashtags by looking at which ones they use.

Cross reference from other platforms:

There are thousands of influencers on all social platforms. If you are looking on Instagram but cannot find a good one at that particular time, go on other platforms such as YouTube or Twitter and find one there. It’s likely they will also have a big following on their other platforms.

Using these tips you should have a better idea on how to successfully find influencers for your Instagram marketing campaigns. Keep in mind that the best influencers are selective who they work with, so it’s important to create a relationship with them which goes beyond just paying them for a post.