How to Become an Influencer to Grow Your Business Online
Being an influencer is considered much more than a selfie posting Instagram user, now it's one of the top marketing tactics used to help brands reach millions of followers.
We know the benefits of influencer marketing as a marketer. But the benefits of being an influencer is just as good. You can collaborate with household name brands, earn commission or contracts by helping to create content, manage projects, and be a brand ambassador for all to see.
But as good as this sounds, the competition to be an influencer that stands out is top-notch as well. Even if you want to be an influencer solely to help your brand grow, you have a lot of work ahead of you. Today, I'll show you how to become an influencer to grow your business.
First things first, you'll have to determine where you stand as an influencer as is. If you haven't started your social media accounts as yet, then you should skip this section. If you have, read on.
Influencers come in all shapes and sizes, and you don't need a million followers to be considered an influencer anymore. Venngage breaks down how brands classify influencers.
This helps them to determine what projects or budget they should consider before approaching you. It additionally allows you to understand where you stand in the influencer food chain. As you know, the more followers you have, the more influence you can have on them.
1. What is Your Influencer Goals and Objectives
Before you start posting or creating content, you'll need to decide what exactly you want to accomplish by being an influencer for your business. Ask yourself what's the real end goal, apart from hundreds of followers or simply saying sales.
Think about your influencer marketing goals. Influencer marketing only works in, you have influence, and if your influence is creating sales.
Based on your business model (service or product), you might want to create goals aligned with the following:
- To gain x amount of clients per month to meet your financial goals
- To sell x amount of products per month
- To solidify yourself as a thought leader in your industry that people turn to for advice.
- To collaborate with other influencers
- Increase the use of a discount or incentive to help drive sales
- Promote new products and brand awareness
- To drive more traffic to your eCommerce store or landing page
2.Define and Research Your Industry/Niche
After you define your goals, it's time to define and research your industry or niche. Based on your niche, you'll be expected to post specific content types to attract your ideal followers and audience.
You can pick your niche based on your business, but you'll have to go a bit deeper. For example, if you're a restaurant owner that provides Italian food for people in new york, your niche is Italian food. Research different food brands and focus on hashtags, bio content, and brands who were rising stars in this niche.
Once you know your niche, you can start influencing the right people with the right form of content.
3. Choose and Complete Your Social Media Account
Now it's time to select and complete your profile. Nothing turns away followers from an influencer than uncomplete profiles. This not only builds trust but credibility as well. So ensure that any social media profile you plan to be most active on has the following:
- A creative and exciting bio
- A stunning profile image or display picture
- A username that is used across all your social media profiles.
- Add a link to your website, blog, email list, ebook, or Youtube videos.
Influencer Example: Victoria Taylor
For more help on completing your social media profiles to make them influencer official check out these guides below:
- 8 Actionable Tips to Use Social Media for eCommerce Sales
- The 10 Elements of a Successful Social Media Profile
- How You Build a Successful Social Media Influencer Profile
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4.Use High-Quality Images & Videos
Most social media platforms are heavily visual. This means a picture is worth a thousand likes, and you can judge a profile by its images.
In the world of influencer marketing, it's essential that you only showcase your best images, videos, or reels. Statistics show that 90% of information sent to the brain is visual, and people form their first impression a mere 50 milliseconds.
Whether you're taking images with your phone or a professional camera, keep these in mind:
- Always have bright lighting (outside or inside) so that viewers can see whatever you're portraying clearly
- Ensure that your images are in focus. Blurry images don't have the same effect as sharp images.
- Have a consistent theme or present. This is essentially important when using Instagram.
Influencer Example: Taylor Loren
Maybe you're new to Instagram or posting images on your social media. Here are some helpful tips and tricks you can try now:
- 200 Instagram Photos: Examples, Ideas & Resources for Your Business
- 5 Best Types of Instagram Photos to Drive Engagement
- 20 Tips For Amazing Real Estate Instagram Posts
5. Master Your Social Media Captions
Writing the perfect caption starts with knowing who exactly you write for, your followers. Write captions that will connect easily with your target audience to build your community.
For example, Naomi is an influencer coach who uses her own influence to find and nurture leads. She writes captions that speak to the struggles of being an influencer and making money from it. She understands her audience and uses her captions to connect, attract, and engage with her ideal target audience.
Influencer Example: Naomi aka naohms
When writing captions that sell, influencer, and engage, it means emojis, jokes, jargons, and terminologies that your ideal follower uses themselves regularly. When you're writing captions for your audience, ask yourself these questions:
- Will my audience understand this reference?
- Would my ideal customer say this
- Are emojis appropriate to use here?
- Do I need to add more context to this post?
- Is this caption easy to read?
- Does this caption capture my brand voice?
You can also use these 8 Must-Have Tips for Crafting the Perfect Instagram Caption
6. Show Off, Don't Sell Your Products or Services
One of the biggest mistakes that influencers make when growing their business is that they think if they post a personal picture with a sales pitch caption, then sales will come their way. But that's not how it works.
People trust influencers over brand because they don't like being sold to. Influencers have mastered this art because they simply share, not sell their favorite brand and products. It would help if you did the same.
Use the art of storytelling to show off your services and products instead. To be fair good, storytelling is not as easy as it looks, so we created this guide, What Brand Storytelling Is & How To Do It (With Examples!) to help you.
Influencer Example: M o n ic a P I r a n i
7. Engage With Your Followers & Create a Community
Engagement with your followers and community shows you how well and effective your content is on social media. Without engagement, your content will fall flat on its face. Whether it's 100 or 10,000 followers, engagement means much more to you than it does for followers.
For example, Influencer Patricia Bright has consistent engagement through comments, likes, and shares that show how easily her content connects to her target audience.
Influencer Example: Patricia Bright
If potential followers see that your engagement is low, they're less likely to follow you, whereas if you have a high volume of engagement, you'll gain more followers. Engagement can come in many shapes and forms such as:
- Direct Messages
8. Network With Other Influencers in Your Industry
Reach out to other influencers in your niche and collaborate by creating content and helping each other to grow. With your combined audience, you'll increase the chance of getting more followers for each other. You can collaborate by doing the following:
- Video collaboration
- A giveaway
- Behind the scenes
- Having fun and trying new things together
- Listing your favorite products
- Q&A Session
Choose someone who compliments your niche, don't choose someone solely because of their follower count. Ask yourself, does this person's message align with my own?
Influencer Example: James Charles
9. Use the Best Hashtags In Your Post
Hashtags help to make your post more discoverable to people who don't follow your social media account.
Influencer Example: Instagram Creators
You'll have to pick the most popular hashtags to improve the visibility of your content. Here's a list of the best hashtags guides to help you make the most out of your next post:
- 7 Surprising Ways YouTube Hashtags Can Increase Views
- 150 Best Hashtags to Get More Likes
- The Most Popular Hashtags: The Ultimate List
10. Offer an Incentive to Collect Leads
Followers don't equal customers. So it's important that you find a way to collect leads. Leads are potential prospects that you can convert into paying customers.
You can do this by adding a landing page to your bio's link and creating a squeeze page. This is a type of landing page with a specific purpose, to collect a lead's email address. You can also use a pop-up on your landing page as well.
Influencer Example: Signed Blake
Being an influencer comes with pro's and con's, but the benefits far outweigh the cons. One of the key tactics that aren't listed in this article is to be consistent. The only way to rise in the ranks as an influencer, promoting your business, and growing your online community is to show up every day on social media.
Influencers don't really get a day off. That's because the competition is always on for the next best influencer, so you have to be at the top of your game. This might mean investing in marketing tools or apps to help you publish content while you work on building your business.
Here's a quick recap of the top ten ways you can become an influencer to grow your business:
- What is Your Influencer Goals and Objectives
- Define Your Ideal Follower & Industry/Niche
- Choose and Complete Your Social Media Account
- Use High-Quality Images & Videos
- Master Your Social Media Captions
- Show Off Your Favorite Products or Services
- Engage With Your Followers & Create a Community
- Network With Other Influencers in Your Industry
- Use the Best Hashtags In Your Post
- Offer an Incentive to Collect Leads