How to Use Twitter Influencer Marketing to Grow Your Small Business - Rainmaker Media Solutions
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How to Use Twitter Influencer Marketing to Grow Your Small Business

How to Use Twitter Influencer Marketing to Grow Your Small Business

By Matt Diederichs

Influencer marketing. For savvy business owners staying up to date on social media tactics, it may seem like ‘influencers’ are all anyone’s talking about in 2016—and with good reason. A recent study found that influencer marketing pays an average of $11.20 in earned media value for every $1.00 of paid media spent.

And it’s not only the big brands working with the most recognizable influencers who are having success with this kind of advertising. Every niche audience has its own niche influencers. So no matter the size of your business, influencer marketing can work for you. Here are our top four tips to get you started.

1. Find the right influencers

It’s easy to point to celebrities and public figures as the type of people you’d like promoting your business, but let’s get real: A neighborhood pizzeria (no matter how good) is unlikely to land a social media promotion deal with Kim Kardashian anytime soon. Instead, build a clear picture of the type of person your audience is likely to connect with.

Do that by reading your customer’s Tweets, seeing what type of content they engage with, and who it comes from—these are your potential influencers. You can dive deeper and create audience personas. The more you know about your customers the easier it will be to discover who they find influential.

Once you have a pool of potential influencers, filter for relevance and reach. The type of influencers you’re looking for will have some semblance of both. Reach simply means that they have an audience of noteworthy size—perhaps a few thousand Twitter followers or a widely read blog (the size of a ‘noteworthy’ audience will vary from business to business).

With reach established, relevance means that these people are trusted resources for your customers—individuals who carry influence in your region or your local market. For our friend the pizzeria owner, it does little good to build relationships with far-flung food bloggers from around the world. Instead work to connect with locals, people who are influential in your area or niche.

Leverage Twitter’s advanced search to find high-value individuals in your area. Start by creating a search stream for local verified users (verified users often have large and engaged audiences). For example, a search for “filter:verified near:boston” will return Tweets from verified users in the Boston area. To get more specific, experiment with adding relevant keywords. A search for “pizza filter:verified near:Austin” will return influential people talking about pizza in the Austin area.

If you use Twitter in the Hootsuite dashboard you can drill down even further with a geo-search stream, which will return relevant Tweets from within a few miles of your business. Watch this video to learn how to setup a geo-search stream in the dashboard.

With Hootsuite you can save these searches for easy reference from the dashboard and the Hootsuite mobile app.

2. Turn messages into relationships

Now that you’ve identified a few people (and do start with just a few) as local influencers, it’s time to start making connections. This critical stage will lay the groundwork for everything that is to come afterward, opening the door to partnership collaborations. The Twitter platform makes it easy to reach out to any individual Twitter user—just @mention the influencer you want to build a relationship with to target them with your message.

Building a meaningful relationship with an influencer tends to follow a three-stage formula: connect, engage, then activate. First, establish an initial connection with the influencer by ‘following’ their account on Twitter. Many will follow your account in return, especially if they’re highly relevant.

Next, your goal is to establish familiarity and rapport through engagement. Like a few of their Tweets, respond to a relevant piece of content or two, or mention them in a Tweet of your own. Ideally this happens over a period of days or weeks, to allow time for multiple engagement touch points.

Finally, send a Tweet that @mentions them directly.

It’s important to note that high-value individuals receive frequent requests from brands, and are less likely to respond to weak offers or sales pitches as a result. So start by offering value, with no expectation of value in return. If you have a product or experience you can offer, share it with the influencer with no strings attached. View Full Article >>

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