What Is Influencer Marketing and How to Use It for Expanding Your Business

What Is Influencer Marketing and How to Use It for Expanding Your Business

Last updated on by in Advertising Personalization


Did you know that consumers trust recommendations from third parties more than they trust a brand itself? In fact, 70% of people will trust a review from a complete stranger.

If somebody tells you they’re the greatest football player on the team, are you automatically going to believe them? Probably not. You are going to have some skepticism because they’re just bragging about themselves. But if somebody else approaches you and tells you that so-and-so is the best player on the team? You’re more likely to believe that other person, aren’t you? That’s because opinions and recommendations are by and large more influential when they don’t come from the source itself.

Knowing this, most digital marketers include company logos and testimonials as social proof on their web pages to strengthen trust and influence visitor behavior.

Here’s a SelectHub landing page that uses social proof throughout the entire page. Notice the company logos at both the top and bottom of the page, as well as many customer testimonials — all including affiliation. The one at the bottom even includes a headshot:

influencer marketing SelectHub

Here’s another example from Mopro. They highlight logos from big-name companies — Skechers, Universal, Yahoo, Levi’s, Microsoft, Nike, and more — to influence prospects’ decision-making.

influencer marketing logos

While including social proof on your pages is great for increasing trust, another method to influence a prospect’s behavior is influencer marketing.

Over the years, influencer marketing has become one of the primary strategies for expanding brand awareness and building successful businesses. Let’s explore what all the hype is about.

What is influencer marketing?

Influencer marketing is a marketing strategy that involves reaching out to well-known individuals to receive their assistance with promoting your product or service. This type of marketing is ideal for generating increased traffic and sales for your business, because your influencer’s audience trusts them, and are more likely to listen to their recommendations.

It’s important to note that when it comes to influencer marketing, the quality of the audience weighs more heavily than the quantity of the audience. That means it’s crucial to choose influencers who are relevant to your target audience so that your campaign resonates well with them. Your influencer’s efforts could reach 30 million people, but if those 30 million people don’t have a need or desire for your product or service, it’s likely that your efforts (and money) will be wasted.

It’s also just as important to consider where your influencer will send traffic once they mention your brand and have their audience intrigued. The best option — a personalized landing page.

Tips for creating a landing page for your influencer campaign

When fully optimized, your landing page has the potential to result in maximum engagement and high conversion rates. Similar to standard landing page best practices, here are some tips for creating your landing page for the campaign:

Just like with any web page, A/B testing the page you are creating is integral to the success of your campaign efforts. By testing various elements, you’re able to see what’s working, and what’s not, allowing you to optimize your page until your results are superior.

What to consider when choosing an influencer

Since your influencer isn’t going to force themselves upon a specific audience, it’s critical that the influencer you choose to reach out to is a good fit for your needs. Remember, just because an influencer has 30 million followers, doesn’t mean they’re the right followers for you — they could be reaching 30 million people who have absolutely no interest in your product or service.
To choose an influencer that’s right for your brand, consider these contextual areas:

Niche

In what area, or areas, can your target audience be found? Is your business focused on medical, legal, accounting, advertising or something else?

Genre

Now choose a specific category (or a few) within your niche — fashion, technology, sports, travel, etc. — and make sure your campaigns attract serious prospects.

Personality/profession

What type of personality or profession will best promote your product or service? Is this person who will connect with your audience a researcher, a person of authority, an educator, a government official, etc.?

Actionability

What exactly are you looking to get out of your influencer campaign, and what action are you hoping the influencer will drive? For example, if you’re looking to increase your Twitter following, you’ll want to choose an influencer who also has an exceptionally large Twitter audience.

How to get started with influencer marketing

Although it’s the influencer’s job to promote your product or service to a targeted audience, it’s your job to communicate your value clearly to the influencer for them to convey that message to their audience.

You need a strategy for getting influencers to share your content. Here are a few ideas:

Include their quotes or commentary on your content

Similar to influencer guest blog posts, adding influencer commentary or quotes to your content is perfect for increasing credibility for your company. It makes readers feel like they’re gathering valuable information, not just from you, but also from other top field experts.

While these additions should stand out among your content (with a block quote or against a contrasting background), they should still flow smoothly with your message. Also, be sure to link those sections back to the source you received them from, and let the influencer know that you’ve used their words/ideas in your content.

Recently, Instapage met with some of the world’s top digital marketers to get their insight on where the industry has been and where it might be heading in the future. We recorded our session to offer it as a video, and repurposed it into a blog post as well, featuring the influencers and their views on the latest marketing trends:

Mention them in a curated list

A curated list is a useful form of marketing content that’s likely to be shared by others. So a good way to get influential thought leaders to share your list is to include them in it.

Curata did this with their curated list of content marketing tools, from website analytics tools to marketing automation tools to blogging and CMS tools:

influencer marketing curata

Once you’ve found all of the biggest names in the industry and you’ve added them to your list, be sure to let them know. Send them a direct message, email them, or tag them on social media to increase engagement at the same time.

Ask them to write a guest blog post

When an industry expert contributes to your blog, not only are you adding great content to your blog, but you’re also boosting your blog’s credibility. Readers see the guest post and have more faith that you will do what you say you can do.

The most valuable benefit of an influencer guest blog post is that they’re likely to share their post across their networks, with their audience. For you, this means reaching a whole new audience.

Tag them on social media

If you’re looking for increased social media engagement, this method is critical.

Research what experts in your field are interested in and produce content that will appeal to them. Post about it on social media and tag or mention them to grab their attention (especially if the content is about them ). You can even send them a direct message to let them know you mentioned them (be careful with direct messages as they can push influencers away).

If your content is relevant, helpful, or inspiring enough, you could earn a share, retweet, or repost.

Ask satisfied customers to provide feedback

If big brands have already become your customers, that’s something to highlight.

Ask clients to answer a few survey/interview questions about your product or service, so others can get an idea of how the product could work for them as well. You can even request that they upload photos or videos of themselves using your product, so prospects can see how your product works, and how other industry leaders are thriving from it.

Reach out to mid-level influencers

It’s important to note that while reaching out to top brands in the industry is ideal for creating brand awareness, there’s nothing wrong with partnering with mid-level influencers to start. If your budget is not quite where you’d like it to be — especially true if you’re a startup company or a small business — this can be a great, cost-effective way to improve your ROI.

In 2015, Try The World, a company that offers international gourmet food subscription boxes, was looking to raise awareness for their products. Instead of turning to a big-name celebrity as their influencer, they decided to reach out to YouTuber, Missy Lanning, who now has over 629K subscribers. She posted this Taste Test Challenge YouTube video featuring a subscription box from Try The World:

influencer marketing try the world

To date, the video has generated over 770,000 views, substantially increased brand awareness, and even earned a better dollar-for-dollar value than working with a top-level influencer.

Ready to expand your business with influencer marketing?

It’s not enough to simply have an effective digital marketing campaign because there’s always something you could be leveraging to make your efforts even more successful.

Whether you’re attempting to reach a whole new audience, looking to increase your ROI, or just hoping to find an advertising method that’s not so invasive, influencer marketing could be exactly what you need.

Once you’ve created your influencer marketing strategy, be sure to send your influencer traffic back to a professional landing page so your new prospects can understand your message and convert into new customers. With Instapage, our 100% customizable templates and designer-friendly platform you can create your influencer landing pages in just minutes.

Show Me the Landing Page Persuasion Guide