Influencer Marketing Strategy: Step-By-Step (2021)

influencer marketing strategy

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Coming up with a successful influencer marketing strategy can spell the difference between a fair and outstanding brand performance. 

If you’re interested to know more about influencer marketing and how they work, then we recommend that you first read through the ultimate guide to influencer marketing to get the ⚽ ball rolling.

Afterward, get back to this article so we can discuss with you the step-by-step process of how to build your very own influencer marketing strategy.

Introduction to Influencer Marketing

When a company reaches out or collaborates with an influencer to market the products and services they offer, this counts as influencer marketing. With credible expertise in their chosen niche and the overall charisma that they have over their community, brands can count on influencers to help sway potential leads into becoming valued customers.

How Big is Influencer Marketing

In 2021, influencer marketing is valued at $13.8 billion. With great growth ???? potential and the conducive environment fostered by the Digital Age, this is projected to expand 30.3 percent by 2028. Looking at these numbers, it’s safe to say that influencer marketing has successfully penetrated the conventional strategies used by brands and companies to increase their sales and revenue. 

Why You Should Try Influencer Marketing

If you’re not convinced yet about how promising influencer marketing is, then the following reasons might persuade you a little bit more into trying this type of marketing strategy.

1. More People are Becoming Influencers

It’s not a secret that more and more individuals are becoming influencers. Nowadays, it doesn’t matter if you start out as a nobody. Eventually, with hard work and perseverance, you can earn popularity and respect from the general audience. You can even achieve another milestone and create a community that you can engage with regularly in the long run.

2. Influencer Marketing Agencies are Growing in Number and Popularity

With lots of things already on their plate, like editing videos or proofreading blog articles, influencers will appreciate having someone else do the administrative side of things for them. This is where marketing agencies come in. Agents or managers help a great deal in making sure that influencers show up to business meetings without compromising their creative freedom. 

3. Influencers are Becoming More Real and Relatable

Gone are the days when the only thing that can hold people’s attention is controversy and make-believe acting. With so many things happening in the world today, influencers are becoming braver and bolder with each post, video ????, or comment they put up on the internet. 

The trend nowadays is to let your audience see the real you. There’s no better time to embrace uniqueness and express firm beliefs than now. However, being vulnerable on the internet has its consequences that influencers should prepare for.

4. Wider Selection of Content Options

With the growing population of influencers online, there’s going to be an inevitable overlap of content ideas. But even so, you can still find different content options, formats, styles, and approaches that will appeal to different audience segments. The inherent, unique characteristics of any influencer also help to diversify the existing content. 

Creating an Influencer Marketing Strategy

This guide on how to accomplish creating an influencer marketing strategy in 2021 will break it down into 15 actionable tasks. 

1. Know Your Target Audience

Have you curated your audience for your product or service? If you haven’t already, we recommend that you do this task first to get to know your target ???? audience and evaluate what types of influencers will be suitable candidates for the marketing strategy you’re creating.

2. Set Your Goals

In our ultimate guide to influencer marketing, we talked about goal-setting and the SMART guidelines. The Eisenhower matrix below will also be a helpful reference for this action step.

Contemplate which of the following goals you’d want to achieve for this specific marketing strategy.

  • Amplify the brand awareness
  • Build the identity and niche associated with your brand
  • Audience curation
  • Community engagement
  • Target more sales 
  • Generate more leads
  • Encourage customer loyalty
  • Get more links directed to your site

Depending on how well you’ve drafted your strategy, you can hit more than a single goal with it. If you’re interested to know more about how well you’re hitting your targets, check out this guide on Key Performance Indicators or KPIs.

3. Find the Right Type of Influencer Marketing Campaign For You

The goals you’ve set in step 2 will dictate the type of influencer marketing campaign you’ll need. Say, for example, that you’d want to target more sales. Then, you should consider implementing marketing campaigns involving gifts, reviews, giveaways, and product placements to name a few. 

If you have previous data about which campaigns have or have not worked for your brand before, it’ll give you a headstart in finding the right type for your specific goal.

4. Find the Right Influencers You Want to Work With

Reaching out to influencers that you’re interested in working with is great for building connections and fostering future partnerships. However, for the particular influencer marketing strategy you’re working on, not every influencer you meet will be the right one.

So, what do you have to do? Cull down your list of influencer contacts and only arrange meetings and brainstorming sessions with the ones you can see yourself in the campaign with. This actionable step funnels the amount of time, money, and effort you’ll be spending into the most suitable candidate for your strategy.

5. Choose the Right Social Media Platform

Influencers have their respective niches and these niches are situated in various social media platforms on the internet today. For one, if you’ve decided that you’ll need micro-influencers to be the standard-bearer of your campaign, then heading into Instagram will be a good choice.

Choosing the right social media platform can also be dictated by the type of influencer marketing campaign you’re planning to execute. For instance, if you instead selected a YouTuber to partner with, then product placements on their background will be a great way to showcase your brand.

6. Set a Budget

You should prepare and allocate a budget floor and ceiling for your campaign. This includes the agreed-upon payment for influencers per content. It can be as low as $10 per post or as high as a million, depending on the type of influencer.

A friendly little tip: don’t go overboard with the money you’ll be shelling out for fees. Give the influencers the amount that both parties agreed with and be honest with them if you can’t meet their asking fee. If they’re genuinely interested to do the campaign with you, they’ll understand the budget issue and compromise. Otherwise, it’s time to connect with the next influencer on your list. 

7. Be Authentic

It’s easy to gravitate towards the current marketing trends ???? and join the bandwagon. But with everyone doing the same thing, the market can get saturated with very similar campaigns and product choices.

To refrain from becoming “just another marketing campaign”, you should start with an interesting project you can call your own. Be authentic and squeeze out your creative juices in each brainstorming session you have. Tune out the marketing noise for a while and start from scratch if you can. 

8. Create Irresistible Content

Influencers and members of the creator economy, in general, repurpose their content to post on every platform to maximize their coverage and exposure. While this actionable step has its own merits, it also suggests that the content needs amplification to gain attention. But with irresistible content that’s hard to not get attracted to, you might not have to do as much repurposing. It takes a while to create one though, so be patient.

9. Convert Loyal Customers Into Ambassadors

Developing programs for brand ambassadors is the norm for influencer marketing. But this doesn’t mean that such programs are limited to those personalities. 

If you think about it, your analytics will show you data about who your loyal customers are. They are the ones who’d be genuinely interested in becoming brand ambassadors. They love the product, they can vouch for it, and they might need less convincing than influencers who might not even know about your brand until you reach out to them. 

Although loyal customers have significantly less following than influencers, you can build a reputation of patronizing your loyal customers, which is also a form of marketing and publicity. That’s hitting two birds with one stone, right?

10. Reach Out to Influencers

When you’re planning an influencer marketing strategy, it goes without saying that you need to do research on influencers. The data you need to collect might include an influencer’s social media account handles, e-mail address, previous partnerships with other brands, and most recent content published. All these are at the top of the basic background checklist. 

Make them feel that you’re genuinely interested in them and their work. This increases the chances of you both getting along and eventually striking a deal. Learn more about how to pitch properly to influencers in 2021 on this link.

11. Give Creative Control to Influencers

The biggest no-no in influencer marketing is when brands meddle with the creative process of influencers. Firstly, it’s a sign of disrespect and lack of trust coming from the brand. And secondly, wanting to have absolute control over your campaign will not yield fruitful results. Learn to trust everyone on your team. 

So, if you really want your influencer marketing campaign to work, give the reins of creative control over to your influencers. You can always provide feedback and raise your concerns after they’ve presented their work. This way, both parties can compromise and agree on what works and what doesn’t in the marketing campaign

12. Set Up Campaigns and Ask Your Influencers to Distribute Your Content

Once you’ve finalized the content and format that will be used in the campaign, set them up and get ready for distribution. Of course, your company’s marketing team will spearhead the campaign but your partner influencers will be the heralds of this undertaking.

Depending on your agreement, you can ask them to post the marketing content to all their social media accounts and keep on talking about it until the campaign ends. You can also give them permission to conduct giveaways, or other smaller campaigns themselves to help you out.

Again, the key is to deliver what both parties have agreed with.

13. Keep Track of Your Outreach

As soon as the campaign goes live, you’ll need to keep track of the metrics you set up in the first place. So, it’s important that you know your key performance indicators or KPIs very well and how to measure them.

Using KPIs will help you view your outreach data and analytics without bias, so you can make adjustments to the execution as needed. These can also serve as baseline data that you can use in your next campaigns.

14. Analyze the Results

After the campaign ends, it’s a standard operating procedure to sit down with your marketing team and analyze everything that’s happened from planning to execution. It’s at this step that you’ll know if your campaign is successful ✨ or not. 

Are the numbers you’ve obtained within the KPI range you set at the start? Which points of the campaign failed or needed improvement? Here, you can be brutally honest with your team and focus on the numbers. 

15. Review and Improve Your Strat

Some campaign managers and teams stop after analyzing their results. We hate to break it to you, but that’s just wrong and an incomplete take on conducting marketing campaigns. 

The final and culminating step in any plan or strategy is to review and evaluate. Now that you know what went wrong, and what went well, you can revise your plan for next time. With this actionable step, you’ll be able to head back onto the battlefield with fewer chinks in your armor and achieve greater heights than you did before.

You Might Ask

What is an example of influencer marketing?

An example of an influencer marketing campaign is Hello Fresh’s collaboration with influencers and food ???? bloggers. By offering discounts and free meals to the influencer’s followers and community, Hello Fresh is able to generate more leads on top of sales.  


Is influencer marketing effective in 2021?

Yes, influencer marketing is quite an important strategy for brands. In fact, 67.9 percent of companies are using this strategy in 2021. This means that more brands are recognizing the effectiveness of influencer marketing for their companies. It’s even forecasted that these numbers will still go up by 72.5 percent in 2022. 


What is the future of influencer marketing?

In the future, the influencer marketing industry is projected to be valued at $15 billion by 2022. This suggests that influencer marketing campaigns will continue to grow and soon become part of mainstream marketing strategies.  


Does influencer marketing actually work?

Yes, influencer marketing actually works. In fact, more than half of marketers agree that influencer marketing is a good strategy for a company. Here are what the numbers have to say:

  • 80 percent of marketers vouch for its effectiveness
  • 89 percent agree that it works well, if not better than other strategies
  • 71 percent claim that it brings better quality and higher quantity of traffic to the companies

How big is the influencer marketing industry?

As of 2021, the influencer marketing industry is already valued at $13.8 billion. It contributes to about 13 percent of the whole creator economy market size, which is estimated at $104.2 billion.


Conclusion

Committing to trying out an influencer marketing strategy will require as much of the company’s resources as other marketing channels. While there is available good, reliable feedback about this undertaking, you can never go wrong with carefully planning each step to make sure that you’ll get the most out of it, even if it doesn’t go well.

If we’re to emphasize key ???? points in this step-by-step guide, they are to conduct serious research and to be creative with your strategy. A marketer’s job is no easy one. But with the proper planning and a kickass team, the job becomes a bit more manageable. Like marketers, influencers also need other people to successfully sail along with them in the internet realm. 

So, what better way than to collaborate in an influencer marketing strategy and be in a win-win situation? Get ready to call your marketing team and start brainstorming!

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