You might be asking – what exactly is a Social Media Influencer? Well, to put it plainly, they are the gurus of the social media world, from all walks and industries of life, that have loyal & trusting Followers ranking in the millions. They are also the men and women who determine a lot of what is deemed to be trending or not in the Social Media world.

In other words, they run Social Media.

Brands have come to realize that in order for them and their products/services to earn the trust of the public, they have to go through the leader (the Social Media Influcner). And that is why major brands today – from beauty & fashion to technology & fitness – reach out to these Influencers for partnerships.

However, it’s not all roses and butterflies. There are rules of engagement you need to consider before you embark on such a Influencer partnerships.

1. Carry Out a Compatibility Test
There are thousands of Social Media Influencers out there, but there is only one you; and that is why it’s important to figure out the right Influencer that will help achieve your aim. Reaching out & partnering with just any Influencer can go really wrong, after all there are Instagram stars with millions of followers consisting of people who just think they look pretty, but will not be moved to buy any product or service they proffer.

This is where tools like Curalate Explore come into play. It helps you discover & streamline Influencers that meet your criteria, so you can get the best value for your dime and waste no time doing it.

2. Do Not Neglect the Micro-Influencer
There are people out there who have predicted that the era of the Influencer will soon come to an end. This is based solely on the premise that these Influencers who have millions of Followers sometimes are all bark and no bite. They have the numbers, but brands get no returns on partnerships due to the sporadic nature of their Following. But what they lack, Micro-Influencers more than make up for.

Research shows that these Influcners, who usually operate within the 10,000 – 100,000 Following range, have more engaged Followers and so can give brands the engagement they seek. Plus they usually cost significantly less than their ‘Celebrity’ counterparts.

3. Approach them Professionally
Just because you see what they eat for breakfast every morning and know the colour of their couch, doesn’t mean you’re their friend. And sending DMs (Direct Messages) is certainly almost always going to make you look unprofessional or seem like a stalker.

So instead, send them a message or tweet at them on Twitter. It is more formal, and would establish a professional business relationship from the get-go.

4. Establish a Clear Cut Terms & Conditions Agreement
In the Genesis of Social Media Influencers, partnerships were mainly based on favours or saying nice things for some freebies. But soon, brands realized they were getting the raw end of the deal. That is where the Terms & Conditions Agreements came in.

When working with an Influencer, be sure to have them sign on to a contract that clearly states the rules of engagement. This will not only spell out what is required of them without encroaching on their creative process, but will also facilitate a smooth partnership life span.

5. Build a Relationship
One thing you always have to keep in mind, apart from the business at hand, is that building a relationship with the Influencer is key. A lot of Influencers want to develop a bond with their partners to oil the wheels for future projects; and this can be beneficial to you too.

So beyond the project at hand, establish a connection with the Influencer for future benefits. Besides, they will be more willing to talk about and promote brands they like & have a connection with over those they don’t.

That’s it from us here at CityCard HQ – Remember to adopt these guides when working with Influencers. They will help facilitate the partnership smoothly, and plan & execute it more effectively.

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Photo Credit: RageOn.com

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