Typical influencer content has long been composed of a blog post with a few required social shares, but social media should be a larger part of influencer campaigns. Gone are the days of readers simply discovering blog posts on their own. With the advent of social media, namely Pinterest, and a rise in knowledge of SEO, bloggers have to be both content writers and marketers in order to get more eyes on their content, sponsored or not.
With 97% of adults age 16-64 visiting a social media platform in the past month, influencers and brands alike should be sharing their content on various social channels in order to earn a higher ROI on each piece of content. What does this look like from a brand perspective?
Pageviews and followers don’t mean as much as they used to. Brands should dig a little deeper when seeking out the best influencers for their campaigns by looking for influencers with strong social media engagement. For example, look for influencers who receive high reach and a lot of active comments on their Facebook posts; influencers who host or participate in Twitter chats; or influencers who have embraced live video through Facebook Live, Instagram Stories, or Snapchat.
When brands reach out to influencers to create authentic sponsored content, they should strongly encourage influencers to do more than simply share their blog post on each social channel once or twice. Bloggers tend to share an image from their blog post, along with a short blurb about the content and a link for social media users to read the rest of the post. This works fine, but truly shareable social content requires a bit more effort.
Rather than simply sharing their blog post, influencers can increase shares and engagement by creating content exclusively for each social media channel that asks a question, makes people laugh, makes people think, or is inspired by a hot topic. When in doubt, cute animals always work.
Sponsored content doesn’t always have to include a blog post. Jay Baer, President of Convince & Convert, says, “The goals of content marketing are consumption, then behavior. The goals of social media are participation, then behavior.” (source) Consider the goals for your influencer campaign before determining how you will structure your campaign.
Work with influencers to creatively share your product in ways that don’t involve a blog post, such as:
Brands seem more approachable when they actually communicate with consumers on social media. With the rise of chatbots and social messaging, like the calls-to-action on Instagram and Facebook Messenger, brands now have a unique opportunity to chat 1:1 with consumers, answer their questions, solve their problems, and learn from them.
How does this tie into influencer marketing? Consider a brand ambassador. Brands like Home Depot and Wayfair work with brand ambassadors for months or a year at a time because of their continued reach and engagement. These brand ambassadors can now take over a brand’s social channels for a day and talk directly to consumers about their experience with the brand. Twitter chats, Facebook Live broadcasts, and Instagram Stories are perfect for this type of interaction.
Social media continues to grow, with 2.3 billion (with a B!) active social media users, and as more users create accounts and social channels introduce new ways to engage, social media should play a larger role in influencer campaigns.