Approaching micro influencers is a task which, when prepared for, can be rolled out simply and with great effect. In previous blog posts we explored what micro influencer marketing is, and why finding the right micro influencers for your brand is not only crucial but also an important step to take prior to approaching influencers. If you have already identified the right targets and platforms for your brand based on business objectives, brand values and visual representation, then read on to learn how to build an authentic relationship with micro influencers.
Step one – observe their behaviour
At this point, you should already have picked out ‘good fit’ micro influencers for your brand, and be following them across their most relevant social media platforms. So now it is all about getting to know them. The more you understand the way they work, the more efficiently you will be able to collaborate and collectively deliver results for your brand. Ensure your brand is following them on these platforms and observe their ongoing social media behaviour and engagement with your target audience.
Step two – understand your contractual options
There are many ways a brand can work with micro influencers. The chosen route should once again be based on your business objectives: be it growing brand awareness, enhancing brand positioning through the creation of elevated post content, or increasing consumer engagement and, ultimately, sales.
Within our recent analysis of ‘How micro influencers can elevate your brand,’ the Siren team outlined the below three key ways to work with influencers. Prior to liaising with them, you will need to understand what these partnership opportunities look like.
Content creation - the traditional form of working with an influencer is through comp’d experiences, and gifting them a free product or service in exchange for social media promotion, for which micro influencers will always create their own content. Note that the sponsored posts need to indicate that they are gifted or paid for opportunity.
- Affiliate marketing – for those brands looking to sell and shift products, an effective option is to work with micro influencers via affiliate marketing. This will not only focus on direct sales, but will also further align your brand with the aesthetics, values and styles of the chosen influencers.
- Competitions - running a competition with micro influencers is extremely effective to increase engagement and following for your own brand. This is because influencer led competitions on social media will request participants to follow and engage with your brand directly. Once the influencer’s audience has been re-directed to your brand page, it is then up to you to engage with them to keep them there.
- Event participation – as consumers are looking to expand the ways in which they experience brands (aka experiential marketing), it has become increasingly popular to allow your influencer to directly engage with your audience via hosted events.
- Consultancy - working with a micro influencer on the ‘behind the scenes’ development stages of your brand life cycle is an effective way to gain expertise on the chosen field of that influencer. They are able to provide an outsider perspective on your brand, the market and consumers.
Step three - perfect your elevator pitch
Once the chosen route of collaboration has been decided on, your elevator pitch, including brand objectives, opportunities and method, should be prepared. The delivery of this will depend on your brand’s identity and tone of voice, and should be consistent with existing brand guidelines. For playful consumer brands, a shorter and more casual introduction over social media private messages may be the best route. Larger corporate brands may prefer a more direct and official approach over email (where applicable). All options should be reviewed against the brand’s existing communication strategies.
Step four - develop the relationship
The relationship development stage between the brand and the micro influencer is a key phase to optimise ROI opportunities in both the short and long term. This is also the negotiation and agreement phase regarding deliverables, tone of voice, visual guidelines and timings.
The more you can develop a personal relationship with influencers, the better. This will not only improve the process of working with them, but their personal opinion of your brand (a word of mouth positioning) will also improve the quality of work they deliver. This, in turn, can open doors for a long term relationship, which, with influencers, is always the goal.
Find out more about how we achieved some amazing micro influencer results for No. Fifty Cheyne, The Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company and Rabbie’s.
Find out more about how engaging influencers can benefit brands with our exclusive, free guide: