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What Is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer marketing has become a popular and effective way to generate customers. But exactly what is it and how can your company get involved? This guide helps to explain exactly what influencer marketing is.

Who are influencers?

Influencers are people who are able to ‘influence’ consumers into buying products due to their social status. They could be an expert in their area or they could be someone who simply has a lot of authority and a lot of fans. Influencers include major celebrities – as well as more minor internet celebrities who may have a large social media following. Some of the people that fit into the latter category include popular YouTubers, popular Instagram models, viral Twitter accounts and rising TikTok stars.

How does influencer marketing work?

Influencer marketing works like this: a company pays an influencer to promote their product for them. This could be something as simple as paying a celebrity to Tweet about a product on their account. Alternatively, it could involve paying a YouTuber to feature your product in their video.

influencer marking Platform Boots woman in black jacket and blue denim jeans standing on black asphalt road during daytime

As a result of this, you end up gaining more exposure for your product – some of the influencer’s followers may be interested in your product and may even end up purchasing it. 

How can I get an influencer to promote my product?

Not all influencers will want to promote all forms of product. In fact, some influencers are likely to be very picky about the products that they choose as sponsors. Ideally, you should try to consider influencers who have some kind of link to your product niche. If you’re trying to promote a beauty product, it would make sense to reach out to beauty vloggers and Instagram makeup artists. If you’re trying to promote business software, consider reaching out to viral Twitter accounts that specialize in business advice or famous entrepreneurs. 

There are platforms that you can use to connect with influencers. Alternatively, you may be able to find a way of directly connecting with influencers by emailing them or their agent. Marketing professionals such as Joey Armstrong can help you to connect with influencers and pitch your product. 

It’s worth noting that the most famous influencers typically receive thousands of sponsorship requests per week – unless you’re willing to pay big bucks, most of these influencers won’t even acknowledge your product. For smaller businesses with not a lot of money to spend, it’s therefore better to stick to minor influencers and build up your exposure from here. 

How can I become an influencer?

To become an influencer, you need to build a reputation and a social media following. This typically involves creating content that goes viral – which, of course, is not easy to do. Once you’ve got a large following, you can start advertising the fact that you accept sponsorships. It’s worth signing up to influencer platforms where sponsors can pitch to you. You get to choose the products you’re willing to promote. For each promotion, you’ll get a payment. It’s a profitable form of business – if that is you can build the necessary following to become influencer-worthy. This post by Shane Barker explains more on how to become an influencer.