In the never-ending quest for quality content, many brands have turned to social media to expand their reach and to establish credibility. But what does “influencer marketing” mean, and how can you become one? Let’s take a quick look.
The Rise Of Influencer Marketing
If you’re reading this, I assume you’re either already involved in social media or are very near to it. Based on your interests and activities on social media, you might be familiar with the term “influencer marketing,” as it relates to marketing on social media platforms. This form of marketing involves using prominent people (known as “influencers”) to create buzz about your product, service or idea.
Think of the Kardashians and how they use their fame on social media to promote brands. Or how about the personalities on TikTok who earn millions of dollars from advertising and sponsorship? The list of influencers goes on and on. In 2019, nearly 58% of marketers plan to have a greater focus on influencer marketing. And what’s driving this trend? The vast majority (84%) say that influencer marketing provides “exceptional value.””
If you’re curious about this marketing trend and want to learn more, continue reading.
Why Online Influencers Are so Popular
To begin with, many people can be found on social media platforms who are already popular and well-known in their communities. This means that you can piggyback on someone else’s fame and popularity to gain even more traction with your brand. Another advantage is that you can target these individuals based on a variety of metrics. Some prefer to be found on TikTok, while others may be more suitable for Instagram. If you have a budget and want to target an audience that’s most likely to respond to your offer, you can measure and track the results of your campaign quite easily. And don’t forget about the value that these individuals provide. Many people are drawn to social media platforms for the news and information that they can find. If you can provide them with content that’s relevant to their interests, you can gain instant credibility.
How To Become an Influencer On Social Media
If you’ve decided that influencer marketing is a suitable approach for your brand, how can you begin to establish your expertise? One of the best places to start is the blogosphere, as it provides you with a steady stream of content that you can use to establish your authority. In 2019, Blogger’s Revenue is projected to hit $24.43 billion.
You can use your blog to build a following, gain credibility, and possibly even make money. While the idea of combining blogging and commerce doesn’t seem like a natural fit, you can use a tool like Strikingly to effortlessly integrate affiliate marketing with your blog. What’s Strikingly’s unique way of doing business? Essentially, the platform provides you with a “heads up” on how much revenue you’ll generate from a click or an action on your site. This way, you don’t get fooled by any fake clicks or fraud, as you’ll always know the truth. Plus, you can measure each click’s value to ensure that you’re not paying for clicks that don’t bring in any revenue.
The Different Kinds Of Blog Posts You Can Write
Depending on your blogging experience and how tech-savvy you are, you may not need very much guidance to get started. For someone who’s new to blogging, it can be a little tricky to know what content will be popular and valuable. That being said, there are certain types of posts that perform much better than others, and you can use this to your advantage.
If you decide that you want to write about lifestyle or beauty related topics, for example, you can bet that thousands (if not millions) of people will want to read your blog post. On the other hand, if your topic is tech-related, you may end up with audiences that are more technically-savvy than the average person. Keep in mind that demographics can vary based on region and language, so you may not reach your full potential audience if you don’t speak their language or live in an area where content is in a different language.
The Most Popular Blog Post Topics
Based on the number of times that a blog post’s URL is clicked on, followed by the amount of times the tweet referencing that blog post is mentioned, a blog post’s topic can be ranked.
This data can be found through a tool like Google Trends, which you can use to search for any niche, keyword, or topic. Below, you’ll find a chart that ranks some of the most popular blog post topics for the last year, as determined by Google Trends.
Top Tier Blog Post Topics
If you want to be seen as an influencer in your niche, write about topics that are highly relevant to your niche. While any blog post can be valuable and educational, writing on a topic that’s already popular may boost your influence and credibility.
When deciding what niche and topics to write about, you have to keep in mind that your goal is to increase your influence and credibility, not just to publish any old blog post. As an influencer, your goal is to attract and retain an audience that’s interested in your niche.
Content Is King
Aside from learning how to become an influential person in your niche, what else can you do to solidify your status as a thought leader? Write as much content as you can, as quickly as you can, to expand your online portfolio. In the words of Hunter Lewis, a HubSpot Senior Manager, “Content is much more valuable than ever before, and if you want to have a successful blog, you have to keep producing content to keep your audience engaged.”
In other words, if you want to be seen as an influencer in your niche, start thinking about ways that you can become a prolific content creator. When it comes to blogging, the most effective and unique strategy is a combination of the two previously mentioned approaches: build a reputation and then monetize that reputation with affiliate marketing.
Build A Reputation
So you’ve started a blog and produced your first few articles. Now what? Well, you can start earning your “influencer” stripes by actively participating in your online communities. Simply put, whenever you interact with your audience on social media or in other online spaces, you’re building credibility and demonstrating thought leadership in your niche.
To get started, join relevant community forums and start participating in conversations. This way, you’ll not only establish yourself as an expert in your niche, but you’ll also gain credibility with your audience. Remember: interaction is key, and it creates credibility. In the words of HubSpot’s Senior Manager of Marketing, “Pro-actively participating in conversations can help you develop a reputation as a thought leader in your niche.”
Monetizing Your Reputation
If you want to turn your influencer status into a profitable business, you can earn money through affiliate marketing. Simply put, you’ll earn a commission (usually between 10% and 30%) whenever someone clicks a monetized link or buys a product that’s promoted in a blog post or a social media status.
To get started, create a small landing page with a few product links (for example, Amazon, eBay, and a few other major online stores) and a call-to-action (CTA) button (to encourage people to make a purchase). When a customer clicks the CTA button, they’ll be taken to the merchant’s site to complete the purchase (remember: you’ll get a commission from this sale).
Obviously, you don’t need to limit yourself to just product links and a CTA button. There are several well-designed affiliate programs that let you choose your own products, and even let you add your own logos, banners, and fonts. Moreover, you can opt-in for paid traffic, which means that you’ll see paid clicks on your page (as long as you meet certain criteria, which you can learn more about here).
For example, if you write about tech-related topics and want to become an influencer in that niche, you could create a blog post that lists all of the top tech products currently on the market. In this way, you’ll provide your audience with an objective, authoritative review of the latest technology and offer advice on which products to buy. With affiliate marketing, you’ll be able to monetize all of that content, assuming that you have a substantial audience.