Modern marketing strategies require much more than a catchy slogan and a nice visual. Companies of all sizes are looking to build lasting connections with their target audiences through all available channels.
Influencer marketing is now one of the most powerful ways to interact with consumers without sounding too pushy or promotional. Influencers can get a company’s message across to consumers in a smoother, more personalized way, a fact of which brands are well aware.
Becoming an influencer within a specific industry is a great way to help brands captivate their audiences. Building the reputation and credibility to effectively influence the masses takes a lot of hard work.
To help you on your quest to becoming a reputable influencer, I’ve put together a list of 10 tips to help you gain a good reputation, set yourself up as a thought leader, and become a relevant figure within your field of expertise.
1- Learn About Your Audience
Remember that influencers depend on building a connection with consumers in order to influence their purchasing decisions. Before deciding how to build that connection, you have to think about your target audience.
A good way to gain valuable insights about your target audience is to carry out market research, as you would if you were launching a company. Consider their age ranges, social class, dominating gender, and other interests that could dictate your tone of voice, style, and the topics you’ll be covering.
2- Add Value To Your Image
The most obvious way to add value to your image is to show off your knowledge. You can achieve this by creating valuable content, such as blog posts, infographics, and other resources that are relevant to your industry and then sharing these (at no cost) with your followers.
You can also request your audience’s email addresses to create a list of followers that the brand can then use to create leads. Offer free downloads in exchange for contact information and launch email campaigns that will keep your followers engaged and up-to-date with your latest posts and industry news.
3- Be An Advocate, Not A Salesperson
Becoming an influencer is about being knowledgeable and having credibility. One of the best ways to build and maintain credibility is to be an advocate and give honest advice or feedback about a product or company.
More importantly, you have to make sure you don’t sound like a salesperson who is just trying to force people into buying a product. By avoiding this, you’ll earn a reputation for being a reliable source and for giving valuable advice, rather than being a product-pusher.
4- Build Your Fan Base
In order to be a successful influencer, you need to have a decent base of followers. Your industry will dictate the number of followers you require to make an impact. However, the one thing that is more important than your number of followers is their quality and loyalty.
Instead of racking up hollow numbers, make sure your followers are interested in your industry. Having a fan base that’s interested in your industry will exponentially increase the impact of your posts, articles, and engagement. Brands who are interested in working with you will consider the number of followers you have, but they will also look at how you interact with them and their level of engagement.
5- Make Reading Part Of Your Everyday Ritual
One of the benefits of being an influencer is that you will be on a constant quest to learn new things. In order to achieve this task, you should incorporate reading into your daily routine. Reading on a regular basis will not only teach you new skills and make you more knowledgeable but will also increase your mental agility and expand your vocabulary.
Remember, you shouldn’t only focus on reading about your field of expertise. You should read a variety of texts that range from informative articles to novels to world news. Joining a book club is also a great idea because it will encourage you to stay current with your reading while sharing your thoughts with like-minded people.
6- Stay Atop Relevant News In Your Industry
Aside from reading world news, you should also remain updated with the hottest topics in your industry. Every influencer worth his weight in gold needs to stay abreast with the headline-worthy news in his field of expertise.
Besides being able to answer questions when asked, you can even go a step further and share your point of view proactively with your audience. This will help them understand the impact of such news and also show them that you are a good source of valuable information.
7- Network, Network, Network
Rome wasn’t built in a day and the same thing goes for becoming an influencer. That being said, creating a network of connections, both online and offline, will help you build a name for yourself faster because you will be able to learn from established professionals. In addition, you’ll increase your chances of getting noticed by brands and landing significant contracts, as you will have more chance of showing up on their radar.
8- Participate In Relevant Conversations
As a rule of thumb, you should join all relevant forum and social media groups and participate in the discussions that are taking center stage. You’ll have the chance to demonstrate your knowledge and versatility by joining the conversation with already-established influencers and brands who are looking for the right person to endorse their companies.
9- Be Memorable And Authentic
One thing that companies and consumers have in common is that they want influencers to be memorable and original. You can study established professionals and follow in their footsteps, but you should add your unique and personal touch to make sure you’re not flat-out copying someone else’s style.
If you are blindly following what others are doing and don’t work on being original, you won’t be able to captivate audiences, let alone find a brand who wants you to endorse them. Always find your own tone of voice and earn a name for being authentic rather than a knockoff.
10- Aim To Inspire Others
Building a relationship with the masses is about giving them hope and inspiration. This doesn’t mean you have to encourage your followers to do what you’re doing. Instead, show them through your actions that hard work and dedication can really make a difference and share applicable tips that they can adopt to bring success to their professional and personal lives.
Becoming an influencer is about being knowledgeable and cultivating a healthy relationship with your audience. By using the tips outlined above, you’ll be able to enter the industry with a bang this year, influencing others with your expertise while paving your way to success.