Do you want to become a social media influencer? Maybe you’ve already gained some traction on social media, but you would like to spice up your influencer marketing game a bit more?
Today, we are going to share a few insights on how you can give yourself an advantage over your competitors and build a strong influencer brand. To do so, you’ll need to distinguish yourself from the crowd of other social media influencers.
Why should you stand out as a social media influencer?
The stronger your influencer brand is, the more chance you’ve got of being recognized – and paid for your endorsements. But being noticed among fierce competition is not easy for many social media influencers, even those who seemingly have all it takes to be seen. Posting quality content regularly may not be sufficient any longer, and influencers need to come up with new ideas if they want to attract advertisers.
Simply put, standing out leads to having more. More followers, more business, more fun, and more fame – you name it. Being a social media influencer can be a real, full-time job, so many aspiring influencers take their strategies seriously. Everyone wants to shine, but not everyone knows how to do it right.
How to stand out as a social media influencer
If you are hoping for a unique recipe that you can copy and paste into your strategy, then we are sorry to break it to you, but that simply doesn’t exist. Many factors contribute to the success of each social media influencer, and they vary from case to case. However, we decided to list some of the best practices you can get inspired by and follow in your influencer marketing activities.
1. Find your niche
Having a niche is one of the factors that can help you stand out as a social media influencer. Sometimes it is hard to describe or narrow your niche down since a lifestyle can’t always be considered to be a niche. However, if 85% of your content is taken up by DIY clothes sewing, for example, then this can be regarded as a niche and, ultimately, as your hallmark in the influencer marketing world.
2. Build an online community
Many influencers mistakenly understand building a community as interacting with comments under their posts. Of course, that type of interaction still matters: you shouldn’t ignore any comments or suggestions left on your profile. Acknowledging them and answering them quickly helps you build a special bond with your followers. However, there’s much more than that to actually building a community.
Diversifying communication channels matters a lot. Try to be as ready as possible for a potential crisis, like having your account blocked or a platform disappearing ‘overnight’. Do you remember Vine? After years of seemingly successful operations, the service shut down without much notice and its stars had to find new outlets for their social presence. This is also one of the reasons why bloggers turned to social media, and many social media influencers manage not only their own pages but also groups or private profiles – as backup for their main channels of interacting with followers.
Online communities organized into Facebook groups, for example, have become interesting to brands as spaces where products and services can be advertised. Collaborating with a social media influencer who managed to gather a significant chunk of their following in a Facebook group can be beneficial and appealing for many brands.
3. Create a professional media kit
Let’s say you can have the most wonderful content published on your channels. You attract followers from all over the world. However, if you don’t have a professional, data-based media kit on hand, some potential advertisers may not be interested in working with you.
If you are serious about being a professional social media influencer, double-check if your media kit is professional enough to not put anyone off. Have you included all the necessary data? Is the presentation of statistics comprehensible enough?
A professional media kit for social media influencer marketing campaigns should consist of:
- a short bio and characteristics of your services,
- a list of services that you can provide, along with their pricing,
- examples of campaigns you’ve previously managed,
- testimonials (if applicable),
- channel and audience statistics.
Providing brands with statistics can be tricky, but not if you have reliable metrics at your disposal. With NapoleonCat’s special dashboards for influencers, including real-time data to your pitches will no longer be a hassle. Read more about the feature and sign up for a free trial here.
4. Avoid spammy self-promotion
The worst you can do to your personal brand is to “spray and pray”. Unfortunately, there are some social media influencers who think that spamming irrelevant groups with their content is a great idea. However, reality does not work like that and by resorting to spammy practices, you put your content at risk of being banned or filtered out on social media.
That’s why you should lean your social media influencer personal branding on a few pillars.
First of all: joining groups is not the worst idea ever, as long as they are relevant to your niche or business and you can get involved in fruitful discussions where your insights add value. This applies to any type of interaction on social media: as long as you add something valuable, you are good to go.
Don’t be afraid of sharing what you are into these days. If you attend an interesting video conference or meetup, or someone writes about your successful campaign and shares your posts, then re-share it too!
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5. Leverage trends
To be a successful social media influencer, you also need to be an early adopter. Even if your current methods work wonders, you can always test some new ones and see if they bring any results. If you enter a particular social media platform even a few weeks later than your competitors, it may be too late for you to shine on it. Instead of jumping on a bandwagon, be the one to lead it. Who knows when you might identify a brand new trend and implement it before others do?
6. Go the extra mile
Many brands resign from further social media influencer campaigns after having been put off by communication with a particular influencer in the past. There is a bit of a hurtful belief out there that social media influencers just want to benefit themselves from collaborations and only give the contractually required minimum.
Prove brands wrong and make extra efforts when planning and executing your campaigns. This could just be something really small, such as an additional post on your Instagram Story. You may also simply share some ideas to improve the overall performance of the social media influencer campaign you’ve been hired to execute.
Many influencers refuse to do so, or they charge extra for any additional steps, no matter how small and effortless. If instead you use your own initiative for the sake of a campaign’s success and building a relationship with the brand, then you will gain extra brownie points in the eyes of that particular brand – and, potentially, an entire niche or local market.
They may not only choose you for their next campaign, but might recommend you further and spread nothing but kind words about collaborating with you. This is exactly what you need if you want to build a strong social media influencer brand.
7. Befriend other social media influencers
No, it does not sound ridiculous! The influencer marketing cake is big enough for everyone to have their fair share. If you maintain good connections with bloggers and social media influencers or get involved in some group campaigns and activities together, you can increase your reach and be seen as an open person who embraces collaboration instead of staying away from it. Your influencer connections might also help you become noticed and recognized and support your personal campaigns and initiatives.
That’s right. You can stand out from the crowd whilst collaborating with some parts of it.
Of course, there are two sides to the coin: you should always return the favour. At the end of the day, though, such friendships can be very beneficial for both sides.
8. Listen to your audience
Audience should be incredibly important for every social media influencer. Their presence, engagement and interactions provide brands with important insights on whether collaborations with a given influencer could be successful. This is why, in order to be a notable social media influencer, you need to listen to your audience and not just hear it.
If your target group reacts better to specific types of content or practically demands you create more of it, then it may be profitable to focus your efforts there. Distribute content according to where your audience is present and active, give them some food for thought, and ensure that you take their suggestions seriously.
Talk to them, talk with them, and talk about them.
For example, if your audience asks for more Instagram Stories on one particular subject, think about how you can squeeze that into your strategy and keep your followers updated on your progress. Go the extra mile not only for brands but also for those who help create your own brand: your audience.
Using all of the discussed methods may not win brands’ hearts instantly, but it can bring you a step closer to doing so. To become a busy, sought-after social media influencer, you need to stay professional, engaged and creative. Instead of taking campaigns for granted, take them as unique opportunities to shine bright like a diamond and show off your best side in great detail.