Identify Influencers That Fit Your Niche | MODERNSPEAK

Kristyn Snell (She/Her)

March 18, 2024

Find the perfect influencer for your marketing campaign

In the wild world of online influence, tapping into the power of influencer marketing is a game-changer for brands looking to connect with their audience in a genuine way. Yet, wrangling the right influencers who vibe with your niche or product can feel like searching for an old email in your Outlook inbox (IYKYK). We’ve got you!  With the right strategy, patience, and a clear understanding of your campaign goals, you can uncover influencers who match your brand's vibe and stir up some serious engagement.  Working with an influencer marketing agency like our team (wink, wink) can help.  But if you’re on a DIY mission, here are the essential steps to source creators aligned with your niche.  

Find Influencers for Your Niche - RESEARCH

Finding influencers within your niche requires thorough research.  Note - this part can be time-consuming but will pay out in the long run.  Start by identifying the key topics, interests, and demographics relevant to your brand.  Don’t forget the broader topics that your brand fits into.  Themes like wellness, adventure, tech, or lifestyle can help steer your search.  At this stage, it’s also important to narrow down which platforms your brand is active on and which platform the campaign will take place.  Pro tip: if your brand is not active on TikTok, partnering with a TikTok influencer might not be the best fit. 

From there, dive into the social media platforms, influencer marketing platforms, and Google searches to discover active influencers in your niche.   Google is a great place to start, however, there are more sophisticated digital tools (used by agencies like ours) that can pinpoint the checklist of characteristics you are looking for.  If you aren’t using any tools, you could use the in-app discovery prompts that help connect you with more influencers “like this” that you might see when you land on the page of a new creator.  

Start making your shortlist, and as you add the names, actively review the previous content they have posted to confirm they are consistently creating content related to your industry AND have an engaged audience.

Target the Right Influencers

Once you've identified potential shortlist influencers or creators, evaluating whether they align with your brand values and target audience is essential. Consider the influencer's content style, tone, and values. Look for influencers whose audience demographics closely match your target market. Quality is more important than quantity; focus on influencers with a genuine connection to their followers rather than those with the largest following.  At this stage of the discovery process, evaluating their audience metrics (geography, age, etc.) may be challenging without access to their back-end data.  (More on this later).  

Influencer Marketing Strategy

Developing a solid influencer marketing strategy is crucial for success. Determine your campaign objectives, whether it's increasing brand awareness, driving website traffic, or generating sales. Having VERY clear goals will have a HUGE impact on the campaign's next steps, so you cannot skip this step.  Define clear metrics to measure the success of your influencer collaborations, such as engagement rates, click-through rates, and conversions.   The influencers you select will need to support your goals, and the tactics used in the campaign and the style of content produced will be impacted by what type of outcome you are trying to achieve.  

Influencer Research

Before reaching out to influencers, conduct thorough research to understand their content, audience, and engagement rates. Analyze their past collaborations to gauge the effectiveness of their partnerships. Look for consistency in their content quality and authenticity. Pay attention to how they interact with their audience and whether their followers actively engage with their posts.  This takes time, and energy, and will prevent many surprises down the road.  It also comes with the caveat that the algorithm fluctuations, trend cycle, and global current events all impact content performance.  

Red Flags to Watch Out for When Choosing Influencers

While evaluating potential influencers, look for red flags that may indicate a poor fit for your brand. These may include controversial or offensive content history, low engagement rates, or fake followers. Scrutinize the authenticity of their audience and be wary of influencers who prioritize quantity over quality. Understanding the ratio of paid content to organic content and their content posting cadence (3 x a day vs two times a week) will help you understand if your investment will stand out or get buried in the content churn.  Trust your instincts and prioritize collaborations with influencers who genuinely resonate with your brand.  Your gut knows things your rational mind might not!

Authentic Collaborations

Authenticity is key to successful influencer partnerships. Choose influencers who genuinely believe in your brand and are passionate about your products or services. Encourage them to create content that feels natural and authentic to their audience while highlighting the unique value of your brand. Avoid overly scripted or promotional content that may come across as inauthentic and turn off followers.  (Hint, check who has already been tagging, mentioning, and DMing you.  You might already have a shortlist of emerging creators who are saying, “hey, let’s work together” and have a proven portfolio of brand-aligned content they’ve already published. 

Criteria for Choosing Influencers for Your Brand

When selecting influencers for your brand, consider the following criteria:

  • Relevance: Choose influencers whose content aligns with your brand's niche and target audience.
  • Engagement: Look for influencers with a highly engaged audience who actively interact with their content.
  • Authenticity: Prioritize influencers who authentically resonate with their followers and share a genuine enthusiasm for your brand.
  • Reach: While follower count is important, prioritize quality over quantity and focus on influencers with a loyal and engaged following.
  • Consistency: Select influencers who consistently produce high-quality content and maintain a consistent brand image.
  • Values: Ensure the influencer's values and personality align with your brand's ethos and messaging.

In conclusion, identifying influencers that fit your niche requires careful research, strategic planning, and a focus on authenticity. By targeting the right influencers and fostering genuine collaborations, you can leverage the power of influencer marketing to effectively reach and engage your target audience. Choose influencers who align with your brand values and prioritize building long-term relationships that benefit both parties. Influencer marketing can be a valuable asset in your digital marketing toolkit with the right approach.

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