Influencer marketing offers countless possibilities for businesses in virtually any niche. It has grown with the rise of adblocking software and native advertising solutions, originally out of celebrity endorsement, but with nearly everybody now on social media we find relatively ordinary, down-to-Earth people are often the best influencers.
So, how do you find suitable micro-influencers? There are a number of ways to find micro-influencers in your niche. Here are 7 Unique ways to find micro-influencers in your industry.
Unlike many social media channels, Twitter encourages you to follow, and be followed by, people who are complete strangers in the real world. This makes it one of the easiest places for you to find and make contact with influencers.
Twitter is quite intelligent and takes notice of the kinds of people you follow. It suggests further followers it feels you may be interested in, based on your existing follower list.
You may already know people who you believe are influencers in your industry. If so, search for and follow them. It may be harder to encourage a return follow from an influencer than from a normal person, but if you retweet and like enough of his posts, he is eventually likely to follow you back.
Searching by Topic
One way to find influencers on Twitter is to do a topic search. If you type your niche into the search bar, you’ll see a list of tweets that refer to your subject area. Look under More in the menu bar at the top, and you’ll see People shown as an option.
Selecting this will display a list of Twitter accounts for people who either mention that topic in their bio or who are known for their role in that niche. You will find the more influential Twitter accounts higher up the page.
Analyze Potential Influencers
You can click on somebody’s profile to see his or her Tweets, Following, Followers, and Likes. Unless the topic is extremely niche, influential tweeters usually have a large number of Followers, along with a high number of Likes. To be of use to you, you will want a potential influencer to have reasonably high Following numbers. Otherwise, he is simply likely to be a broadcaster of his own material. As a guide, a Followers: Following ratio should be in the range of 0.7:2.5, for there to be a good chance of an influencer sharing your material. Refine your search even further by using hashtags or by doing an Advanced Search, using Twitter’s more powerful search engine.
Create a List
Create a private Twitter List where you can keep your potential influencers together. You can look at all of their Twitter activity combined, seeing what is happening in their lives. This will influence how you approach them.
You are more likely to get a response if you tweet about content that is relevant to the lives of your potential influencers and their audiences.
2. Facebook Groups
It is more difficult to find influencers on Facebook than Twitter because of Facebook’s focus on people connecting with people they already know. It has strong privacy settings which can make it difficult to directly search for leaders in a niche if you have not already identified who they are.
One approach is to look for Facebook groups in your niche. You can search for groups based around virtually any topic. Depending on the subject, you may find groups based in a certain region.
For instance, if you want to target the backpacking market, there are numerous backpacking Facebook groups, some general (e.g. Backpacking with 28,400 members), some specific to regions (e.g. Backpackers New Zealand with 34,700 members). If you go to the Discover section of Facebook Groups, you will be presented with groups in a wide variety of topic groupings.
Apply to join any groups which may seem appropriate.
Once an admin accepts into a group, you’ll be able to see who the members are. It won’t take long to see which members interact the most, are most respected and are the most influential. It is important that you work through this process slowly, and avoid promoting your business or its products until you’ve built up a reputation in the group. Otherwise, you are in danger of coming across as being spammy.
LinkedIn is one of your best options for connecting with influencers in your niche. It is designed to be a channel for people to link up with other people in the same industry.
Begin by typing your industry name in the LinkedIn search box. You can narrow your search by selecting People and then 1st or 2nd-degree connections. You may also opt to filter by other criteria, such as Location.
Take a close look at each 1st or 2nd-degree connection in your industry and create a list of those people who you feel are worth following up as potential influencers.
Don’t Rush the Relationship
As with Facebook, you will need to build up your relationships with potential LinkedIn influencers slowly. Like their shares and posts. Message them about any good content they create.Your message will need to be specific and add value, however. Merely saying, “Good post!” is a total waste of time.
Another method is to join a relevant LinkedIn group that the influencers are in and intelligently interact with them there, in the same way as you would a Facebook group.
Once an influencer recognizes the value you provide to him, you will probably be able to ask him for a moment of his time to discuss your content or propose some other form of influencer marketing where you could work together for mutual benefit.
Klout attempts to show how much online clout a person has. It gives everybody with a social media presence an influence score between 1 and 100. More than 620 million social media users have a Klout score, with the average being 40 and anybody with a score of 63 or better being considered to be in the top 5% of social media users. Obviously, it’s a play on words – somebody with a high Klout score has high clout on social media. Donald Trump, who is renowned for his love of Twitter, has a Klout score of 95. Katy Perry’s is 92.
Those people with very high Klout scores are of course generally inaccessible for influencer marketing. You would be very unlikely to get Donald Trump to retweet about your product – but if he did, a huge number of people would see and probably respond to it.
Klout measures your influence, not your activity. You might tweet 100 times per day, but if nobody interacts with you, your Klout score will not improve.
You can limit your search for influencers within Klout be those from a particular niche. Type the topic into the search bar, and Klout will return a selection of relevant content. It also shows a Features Expert (randomly picked from those who have recently talked about the topic in social media with a high Klout score).
The Klout Chrome Add-On
You can download a Klout add-on for Chrome which works well with Twitter. Once you’ve installed the add-on, you’ll see a tweeter’s Klout score beside any tweet in your feed. This clearly tells you at a glance the degree of influence any particular Twitter user has, and give you an idea of who to work with.
5. Influencer Marketing Platforms
If you a serious about engaging in influencer marketing, you may opt to run with one of the influencer marketing platforms. There are now quite a few of these specialist platforms for Instagram, SnapChat, Facebook and YouTube.
As with any other marketing function, Influencer marketing platforms vary in their service offering. Platforms offer a combination of influencer search/discovery, influencer relationship management, fee negotiation and payments, campaign management, social listening, audience demographic data, and performance metrics.
Two types of search systems are used by platforms:
An opt-in network – brands search an influencer marketing platform for suitable influencers from a list of influencers who have signed up to the service. These influencers have been screened by the platform to ensure they meet influencer-criteria.
Social scrapers – search the social space of the internet to find people who meet influencer criteria on a particular topic, much like a “Google for Influencer Marketing”.
When you identify suitable influencers on a platform with opt-in search, you already know that they are willing to work with brands as an influencer. The main problem is that there are far fewer influencers found on these search engines.
Social scrapers can find many more truly relevant influencers. However, there is no guarantee that these people will be willing to work with you.
Keyhole provides Twitter and Instagram metrics for marketers to assist them with their social campaigns and content strategy. This includes influencer tracking where you can focus on specific influencers, filtering out any engagement that has occurred as a result of their online activity.
Keyhole allows you to identify topic authorities ideal for your influencer campaigns. It ranks influencers by factors, such as follower engagement, impressions, exposure driven to particular hashtags, and general authority on an influencer’s topic.
Inkybee is a set of blogger outreach tools designed to provide a complete outreach campaign for professionals in digital marketing, social media marketing, public relations and SEO. The tools can be used to find suitable relevant, influential blogs for marketers to reach out to publicize their clients’ work.
Inkybee has a strong set of research and discovery tools to help find the most influential bloggers and a powerful search engine. It also includes a Twitter Influencer Analysis to find any influencers among the followers or friends of any Twitter profile.