Social media is a powerful tool and has integrated into everyone’s lives. We use it to connect with family and friends, share our interests or showcase our products and services. It has become an integral part of our existence.
In the past, mass media created celebrities, and the only influencer marketing campaigns that we saw were expensive campaigns like KFC, Coca-Cola or Nike. Today the tables have turned, and almost anyone can be an influencer as long as they have a dedicated following who trusts and supports them.
People can find communities that align with their interests making it easier for marketers to tap into niche audiences. This also gave rise to unlikely influencer-type celebrities occupation where with hard work ad a bit of luck, you can be a social media influencer.
What Is A Social Media Influencer?
In most cases, when we describe a social media influencer, we think about individuals online with a large following who often make money from promoting brands and their products. However, there is no specific number of followers you need to be called an influencer, as even micro-influencers can introduce new products to their followers and audience. When brands work with influencers, it is to access their audience. The influencer should have a decent amount of followers and good engagement to ensure the brand will receive a relatively good return on its investment. At a minimum, the company would want a decent amount of product or business exposure.
Before you decide to quit your day job, please remember, on average, 1-5% of influencers make a decent living from it. Many influencers can have hundreds of thousands of followers and often only receive free products and or strategic collaboration opportunities in return for exposure to the influencers niche audience.
Consistently making content to share with their audience online is how influencers stay relevant and at the forefront of their follower’s minds in a world where attention is the new currency.
How To Become A Social Media Influencer
So you’ve had a think, and you’re sure being an influencer is what you want to do. Now it’s time to put yourself to the test. Below are six tips that can help you on your way.
Choose A Niche
Choosing a niche to develop your brand will be how people identify you as an influencer in your chosen field. Without it, it may not be easy to grow to your desired level. Most successful influencers have a niche. Whether it’s popular culture, animals, travel, or fashion, they are easily identified in this way.
You can figure what niche to use by your interests or talents. If you find it hard to narrow down on a topic, you can brainstorm to find out what interests you outside of your day job or schooling.
Followers naturally gravitate to what they like and are interested in, and when you love what you do, your authenticity can be seen effortlessly.
Which Social Platforms Will You Use?
Choosing the best way to reach your potential audience is equally essential to your niche. Do they watch videos on Instagram, what age group are you targeting, and what app do they use the most?
If you create how-to videos, then Youtube will be better than Twitter, but platforms like LinkedIn would be a better option if you target business owners with coaching opportunities.
Outside of where your audience is, what platforms are you good and most comfortable with using. What are the platforms that you think your content and character will shine? Where can you make the best impact?
Engage Your Target Audience
To become a respected and in-demand influencer, you have to engage and listen to your target audience regularly. Engage your audience in the content creation process. What would your audience like to see more of on your channel. Do polls and surveys.
Inspired by the feedback you receive, create and post the content and measure the engagement. Measuring engagement is usually done via the platform insights and through the number of Likes, Comments, Views & Shares you receive. Please bear in mind that different platforms have different ways of measuring engagement.
You can tell what type of content people like as you will have a significant engagement number, directly showing you what parts of your content have people interested.
Share Your Message & Connect With Your Audience
People love stories, and having a relatable story to share will connect you with your followers on a deeper and more personal level. A creator with a powerful message can connect people all across the world. Combine your message with strategic marketing and content that can benefit your audience, and you have yourself a winning formula.
With this strategy, you can build yourself a solid community of dedicated followers who strongly identify with your purpose or cause. Remember your story; no matter how painful or shameful you think it is, it can always inspire someone else.
Quality Equipment Is An Investment
Being authentic and relatable is essential, but your audience will expect polished and well-crafted content after a while. When you start, your audience will accept low-quality or messily edited videos, but soon after, your audience will want to see your growth. They are investing time by consuming your content, and they want to feel appreciated and know that you have put effort into the content you create and share.
Making sure you invest in good quality equipment, editing apps, and objects to make your scenery look appealing is one way to ensure you put out the best content possible.
Although there are many steps to becoming an influencer, the above are a few tips to help you get started. Unless influencers had a stroke of luck and went viral, none of them found success overnight. Every day little by little, with every bit of content created, your influence can grow.
Having a content strategy and being consistent is the main way to grow your audience steadily. Making sure every piece of content adds value to your target audience, sharing articles and information that helps, how-to’s or by being inspirational, can allow you to cut through the clutter.
Don’t be afraid to mirror your favourite influencers. Learn from their mistakes and follow in their footsteps. Being an influencer is a relatively new profession, so there are many ways for it to evolve.
Stay authentic, and always love what you do. Make a plan and stick to it. Run your race, and bring joy to the world. Through your platform, you can be the reason people smile today. Always follow up on your promises, or at least always be honest. Your destiny is in your hands, so don’t be afraid to show the world what you have to offer.