VD59: Working with bloggers and measuring influence
As a business owner, you know the importance of collaborating with bloggers to help with your customer acquisition. Knowing which influencer / blogger to work with is a trial and error process. The more influential a blogger, the less likely you will hear back from them. For this very reason, many companies are getting into the business of Influencer Marketing to help the selection process and negotiations. However, unless you have a steep marketing budget, it can be hard to play in the Influencer Marketing arena.
Now, do not get discouraged, the following simply means that you must further refine your search. You must define the type of influencer you would like to work with. Wanting to collaborate with a fashion blogger is too loose – What type of fashion? Where are they based? How big is their audience? Are they Pinterest master? Instagram fashionistas? Or a Youtube Blogger?
You will need to start working with up and coming bloggers and determine if partnering up with them, will fit with your business goals. Here is how you can be measuring influence of bloggers you would like to work with:
- Don’t look at followers: Numbers lie Review the overall engagement level. Are readers commenting, and sharing? Are they receiving constructive comments? Does their audience get excited about their blog post? Are their likes consistent?
- How are they featuring brands? You must pay close attention as to how they are currently embedding brands within their blog posts. Are these posts getting the same level of engagement? Are they creatively featuring brands they work with?
- Who is the audience? Take a deeper dive as to who their audience is. Examine whether or not they qualify as a potential customer. Are the topics they cover relevant with your business?
Overall, take a close look at whom you would be collaborating with so you can set proper expectations. A few tools to help you measure influence include Klout, Topsy, Klear and Keyhole.
Finally, make sure your collaboration comes across as sincere. Marketing is inherently shifting towards a more “native” form with promotion being concealed in the form of articles, blogger product placements, etc.. It’s important that the collaboration feels seamless. Don’t forget to set-up bitly URLs when working with influencers so you can monitor how many sales they brought your way.
The more novice the blogger, the more inexperienced they are with dealing with brands. You will need to negotiate to determine which type of compensation suits them best. In most cases, sending your product can be enough. Use your judgement.