Influencer Selection – A Few Key Considerations

If your brand isn’t already making use of influencer marketing, it will be soon enough. At least, unless you are happy to be left in the dust by your competitors.  2017 has proven to be an incredible year for influencer marketing – things are only expected to step up over the foreseeable future at least.
In order to get the very most out of any such campaign, you need to be strategic and mindful when selecting influencers for your brand. There’s a lot to take into account, but the following key considerations should take precedence over all others:
1. Relevance
For obvious reasons, the influencer in question should be appropriately positioned to provide meaningful content of relevance to your business and niche. Otherwise, their influence and advice may fall entirely on deaf ears.
2. Engagement
Contrary to popular belief, influencer power and value isn’t determined by audience numbers alone. Instead, it is determined by audience engagement. As in how engaged their audiences are and the level of impact their words have on those within their reach. Or to put it another way, it’s all about audience quality, rather than quantity.
3. Reach
That said, quantity does of course play a role when selecting appropriate influencers. While a small but relevant reach is better than a large irrelevant reach, a large and relevant reach is of course ideal. You might also want to bear in mind that many influencers have multiple niche audiences of their own, rather than one unified set of fans and followers.
4. Availability
The only influencers of use to your business are those that are readily available as and when required. There’s nothing to gain by relying on the kinds of influencers who are scarcely available and make it difficult for you to convey the right message at the right time.
5. Authenticity
Authenticity and believability count for a lot – precisely why experienced and professional influencers make better choices than flavour-of-the-month novelties. Always work with those who know what they are talking about, as opposed to those who simply say what their audiences expect to hear.
6. Platforms
For obvious reasons, you need to think carefully about which audiences on which platforms you wish to target, before selecting influencers for your brand.  Just as some influencers hold something of a monopoly on Twitter or Instagram, others focus their efforts almost exclusively on Facebook.
7. Image
Influence is one thing, but you also need to ensure that the influencer you work with contributes to the overall image of your brand. It’s all well and good to reach out to a wide audience, but not if your image and reputation are for any reason dragged down in the process.
8. Goals
Last but not least, it’s also of critical importance to carefully consider your primary goals and intentions, before selecting which influencers to work with.  The reason being that while some influencers can help you improve product sales, others are more about brand establishment and exposure, reputation management and so on.