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As the social media landscape and society at large continue to evolve, influencer marketing is only playing a more integral role in how brands reach and inspire consumers. But as competition for content creators endorsements grows fiercer, brands must take a thoughtful and strategic approach to managing their communities of advocates. To build a family of consistent champions, brands must foster collaborative sustained relationships with their passionate fans. Time honored, mutually empowering connections not only weather periods of uncertainty, but also generate the greatest long-term value for brands. Of course, fostering a loyal fan base is no easy task, so in this video, I wanted to take it back to the basics and walk through three key strategies for building and managing impactful influencer networks, including finding the right influencers for your brand, segmenting your community to conduct tailored outreach, and fostering influencer retention to inspire sustainable growth. Let's dive in.
Whether you're just beginning to build out your influencer community, or you're working to expand it, you should always strive to find the best influencers for your brand. And remember best does not mean biggest. Look beyond follower account or a specific aesthetic and instead prioritize genuine enthusiasm for your brand. Focus on identifying and engaging influencers whose content aligns with your brand's ethos and who have a demonstrated history of posting about your brand. You'll find that it's not only easier to build meaningful relationships with influencers who are already aligned with your brand's mission and messaging, but connections founded on genuine passion, rather than transactional agreements, are the most likely to endure and deepen over time. So investing in your existing influencer fans will likely result in the highest long term ROI. In addition to reaching out to influencers with strong brand fit, you should also look to prioritize relationships with creators who garner strong engagement from their own followings. The more invested an influencer's audience is in what they have to say, the more attention they'll pay to that influencer's endorsements of your brand. Content creators with strong brand fit and high engagement rates offer your brand the best opportunity to meaningfully connect with consumers, which after all, is the ultimate goal of influencer marketing.
Once you've built a relatively established community, it's important to understand its dynamics in order to optimize your outreach. Social media doesn't sleep and neither should your influencer strategy, but managing hundreds, if not thousands, of unique relationships at once can understandably be an overwhelming task, especially when time and resources are limited. So to streamline your outreach and maximize the impact of your efforts, it's helpful to break down your community into smaller more manageable groups based on both the recency and consistency of an influencer's content creation. We recommend segmenting your community into the following four groups. Potential fans, or influencers who have not yet posted about your brand, but whose content aligns with your mission and messaging. New fans, or influencers who only recently began posting about your brand. Lost fans, or influencers who previously posted about your brand, but have recently dropped off. And finally, and most importantly, retained fans, or influencers who have posted about your brand consistently over time. Segmenting your community into groups based on brand affinity allows you to plan more targeted and tailored outreach to meet the specific needs of influencers in each category. Potential fans, for example, may be entirely unaware of your brand, so it might require more work to welcome them into your community. Since new fans have only recently discovered your brand, it's crucial that you sustain their interest to further strengthen their affinity and inspire continued content creation. As for lost fans, your brand should take care to swiftly re-engage these influencers to bring them back into the fold and reignite content creation. Retained fans are your brand's most consistent advocates and therefore the most impactful segment of your community. They've demonstrated a deep connection to your offerings and are likely to continue supporting you in the future. Because retained fans drive the most long-term value for your brand, you should invest the majority of your resources into sustaining these relationships rather than exclusively targeting new or potential fans. Keep in mind that these community groups are and should be dynamic. You can think of influencers as leads in a marketing funnel who need to be nurtured from initial interest to genuine passion and loyalty. You should continuously work to convert potential fans to new fans, and new fans to retained fans, who in turn will inspire more new fans with their enthusiasm.
Finally, building genuine long-term relationships with the creators in your community is key to sustainably growing your brand's earned media footprint. As we just covered, retained influencers drive the most long term value for your brand, so by consistently nurturing these relationships, you'll not only foster deep and authentic connections, you'll also likely increase the frequency and impact of these creators' content over time. To build authentic relationships with influencers, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Rather than focusing on one-off marketing campaigns, keep influencers engaged with evergreen initiatives and consistent outreach to strengthen their relationship to your brand and facilitate continued content creation. Additionally, furnish content creators with career development opportunities that help to advance their own professional goals. This can be as simple as re-posting an influencer's content on your own account, or as big as collaborating with them on a new product. Regardless of scale, fostering relationships that are collaborative and mutually beneficial will help forge long and impactful influencer partnerships. Lastly, and most importantly, recognize content creators as people, not just business entities. In addition to elevating influencers professionally, thoughtful and personal gestures like celebrating birthdays or career and personal milestones can help foster passionate, multidimensional relationships. Remember, relationship building is all in the details, so be sure to make your outreach as personalized to each influencer as possible. And there you have it.
We hope this video leaves you with a few valuable takeaways that you can apply when crafting your own rock solid influencer strategy. But we know that it can be difficult to gauge the efficacy of your community building efforts without adequate data and tools. That's where we come in. Our platform offers advanced analytics on the post, influencer and community levels, along with robust content tracking, community segmentation, and more. Thanks for watching and we'll see you next time.