Influencer marketing is ever on the rise, and with good reason. People still trust people more than they trust companies--even small (or solo) businesses.
Influencers are (perhaps obviously) simply individuals with influence over your target market. They can be:
- Journalists; or
- Any variety of online account with a significant audience.
Basically, if the people you want to put your product in front of are listening to this person... you might as well consider them a 'person of influence'.
Influencer marketing for small businesses
As a small or micro business, chances are you don't have an endless budget to spend on advertising and customer acquisition. Instead, you're looking for good-fit and highly effective means of attracting new eyeballs.
Influencer marketing (when done intelligently) can provide a nice balance. Why? Because influencers are people--and often, they are creators looking for an opportunity to support their own creative efforts.
When advising small and solo businesses, the micro-influencer strategy was one that we landed upon time and time again. Somehow, the marriage between a 'micro influencer' and 'micro business' just made sense--and on the business side, it also allows you to build a portfolio of influencers, rather than placing one large bet on an account (that may or may not pan out in real sales).
How to manage multiple influencer accounts
The rise in influencer marketing as a cost-effective strategy has meant that the primary bottleneck is operational efficiency. It's all well and good to say, 'Okay great, let's just go out and give our product away for free to 25 influencers, then whichever ones perform best we'll pay on retainer'.
It's quite another thing to sensibly organize and manage that operation. Think about it: now, you're talking about effectively tracking and analyzing the performance of 25 individuals--all posting on their own accounts, schedules; all with their own engagement metrics, insights and data to compare.
Hence the rise of 'influencer management platforms'. A niche that would have been hard to imagine just 10 years ago is now a highly competitive and fast-growing niche of SaaS products. Platforms like GRIN and Upfluence really go above and beyond when it comes to Discovery and talent management--but above and beyond, for a $1200/month pricetag, isn't necessarily what we need as solo and small business owners.
What we need is a system that works. Something to help us keep track of the various accounts, give accurate feedback to potential influencers, and make good decisions on any experiments we might be running with prospective talent.
I built this Influencer Hub as a custom project for a client running precisely this experiment. I've removed the details of that plan and strategy, and left the skeleton for you all to adopt and implement yourselves.
You can use the dashboard to get an overview of all the activities of any active influencers in your 'program'.
Use the Pipeline to keep track of prospective talent and where they are in the process.
Head over to 'Portals' to generate a new portal for talent that's part of a trial or active period. Then, share access to the Portal with them and be sure to Filter the relevant tables in the portal to only show the Inventory, Posts and activity for the name of the relevant influencer.
You can use the 'Terms' section to scope out your program guidelines, contracts and docs.
And finally, if you want to draft an onboarding checklist (or if you want to provide guidance for a freelancer or team member who might be running your influencer community), you can do so in the 'onboarding' tab.
Adding this component to Clarity OS and other Landmark Models
If you'd like to add this component to an existing Landmark model, after duplication, simply drag the entire 'Influencer Hub' page into your synced sidebar menu.
Then, from the Influencer overview page, copy-paste your main model side bar menu in the left column, where the guidance suggests.