You can also read the German version of this article here.
Communicating efficiently with an influencer in inherent to a good Influencer Relationship Management. Influencers, as we know, are private individuals, sharing content from their daily lives on different social media platforms. At the same time, Influencer Marketing uses this private activity for commercial purposes, benefiting companies.
From this duality, there are many great opportunities. Indeed, influencers can bring out the authenticity that makes them attractive in the advertising industry. On the other hand, it also creates various difficulties. This mix of private and business matters raises the question of how should companies and influencers communicate. It is important that despite the relaxed style of communication a respectful approach can be guaranteed.
Influencer outreach has been dubbed “as the fastest-growing online customer acquisition channel, beating organic search, paid search, and email marketing.”
How to communicate
First establishing contact via Direct Messages, or DM for short, presents an advantage of you contacting them on a platform they go on daily. With all the proposals the influencers receive, it’s fairly easy for yours to get lost in the sea of suitors. However, through DM, some influencers check their social media accounts tens of times a day. So your message has more chances to be seen and read there. Finally, they enable you to have a more friendly and familiar approach. This is a key point when wanting to establish rapport.
But we shouldn’t throw too much blame at emails either. They are still the most used and the most professional way to reach someone. Some Influencers would actually rather you contact them via email, because they have this dedicated space for all the professional offerings they receive. It also enables you to track your activity more easily, categorise or archive it in more ways than DM do. In addition, emails can convey further details and explain precisely what you have in mind. But remember that unfolding everything at once right from the beginning can be a bit overwhelming and impersonal to the influencer.
Third party (ie. agencies and/or influencer marketing softwares)
If you feel like you do not have the time or the skills required to handle your influencer marketing activities you can appoint them to a third party, like an agency or optimize your time via an influencer marketing software. For instance, the INFLURY software enables you to quickly reach the influencer you have in mind via intuitive and automated features such as automatic campaign booking requests. You can have all the information about an influencer you’ll need in one place such as their followers growth, their engagement rate and even their pricing.
Of course, these methods are not mutually exclusive. it is possible for you to first reach an influencer with a short DM informing them of an upcoming email. All these media have advantages and drawbacks, and do not suit all Influencer Relationship Management strategies. It is up to you to think about how you want to be perceived by the influencer and select the appropriate medium.
What to communicate
When talking to an influencer, especially for the first time, you want to make sure that what you have to offer will catch their attention and they will want to pursue the conversation with you. That is why making sure you have thought of the right influencer in the first place is a good thing to facilitate the whole process. An influencer aligned with your brand and your values will be more inclined to collaborate with you. Keep it friendly and personalised, yet professional.
As for what you’ll actually mention, talk about what links you to the influencer. Mention why you would like to collaborate with them. This will help build a first connection between you and them. You can also mention the general outlines of your project and why you think collaborating with them would be a good thing for the both of you. Make sure you get your needs across, as this will clear out any further misunderstandings.
If the influencer doesn’t respond right away, don’t panic. Influencers are busy people and they might need some time to ponder over what you sent them. Think of following them up after a few days, a week at most. If after this they still don’t reply, wait for a month or so before trying your luck again.
Building a long lasting relationship with an influencer is a long and slow process. The goal of Influencer Relationship Management is to make sure you both get the most out of the collaboration. With both parties satisfied, you can improve your brand image with only the best advocates.