So You Want to Be an Influencer...

Thinking about building your social media up to influencer levels?  It all starts with a plan.  Here are the questions you need to answer to formulate that plan.

1. What is your goal as an influencer? 

Whether you've got a well-performing personal account that you'd like to transition into an influencer account, or you're starting from scratch, taking some time to think about what your goals are will help to guide you when deciding what to post and what not to post.  When selecting an influencer, businesses will want to see that you're a good fit for their brand, both with your posts and your follower demographics.

Goals can include:

  • FREE PRODUCT: If your goal is to earn yourself some swag, think about the types of products and brands that you're interested in, and do a little research.  What types of posts do brands in your preferred industry seem to appreciate?
  • MONEY: Influencers can be paid in two ways - either through sponsored posts or through affiliate or commission programs.  As a new influencer, you'll likely be able to find quite a few programs that you can be accepted into, but paid posts don't come until you've gained a substantial following.  However, demonstrating a strong ability to sell via a commission program may earn you some extra perks as you're growing your brand. 
  • BUSINESS SUPPORT: For businesses, using influencer strategies on your business account, or teaming up with several influencers who target your demographic. 

2. What are you interested in and knowledgeable about?

An influencer account is a long-term commitment, so whatever topics you choose to cover, make sure it's something you feel you can stay interested in long-term.  Although your influencer account doesn't need to contain only one type of post, most have consistent themes running through them that engage the same types of followers. 

You'll also be more likely to engage followers if you pick topics and themes that fall into areas you're educated in and knowledgeable about.  This helps you to give smart and appropriate commentary and avoid embarrassing slip-ups and flame wars. 

3. What are your talents & assets? 

As an influencer you'll need to rely on what you have available to you in order to create great posts.  Thinking about this may help you decide what kind of influencer you're interested in being.

  • ASSETS:
    • LOCATION: Living in an Instagram-friendly location can be a major asset. Think about how you can best take advantage of where you live when deciding the types of brands you'd be interested in featuring.  For example, if you live in an urban area, think of brands with an urban aesthetic to their marketing images, or if you live near lots of great hikes, think about brands that prefer nature in their imagery.
    • MODELS: Whether you've got a cute pet, cute kids, or attractive friends, bringing some other people into your Instagram can make it much more engaging. 
    • STUFF YOU ALREADY HAVE: If you already have years worth of photos of cool architecture, beautiful hikes, cute dogs, or funky shoes, this can help you key into a topic to cover.  Although you'll certainly need to take new photographs, picking something where you'll be able to grab a "throwback" from hundreds of options when you need new content can make life much easier. 
  • TALENTS:
    • PHOTOGRAPHY: For the more visual platforms such as instagram, you'll have to be a decent photographers  access to someone who takes decent shots.  
    • SOFTWARE: An okay photograph can look fantastic if you know how to use the right design software.  
    • WRITING: The other half of social media posts is the writing - many influencers trade on their ability to come up with hilarious one-liners on Twitter, or inspiring sayings for memes. 
    • HUMOR: Some of the most popular influencers are known for funny videos, humorous commentary, and posts that poke fun at ridiculousness of various aspects of modern life. 
    • SKILLS PEOPLE WANT TO LEARN: From makeup to baking, some influencers make bank by sharing their unique talents with the world.

 NEXT STEP - What do Businesses Look for From Influencers? 

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