How (and why) small businesses can find social media influencers

How to Find and Engage With Social Media Influencers

The strongest mode of marketing has always been positive word-of-mouth, and that has been true since the beginning of commerce. How this word-of-mouth is delivered has changed, however. This term once meant consumers talking to each other face-to-face, then over the phone, and now it includes countless social media platforms like Twitter, Snapchat, and Facebook. Positive word-of-mouth has even more clout in the technology age because reviews, positive or negative, now reach thousands and even millions of people, instead of a couple people in a private conversation.

However, not all people’s opinions are ranked equally online. Social media influencers are looked to by many people as thought leaders or experts in their fields, be in entrepreneurship or fashion, of a myriad of things in between. Identifying and connecting with the right social media influencer can give your small business a powerful platform visible by many people.

Below are three tips to find your perfect social media influencer:

Use online tools

Social media influencers’ domain is the internet so you should use it to find people that are relevant to your industry and brand. Use online tools like Followerwonk or Twello to connect to your Twitter account and get detailed analytics on your social media performance, take a look at how your competitors are doing, and learn who is the leading influencer in your field. These tools can help you locate people with whom you can synergize and share productive ideas.

You can also use the internet to conduct a traditional search for influential people that could promote business, like an industry or trade reporter, bloggers, and other social media outlets. Set up Google Alerts for regular reminders and news using keywords relevant to your industry, including the names of your competitors (and your own, of course).

Run some analytics

It may sound like common sense, but it’s worth saying, the social media influencer you are looking for often writes online (or creates videos) about topics relevant to your business. There are analytics sites that can “listen” to online conversations and tell you who is using relevant keywords the most, and with the most success (in terms of reach and sharing). Use Kred and Peerindex, tools that highlight influencers in a particular niche. Target specific keywords that are not too broad, but not too obscure either. You can also run a Google search to find the keywords you should be following.