Content marketing is a cost-effective tactic to increase awareness about your brand. This strategy can also help you generate leads and build credibility. However, do you think content marketing should be combined with influencer marketing?
Let’s bust a myth right now. Content marketing and influencers cannot work in separate compartments. They go hand in hand. Influencer marketing is an important element of content marketing. It’s one of the best ways to build trust and credibility through content shared by prominent figures on social media.
When done correctly, both marketing forms can have a great impact on your brand. However, some might ask, why should you combine these strategies, and how can you do so?
The first part of this post will address is why it is important to combine content marketing and influencer marketing. And the second section will guide you through how to combine these amazing strategies to get the best of both worlds.
Why Should You Combine Content Marketing and Influencer Marketing?
Content marketing and influencer marketing aren’t independent marketing forms. They are very closely related to each other and interdependent. In fact, influencer marketing is a key aspect of content marketing. So, marketers should ideally integrate influencer marketing into their content marketing strategies.
Webinars, ebooks, or whitepapers are all important components of content marketing. However, unlike influencer marketing, they fail to provide a human touch. This is one of the reasons why influencer marketing is one of the most effective forms of content marketing.
Following are three undeniable reasons why you should combine influencer marketing with content marketing.
1. Influencer Marketing can Help You Tap into New Markets
Every brand always aims to expand their reach and gain new customers. And influencer marketing makes this job easier for you. Influencers can help you get the attention of your target audience and increase the visibility of your brand among their followers. When you collaborate with influencers, this is how you can tap into new markets for your brand.
2. Influencer Marketing is Authentic and Genuine
Content generated by influencers is genuine, authentic, and relevant. It can help you win the trust of your target audience. Influencers have thousands of followers with whom they engage and interact.
This is why they understand their audiences better than anyone else. So, when brands collaborate with influencers as part of their content strategies, they can maximize the impact of their marketing strategies.
3. Influencer Marketing Sells Experiences Rather Than Products
In a competitive environment, you can’t hope to boost your sales by simply promoting your products. You need to focus on selling the experience of using your products. That can help motivate your target audience to visit your website and make a purchase.
And who is better at selling experiences than influencers? They create content based on their personal experiences. Content which doesn’t look overly promotional. Also, their followers can easily relate to them and trust their reviews or/and recommendations. This is another reason why brands need to combine both of these marketing forms and team up with influencers.
How to Combine Content and Influencer Marketing
1. Define Your Content Marketing Goals
Before you combine influencer marketing with content marketing, you need to identify the goals of your content marketing campaign. Once you identify your goals, they will help you create an effective influencer marketing strategy.
You might already know what you want to achieve, but it is equally important to know why you want to achieve it. Also, your goals will help you track and monitor the performance of your campaign. Otherwise, it’ll be difficult to evaluate your content marketing campaign.
Well-thought-out goals will help you make quick decisions during the campaign. However, don’t get overwhelmed and focus on too many goals. When you start with the campaign, focus on one or two goals to achieve the desired results.
The next important step to combining influencer and content marketing is to identify relevant influencers. If your influencers are not suitable for your brand, then your entire marketing campaign will fall flat on its face.
It is very important that your influencers are from the same niche as your brand. Otherwise, the content created by them may not resonate with your target audience.
Your potential influencers need to have high engagement rates. You need to track the number of likes, comments, and shares their posts get and calculate the engagement rate.
Your potential influencer needs to be an expert from the same industry as yours. This will help you reach relevant audiences and build credibility among them.
It is important that your audience demographics are similar to that of your potential influencers.
You need to follow your potential influencers on social media and check if they post consistently and create authentic and aesthetic content.
These parameters will help you identify relevant influencers. You can search for potential influencers manually, but you can save a lot of time if you use tools. You can use influencer marketing tools like Grin to search for suitable influencers. It has many filters like location, engagement, and reach which will help you find the best influencers for your campaign.
3. Select Your Content Formats
As mentioned above, ebooks, infographics, and whitepapers are vital components of content marketing, but they lack a human touch. To humanize your brand, you need to collaborate with influencers. Now, that you have identified influencers for your campaign, it’s time to decide on the content format.
You need to select content types which will help you achieve your campaign goals. However, it’s also important that you give your influencers the creative freedom to select the best format. So, you and your influencers need to be on the same page and agree to use the same content formats.
Here are a few creative content formats which you and your influencers can select from:
1. Organize Giveaways or Contests
You can ask your influencers to host a giveaway or a contest in which you offer one of your services or products as the prize. However, make sure that they clearly list the instructions to enter the content in their posts. When done correctly, giveaways can help you increase brand awareness and boost your engagement rate.
For instance, Sirui Australia collaborated with Matt Masson, who is a professional photographer, to host a giveaway. As you can see in the screenshot of the post, the instructions are very clearly mentioned by Matt. He has also announced the gift, a tripod kit, which will be given to the winner.
You can also ask your influencers to create tutorial videos which talk about how to use your products. Tutorial or demo videos are arguably the best way to showcase the features of your products to your target audience.
They also helps your target audience to familiarize themselves with your products. And this might encourage them to visit your online store and make a purchase.
For instance, Omar El-Takrori is a professional photographer who shares a tutorial on how to use Adobe Lightroom. The video managed to gain 218K views.
Image Source - YouTube
3. Social Media Takeover
A social media takeover is another interesting way to connect with your target audience. If you’re running out of fresh content ideas, simply ask your influencers to take over your social media accounts temporarily.
Your influencers will post creative and engaging content on behalf of you for a limited period of time. If you don’t want to provide access to your accounts, then you can ask influencers to send you the content. Once you receive it, you yourself can post it on behalf of your influencers.
For example, Glow Juicery is a brand which offers fresh fruit and vegetable juices to their customers. As you can see in the post below, they announced a Stories takeover by influencer, Marnie.
4. Bring it All Together
Now that you and your influencers have decided which content formats to use, you need to bring all of the components together. However, it’s important that you discuss what the campaign should look like with them.
If there are any special instructions you want to give to your influencers, share them from the start. That will help prevent wasted effort or influencers creating the wrong kind of content. It also prevents the need for multiple revisions.
Influencer marketing and content marketing are interdependent and need to work hand in hand. You need a trustworthy voice to support your content to generate epic results. And that voice is the voice of your influencers.
Influencers can help humanize your brand and establish a connection between your target audience and your brand. So, you need to combine influencers and content marketing strategy to generate amazing results.
Do you know of any other ways to combine content marketing and influencer marketing? If so, please feel free to share your thoughts, and don’t forget to download these effective influencer outreach email templates.
Brian Mechem is COO and Co-Founder of Grin, a software solution for companies who run influencer marketing programs. Grin's software powers some of the best influencer programs in the world, providing insights on ROI and adding efficiency to the influencer marketing process.