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Finding Influencers on Social Media

Influencers are a fantastic business accelerator for those that know how to leverage them. With the right influencer partner you can drastically widen your reach and deepen your relationships with your customers online and offline.

In the last article, we reviewed the types of influencers and which would make the best partner for your business. Below, we’ll cover where they can be found and how to find the most likely candidates.

Let's get started, shall we?

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Types of influencer channels

The first thing you need to do when looking for an influencer is decide which platform to pursue. Influencers can be found on many different platforms, from Instagram to YouTube to LinkedIn. Sometimes influencers cross platforms, but most of the time they focus on a single channel.

The simplest way to decide which platform is best for you, is to answer this question: “What are my customers using?”

There’s no use hiring an influencer on Snapchat if your ideal target market is corporate accountants. They probably won’t even have the app on their phone, much less know who your influencer is. Besides, the kind of straight-laced message and brand personality you need to present to accountants does not fit Snapchat’s lively, spur-of-the-moment environment.

Choose a platform that both matches your brand identity and appeals to your customers. Understand the type of audience the platform appeals to and what kind of message works best within that niche.

Here’s a quick overview of the most popular channels:

Instagram

This photo-sharing app is full of fitness gurus, models, and lifestyle celebrities. But that doesn’t keep B2B brands like Mailchimp and Adobe from killing it on here.

Instagram users love brands that showcase their personality in creative and visually-appealing ways, whether that’s showing a beautiful new office location or employees being awesome and doing interesting things. Instagram audiences value creativity and fun above all else, so look for an influencer partner who will help you draw out that inner artist out for everyone to see.

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Facebook

Over 1.25 billion people log into Facebook every day, so it’s a safe bet that Facebook has an audience for pretty much any business, whether you’re B2C or B2B. The challenge is figuring out which among those billions are interested in what you have to say.

Facebook is most popular with millennials, although Gen-Xers also have a very strong presence. This population spans a wide variety of interests, and Facebook influencers can be found on nearly any topic, from marketing to parenting to blacksmithing.

Twitter

Twitter users are a pretty international bunch, with over 80% of the user population located outside the United States. This makes it ideal for global brands who want to reach a wide audience. Twitter users are also highly educated, with 32% being college graduates and a total of 57% having some form of college education.

Like Facebook, content on Twitter covers a variety of topics, so many brands will eventually be able to find a home on Twitter if they put in enough effort. Twitter users are very prolific, with hundreds of millions of Tweets being sent every day. A significant portion of these are retweets, so content from the right influencer has a very good chance of going viral. Influencers that use hashtags and Twitter chats give you a chance to quickly connect with a new audience.

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YouTube

YouTube is a fantastic place for brands to connect with both influencers and customers, because YouTubers tend to be uniquely receptive to brands. According to ComScore, 74% of millennials view branded videos on YouTube, and almost 80% prefer viewing videos uploaded by individual content creators (i.e. influencers).

An influencer partnership could prove very beneficial if the promotion happens in a tasteful and non-intrusive way that stays true to the content creator’s usual format, so it’s important to find an influencer who is the right fit for your brand and message.

Snapchat

Snapchat appeals mostly to younger audiences. The average user is under 34 years old, and 70% of Snapchat users are women. Although the app has gotten in trouble recently with a poorly-received update and an unfortunate Kylie Jenner tweet, it’s taking a step in the right direction with the launch of Official Stories ,and it still has weight thanks to famous celebrities and lifestyle influencers using the platform.

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Bloggers

Blogs are an older platform compared to the other items on this list, but they are still a powerful force for any marketing team.

There are prominent bloggers in any industry or field of interest. Each blog is a contained environment with its own user demographics, culture, and preferred content format. When looking for blogger influencers, use Google or specific software tools find the most popular blogs on that topic. Many prominent bloggers will also have an established presence on at least one of the major social networks as well—so you can benefit beyond just the blog itself by working with them.

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LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a social network for business professionals. As such, most of the people you find on LinkedIn are working professionals or job seekers who want to develop their job skills and grow their network of business contacts.

Influencers on LinkedIn tend to be those who can communicate deep knowledge and expertise about a specific industry or topic.

Medium

Medium is a cross between Twitter and a blogging platform, where users can upload longer-form content and easily share it with others. It’s been said that 95% of Medium users are college graduates, and around half being in the millennial age range.

Much of the content on Medium is thoughtful and thorough, with more of a journalistic feel than other content platforms on this list. Building up an audience here should make it easier for you to get your work published as a guest contribution to other popular publications. Plus, Medium’s Partner Program makes it easy to earn money for your work.

As you can see, each platform has a distinct culture and format that need to be taken into account. Brands that are a poor fit for a given platform will not do well, no matter how many influencers they recruit.

So now that you know what platform you need to leverage, let’s talk about finding some influencers with whom you can partner up with.

How to find Social Influencers

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You could find influencers with a simple Google search if you wanted to, but that’s time consuming and far from scalable. We suggesting using of the following clever and cost-efficient tools instead:

Musefind

Musefind is an influencer CRM where influencers can sign up for an account and post their details for brands to review, such as price, content, availability, and more. Brands can use Musefind’s built-in tools to manage the brand-influencer relationship, review drafts of branded content, and track payments.

Musefind makes it convenient for marketers to complete an influencer campaign from start to finish in one place, without the need for multiple tools and platforms.

BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is one of the mainstays of the content marketing and influencer marketing fields due to its very simple and effective premise: helping you find the most popular content on any given topic. In addition to pulling it up, BuzzSumo tells you how many people are reading it, who they are, and where the content is being shared.

BuzzSumo even has an influencer section that shows you what an influencer shares, what topics they share the most often, analyzes their reach and engagement, and has more metrics than you can shake a stick at, plus list-building tools to help manage your search.

Traackr

Traackr is an online platform that specializes in influencer relationship management. The platform—and the tools it uses—are geared towards long-term campaigns and building relationships between brands and influencers.

Like Musefind, Traackr has a library of influencers of various types and topics. However, influencer’s can’t join the platform—it’s curated by the company, with brands able to request specific influencers be added to the database. Once there, you have access to powerful tools like their network visualization map, which shows how an influencer is connected to others inside or outside your network. Tools like this can give an incredible advantage to those committed to influencer marketing as an ongoing strategy.

An Easier Search

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Social influencers are an important part of growing a brand’s image, but need to be carefully managed if everyone is to achieve the best success. Finding the right influencer partner can be a challenge, but the process becomes a lot easier if you know where to look and have the right tools at your disposal.

Kelso Kennedy

Kelso Kennedy

CoFounder @RedStampAgency - Time Magazine's 2006 Person of the year. He likes Business, Technology, Hockey and Life.

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