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Mar 08 Identifying Influencers: It’s Time to Go Beyond the Low-Hanging Fruit

Identifying influencers for your campaigns won't be easy, but it's crucial to find the right ones.

START WITH PEOPLE FIRST!

We’ve mentioned before our fondness for Forester's POST methodology and starting each content strategy with a clear understanding on your target audience first. Our approach to influencer identification begins the same way. While the type of influencer is relevant (they’re representing your brand after all and need to be a fit) we’re much more interested in who they reach and how they reach them.

  • Do they have a large following on the channels where your audience is most likely to discovery content?
  • Do they produce content around themes your audience is likely to search for and engage with?

If you’re a food brand, you already know recipe bloggers are the low-hanging fruit but don’t stop there. We look for influencers who can create content around your audience’s passion points and find ways to insert your brand messages in a highly authentic way.

Sure, we might (probably would) partner with influencers who create recipes — like the ones we worked with for a campaign supporting the Cranberry Marketing Committee. A quick search on Pinterest for most food items will show the top shared and searched keywords paired with “eggs”, for example, are recipes based.

Carusele blog 1

But it could also mean we work with folks who talk about healthy living and getting a good start to the day, or maybe even mom bloggers sharing tips on baby-led weaning as we look to expand our reach and generate awareness with other audiences.

We did just this for ConAgra Foods brand Reddi-wip.

CONTENT MARKETING CASE STUDY: REDDI-WIP

Given a target of moms with young children, we knew this audience would be looking for and sharing ideas for planning birthday parties. So we partnered with entertainment and mommy influencers who created blog posts and beautiful, yet organic-style imagery featuring Reddi-wip as part of a larger birthday party planning story.

The campaign delivered more than 5.5 million impressions (exceeding goal by 25%) and generated 2,100 pieces of content indexed by search engines.

Designed to support a specific retailer, our content creators attached a retailer-exclusive coupon to their content and the cap for coupon downloads was reached just 3 weeks into our campaign.

CArusele blog 2

IDENTIFYING INFLUENCERS: CONTENT CREATORS & SYNDICATORS

Once we’ve aligned on the type of audience we want to reach and the theme(s) of content we’ll reach them with, we build our list of influencers. We start with folks we know and trust from Carusele’s proprietary influencer data-base of more than 7,500 built through personal contact with each and every one over the last 8 years. We then branch out into influencer networks built by our trusted partners like Tap Influence — who alone expands our exclusive network by 30,000.

From those data bases, we hand built two separate lists — a small list of content creators who will develop high-quality long-form, image-based and video assets and a much longer list of syndicators chosen to help share that content to extend the reach of each program.

Each of these lists is then hand-scrubbed by our production team. This means they visit every channel where our content producers publish content to confirm fit for not only your brand but the particular campaign we’d have them support. We’re looking for a plethora of things that indicate content quality and level of engagement from their community. Things like:

  • How often have they posted recently? Are they active?
  • How much engagement do their posts get on average?
  • Is all of their content sponsored? Or do they truly have their own voice and story?
  • Have they spoken out against your brand? Do they post regularly or have they posted recently about your competitors?

This unique process helps us not only keep influencer costs down, but provides brands with reach far beyond the networks of the content creators and ensures every pieces of content they pay for is of the highest quality.