One of the most common influencer marketing questions I get is, “How do I find the right influencers for my brand?” It’s a good question with a seemingly simple answer: you should just find influencers with a large following that are in the same niche as your product.
The problem is, it’s not that simple. What percent of an influencer’s audience actually views their content? How long does their audience watch their video content before exiting? Do their sponsored posts do worse? Do they even create the kind of content that you can integrate your product into? What is love? Are there other, less-related niches that reach potential customers better?
Is your head spinning yet?
Before you panic and end up accidentally booking an avante-garde waffle artist for your new brand, Sliced Tea (the hottest recycled pizza crust-based iced tea startup in the valley), let’s break this down real quick:
Step 1: Get a lay of the land
The first step in the search process is simply gaining an understanding of what is out there for you in the land of influencer marketing. Don’t even think about your marketing strategy at this stage – approach this process as a student.
The best place to start your research is the Discover page:
Start by searching for some high-level keywords related to your brand! Keep in mind that Grapevine’s search functionality looks for keywords in influencer post descriptions/titles and account bios.
Next, get a feel for influencers’ engagement, past Grapevine reviews/sponsored posts, demographics, average view duration, etc. Then check out their YouTube and Instagram profiles, taking note of the the type of content they make and the subjects they cover. Don’t forget to actually watch/look at their content!
As you conduct your research, you’ll run across many commonly occurring keywords that are associated with certain niches and/or content types. Write them down and search for them!
Step 2: Building a game plan
Now that you know what you have at your disposal, it’s time to build your strategy. This plan should include the influencer niches you’ll target, content types to integrate with, and keywords to search. Fortunately, this should be pretty easy since you did your research. Additionally, you should have an idea of how many influencers you want to work with and your overall budget.
Pro tip: You don’t have to stick to the influencer niche that directly corresponds to your brand’s. If you’re a mattress brand, don’t just work with influencers who review home goods. Find ones who reach an audience that might buy a mattress, such as new mom beauty influencers (new families often buy houses and need a place to sleep, right?).
Step 3: Search
This is the fun part! You’ll want to start by setting up your filters to clear out any influencers you definitely won’t work with. You can filter by demographics, engagement numbers, and estimated cost.
Next, you’ll want to start running your keyword searches! Remember those influencer niche and content type keywords you found earlier? Use them!
As you look through influencers and find ones that fit your strategy, just hit the “Favorite” button to add them to your favorites list:
Pro tip: After you type in a search, you may find that a decent chunk of irrelevant influencers pop up, since most words have multiple meanings depending on the context. To clean up the results, look through the influencers, identify keywords that the irrelevant ones tend to use, and then type those keywords into the search bar preceded by a minus symbol (“-keyword”).
Step 4: Influencer selection
At this point, you’ll probably have a pretty large favorites list! But before you start reaching out to them, you’ll want to clean things up a bit so only the top influencers are on your list. To do that, go to the Discover page, click “Segments”, click “Favorites”, review the influencers, uncheck the ones you want to remove, and click “Save Changes” when you’re done:
Pro tip: You can save the ones you remove for later by adding them to a new segment!
But wait! Before you go, let’s review things quickly.
The first step in the process is researching the influencers that may be relevant to your brand. You should be looking at everything from their demographic reach to the type of content they produce.
Then, build your strategy! The key points to address are what influencer niches you’ll target and the content types you’ll integrate with.
Next, conduct your search. Type in keywords to find influencers in the right niches that produce the right content types and favorite the ones that fit your strategy. Don’t forget to use keyword exclusion to declutter (“-keyword”)!
Finally, clean up your favorites list in the segments section of the Discover page!
Now go get ‘em, tiger.
PS: Please share your favorite Shaq gifs and any questions or thoughts you have on influencer marketing or search in the comments! What works for you? Let’s discuss.