In the world of social media marketing, influencer marketing is now the number one channel of getting many people to know about a product or service.
It is a quickly-growing industry, where people with large volumes of followers give their services to advertisers who pay them to talk about or feature their products and services.
With over 3.7 billion social media users in the world, the influencer marketing business has become a $5 billion industry.
One thing that makes this industry so great is the fact that anyone can become a social media influencer.
Oh Yes! You too can become a social media influencer and start getting paid to represent brands.
There are various factors that you need to consider if you want to become a paid social media influencer. The first is the fact that you have to be very patient and apply a strategic approach.
This article gives you a simple 9-step formula that you can use to become a viable social media influencer, command a large audience and start earning money from sponsors.
How to Become a Social Media Influencer | Make Money Online and Become Internet Famous!
9 Steps to Become a Social Media Influencer
It takes patience and determination to become a social media influencer, and you may have to put in at least one year of hard work to succeed.
Now that you know it will not be that simple, it is time to roll up your sleeves and start on the nine steps to social media influencer glory.
#1: Select a Niche
The first thing you have to do is select a nice that you will operate in. There is no other way around this.
You cannot become a social media influencer if you do not have a target niche.
Take the time to observe the influencers on Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube and you will realize that they all have a niche.
If you do not have a niche, you will dilute your efforts, trying to get the attention of people from several different niches.
You will be speaking and marketing to everyone, and you will end up reaching nobody.
When selecting a niche, here are some of the things that you should think about:
- What are you very good at?
- What do you love?
- What are you very passionate about?
- What are your interests?
- Do you have any weird quirks?
- What things do you enjoy sharing about?
For example, if you have always loved the great outdoors and being fit, then you can decide to become a social media influencer for people who love getting fit and going out for hikes and other outdoor activities.
You have to make sure that the niche you chose resonates well with you. The only that people can get to trust you is if they feel you are being genuine in the love for whatever it is that you are talking about.
People are drawn towards energy, and when you believe in what you are preaching, they will respond positively.
If you are not passionate about what you do, people will pick on that and they will stop believing in you.
It does not matter what niche you choose, just make sure that you are dealing with things that you love to do.
Passion is the elixir that you have to rely on even when things are not going smoothly. When you show your passion, people see someone who does not give up – something that people are automatically drawn to.
#2: Select your Main Platform
There are various channels that you can use for your social media influencer exploits.
Some of the most popular are:
Before you can start your journey to becoming a social media influencer, you need to pick the main channel that you will use.
You can have profiles on many social media channels, but you must have one from which you will draw in the most people.
You can use the other channels as a tool for drawing people into your main channel. For instance, you can place snippets on Twitter and Facebook leading people to your main YouTube channel.
There are several things that you need to consider when deciding on your main social media channel.
Start by looking at what your competition is doing and which are the main platforms that they use.
If you want to become an influencer in the fashion industry, then Instagram should be your preferred choice.
If you want to become a video game influencer, then you should look to YouTube and Twitch.
All the other social media platforms can be used for social media influencing purposes, depending on several factors such as:
- The target audience
- The channels being used by other influencers in your niche
- The type of content that you want to use
- Whether you want to be the face of your exploits or use another medium such as audio
- Whether you are good at creating engaging content.
Basically speaking, if you want to use video as your way of communicating with your target audience, then you should choose YouTube. This is a channel that is well established for social media influencers.
The kind of channel that you choose should be suited to the content that you will create and should be a place where your target audience loves to spend their time.
#3: Describe your Audience
To become a successful social media influencer, you must be able to find the right kind of audience who will follow you and support you.
There is no way you can become a social media influencer without having subscribers, followers, and fans.
This is the reason why you must define your audience before you even decide on the platform and content that you will use.
You need to focus on these people and the communities that they are involved in so that you can start a relationship with them in the right manner.
The type of audience that you are targeting will be determined by the industry you are in.
For example, if you are a business influencer and you want to educate people on how they can create and license courses, then your audience will most probably be on Twitter and LinkedIn. You may also choose to look for your audience on YouTube, where the courses will most probably be hosted.
If you want to influence people on how to choose a healthier and happier lifestyle, then you will find your audience on Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook.
Here are some of the factors to consider when you are describing your target audience:
Here you must answer questions like:
What is the age of my target audience?
What is their gender?
Where do they live?
How much do they use the Internet?
You must identify the challenges that they face by posing these questions:
Do they know about your service?
Why do they need your service?
What are the factors hindering them from using your service as you would like them to?
You must understand what motivates them by posing these questions:
What is it about your personal brand that will encourage your target audience to engage with you?
Why would your target audience engage with the products or services that you intend to promote?
You must also understand the pain points that your target audience seeks to address using products and services that you might promote.
Make a list of pin pints, which may be Financial pain points, Process pian points, Support pain pints, or productivity pain points.
What’s in It for them?
One of the aspects that people ignore when identifying their target audience is “what is in it for them”.
You must show your target audience what they stand to gain when they use your channel to get solutions to their pain points.
#4: Formulate a Content Calendar
You must be able to consistently create content that your users will love if you want to become a successful social media influencer.
To become an influencer, you must be committed and consistent in giving people what they need.
You have to be there on a daily basis, with a consistent message, and give them content that is useful, whenever you do appear.
When you have your type of content figured out, you must create a content calendar that will help you become consistent.
When you have identified your target audience by answering the questions in the step above and decided where they usually convene, you will also be able to tell when they will be available to consume your content.
Use the tips below when you are coming up with a great content calendar for your social media influencer exploits.
- Map out your goals and the kind of content that will help you achieve these goals.
- Create and showcase high-quality content, packed with value for your audience
- Decide how many times you will be posting within a given time frame.
- Choose the best time to post, which should be the time that your target audience is online.
- Come up with an Excel-based calendar or use some social media management tool for planning your posts.
- Fill out the calendar with different types of content that you will post to give an interesting mix. Add the site names and the times you will be posting in the calendar.
- Use social media management tools to schedule your posts. This way, you can plan and create the content and then schedule the time when the tool should post it.
Here is a table that you can use to guide you on the best times to post.
|Social Media Network||Days of the week||Best Time to Post||Worst Time to Post|
|Steady engagement through the week.
|8 to 9 AM||3 to 4 PM|
|Late weekdays and weekends||1 to 4 PM||8 PM to 8 AM (Nighttime)|
|Monday to Thursday||12 Noon to 3 PM (5 PM is best)||8 PM to 9 AM (Nighttime)|
|Saturday||8 PM to 11 PM||5 PM to 7 PM|
|Weekdays, especially Tuesday||5 PM to 6 PM||10 PM to 6 AM|
#5: Create a Strategy to Generate Traffic
Becoming a social media influencer depends on how much traffic you can generate. As you grow the number of people who follow you, others will be encouraged to follow you too.
When you have a huge following, you can easily leverage the power of social proof to get more people to listen to you – something that encourages sponsors to hire you.
However, traffic will not just materialize from thin air, you must find a strategic way to generate traffic.
Here are a few tips on how you can go about strategically increasing your target audience traffic:
- Make sure that it is easy for people to share your content with their own networks,
- Use the correct hashtags to increase your visibility and also tag other influencers in your niche.
- Add chatbots to all your social media profiles, which serve towards driving traffic to your main influencer channel.
- Post content when your target audience is most active, as seen in the step above.
- Be present and interact with your target audience when required.
- Use some cash and pay for social media advertising.
- Create a foundation with your target audience based on trust.
- Make sure that all your social media accounts are added to any communication that you have online.
- Use infographics, videos, and images that will catch your target audiences’ eye and also stand out from your competition.
- Use other channels to increase your audience, such as webinars, podcasts, video interviews, etc.
#6: Encourage Collaboration with other Influencers
This is one way in which you can quickly command a huge following for your social media influencer program.
Influencers have a huge following online. Some of them have followers in the millions, and you can benefit a lot when you work with them.
Collaborations help expose you to their existing audience and bring them into your shared pool.
There are several ways in which you can collaborate with other social media influencers. Here are some of them:
Ask them to promote your services, after you have a fair number of viewers. This is a very difficult ask, and you must provide value for them too.
Find ways to engage organically with other influencers. This can be done by creating content that is so good, that they are compelled to share it with their own viewers.
You may also feature some of the influencers in your niche. Cover their stories, do interviews with them or create roundup articles. After you have created such content, tag them and they will share your work with their audience.
One clever way of doing this is to curate some tweets or content from other influencers, come up with a post that is based on what they tweeted about, and then tag them after you have posted the content.
If you impress them, they will definitely share with their audience, since their work is already showcased in your post.
Collaborating with influencers within your niche is something that you should do as a matter of practice.
#7: Engage your Audience
The key to becoming a social media influencer is to engage your audience.
Of what use are you, if you cannot get your audience to engage with you and hang on to each word that you write or say?
It does not matter how great your content is, if you do not engage with your target audience, they will lose interest in what you are doing.
The algorithms of Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram will reward you when you engage with your audience. It shows them that you have a thriving community around your social media profile.
When you have engagement and you use advertising, these algorithms can target a wide range of people, and this will help grow your audience even more.
There is a beneficial snowball effect when it comes to engaging with your audience.
The more you engage with them, then the more the algorithms will expose your content to other people who have an interest in what you are talking about. This will increase the engagement even further, and the effect goes on and on.
Brands are also looking for social media influencers who can hold court with their followers and encourage them to buy products and services or simply follow the brand.
They will not be happy if they see you create content about their products and services and then observe from afar.
To be able to engage with your target audience on behalf of your sponsor, then the audience needs to know you and trust you – the only way they can do this is if you engage with them regularly.
#8: Make Yourself Accessible to Brands
You must find a way in which brands can approach you when they need you to promote their products and services.
There is a lot of money to be made in the social media influencer marketing industry, but you can only have a share of this loot if you are reachable.
There are several ways in which brands can find your social media influencer profile.
For example, for brands to find an influencer on YouTube, they can look for the top performers within their niche using Google Search. One way to do this is to look for “Best YouTube Accounts for [Niche]”.
On Instagram, brands have been known to use a tool like Iconosquare, which is an analytics tracker that shows how engaging and relevant a social media influencer is on the platform.
At other times, brands may use relevant hashtags to see which accounts have the best performance based on them.
On LinkedIn, brands will look for people using relevant keywords, locations, and posts.
On Twitter, they can use the advanced search tool.
On Facebook, they can look for admins of groups that are thriving within their target niche.
No matter what tools brands use to look for social media influencers, you must find the best way to stay relevant and appear at the top of their searches.
This means that you have to learn how to optimize your content, and also use every opportunity to showcase your contacts.
Also, use your bio to show that you are open to sponsoring brands and collaborating with them.
#9: Deliver More Than Is Asked of You
If you want to be a social media influencer that top brands will look for, then you must always deliver more than they ask of you.
When you deliver immense value, which may be more than they are compensating you for, you ensure that the brands come back to you in the future.
Remember that this is a business that relies on future engagements, and it is best to keep your clients from going to other people.
There is a hidden power of reciprocation whenever you do something of great value to a company.
They will feel that you went out of your way to represent them and they will feel obliged to do something in return for you too.
Simply note that when you are giving more than is asked of you, you do this without expecting anything in return.
Any social media influencers spoil their relationships with brands when they feel the brand did not give back anything more than the agreed compensation.
You must be ready to play the long game.
Give them more than they asked for, then continue with the core functions of your influencer business.
One day, they will remember you and ask you to do something else for them.
The tips outlined above have been tried and tested by other social media influencers.
This means that all you have to do is follow them religiously and you will succeed in becoming a social media influencer.
It will take you time to become successful, so make sure you are patient. Just keep faithful to the process and the results will come one day.