The business of being a paid social media influencer is drastically changing. If influencers don’t quickly adapt, it’s Game Over!
To no fault of their own, the modern day social influencer was turned into a celebrity literally overnight. Thanks to the ability of social media creating world-wide audiences in a direct and organic way. As a result, followers were growing by the millions and brands were seeing an opportunity just as were influencers utilizing their audiences to make money on their popularity.
This spawned the demand to increase one’s following to be deemed relevant and valuable. So began the quick rise of buying followers and, soon after, likes.
Unfortunately, it soon became clear of the fake followings and lack of content engagement. This left many not knowing how else to measure their influencing power while brands were scratching their heads wondering who is a legit influencer.
We want to help you understand how to position yourself and give you the business insight to guide you correctly through this still untapped opportunity of brands partnering with you. But, to help brands see your value, there should be some critical information you can provide that will not only prove your value, but improve your chances of being paid what your influence is trulyworth.
So, here is our advice. We can only hope you take note because if you do this as an influencer, you will position yourself as a viable investment for brands and agencies like ours who see tremendous value in a strategic partnership with you!
Okay, So What Is Your Value?
First, know that as an influencer, you’re similar to a CNN, NBC, MTV, Bravo, E and others along with magazines, radio channels etc. They are channels with certain audiences and they make money from their advertisers who feel their audience matches their customer. But where you vastly differ, and are far more valuable, you have a voice that can spawn a reaction from those that love, trust and admire all the things you do. Not to mention what you like and dislike; and you have hard data that reflects your power. Plus, and most importantly, the things you tell them you do like … they will trust that and want to buy / try them too!
Now that we’ve got that down, let’s talk brass tacks and what makes you so different and so much more valuable! To any business that is stepping into the game of partnering with social media influencers like yourself, followers are an important ingredient. That’s a given, but not nearly as important as the results of your influence to your followers. THAT is your true value. Period. End of story.
You have real numbers to prove that you posted X, you reached Y people, and it resulted in Z units sold.
This path from seeing how your content can generate a purchase / action is what we in the land of geek-talk within agencies call a “conversion”. Ya know, converting someone from a passerby to a paying customer. Or, in social media terms, converting someone from a viewer / liker of your content to a … tah-dah … follower!
How To Prove Your Worth!
For any media (ie. billboards, magazines, radio stations, newspapers, cable/tv, etc) to prove their value to a potential advertiser, they maintain what is called a “media kit”. It basically breaks down who their viewer in age, gender, interests, distribution, audience etc. Typically it’s skewed because it isn’t definitive nor truly definitive. Whereas the data you as an influencer can provide are what makes you so valuable in this modern day because it’s directly from the analytic tools provided and data you can collect from a brand who hires you.
As an influencer, to be taken serious, you need to maintain a media kit. It proves the power of your influence with supported data thus proving your value and price you charge a brand. This concrete evidence shows that if Brand A pays you X-amount to promote their product /service to your followers, and they make Y as a result and it’s profitable, you’re now considered a good investment because your voice made them money.
Becoming An Investment!
Okay, so you could be wondering what you should have in your media kit. Overall, it should reflect your current number of followers through all channels and with each. Then show the age / gender breakdown, follower growth month over month, engagement rate, Click Through Rates (aka CTR) to client websites / in-store traffic and the value of sales you generated due to your influence. We also suggest writing a brief description of your most impactful efforts with a client and explain what you did and the return they received. This also helps a prospect see your intellectual value in that you know what you’re doing.
This will alleviate any apprehension from a brand wondering if you have solid influence and can see a return on their spend with you. That in mind, keep it current as you don’t want to showcase results from a year ago! Be relevant!
As influencer marketing is still largely underutilized and grossly misunderstood how to leverage correctly, help brands and agencies see your true value as a bonafide influencer. This is accomplished using the results you deliver as you establish yourself as a legitimate media company with proven influence. This convinces brands that they would be stupid not to partner with you to increase their relevance and sales.
All in all, get your media kits together so you can start making more money as a social influencing bad-ass, and enjoying the freedom of being in business for yourself while being in-demand!