The Ultimate Roadmap to Becoming an Influencer [in 3 Stages]
Curious how to become an influencer? This carefully crafted roadmap will uncover all the major steps towards a successful career as an influencer.
Influencer Marketing is the new buzzword. Our take? Online influencers will be getting more and more popular. They are able to "humanize" brands & give them voices.
This is like "word of mouth" but enhanced. Influencers are treated as trustees by their followers, "a person who is just like you." Their opinions matter, which makes them perfect brand ambassadors.
Who is an influencer, anyway? LaunchMetrics has run the research trying to define what the word "influencer" means to people. According to their results, an influencer is someone who:
- shares his opinion on specific issues
- has a mass following in a particular field.
So, are you ready to become a web influencer? Good. Below, we handpicked major tactics you should pay attention to. We also highlighted the do's and don'ts on your way! Let's start.
Stage 1. Define your area of expertise
Okay, what are you best at? Each blogger, when you look at him/her, started somewhere. They've found their 'niche', something they are best at. Simply put, you need to combine your hobbies with something that can potentially drive profits.
Focus on your passions
Malcolm Forbes (you guessed it: the famous Forbes magazine publisher) once said:
The biggest mistake people make in life – is not trying to make a living at doing what they most enjoy.
And this is spot on. Please don't try to get into something you don't enjoy. Your work should never be a burden.
On the contrary, it should light up your routine. You can choose fashion, technology, sports, or become an influencer in marketing. Anything works, as long as you are enthusiastic about it.
Who are your followers?
The first rule of marketing is to define your target audience. You should know these people as if they are your friends. Who are they? What are they interested in? What are the daily struggles they face? What are their dreams?
Do your homework and make the research as detailed as possible. You can see this info in the data analytics tool (e.g., Google Analytics, Facebook Business Planner, etc.). But don't stop there, you should create a survey and ask people exactly about the pain points they have and how you can solve them. This information is invaluable. Later it will contribute to your influence online.
Don't buy followers!
Paying for followers is the same thing as taking your cousin to the school prom. Instead of spending money on fake followers, buy some Facebook or Instagram ads & reach real people. Please remember: you can't fake engagement & interactions. What's more, don't be naive thinking that brands & agencies don't check for cheaters. So, if you are wondering how to become an influencer – stay committed. Choose a longer but safer way.
Stage 2. Create fascinating content!
You know this: it all comes down to content, always. Successful online influencers create content that people love sharing. It’s witty, helpful, funny, sad, challenging. Don’t create content for the sake of creating content. At Adsy, we have already discussed the makings of great content. Read some of the insights below.
The ultimate goal is to solve problems!
You researched your audience for a reason. Relevant info about your users help you create better posts, articles, videos – you name it. More specifically, try to build your content around the problems your readers have. You need to be genuinely involved in their life, to be able to share lifehacks and solutions.
Stay sincere & unique
Many people are tempted to wear masks on social media. Meanwhile, you should always stay real and down-to-earth – this is something your followers will appreciate. Form an open & friendly relationship with your followers. In due course they will cherish your opinion & your influence online will grow.
Share your thoughts
We quoted LaunchMetrics research in the introduction, remember? Well, the same study states that 79% of people surveyed expect influencers to express their thoughts on specific issues or topics. Make your statement, even if some of your followers don’t approve of it. It’s important to remember that you can’t be loved by everyone.
Keep track of the news & trends
Thanks to the global web & social networks, all news spread with lightning speed. As an Internet influencer, your task is to keep up! Use the latest trends for your benefit. Jump on the trending topic and write about it. This is called situational marketing. Share the news & exclusive info with your readers and be creative about it.
Don’t be too salesy
Don’t get us wrong, you can and should promote your business. In fact, we will discuss promotion tactics right below! But your task as an influencer is to focus on the user. Try to balance your promotional posts with educational materials. Who does like seeing never-ending ads and promos? Exactly! That’s why try sharing your expertise with your followers without being too pushy. Especially when you just take off on this path.
Stage 3. Promote your personal brand
We live in the Internet time. Nowadays, a chicken egg can get more likes than Kylie Jenner. The Internet is the ultimate platform to promote anything, anywhere. Easier said than done, right? No doubt, the competition is fierce, but there are some tactics to help you get yourself out there. Let’s see what you should do!
Run adverts on social media
As of 2020, 4.57 billion people have access to the Internet. These people go on Google, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram daily. They use Instagram and Snapchat. Paid ads are the easiest way to reach them.
Why are Google & Facebook ads so effective? Because you can reach any group of people. The targeting options are amazing! You can be as specific as you can get.
Reach out to brands
Don’t just sit back & expect brands to make the first step. So what if you have less than 1,000 followers? There are plenty of small independent companies that might be willing to work with you. It’s a win-win situation: both of you will benefit from the collaboration!
Sure thing, you should be realistic, when you contact big guys like Nike or Adidas. Everyone would be honored to work with them. The competition here will be immense.
Don’t ignore work connections
Connect with fellow web influencers. Personal connections can jump start your career. You can start small – read and write comments on their sites, Facebook, or LinkedIn pages. Eventually, you can partner up and organize common promos, giveaways & more!
Offline connections are crucial too. Take up a speaking gig at a regional conference, exchange your knowledge with others, and be seen. You will meet many new people that can turn important for your career.
Don’t be greedy!
Put your audience first. Don’t accept all offers from brands you receive. Some of them can be irrelevant (even though very profitable!). Remember, your reputation is your most valuable asset. If you ruin in – it’s impossible to restore. It’s always better to establish long-term relationships with trustworthy & quality brands than to jump from company to company.
80s kids: We want to be astronauts when we grow up!
2000s kids: Follow me on Instagram. I am an influencer!
Nowadays, ask any kiddo around the block, they all want to be Internet influencers. And this is real. Take your smartphone, start filming, take photos, write content. Anyone has a shot. But it’s important to remember all do’s and don’ts that we briefly outlined in this quick guide on how to become an influencer.
Please let us know in the comments section what’s your ultimate challenge as an influencer. We will be happy to discuss this and help!