Increased online privacy standards are posing a few challenges for digital marketers. At TRIBE, we support these changes, privacy while online is essential. However, without the benefit of data tracking and targeted advertising, growing your business online is more complicated.
But don’t despair; it just means that it’s time to think outside the box and be more creative when it comes to marketing, especially in the business-to-business sphere. Brands have used influencers for years when marketing directly to consumers. So, why not apply the same thinking to B2B?
Need more convincing? One study found that B2B brands can get an annual ROI with influencer marketing that’s 11x the amount of traditional methods!
It’s simple: Micro influencers are a game-changer for B2B marketing.
If you aren’t familiar with the term ‘micro influencers’, at TRIBE, this is what we call ‘regular’ people who have built a dedicated following on social media. Usually, they sit within a particular niche, and their audience relies on them for content within that niche, whether it be fitness, fashion, or travel. Typically, they’ll have between 3K and 10K followers.
Why micro influencers?
A micro influencer’s follower count may be smaller than others within their niche, but they usually have a much more devoted audience who consistently engages with their content.
They’re relatable, genuine and trustworthy, three things that are essential when it comes to marketing.
Posts from micro influencers are more authentic than having a celebrity name-drop your product. Plus, a partnership with a micro-influencer will be a lot less of a hit on your marketing budget. Experts say that 94% of B2B marketers who’ve tried influencer marketing feel it’s highly effective.
Remember — it’s essential to work with an influencer who aligns with your brand image and goals. Four things to keep in mind:
1. Know your target market.
Who are your customers already following, engaging with, listening to and watching? Survey your existing customers, or review their social media and online presence to gather insights
2. Look for existing advocates of your brand.
Chances are there’s already a micro-influencer with awareness, knowledge, and passion for your brand out there somewhere. Invite them to join TRIBE so that you can include them in your future campaigns.
3. Be hyper-aware of any endorsement conflicts influencers may have.
Usually, micro influencers still have a day job, which might involve them working for a company that has helped them build an audience. Be sure that there is no conflict of interest with your brand and others they may be working for or with.
4. Understand engagement metrics.
Followers and reach are important metrics, but engagement is the key. Does their audience interact in the comment section, share their posts, and follow through on sales?
Consider the buyer journey when designing your B2B influencer campaign
B2B customers have longer, more considered buying journeys than standard B2C sales because of the number of stakeholders involved in business decisions. The decision-makers have a more significant 'consideration' phase and require buy-in from their senior teams, so influencer marketing content should reflect this.
But we do know that they’re keen on influencer content. 65% of B2B buyers said their consumption habits have changed to prefer credible content from industry influencers. Rather than quick, one-off posts that regular B2C influencers can get away with, as a B2B brand, you’d be better off with a long, multi-pronged marketing approach.
Consider how this might look for your brand. Maybe it could be a series of posts with educational content, product reviews and testings, and taking a deeper dive into a product or service.
Explore the idea of growing your brand with like-minded influencers
As a byproduct of already being a creator within your niche, any influencer you work with will likely have great ideas each time you brief in a new campaign. Why not leverage that by working with them on an ongoing basis.
By utilising TRIBE’s Brand Fans feature, you can assemble a group of trusted creators to work with regularly. Move beyond one-off posts and build on-going collaborations via private campaigns. Use their insights into what content resonates with your shared audience to create engaging campaigns.
Influencer marketing for B2B is the future
Industry analysts expect that Influencer marketing will grow to be worth $13.8 billion in 2021! It’s the fastest way to get to new customers and can be very lucrative for brands who embrace it. A 2019 survey reported that businesses are seeing a return on investment of $5.20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing.
If you’re new to influencer marketing, especially within the B2B sphere, getting started can be a little daunting. TRIBE helps brands unlock instant branded content from skilled and influential creators who already use and love them. Find out why some of the world’s biggest brands use TRIBE.