Why is it important to find the right B2B influencers?
Are there right and wrong ways to approach the process of choosing the best B2B influencers?
The crucial task of selecting B2B influencers who will drive the greatest success for a brand isn’t a simple one, yet it’s one often shrouded in mystery — a question that we’ll explore utilizing a collection of do’s and don’ts.
39 percent of B2B marketers state their top challenge with influencer marketing is that the process is too manual, and only 25 percent of less successful influencer marketers use software versus half of the most successful to identify influencers, according to our State of B2B Influencer Marketing Report.
There is no single more important element in B2B influencer marketing than finding subject matter experts who will provide the best relevance, resonance, and engagement for your brand.
Join in as we take a look at what a smart B2B influencer selection process looks like, and why some approaches are better than others. If you’re wonderful why influencer marketing is a winning solution for B2B brands, also be sure to check out our recent “Why Influencer Marketing Should Be a Priority 2021 Tactic for B2B Brands.”
“There is no single more important element in B2B influencer marketing than finding subject matter experts who will provide the best relevance, resonance, and engagement for your brand.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellisCLICK TO TWEET
Don’t — Rely Solely On Follower Counts
Mere follower count tallies tell only a partial tale when it comes to whether an influencer’s audience is first and foremost authentic — and not filled with fake accounts and the like — along with being topically relevant to the issues that are important to a brand.
A potential influencer’s follower count plays a role in the selection process, certainly, however learning whether an industry expert’s followers are actively engaging with them by posting, commenting or by utilizing other forms of social sharing is usually a more important element when it comes to finding ideal influencers.
This type of follower analysis requires a deeper variety of research into whether a potential influencer will likely be a good brand match, and as we’ll explore, it requires both taking full advantage of powerful tools for measuring social media engagement as well as a human touch.
As our CEO and co-founder Lee Odden has shared with audiences since the dawn of B2B influencer marketing, in the B2B world you actually have to be an expert to be a great influencer — you can’t just be good at making videos, tweeting, or other individual particular forms of social messaging, as is often the case in B2C.
Do — Measure Follower Relevance, Resonance & Engagement
As we’ll explore, there are numerous helpful tools and platforms that help to a certain extent in the process of finding the best influencers for a particular brand, however their numerical measurements and rankings are only able to do so much, and often work best when several tools are used and then combined and analyzed by a competent B2B influencer marketing researcher.
It’s key to look at a potential influencer’s topical relevance, and their resonance — the degree to which that topic resonates with the audience network of a particular influencer.
“There are numerous helpful tools and platforms that help to a certain extent in the process of finding the best influencers for a particular brand, however their numerical measurements and rankings are only able to do so much.” @lanerellisCLICK TO TWEET
Don’t — Take A B2C Influencer Approach For Reaching B2B Audiences
B2C influencer marketing’s traditional approach, often built on paid relationships with minor or major celebrities — while occasionally utilized in B2B Colombia Phone Numbers List marketing — typically isn’t well-suited to creating the kind of expert credibility that B2B buyers and customers are seeking.
Instead, smart B2B marketers use an influencer selection process that heavily relies on locating the most relevant subject matter experts for a particular topic — professionals who may be famous only on a certain niche industry Reddit channel or other social media platform.
Their form of celebrity, however — while on the micro side — resonates well with B2B buyers, as the fame a good B2B influencer has built is based on genuine expertise about a topic.
As Lee has explained over the years, if you want the best influencer content, invite the scientist, engineer, educator, or academic to share their perspective. When they do this as an influencer, it’s going to lift the quality of your brand’s content and help make it great.
Simply seeking true celebrities for influencer marketing and hoping for massive engagement offers very little return on investment in the B2B arena, where influence has reached a level of democratization. This presents new opportunities for influencers, and makes the process of finding the right influencer more challenging than ever.