One of the biggest advantages of influencer marketing is that it’s not reserved for big-budget corporations with dedicated marketing teams. If you’re a small business, you can benefit if you find local influencers to work with.
Not only do local influencers tend to understand the area, but also, often your target audience. This combination can help you extend your reach with a virtual “bonus” employee whose main goal is to provide quality content to help your brand tap into potential customers near your store or business.
Regardless of the size of your establishment, it’s good to know how to find local influencers. Here are some tips to help you locate them and pave the way for your next campaign.
1. Search your brand’s followers
Your search for local influencers should start with your followers. Because these fans already know your product or services and have chosen to stay up-to-date with your posts on social media, they’re more likely to be brand advocates. At the very least, they’re already familiar with what you offer, as well as your brand’s values, voice and marketing style.
It should go without saying that your first stop should be on your brand’s local page, where you’re guaranteed that most of the reviewers will be within driving distance of the establishment you’re looking to promote.
2. Search profiles on platforms
Search the name of your city on different social media platforms. Take a moment to look through the top search results and see if there are any influencers who align with your audience and brand.
3. Search for local hashtags
While mega- and macro-influencers are more likely to turn up in search results, nano- and micro-influencers can be harder to find. To flesh out these lesser-known influencers, perform a local hashtag search. If the search turns up too many results, try narrowing it down by adding a niche or industry-specific keyword.
4. Check your reviews
Just because an influencer doesn’t follow you on social media doesn’t mean they’re not a fan. Look through your brand’s reviews and cross-reference the list with your customer relationship management system to see if your biggest promoters live in or near the city where you’re seeking influencers.
In addition to checking reviews that come in through the website or on your brand’s social media posts, search for people who are talking about your business elsewhere online. If you’re alerted to a new “informal” brand advocate, it’ll be much easier to approach them about doing a local influencer marketing campaign.
5. Do a Google search
One of the fastest ways to narrow your funnel of local influencers who have experience with marketing campaigns is with a simple Google search. In addition to the industry and location, add “blogger” or “vlogger.”
Once you find some “Denver beauty vloggers,” spend some time reviewing their content, audience, and engagement. Many experienced content creators have information about previous influencer marketing campaigns, engagement statistics, or their current sponsorship rates posted. Others will be prepared to share that information upon request.
6. Use an influencer marketing platform
If your brand isn’t already using an influencer marketing platform, you’re missing out on a valuable solution. The investment in software is worth its weight in gold if you plan to really dig your heels into influencer marketing.
These all-in-one tools can help you discover social influencers, manage the content they generate, and analyze your influencer marketing campaigns with ease. Whether you’re looking for micro-influencers or celebrities, this end-to-end solution can help you filter your search by location, engagement, industry, niche, and more.
Ideas for working with local influencers
Experiment with a variety of channels.
Don’t lock yourself into “your usual” platform but rather, learn more about what your targeted community prefers.
Invite local influencers to appear in your local store.
Just as celebrities can draw a crowd for grand openings and pop-up events, local influencers can bring followers into your local store.
Send products for an unboxing video.
Unboxing videos are a hot commodity. Send some free products to your local influencers of choice and ask them to film themselves opening and trying the items.
Suggest an in-store tour
Invite your local influencers to tour the store on camera in order to share their experience with shoppers. You may even want to consider giving them a gift certificate with the idea that they’ll spend it on your products or services in one day.
Host a giveaway
Everyone loves free stuff and providing your influencer prizes in a sponsored giveaway can build excitement, boost engagement and even create new brand advocates.
Put these tips and ideas to use as you expand your toolbox to include local influencer marketing. Although you should have some goals and general guidelines for your brand, don’t be afraid to take direction from someone who knows the area’s trends and how to develop engaging content for your next campaign.