Local Influencer Marketing 101
GRIN also recommends this free guide: How to Get ROI from Influencer Marketing.
In this article, we’re going to discuss how you can utilize Local Influencer Marketing to drive more business to your local business. Whether you’re based in Sacramento, like us here at Grin, or elsewhere, you’re bound to learn something from this article!
What is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing can be defined simply as marketing that utilitizes influencers. In the past, influencers manifested as respected leaders in their field, but nowadays the biggest influencers aren’t industry leaders: they’re entertainers on social media and celebrities. Influencer marketing is when businesses approach these people, influencers, in order to reach out to their audience.
With the explosion of platforms like YouTube and Instagram, creators on those platforms are reaching audiences of millions of people. This is irresistible to an advertiser, as one may be able to guess, and because of it, the biggest stars on the Internet enjoy a number of sponsorship deals and are paid to post sponsored posts, pictures and videos to push a product/business to their viewers.
To deny the influence of influencer marketing in modern times would be a silly move. Let’s dive in deeper to what it does for the industry.
Key Facts About Influencer Marketing
Done properly, influencer marketing is far more effective than other forms of marketing. This is because consumers are far more willing to partake in products and actions expressed by people they already follow and look up to, especially if it comes off as genuine. Most modern people are desensitized to ads, and won’t be swayed to using a certain product from a celebrity endorsement that’s been clearly bought and paid for.
Instead, what they want is an endorsement that comes off as genuine. Social media platforms, like Instagram and YouTube, allow influencers to create content that can plug products without coming off as insincere or blatant advertising…even if it is. That’s a massive advantage of working with influencers, and it’s reflected in the research: 81 percent of marketers in one study judged it was effective, and McKinsey discovered that influencer marketing, through word-of-mouth advertising, can generate twice the sales of traditional ads.
When viewing influencers and influencer marketing through these lenses, it becomes clear that utilizing them is one of, if not the best way to push your products. With the rise of extensions like AdBlockers blocking ad revenue and more digitally-savvy consumers turning away from cable TV for their entertainment, it’s important to shift your ideas of what makes good marketing to keep up with the changes.
Most influencer marketing, however, takes place on a national or global scale, thanks to the fact that it’s usually done online. There is a such thing as local influencer marketing, though, and in this article we’re going to explain how it works and how you can utilize it.
How Local Influencer Marketing Works
First, you need to look for local influencers and celebrities. These people are already loved in the area, and they can be the key to opening you up to their audience. What most local businesses need is a regular supply of nearby customers to stay afloat. A great example of local influencer marketing is from Pizza Pilgrims, a business based in Soho. By partnering with influencers in Soho, especially food bloggers and reviewers, Pizza Pilgrims effectively managed to drive local traffic to their restaurant.
In addition to working with influencers, Pizza Pilgrims also established their own social media channels on Instagram and YouTube. Via their YouTube channel, they made videos showing off their journey through Italy to learn how to make authentic pizza- before they even opened their shop. They even established an Instagram, which enjoys thousands of views per post!
If you’re looking to start using local influencer marketing, take a look at Pizza Pilgrims’ example. An established social media presence can get you attention from outside of your local audience, and working with local influencers can push local business to your business.
How You Can Utilize Local Influencer Marketing
Local influencers are great for making sales. The best way to do this is to host them at your business for an event- people will attend the event and give you business to see the influencer in person and in action. For instance, many standup comedy houses work with local comedians- or even famous ones that came from that town- to drive traffic to their venues. This is just one way you can utilize an influencer to drive sales for your business, but there’s other ways to go about it that depends on what kind of business you’re running and what that influencer does
Promotions are the more obvious choice, and are quite plentiful. The key to utilizing local influencer marketing to promote your business is to find the local stars (even if they’re just rising stars) and get them involved with your business. Influencers with under 100k followers can enjoy up to 3x the engagement per follower, and operate within the ideal range to drive business to your business.
Our friends at GoBabl have a tool to measure hyper-local metrics to give you a look at all of the social media chatter in any given area. Who’s getting their espresso fix within a three-block radius of your coffee shop and how can you get them in your door? Which city (and even neighborhood in that city!) is talking about your product the most? Geofencing can take a lot of risk out of “calculated risk.”
The kind of influencers you want to be working with depends on the kind of business you’re running. Restaurants want to approach food critics and food bloggers, for instance, while a computer shop may seek a sponsorship from a local tech blogger or YouTuber.
Offering Incentives To Fans and Followers
Most local influencers will have a social media presence on platforms like Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Use people with this kind of social media presence to share promotions and digital coupons for your restaurant that are exclusive to their followers. For instance, a Facebook post that offers 25% off a meal at a local restaurant will quickly gain steam when posted by a local influencer, and will drive significant traffic to your restaurant.
There’s more ways to utilize local influencer marketing, but these are just a few of the examples that we at Grin can think of. What you do is going to depend on who you’re working with and what kind of business you’re running- don’t be afraid to get creative!
Speaking of getting creative, you should stick around Grin if you want to know more about the creator’s side of things. We write a multitude of articles on how digital creators can grow on platforms like YouTube and Instagram. In addition to these creator-oriented articles, we write marketing-oriented articles, such as this one.
Check out our Grin Platform if you’re a creator looking to grow, or you’re looking to buy services from content creators on Instagram, YouTube or other platforms.
And read our blog for more informative posts like this one!
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