Influencer Marketing is about way more than just Instagram influencers with millions of followers. This episode is a preview of Neal's new book on influencer marketing, The Business of Influence, and aims to change your mindset to understand that influence is literally everywhere, on every social network and content medium, and those who influence include your followers, customers, partners, and even employees.
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What's up, Les? Go Welcome to the Maximize your social podcast. Follow me. Discover the latest social media marketing techniques from the world's leading experts from top to bottom. This is the podcast where business professionals come together to master social media without all the confusing mumbo jumbo with no further ado. Turn it out. Here's your host, the one and only Neil Safer everybody, This is Neil Schaefer. Welcome to another episode of Maximize Your Social. You know, it's funny. I announced that I was going to be writing my next book on influence or marketing, which is titled The Business of Influence. It was about a year ago, actually, and I never wrote a Block post about the fact that I was writing a new book. I created a campaign on publish Isar, which is a really, really great platform for any of you who are interested in writing a book. I highly recommend it, but I want to talk about that experience and really something that I think, based on the feedback that I have gotten from publishers that I've spoken with from people that have already pre ordered my book about the narrow definitions and the narrow concepts that most marketers and entrepreneurs and business people have about influence a marketing. And I want to help you correct those. And if you could read my book today, you would be able to correct these errors immediately and be able to reap the rewards before everyone else. But you're gonna have to wait a little bit longer for my book. I'll get to an update on my book at the very end of this podcast, but I just want to start with, you know, influence of marketing is the number one topic that I get asked about these days and similar to how five years ago I wrote, Maximize your social based on all these questions about social media strategies and sold me to audit and social media are why well, the industry has matured. It's five years later today. Clearly, influence marking is the hot topic that every marketer is trying to figure out, or if they're already investing in trying to reap a greater reward. Ah greater r a y for their investment. And it's no surprise I am featuring literally dozens of case studies in my upcoming book, and there is clear our ally that could be derived when doing influence marketing right? There's a lot more compelling reasons to be utilizing influence of marketing outside of just, you know, to compliment a campaign that you're doing toe added influence or elements to the mix. You know, I believe the influence marketing, I believe. After you read my book, you'll see that it should be a fundamental part of a company's marketing. And this is not just for consumer. Brands are targeting millennials or Tweens for any brand, including B to B brands, including non profits and government organizations. The objective around this episode is really to give a formal introduction to my upcoming book, but also giving you some advice on how to redefine and re utilize influence of marketing for organization. So it really begins with as I'm writing this book and as I am talking with potential publishers for the book, it's very interesting because most people equate influence or marketing to consumer e commerce brands that are just trying to tap into the 20 something crowd on Instagram. And if we look at and because some of you probably read marketing books, business books, if not, you should and hopefully read my previous books. At least maximize your socials, not my book, something den. You know there's a lot of books out there on the topic of influence, beginning with Dale Carnegie's classic How to Win Friends and Influence People. And that is still sort of a classic that it was even featured on young Sheldon for those big Bang theory fans and young Sheldon fans like I Am. But there's also been a number of other books around the topic of influence. My friend and great Thought leader in marketing and social media Mark Schaeffer wrote R A Y, or return on influence. That was several years ago when Clout was still in operation. We all know that clout K L O U T is no longer in operation, you know, more recently we've had, and I guess the first edition was It was at the same time is Mark's book, but we've had Gary Vaynerchuk crushing, and this has almost become I would like to describe the four hour work week for the new generation of entrepreneurs Sela Preneurs freelancers, people that want to go independent or what have you and crush it does talk a little bit about influence and how to use it for business. There's also some other books that have come out that talk about influence in terms of personal branding or how to become more influential. This is a topic it's actually a weapon. Or that I did not very topic that launched the idea for this book. But none of these books and off found and there have been earlier books. But none of these books, not found really help businesses and marketers leverage influences for their marketing. That is the perspective I'm taking. In the last part of the book, there will be information about how why businesses should try to become more influential themselves. Insult comedian. Also for those marketing professionals. And I know a lot of them asked me, Hey, you know, how do I get a little bit more influence in social media? For whatever reason, I'm gonna cover those topics. But really, the perspective is on helping businesses on helping marketers, just like I have done with maximize your social and with maximizing thinkin for sales and social media marketing. So let's start with that definition of influence or marketing, or I should say the current concept of what influence of marking is because currently a lot of businesses on Lee look at influencing market In terms of instagrammers and Instagram is the place where it's the social network that is achieving the largest year to your growth of all the major social networks, and it's now become the second largest social networking. I think we saw a huge growth in the United States instagram users, and now we're seeing that growth worldwide over the last 1 to 2 years. So it's a ver ver exciting time to be on Instagram and to be involved in instagram marketing. But obviously influence knows no limits. If someone could be influential on Instagram, what about all those YouTubers right? What about Logan, Paul and all these others that have millions of subscribers on YouTube? Those air, all influences as well. We can't forget about those people especially ah, lot of YouTubers in the gaming sphere. You know, my elementary school middle school kids don't know a lot of influencers, but they play fortnight and they know the YouTubers that are really famous in the fortnight world. So those are influences as well. What about bloggers? Influencer marketing started with the concept of blogger outreach before we had instagram Right before we have Snapchats, you have bloggers who yield influence you have Obviously, even though Snapchat is not of the same growth. And I think the report just came out today that their arm or Tweens on Instagram and Snapchat I'm sort of not surprised. It was only a matter of time. There snap chatters and there are people that are ver ver influential on Twitter. There was a Chinese PR agency that often reaches out to me as an influencer four sponsored tweets only on Twitter. And I try to push other networks because I actually think they'd be more effective for the product. But they really want to focus on Twitter, right? And in Japan, Twitter is still extremely popular, more popular than Instagram, I think even more popular than Facebook being the number one most popular social network outside of a line. Of course, there are people that you would influence on Facebook. There people that yield influence on linked in in fact Lincoln as a term for them, right, linked influencers and you see them blogging on linked in. So when you begin to think about and everybody who knows me knows I think about business and marketing extremely holistically. When you begin to think about all this holistically, you begin to see that influence does not depend on social network. Influence really is everywhere. There are communities everywhere, just like Seth Godin wrote in Tribes Everybody can now easily find other people to connect with. And there are niche communities in almost any given subject around the world. Which is why, regardless of industry, there's probably a community that you can tap into. And for those of you who saw me speaking social media marketing world last year a ball if you didn't one of the concepts and I wrote a block post on this one. Neal schaefer dot com, which will link to in the show, notes that influence or marketing is about community and not campaign. And it's always gonna be a larger community out there that don't know about you that you should be tapping into. That should have affinity with you, but don't because they just haven't found out about you, and I think that there's our prime opportunities. In fact, I was recently asked to contribute to a block post in the question. If you only had $100 to spend a generate website traffic, where would you spend it? And my answer was I would spend $50 or half of it on retargeting, because we know that these are people that already have some affinity with us, but for whatever reason, have not converted, and I would spend the other $50 on working with influences to tap in the community. That should have affinity with us, but don't and it's gonna be a lot more effective than traditional paid media in order to attract their interest. So now that would begin to look at influence marketing. In this light, I talked about blogger outreach that is, a form an early form of influence or marketing right that bloggers hold influence. They may not have the type of community, like a Facebook group or Lincoln Group or the type of engagement you see Arlington. But they have a community that will often read their blog's common under Bloch's take action from their blog's. And those blog's appear prominently. Sometimes if they have influence in Google search. So we can't forget when we talk about influence of marketing the power of working with bloggers because you know, the life time of a tweet is very short. The lifetime of an instagram post maybe a little bit longer, because you have hashtags and I still have people that, like my post from a year or two years ago because they found a hashtag Pinterest boy. If you talk about long lifespans of Social post, Pinterest is probably the longest. Some pins from a few years ago still drive traffic to my digital properties, so there's a lot of difference ways in which to think about influencers. But clearly the combination or the common thing that all of these entities have in common is their content creators. And from a search engine perspective. Although we can find content in the social network search functionality like on Pinterest or an instagram when they use hashtags or keywords, what have you? They don't compete with Google, right? So when you think about it that way, obviously bloggers still are a a prime source of people that you should be working with, and B to B industries already realized. This, I think, be to see industries could be working Maur when bloggers well What about affiliate marketing Affiliate marketing? Although the term was around way before the term influence or marketing came about, it really is another form of influence or marking how influential these affiliates are. Our question. I know that their platforms out there or if you apply to become an affiliate, they will scream you. And they only want to work with people that they think are reputable and have influence over a community that they have a platform to have a certain social following or a certain amount of website traffic. But here's the thing. An influencer doesn't have to be that 10 million faller instagram celebrity and influence. You might only have 5000 followers, but they have Avery Avery highly engaged community in something that is relevant to the products and service is that you offer. Now you begin to see how broad of a definition influencer marketing should be. Well, what about other types of influence of marketing that further wide in the definition? Well, what about your fans? Right? You know, there's plenty of stops out there that show that by investing in relationships with your customers, you will end up getting more business than investing in advertising outside your customers. In other words, not only through loyalty will your customer's purchase more from you, but they will also refer you two others that will end up being your customers as well. So brand advocacy, right? When your brand advocates actually yield influence in social media, they may not all, but I'm sure some do. When your fans, your followers amongst them, you find influences is gonna be a great case study in business of influence of one of these case studies of a, I believe, is the hotel brand. And they just went flipping through their INSTAGRAM followers and realized, Wow, they had some significant influences that were already following them. There's immediate brand affinity, even though they may not be customers, right. So true brand advocates are already talking about your brand and social media, and they're probably already your customer. But there's other people that you can convert the brand advocates, and I think the whole idea about working with influences, ideally, at the end of the day, you want to try to convert them into becoming brand advocates, right? We can keep going further here. There's more types of influences. What about employees. If we can look for influence around us, perhaps our employees might yield influence and social media, and especially if you're a beauty becoming a technology company, they probably d'oh especially people in your R and d your your engineers. For any company or executives, if they've been treating, they might yield influence as well. So employ, ah, fricassee and especially if you're be to be in. And you have sales people that also have large networks and yield influence these air you know, no brain avenues for which you need to include as part of this influence or marketing initiative that I am redefining the whole idea behind this, right? The whole idea is that social media was made for people, not for businesses. Right. And that's being reflected. Maura, Um, or in the algorithms that determine what gets seen in the news feed of your fans, people are always gonna outperform brands, which is why, to this day, I still have not switched my instagram profile to a business profile, even though I would get access to that swipe up feature. And I know this tremendous Arli there. I think that my engagement is actually going to go down as a result of that, which is why I purposely do not do that. We'll find out if that changes in the near future, and so far for most of the social media celebrity that I know that I've changed a business profile and there are exceptions. I do not see them getting a lot of engagement. I think it's because that reason, although there might be other reasons, I need to do some data test even some more research on that before I can say definitively. But people always outperform businesses. So if the algorithms are skewed against you as a business, when your Facebook page posts get zero visibility when you're linking company page post, get zero visibility Twitter, instagram, Pinterest, YouTube These air still areas. It's a different type of social network where the profile of a business and a person still perform almost equally well. But even as a business, it's harder and harder to engage with people on dhe to be authentic and doing that, it's hard to become a person, no matter how much brands try to humanize their presence in digital and social. So therefore, all of these different types of influences that I'm talking about are all people, and that is the unifying substance here. It's not that you have to have X number follows. It's that you're a person. You're active in social media and you have a community that engages with your content, ideally and specifically around a certain type of subject matter or content that is important to your business, for wanting to engage with that influencer. And that's why. And perhaps the title of this podcast is gonna be influencer. Marketing has no bounds. That's why everybody's definition or most people's definition, I see is very, very narrow. So what are other examples? Just to keep on expanding your mindset about what influencer marketing is and isn't if you listen to the previous episode of Maximize Your Social, I believe. Episode number 132. We talked about the roundup Log post very, very popular and B to B circles very, very popular in social, media and marketing circles. But it's reaching out to those who are more influential than you, asking them to contribute to answer a question or a few questions, interview them and include that as a block post where the hope is that some of those people who contributed are actually gonna share that post with their own networks. In other words, if you would ask influences to share your block post very few people going to do it. But if you use the creation of around the block post as a way to hopefully get them to share your post or at a minimum, it helps you establish a relationship with the influencer for the future. You know, if you were gonna invite 20 influencers, Well, let's say I mean, let's look a typical scenario. Maybe you're right. 50 influencers, maybe 20 agree to be part of it. And maybe five of those actually end up sharing that final piece of content out of the 20. That's still five influences that are gonna expose your content and your website to their community, and that's gonna give you new traffic. New leads, new conversion. So that's another great example. What are some other examples? What about events inviting influences to be part of webinars, for example, those are virtual events or physical events, invited influences to be part of your event. How about you? You make them part of your event by inviting them to speak or to moderate or to run a Twitter chat during your event is gonna be a great case study. And we'll include this in the show notes a Link Thio Analytic, a CZ case study of working together with VM World Europe for what they did in bringing together influences in the tech community to basically put on a tweet shot and to have their own panel discussion during that VM world just based on these influences next to gain an incredible amount of engagement. In doing so, events are great way of working in the influences. Heck, I would even think of creating an event as a way to work together with influences. Obviously, there are many types events you can create. I work, and I'm an advisor to a event management company in Japan that do corporate events. A lot of B two B events and I've seen the incredible r a y from those from my first hand experience of being part of those events, as well as helping them create content around the Arlen case studies around those events. So events are a powerful, powerful form of marketing, and when you include influences part of them. It is a great way to yield R A y in. Just strengthen those relationships and you get to meet his influencers in person, where you can really deepen that relationship. There are others, and it goes beyond the scope of a singular 20 minute episode of this. Maximize your social podcast. You know, I liked it. I try to keep this short and sweet, even though previously I had my longest 38 minute podcast. Assuming that you continue to subscribe to this and to subscribe updates from Neil schaefer dot com, you'll continue get updates, and I'll continue to sort of published content that's going to reveal more and more thoughts, insight that is going into the business of influence. So the business of influence has been a project that's been going on for several months. I'm really happy to announce that I finally hit the approximate 70,000 word count. I only plan to make this a 60,000 word books I'll be going through and and taking up the book. But the rough draft of the manuscript is finally completed. I'm working on the tedious aspect of doing a final edit of the book now that it's complete and I finally hit 500 pre orders on the publish Isar platform, so we'll include that link. If you're all interested in this book, there are unique features and benefits and discounts I'm giving to those people that invest in me and pre order the book. That campaign, now that I reached 500 preorders, is going to end on October 31st. I know that you may hear this podcast. After that, I'm really salary makes you subscribe to updates on Neil schaefer dot com. For those of you who hear this in time, as you should, this should publish on October 28 or 29th. I hope that you'll give that a look. Once again, the link will be in the show notes, and you can also see all the updates that I've included. You consign it for updates specifically on that publish Isar site as well, and you will automatically be opted into those updates once you decide to pre order the book. So that's it for today. I hope this has really piqued your interest in the topic of influence marketing, and you begin to see that it is really a fundamental part of marketing that makes Maur more sense. As social networks tweak their algorithms towards people over businesses, social media becomes more pay to play. And as people tune out advertisements more and more, it's just really, really hard to compete with the authenticity of people in social media. And I hope that you'll join me in leveraging that form of new marketing across a wide span of people, not just your instagram celebrity, but influence and influences really are all around us. So re think your mindset of this narrow definition of influence of marketing, and I think your business is really gonna benefit in 2000. Well, to close out 2018 2019 and beyond hope you enjoyed this episode of Maximize Your Social As always. I really appreciate your comments, your reviews, your ratings on iTunes. It helps expose this podcast to others, so I really hope that you'll take a minute after listening. Is if you found value in this, that you just jot down a comment really quickly. I would really, really appreciate it if there's anything you want me to cover in this podcast or any questions about this particular episode. As always, make sure you go to the show. Notes on Neil schaefer dot com. Feel free to drop a comment. I hope that we continue the conversation online and, as I like to say to end, all these podcasts make it a great social. But everybody thanks for listening to the Maximize our social podcast. Make sure kids don't forget to subscribe. Rate the show on iTunes so others can enjoy it to somebody to continue the conversation and empower your business. Your social media Visit meal safer dot com Right now. Have a great week. Let's go. We'll see you on the next episode.