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March 7, 2020

150: How to Know When It's Time to Monetize Your Influence

150: How to Know When It's Time to Monetize Your Influence

As you try to build more digital influence, you might start wondering when and how to begin monetizing your efforts. This episode provides you a number of different scenarios for both the different triggers which might indicate why you should begin to ask for compensation as well as calculating what sort of remuneration you should begin to ask for. This episode also includes advice for marketers who want to build better relationships with influencers.

Find out more about my upcoming book and the pre-order campaign here: https://nealschaffer.com/influencer-marketing-age-of-influence/

Key Highlights

[03:36] When To Monetize Your Influence?

[07:21] Recognizing When You Have Begun Yielding Influence

[08:32] Signals On When The Time You Should Start Monetizing Your Influence

[11:51] Where To Begin

[12:45] Figuring Out Good Hourly Rate

[14:37] Making Sure You Get Something Back

[15:54] The Only Way To Scale In Monetizing Influence

Notable Quotes

  • When you begin to get asked things from people, from companies from organizations, what happens is someone sees value in your expertise, your experience, your knowledge, and they contact you.
  • However, small amount of money you begin with, you need to be it provides you the greatest effort to really monetize your influence, that's really the easiest way to put it.
  • Well, what is the value of that? What is the value of your time? And what is the value of publishing a piece of content on your website, or for your opinion.
  • But whatever it is, make sure you are getting in kind value for that.
  • But I don't want to be doing anything that's less than that, because it's just not worth my time. And this is something that you're going to have to figure out.
  • When we talk about monetizing influence, we're basically asking something in return for something.
  • And I want you to get in the habit of whenever someone hasn't asked for you, as someone who has used an influence, you haven't asked for them. And that is going to help you best monetize your influence.
  • Think about ways in which you can better monetize what you're doing. And I think those of us that have been doing this a while already have this mindset, if you don't have the mindset, now is the time to get the mindset. 
Transcript

Neal Schaffer:

This is the maximize your social influence podcast with Neal Schaffer, where I help sales and marketing professionals, entrepreneurs and small business owners build, leverage and monetize their influence in digital and social media. Hey, everybody, this is Neal Schaffer. And welcome to the maximize your social influence Podcast, episode number 150. Now it's right 150 of the maximize your social influence podcast. I don't know how long you've been listening to this podcast, but or however long it is, whether it's from the original social business unplugged days, and I'm aging myself talking about that. Or it could be from when this podcast used to be called a slightly different maximize your social podcast or the current iteration, which is maximize your social influence. I want to sincerely thank you from the bottom of my heart for continuing on this journey. I am just getting started. In all honesty, even though this podcast began, believe it or not back in 2013, it's taken a little bit over seven years to get here, I have a new passion for really sharing what I think you can all benefit from through this podcast in 2019. Believe it or not, I only published seven podcasts. This year, it's only March. And this is already my seventh podcast equaling the number of all of last year in the first three months. So this to me, that's nothing to brag about. By this time, if I was publishing every week, I should be at about 10 episodes. But hey, I'm getting back into the groove. It feels really good. A lot of really exciting episodes coming up. And I couldn't be more happy than to spend today with you, wherever you are in the world. Talking about this next subject. It has been a crazy week for those of you who either visited Social Media Marketing World, or perhaps you were catching the hashtag on Twitter or on Instagram. Hashtag SMM, W. 20, it was crazy. It was so great to meet many of you. I know some of you that I met our podcast listeners, and maybe others that I met, are subscribing to this podcast for the first time. So if you are new here, this podcast really explores a unique convergence of really leveraging influencers, for brands for marketers, for small business owners, entrepreneurs, as well as the concept of yielding more Digital Influence yourself, personal branding. And in fact, if you read the age of influence, which is the sponsor of today's episode of this podcast, you will learn that the more influence that you are your brand yields, the easier it will be for you to work with influencers. So as I spoken, actually spoke not only on the mainstage about influencer marketing, and really influencer marketing, measurement and ROI. But I also spoke at a private event for the social media listening tool talkwalker. And at talkwalker. At that event, I had a lot of people come up to me with some really, really interesting questions. Of course, after my presentation on Social Media Marketing World itself, I also had a lot of interesting questions. And I really want to try to tackle some of those questions while they're still really fresh in my head. But one question was really striking to me. And it's something that I've never really talked about, and I don't see a lot of other people talking about. So I thought it would be a great topic for this episode. And today's topic is when do you know when it's time to monetize your influence? I'm also going to talk about, you know what to do as a next step. But when is the trigger point? When do you really need to be thinking about this, IP this experience, whatever I have, is worth something to somebody. And therefore, I should be charging money or something for it. So before we get into the episode, today, another reminder, when this podcast is published, it'll probably be a little bit more than a week, until the launch of the age of influence. I am doing a pre order campaign. I know that a lot of you already bought the book as part of my publicized campaign and for all of you, you will get access to these two exclusive webinars. But if you want to take part in them, you need to preorder the book on Amazon using the link in the show notes by midnight March 16. Pacific Time, the reason being that the book actually launches on March 17. So there are going to be two great episodes or I should say webinars, or you can also call them trainings. One is going to be about how to scale your Digital Influence once again, something that I don't see a lot of people talking about, and the other is going to be all about the Digital Influence of blogging and SEO once again another unique concept that I wish I had known when I started blogging and even you know, regardless of what social network you are going to try to yield influence on your website and or your blog still is really the cornerstone of your Digital Influence. Sure, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, these are all, you know, huge social networks with impressive numbers of users and algorithms. But so is the Google algorithm, right? We're talking about digital, which obviously encompasses social and the concept of Digital Influence. So let's get to today's topic. Now, this came as a question from one really, really interesting person. Building influence digitally, sometimes can happen very, very quickly. Now, some of it obviously, is the way you share your expertise and your expertise. But there's something about the timeliness of your expertise, as well as well. Sometimes it's luck as well, right? You never know, when you're on a given social network. When you publish content there or engaged with someone you never know what that might lead to. So one lady in particular, really struck out now this is someone who is in real estate, and I think she had her first real estate transaction in cryptocurrency or Bitcoin. This specifically came from a Chinese purchaser, and it led her on a journey to want to learn more about cryptocurrency. So and blockchain really, so she went to a executive education program on blockchain and cryptocurrency at I believe it was the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Now, you don't have to be an MIT student to necessarily enroll in their executive education, the same goes for Harvard, or Stanford, or where have you but she really wanted to get, you know, first class education on what she was seeing as something that might be a new trend. Well, as she was obviously going through that program, she started talking about what she was learning in that program. And really, really quickly, she just got a lot of different companies, organizations, people reaching out to her asking her for her expertise. And her question to me is, Neal, how do I go about monetizing this? This influence? Right? So I want to take a step back? I'm going to answer that question. Well, at least, you know, generally, at the end of this podcast, but I want to begin with recognizing, when you have begun to yield influence digitally, what's going to happen is, it happens a lot of different ways. And I'm sort of going back to when this started happening to me more than a decade ago. And once again, if someone had taught me this, I might have structured things a little bit better been able to get a little bit more for what time I invested. But when you begin to get asked things from people, from companies from organizations, it could come in a social media message, it could come in a contact form on your website, it could come from your email address, which someone can get if they connect with you on LinkedIn could come from a phone call if you have your phone number listed on your business card that you handed someone. But evidently, what happens is someone sees value in your expertise, your experience, your knowledge, and they contact you saying I would love to pick your brain, do you have time for a call? Now on LinkedIn, I know a lot of us get these standard template messages after someone connects with you. Please schedule a 15 minute call so I can get to know you better. Now, that's not what I'm talking about. That is a sale, right? They're trying to sell you on something. And when I talk about, you know, someone contacted you to, to really, you know, pick your brain phone call meet for a cup of coffee, they want to ask you more questions. In essence, for lack of a better word, they are looking for free consulting. Now, there's another way this works, we'd like to offer you a free product, maybe we'd offer, we'd like to offer you a free month subscription to our tool or to our service in exchange for your opinion, or maybe your post on social media or on your blog. Once again, this has tremendous value. It's free feedback, or it's free mention on a website or in social media, which has extreme value. If you look at the flip side from influencer marketing, people paying influencers to publish content, it is the same thing. It could be that if you have a lot of digital influence from your website, it could be we'd love to link to you. Or we'd love to if you mentioned our company in this article, we'd love for you to publish our content as a guest post or if you have a podcast that could be we'd love to be featured on your podcast. Once again. These are people that want to leverage your Digital Influence for their benefit. Now in b2b industries as this particular person that reached out to me was in, it was companies reaching out to her and say we want to put you on our board of directors, she was already on the board of directors for a few companies actually, or we want to invite you to speak, it could be speaking for a company, it could be speaking at a Association, or some sort of conference, either domestic or international. It could also be we're putting on a corporate event, we'd love to have you there. And this could mean obviously speaking, it could also mean free consulting, it could be a lot of different things. So if you ever had any of these things happen to you, they are a signal. Now, if people are looking to hire you, you know you're in transition looking for a job. This is this is obviously something else, this is all part of sort of courting a new employer as part of the application process. But if that is not the case, right? If you are getting pinged from your Digital Influence, those are the signals, those signals should be going off in your head, that you need to be now better, or really put a plan in place, or a system or process to try to begin to monetize these things. However, small amount of money you begin with, you need to be it provides you the greatest effort to really monetize your influence, that's really the easiest way to put it. Now, some of you may already have monetize your influence. Some of you might be influencers listening to this, some of you might represent companies, where you've had other companies reach out to you asking you to do this, etc, etc, or other companies asking for partnerships, once again, you should be getting something for your influence. And that's really what this is about. And the first thing that I would tell you to do that I would do if I was in this situation. Now, it's going to be different based on all those different scenarios I pointed out. But it really begins with especially when we talk about the free consulting, the Board of Directors, the speaking the attending events, I mean, above and beyond, you know, getting reimbursed for travel is really can I get paid for my time, you know, the time I'm going to be spending with you is time I can be spending with clients is really what it comes down to, or producing content that's going to generate more business for me. So in the old, pick your brain, phone call coffee, you know, there is a business model, there are companies that pay research firms to reach out to people that might pay 100 $200 for a 15 or 30 minute phone call. Those companies do exist. And I know they've reached out to me. And if those companies are charging me that much money, I can only imagine how much more they're making from their end customer. If it is free product or service. Well, what is the value of that? What is the value of your time? And what is the value of publishing a piece of content on your website, or for your opinion. So once again, this is something you're going to have to figure out, you're going to have to begin with estimating what a good hourly rate for you would be this is, you know, what is your time worth? If you were to hire a lawyer, it would be a few $100 an hour, right? Maybe 234 Or five, I guess it depends on the quantity a lawyer might be six $700 an hour, I don't know, you might not be able to charge the lawyers fees, I think those are some of the more on the expensive side in terms of service, but begin with something, okay. And if you're just starting out, and maybe you're younger, and you just want to do a side hustle and see if you can get $25 An hour fine. Start with $25 Start at $50. But whatever it is, make sure you are getting in kind value for that. So if it's a $10 a month product, they're only going to give you a free month, and it's going to take up two hours of your time, I'd be asking for a year of that product, for instance, right? And you know what the worst that can happen is they say no. Same thing for you know, an hour phone call, my rates are $50 an hour, you know, will you be able to provide me $50 For that you can send it to PayPal, send me an Amazon gift card, whatever it is. So this is really where you begin. Now once you begin to yield a certain amount of influence, you may want to think you know what, just getting $20 and $50 is not worth my time, I'm just going to set a minimum of $100. This is something that I commonly do. And it might be $100. It might be $200, and maybe $500. But I don't want to be doing anything that's less than that, because it's just not worth my time. And this is something that you're going to have to figure out because obviously it's going to be different for every one of you, depending on where you are in how you've monetize your influence. Well, here's another one. You know, we want you to speak on our podcast, we want you to provide us your content. And the easy one for that is can I get a link back to my website that's, you know, helping you You're obviously being leveraged for your expertise, but you want to make sure you get something back from them and a link. I don't think you're going to get money back from them. And some of these things obviously are an honor to be part of, but you at least want to try They get a link back to your website, at a minimum, or if they're not following you on social media, give me a follow whatever it is. And this is the thing, right? When we talk about monetizing influence, we're basically asking something in return for something. And I want you to get in the habit of whenever someone hasn't asked for you, as someone who has used an influence, you haven't asked for them. And that is going to help you best monetize your influence. Now, you know, how much do you charge is I gave you some ideas, but I would start out with a minimum. And once you get two or three people that accept those conditions, those rates, that's when you know, you should be raising your price. This is something that I've done with my consulting with my speaking every three gigs, I get speaking gigs or consulting at a certain rate, I would continue to raise that, so that I can be more efficient with my time and I get more value for my time, because when it comes to monetizing influence, right, the only way to scale is by charging more, or by trying to find something where you can get more and requires less time. Now, when we talk about being on a, you know, sponsored content, like a sponsored post on Instagram, or sponsored blog posts, when we talk about speaking, when we talk about consulting, these are things now that have established rates for there are established rates for speakers, they're established rates for sponsored content sponsored Instagram posts, they're established rates for consulting, right, a take an annual salary, divide that by the number of workdays work in the number of hours, and then multiply that by two, because most companies have to pay so much for social welfare, health insurance, whatever for you, you begin to get an interesting idea of what that rate might be. And it's probably going to be closer to 100 150 $200 $250 an hour rather than 2550 75. But once again, this really depends on where you are in your career. So today, I really want to get you thinking. Now, if you're already doing this, like I said, Think about ways in which you can better monetize what you're doing. And I think those of us that have been doing this a while already have this mindset, if you don't have the mindset, now is the time to get the mindset. And on the flip side, if you have been listening to this as a marketer, and you want to know how to better work with influencers, be thinking of the various ways the various value that you can offer them. And I talked a lot about this at Social Media Marketing role, both in my presentation at the talkwalker event with with other people, and it really comes down to there's so much you have to offer. One, there was a construction company, and they were talking about how their main influencers were YouTubers, believe it or not, I mean, they're not, you know, professional YouTubers, but they were publishing a lot of video content about construction on YouTube. And that's where they yielded their Digital Influence. Well, why not set up? You know, if you have a video studio in house, which some of these companies that I talked to actually had, you know, for their own internal production? Why wouldn't you open that up to the outside world, I don't expect a construction company has an in house video crew. But if you work with a video crew, or photographer, these are resources you can offer people that they might be really, really happy to accept, Oh, you want to do a video shoot. If you're going to offer to do a video shoot for me and produce videos for me. Heck, I'll give you free consulting, because it's going to be worth a lot more than me having to hire someone to do it myself. So these are the things and that's where with every podcast episode, I really want to show both sides, both from the influencer side as well as the influencer marketing engaging with influencers influencer outreach side of thinking really, really holistically with some flexibility as well, but but creatively, a finding solution. So it truly becomes a win win for both the influencer and the brand. Because that's when the magic happens. That's when both parties feel really good brands going to get the highest ROI, and you are going to become closer and closer to become a genuine brand advocate for that brand. Alright, well, I hope you enjoyed this episode of the maximize your social influence podcast. I do hope if you haven't already, please hit that subscribe button. And even more importantly, I would really appreciate 510 15 seconds of your time to pop over to Apple podcasts or wherever you listen to this podcast. And please leave me a review. That really helps me create better content. But it also helps others discover this podcast because just as those social media algorithms can work for or against you. The review is really our critical part of those algorithms. So thank you once again, for those of you that have already pre ordered the age of influence. I really appreciate you and I'll be reaching out soon about the webinar details. And I'll end on this note, like I always do wherever you are in the world. Make it a great social Day. Bye Bye, everybody.