Marketing to Your Influencers vs. “Influencer Marketing”

Influencer marketing is a long game that involves outreach to “important” people, most of whom will ignore you.

Influencer Taking Selfie

This post is not about influencer marketing. It’s about marketing to your existing influencers—mainly via content.

It’s unlikely that any of your existing influencers are scantily-clad celebrities. However, you already have a lot of fully and well-dressed, non-celebrity influencers. Your important people include:

  • Customers
  • Vendors
  • Social Media “Acquaintances”
  • Former Co-workers
  • Friends & Family

We often think of content marketing as marketing to people we don’t know. What about creating valuable content for people you do know? Can this produce results for your business or your sales efforts?

Marketing to Your Influencer Customers

In what ways can a customer be an influencer? Well, for one, they can refer you or your company to someone they know.

Your content for this influencer group should not be about “upsell/cross-sell.”

It should be about staying ‘top of mind’ with your customers by supplying them with valuable information.

We are a business customer of The Hartford. The Hartford doesn’t hammer us with upsell/cross-sell promotions. They consistently create and share solid advice around many facets of running a small business. As a customer, we, in turn, share a lot of their content.

Marketing to Your Influencer Vendors

If your company resells vendors’ products, who at those vendors can influence your success? Do vendor salespeople bring you into deals?

If so, how can you help these influencers with your content?

You can create content that helps them with their sales efforts—content they can share with a prospect that allows them to penetrate a new account or move a deal over the goal line.

Achieve either of these, and you’ve got their attention.

We got some mileage from this approach by collaborating closely with one of our marketing customers.

Marketing to Your Social Media Connections

Your social media connections are a vast audience. This group includes people you don’t know. But it also includes your former co-workers, vendors, friends & family.

Curating and posting other people’s quality content and your content will keep many of your connections more engaged.

On LinkedIn, you can periodically remind or update this group of influencers about what you’re up to.

And if you must message someone on LinkedIn whom you don’t personally know, please make it a two-way street. If you ask for something, offer something in return—as Jim Dickie did here:

Sales Mastery Survey

Marketing to Your Friends & Family Influencers

This isn’t a reference network marketing—no, you’re not selling them The Dream.

But you can keep your friends & family current about what you’re up to in the business world.

Other Types of Known Influencers

Depending on what industry you’re in, you may have other groups of influencers. For example, structural engineers are often influencers for people in the construction products business.

Physicians are influencers in the medical device world.

Maybe it’s time to rethink influencer marketing. Especially since a community of influencers already surrounds you.

These are the important people.

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Let’s discuss a tailored path to success.

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