With few exceptions, most influencers are not created by accident. They work hard to build their brand and connect with their audience, and most of them have challenges to overcome. Chances are pretty good that your dad is going to tell you to get a real job, and since it could take years before you see any money, he may have a valid point. But if you work this like a side gig until it becomes a viable career, you can prove your naysayers wrong (eventually). These 14 tips for how to become an influencer work on any social media platform.
How many thousands of followers – or hundreds of thousands of followers – do you need to be successful? You might be surprised. Brands work with influencers at every level:
It’s often less expensive and more effective to partner with a group of small influencers than spend money on a big celebrity.
With 16.8K TikTok followers, no one would mistake micro-influencer Austen Tosone for a traditional celebrity, but her level of audience engagement makes her a favorite with brands.
The first step to becoming a social media influencer is to find your passion or your niche and go from there. If you’re interested in something, chances are a lot of other people will be too. Most niches can attract a market, so whether you love travel, fashion, makeup, cooking, or anything else, you should be able to find your target audience and start creating quality content.
When picking your niche, go for something you are truly interested in and knowledgeable about. Your audience will be able to tell if you are enthusiastic about the content you are posting, and as a result, are more likely to watch and interact with your videos. Choosing something you are more passionate about will also encourage you to put in the hard work and time needed to keep up with the ongoing demand of creating and posting content.
Some of the most successful social media influencers can captivate millions of followers with lots of views and engagement. However, the drawback to some of the more popular niches can be the intense competition that comes alongside them. A good way of tackling this competition is to choose something that really reflects your personality and makes great use of your unique knowledge or skills.
Social media influencers come in all flavors and some have very different goals. If you’re a business owner, for example, your goal might be to establish yourself as an industry expert and build your business. Your initial goal could be to simply make meaningful connections with people who love what you love.
Over time as you grow your social network, your goals may become more ambitious. The faster your online presence expands, the more often you’ll need to revisit your goals and refine your next moves.
Once you have your niche and your goals planned out, it’s time to choose your social media platform. Influencers are generally most popular on just one or two platforms, so focus on those that best suit your content. Each of the major social media platforms comes with a variety of benefits and each is better suited to different forms of content.
A great way to optimize your social media presence is by switching to a business account. Doing so will open up more opportunities and give you access to statistics such as your main demographic, which types of posts perform the best, and even what time of day is best to post for maximum engagement. This information, when used well, is vital to running and growing a successful social media presence.
To gain maximum exposure and audience growth, cross-posting across multiple platforms is essential. For example, if Instagram is your primary social media channel, make sure to post on Facebook and Twitter announcing every time you upload a new photo. Try to think of similar, but still snappy captions to include to keep audiences on every platform entertained, and link all of your social media channels in your bio to ensure that viewers coming from any platform are able to easily find you and stay up to date with your activity.
Understanding your target audience is essential if you aim to have a good relationship with your followers. A successful influencer will know their follower base well and be able to target that audience. Using the analytics tools built into most social media platforms is the easiest way to understand your followers, with information such as audience size, age, gender, locations, occupation, interests and much more. This information will help you tailor your content to your audience, keeping them interested, as well as helping you to identify brands that cater to your demographic.
Long-form content, short-form content, videos, etc. e.g. fashion would work best on insta as the platform is based around pictures with shorter captions to keep things interesting/promote, however, how-to content would be best on youtube as it gives time and space to show and explain how to do things
If attracting brand sponsorship is one of your end goals, find social media channels where your preferred brands are most active and take a look at the type of content shared by influencers they work with. Try not to overwhelm your followers with a feed full of advertisements, and be clear about which posts are endorsements. Chances are, your followers won’t mind provided you are open about it and are promoting products and brands you really believe in.
Think of your bio as a tiny little sales pitch that tells people who you are. Keep it short and include a keyword that identifies your niche. Your bio should also provide your contact information such as your name, email address, and links to all of your associated social channels.
The first step to becoming a social media influencer is to establish recognition amongst your family and friends in your area of expertise. Promote your pages and posts amongst your friends, and encourage them to share and engage with the content you are making. Focus on the content you create is consistently interesting and shareable and try to stay focused on your goals and your niche with every post you share.
Think about your favorite social media influencers. What do they do to keep their audience engaged and the views coming in? The answer: stay relevant.
Attracting more followers is best not left to chance. Hashtagging high-quality content can help you get your posts in front of a whole new audience.
Dog accessory company Lucy and co. posts adorable photos of the owner’s fashionably dressed Goldendoodle, Copper, modeling their products. They use different hashtags related to each post. A Monday post was hashtagged: #monday #mondaypup #dogsofinsta #doodlesofinstagram #instadog #doodlesoftheworld #dogtails #dailydoodledog #dogharness #brighteyedandbushytailed
Maintaining focus isn’t easy, but it is the path to success. Planning your content In advance helps you create interest and deliver enough variety to keep your audience engaged. One effective content strategy starts with defining content pillars.
Each of these sub-categories can be spun out into multiple posts. And since funny posts are popular, you could even schedule posts about “what not to do.”
Becoming a social media star takes time. To succeed, keep doing your thing, even if you feel like you’re talking to yourself. If your viewership doesn’t grow, try new approaches or different platforms.
Now that you know the most reliable tips and tricks to becoming a social media influencer, it’s over to you. Remember: stay consistent and take time to create quality content, and from there you can go build your audience and promote yourself across a variety of social media channels using lots of relevant hashtags.
If you stick to the program, there’s a chance of making your social media platform into your entire career, but keep in mind that everything takes time and success won’t happen overnight. Keep at it, and see where life as a social media influencer can take you!