What Does it Take to Become a Social Media Influencer?

Posted by The ShopandShout Team on Sep 5, 2018 3:48:50 PM
The ShopandShout Team

What Does it Take to Become a Social Media Influencer

On Social Media, the life of a social media influencer can look very glamorous: beautifully photographed trips all over the globe, a closet crammed with the newest fashion trends directly from brands, top of the line resort stays, boxes and boxes of free supplements from top industry names, and of course a perfectly curated feed telling the story of a care-free lifestyle. What many people don’t realize, is how much work influencer marketing actually involves in building a personal brand.

Do you have a desire to dive into influencer territory but are a little confused where to start? Look no further, we are here to help. Check out these useful tips.

Pick your target audience / category

The first step to creating content that can draw in a large loyal following is to pick a niche you are passionate about and one that fits your personality. By hyper-targeting your content you are more likely to develop content that your followers deem valuable, and this will keep them following your story and engaging with you for the long term. It is also important to note that you do not need to be an expert in the field. In fact, when you are starting out it is great to position your content as a ‘journey’ or ‘story’. This will really humanize your content and make it relatable. When people begin to understand and empathize with your wins and losses they will start rooting for you.

Choose your preferred Channel

Experts recommend that you choose one primary channel to focus on, and then two or three  supplemental channels. Make sure they are channels you are comfortable sharing content on, ie: blogs would work better for writers, and people who prefer to speak would be better suited for Youtube as their medium. Don’t forget to make sure you keep your branding and content themes consistent across all channels; but keep in mind, this does not mean posting the same content on every channel! We recommend using tools such as Later, Buffer, Everypost , or Hootsuite,  to help manage your content and social media strategy.

Content Strategy

It is imperative to make sure that you have a content strategy. Plan your content in advance where possible, and collect multiple forms of content for current and future topics. Repurposing content is a powerful way to modify your content for individual platforms and create your own unique variety. For example, turn a blog into a podcast! Within your content strategy, it is also good to factor in current events that are relevant within your niche. For example, if you’re an aspiring fitness influencer it is great to test out new products, or take part in a local marathon, or even give a ShoutOut on social media about your experience to other moguls in the industry. Once you have a  plan, get to it and start creating content, and always keep an eye out for visuals or inspirations you come across in your day to day.

Be constant and consistent, but with purpose

Know the purpose behind your content, posting just to keep up with your quota can actually hurt your engagement rate and reduce your following. Think about the value that each individual piece of published content provides for your viewers, and tailor that into your themes throughout. Also, introduce tidbits of something new to your followers that will challenge them to think a little about their own lives and daily processes. A good place to start is to think about your top favorite accounts or influencers. Ask yourself why you follow them, what you like about them, and examples of content that might make you unfollow them. Emulate your idols.

Reach Out to brands!

Many brands have not even begun to tap into influencer marketing and have a whole world of content that can be created based on their products or services. Don’t be embarrassed or nervous to put your name out there, take the fist step. If you spend time waiting for the brands to come to you, there are plenty of other people taking charge and scooping up opportunities for themselves. Think of it like applying for jobs: sure, there will be some brands that say No, but the more brands you reach out to the higher your chances are of getting a Yes, and one Yes is all it takes for you to start rewriting your future.

Build an authentic community and be active in your niche (join a community?)

Put yourself out there within your niche to find like-minded individuals and groups that can help you learn and grow, as well as inspire new content ideas. Join groups, find forums, ask questions, follow fan pages, and learn as much as you can. As well, there are tons of existing communities and influencer networks you can join, such as ShopandShout, which aims to help influencers increase their following organically by giving them products and services for free to review! As well as help you learn tips and tricks to navigating the influencer landscape.

Promote yourself - shamelessly!

See what we did there? Be fun and creative and always remember to draw people back to your personal page/profile in order to keep engaging with your content.

Provide Value!

This might seem pretty obvious, but as we touched upon earlier, providing something of value to your followers will help ensure that your follower growth does not plateau. There should be an objective for every piece of content. For every piece of content think about why it would be important to someone who doesn’t follow you and inspire them, and inspire your current followers.

Grow and learn from your experiences - and share it!

Trial and error is part of any learning process. Try, and fail, and then get up and try and fail some more. More importantly - OWN IT! You become much more credible to your audience when you admit your wrongs. This can only help boost your authenticity as a social media influencer. Don’t be afraid of things not going according to plan - they hardly ever do, don’t get discouraged! In the words of well known entrepreneur Gary Vee; in order to succeed you need to “learn how to love losing!”.


Vinod Varma

Co-Founder and CEO


Tags: Influencer marketing, social media influencer, Influencer, influencer networks

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