For decades, B2C companies have been using celebrity endorsements to help sell products and services. These types of endorsements aren't as common in B2B marketing strategies, but influencer marketing is. In many ways, an influencer is like a celebrity to the industry. Their connection with your brand can help you establish trust with your audience and convince more B2B buyers to purchase from you.
However, using an influencer in your B2B marketing plan isn’t quite as straightforward as featuring them in a commercial or advertisement. Influencer marketing is more about collaboration and partnership. Influencers can use their unique skills and perspective to convey their own brand while promoting your B2B company at the same time.
In this article, we’ll reveal three of the most effective ways to use influencer marketing as part of your B2B strategy. Let's get started!
- Influencer marketing is a strategy to help establish trust between companies and their target audience.
- It is used by both B2B and B2C companies, but in different ways.
- A B2B company can work with many different influencers at the same time.
An Introduction to Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing plays off the same idea as a traditional celebrity endorsement. Marketers know that using a distinguishable or trusted face to push a product or service can better encourage potential customers to buy it. However, influencer marketing is different from celebrity endorsements in many ways.
First, it is more of a partnership between the two parties. The company and influencer will come together to create a mutually beneficial product, service, or piece of content to share with their joined audiences.
Influencer marketing is also different from celebrity endorsements in that it is accessible and realistic for budgets of all sizes. The internet makes it easier than ever for individuals to create a following of their own. This means there are influencers with trusted audiences to fit almost every niche and marketing budget.
The biggest benefit of using influencer marketing in your B2B marketing strategy is that you can easily attract more members of your target audience to your website, blog, social media pages, or other forms of content.
3 Ways B2B's Can Use Influencer Marketing
When using an influencer in your B2B marketing strategy, you want to be sure the partnership is beneficial for both of you. Here are three of the best ways you can use the power of an influencer in your marketing strategy to boost value and credibility.
1. Solicit a Guest Post from an Influencer
Content creation is likely already a part of your marketing strategy. While your audience is interested in getting information from you and your company, sharing posts written by influencers can attract a new group of people to your website. While Neil Patel authors many Crazy Egg blog posts, you'll also see plenty of guest posts from experts in their respective fields:
When an influencer creates a guest post to be featured on your website, loyal members of their audience are likely to follow. These new visitors can then explore other posts and get to know your company. While you'll want to feature at least some of your own content on your company blog, guest posts can shake things up as well as attract new readers.
Securing a number of guest posts and posting them as needed can also help save you time when you’re running low on content ideas. Soliciting guest posts can be as easy as identifying potential influencers in your niche and reaching out to ask if they'd like to contribute.
2. Reach Out to Social Media Influencers
If you’ve ever run a social media campaign, you know that it can be a excellent tool for bringing new visitors to your website. By also harnessing the power of a social media influencer, such as Guy Kawasaki with 1.5 million Twitter followers, you can instantly amplify your reach.
The vast number of users on social media platforms enables you to get in touch with new members of your target audience in a quick and inexpensive way. Partnering with a social media influencer can help expand that reach and get your name in front of new individuals.
Since it involves minimal effort on both ends, reaching out to social media influencers to share a blog post or link to a webinar can be a great way to build a strong relationship. It may even lead to larger collaborations down the road.
Simply ask influencers to share your content and post theirs in return. It sounds super simple but can be enough to start building some long-term mutually beneficial partnerships.
3. Host a Webinar with an Influencer Guest
Partnering with an influencer to create a webinar enables you to collaborate with a key player in your industry while creating something extremely valuable for your audience. This webinar between Hanapin Marketing and Kissmetrics is a great example of two companies with similar target audiences coming together to discuss a topic that interests their listeners:
Both parties will bring their own audience members to the webinar, creating new customers for each participant. Through marketing the event using the influencer’s name, you can also charge a premium price and attract more influencers to participate.
If you've never hosted a webinar before, you may want to get some practice in before creating one with a high-profile guest.
Bonus: Interview an Influencer on a Podcast
If you have a podcast, this offers a great opportunity to interview an influencer and offer a ton of value to your listeners. Podcasts are particularly attractive to influencers as they offer a way for them to promote their own content, such as webinars, programs, or books. This Foundation podcast with Chris Sacca is beneficial to both parties:
By featuring influencers on your podcast, you’re able to bring value and information to your listeners without the level of commitment that comes with creating a webinar. You'll also likely attract new listeners to your podcast, some of whom might become regulars!
Additionally, allowing an influencer to promote their services on your podcast can give you the opportunity to ask for the same favor if you’re ever looking for ways to promote your own content.
Podcasts are a great way to work with many different influencers. You can even run an interview series and feature a new personality with each show you upload.
Successful marketing relies so heavily on trust that a B2B company needs to continuously look for new ways to strengthen their relationships with clients and customers. Influencer marketing is one of the most powerful ways to boost authority and grab some well-deserved attention.
Let’s recap the four ways you can use influencer marketing in your B2B strategy:
- Solicit a guest post from an influencer to bring more visitors to your website.
- Reach out to social media influencers to share your content with their audience.
- Host a webinar to collaborate on insights, perspectives, and lessons.
- Interview an influencer on a podcast to share tips, tricks, and strategies with your listeners.
How have you used influencer marketing in your B2B strategy? Let us know in the comments section below!
Image Credit: Pixabay