A large part of my role with the social influencer program here at Infinity Marketing is identifying and vetting potential influencers for client campaigns. It’s a really fun step. I get to see some great content (and, if I’m being honest, some not-so-great content) from people all over the country.
There’s nothing like the rush of finding THE PERFECT influencer for a project. Sometimes it’s someone who has lots of past collabs and knows how to publicly present themselves for potential new partnerships. Sometimes it’s a regular, everyday person with no prior “influencer” experience, but who’s positively shared about the client’s products or services on a specific social channel.
On the other hand, there’s also nothing like the disappointment of identifying an influencer you think will be a good fit and finding that ONE THING — no matter how small or insignificant it may seem to the average person — in their content during the vetting process that excludes them from making the potential influencer list we’ll share with the client.
So, you ask, “How does one make the Infinity potential influencers short-list (and TBH the short lists of many other marketing agencies and clients out there)?”
Here are 5 easy tips that will up your chances for sure:
Because Infinity’s “sweet spot” is working with localized micro influencers (1K-100K followers) for our projects, we find a LOT of our potential influencers through geo-tag and hashtag searches on Instagram. It’s a super easy way to know what folks are proud to rep their communities (a very good thing for an influencer).
If you’re an influencer and you’re not geo-tagging your town or city or using localized hashtags in at least some of your content, you’re missing out on potential collabs from agencies who specialize in looking for influencers in specific regions of the country.
If you’re a “poster” but not an “engager,” you won’t make the cut with us. We really want to work with folks who actually respond to legit comments from their social audience. Doing so helps build trust and increases the level of peer-to-peer influence (what we’re really partnering with you to achieve on behalf of our clients).
We look for how you’ve been engaging on current content as well as past content. And no, you don’t have to answer every question or comment, but the percentage of DO vs. DON’T needs to be heavily weighted toward the DO. Even a simple “like” of an audience comment is engagement — and will help you make our list.
You may not have a business or creator profile when we first find you (it’s not a deal-breaker for making the list), but you’ll need to change to one if we end up partnering on a project so our team can track and prove campaign ROI to our clients. In short, business profiles provide more awareness and measurement opportunities for influencers and the companies that hire them than personal ones.
Business and/or creator profiles give you the ability to do cool things like boost your sponsored content to a targeted audience or add links to your Instagram stories — both of which help to increase the visibility of our collective client’s message. They also allow us, as the client’s agency partner, to track each influencer’s sponsored post metrics beyond likes, comments, and/or shares. We get to see additional metrics like impressions, reach, video views, static post saves, etc. that help us reach broader campaign objectives.
Look, we’re definitely not trying to tell you how to live your life, but if you post questionable content (profanity, revealing OOTDs, excessive alcohol, rude emojis, etc.), we’ll most likely move on to the next potential influencer in our search. No judgment, but the majority of our clients have strict brand safety guidelines, and questionable content will never align with that.
The same goes for political or religious statements. Everyone’s allowed to believe and share whatever they like on their own profiles, but you might want to consider what types of brand partnership opportunities you’ll be missing out on because of the content you choose to publish.
This IS a deal-breaker. Any marketing professional worth their salt is going to review past content of any influencer they want to work with, and we’re definitely worth our salt here at Infinity.
One of the things we’ll be looking for in our review is how (and if) you disclosed any past branded content partnerships. Full FTC compliance is expected in every one of our influencer relationships. Were you obvious and conspicuous with #AD or the use of Branded Content Tools? Awesome — that’s what we like to see!
Or did you hide that #AD at the end of your post text, or use either of the ambiguous #SPON or #PARTNER tags? Sorry, but the former is an attempt at hide-it-but-still-act-like-you-are-doing-it compliance, and the latter two can leave questions in the minds of your social audience as to whether or not you were compensated for your content. None of them are favorable for potential future collabs with rule-following brands and agencies, like Infinity.
BIG congrats to you, dear micro influencer, if you’re already implementing all five of these tips to attract future sponsored collabs! Our team honestly can’t wait to find you when we get the opportunity to search for and work with influencers in your community!