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The 13-Step Guide to Becoming a Social Media Influencer

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Do you dream of dropping a regular day job and start earning online?

You can if you build a career as a social media influencer. Brands reach out to them and pay them to endorse a product or service. Influencers can make a lot of money if they gain enough followers and make a big enough impact in their industry of choice.

However, it’s not an easy path to become a successful influencer. There is a lot of obstacles to overcome and steps to follow.

Fortunately, we’ve listed thirteen starting tips to help you succeed. Read our guide below to learn more:

Know Your Niche

The first step in becoming an influencer is to identify your niche. You can’t be a jack of all trades. Brands won’t reach out to you if they don’t know what you focus on and people won’t follow you if you’re not consistent.

It’s also important to go beyond a general category or topic.

For example, you can’t simply state you focus on cooking. Dive deeper. Focus on a specific niche, like focusing on Asian food or French-Japanese fusion.

Pick a Platform

Keep in mind that every social media platform is different and caters to different kinds of content. If you want to focus on video content, you need to prioritize YouTube. If you’ll rely on shorter videos, TikTok, Facebook Live, and IGTV are the better options.

Will you focus on images? You can become an Instagram influencer if that’s your primary type of content.

Identify Your Audience

Now you know what kind of content you’ll make and the platform you’ll focus on, but who is your audience? You need to identify who you’re marketing to because it’ll affect your content and schedule.

For example, more than half of Millenials in the US actively use Instagram. These are working adults so you can focus on content that caters to people with an income. You can endorse a product that is a little bit expensive and relevant to your niche.

Quality Content

If you want to become a social media influencer, you need to create quality content. At the end of the day, people will follow you because they like what you post. Whether you highlight cool makeup ideas, movie reviews, video game let’s plays, or fashion tutorials, people will flock if you put some effort into your content.

Yes, you need to teach yourself how to edit photos and videos to make your content look good. You also need to perfect what you’re doing, otherwise, people won’t stick with you. If you want to focus on playing Fortnite, for example, you need to either be good at the game or be entertaining as a commentator while playing.

Consistent Schedule

Every influencer follows a consistent schedule. This guarantees their followers know exactly when to get online to check their latest content. Having a schedule allows followers to prepare and tune in exactly when you’re live and posting content.

If you don’t stay consistent with your content, you’re relying solely on the number of people online the moment you go live.

Of those people, how many know you’re live and putting up new content? There’s no guarantee people will check out your pages because they didn’t have the chance to prepare. Now they have to decide, on the spot, between checking out your content or continuing their current activity.

Build a Community

An influencer is only as relevant as the size of their community. You can’t call yourself an influencer if you only have a few hundred followers, after all. You are a legitimate influencer once you reach north of 10,000 followers.

It’s okay to buy Instagram likes or YouTube views to get a boost in visibility. Of course, you’ll need to stay consistent with your schedule and content to attract even more people.

That said, don’t simply post links and advertise to your followers. Build a relationship with them. Put up polls and let them help decide the content of your next post or run a contest focusing on content they make and share.

Network With Other Influencers

No one successful got there on their own. Learn to work with other influencers. They have more followers than you and may have more experience so take the time to weave into their network.

Yes, you’ll have a smaller role to play in their own marketing campaign. However, their followers will begin to follow you, increasing your reach and prominence. You’ll become more relevant in the industry you focus on and brands will notice the impact you make.

This is what will get them to hire you to endorse a product, brand, or service.

Go Out and Stay Active

A good influencer doesn’t stick to the corners of their house. If there’s an event for influencers or something related to your niche, go out there and participate.

For example, if you focus on video game news, make sure to participate in events like E3 or whenever Nintendo puts out a new Nintendo Direct. This will make your content relevant to current trends.

Take a look at the whole year and list down all the major events you know you should appear in. Long before they take place, announce your participation to your followers. This will let them know you’ll be there and they’ll follow you to stay updated and to see your posts.

Study the Numbers

The best influencers take their time to use analytics tools and study metrics. The numbers can tell you a lot about your influence and the impact of your content.

Consider looking at your audience’s activity, for a start. Check what day they’re active and at which time. Now you’ll know when to post — focus on the time most people are online for maximum exposure.

Hire Experts For Help

It’s no surprise that building your following and community as an influencer isn’t an easy task. It requires a lot of time and resources. You also need to have some knowledge and skills in digital marketing.

Don’t fret if you feel overwhelmed.

There is a solution for this: hire experts. Yes, it might cost you a bit to reach out to a marketing agency but it’ll help you both in short-term and long-term goals.

Always Engage With the Audience

Whenever you can, engage with your followers. The best way to do this is to run live videos for Q&A/AMA sessions. This allows your followers to get in touch with you and you can answer their questions directly.

If you live stream a lot, make sure to feature a live chat feature. Reply to their messages. Talk to your audience and acknowledge their comments as you continue with your stream.

Post polls and don’t block your followers from liking, sharing, and commenting on your posts. Reply to comments when you can, even to negative ones, to show people you appreciate their participation.

Stick With Your Sponsorship Fees

Do you aim to become a YouTube star or an Instagram influencer? One thing you need to understand is that sponsors and brands will expect you to already know how much you charge. For example, you can charge a certain amount for three posts and a video ad if a local business wants you to endorse their brand on your Instagram feed.

Whatever you do, don’t buckle under the pressure. Don’t let them dictate to you how much they should pay. Study how much an influencer with your following can charge and then stick to those numbers.

It’s okay if the brand doesn’t push forward in hiring you. There will be others willing to pay your fee as long as you have the content and following to back it up.

Let Brands Know You’re Available

Always have a call to action!

Add one to your social media bio and make sure to include one in all your posts, even for videos. It’s normal to ask people to like, share, and comment. If you are open to brand sponsorships, make sure to let businesses know, otherwise, they might ignore you.

Don’t forget to add some kind of call to action on your website too. It adds a level of professionalism and gives businesses an avenue to converse with you and discuss business.

Become a Social Media Influencer Today

It will take time and a lot of effort but it’s not impossible to become a social media influencer. Follow these thirteen steps and you’ll soon be on your career path. Know your niche, audience, and platform and then stay consistent with your schedule and content.

Never forget that starting as a social media influencer requires engaging with your audience and posting amazing content.

Uncertain how to make content people like or how digital marketing works? We’ve got your back. Continue reading our other marketing guides right here to pick up even more tips and tricks!

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