Influencer Marketing: A Guide for E-Commerce

Will influencer marketing work for your e-commerce shop to grow sales?

Here’s the case for influencer marketing

TOO many e-commerce stores focus on SEO optimization while they continue to lose sales to their competitors. Why try to fight against someone who already knocked you out?

Influencer marketing is still “a new thing” for most companies and a huge potential could be ahead of you if done correctly, but does it work?

There’s only one way to find out…

If you’re serious about increasing sales on your Webshop through influencer marketing, one thing you need is to be very systematic with how you choose and promote your products through the influencers.

If not you’re being systematic and if NOT you have an influencer marketing plan you’re taking the “small dog approach”: you are trying to make some noise, but everyone thinks you are just being extremely annoying. 

In this blog post, I’m going to show you a method that I will follow to increase sales on one of my own e-commerce brand stores through influencer marketing.

Increase sales this month: Get access to a free downloadable PDF checklist that will help you develop your influencer marketing plan. CLICK HERE >>

Or continue reading to get inspired by my method to get increased sales through influencer marketing…

Influencer Marketing Case: Content Marketing for e-commerce managers and specialists

I’ve tried influencer marketing a couple of times. Most times, it leads to direct sales (more or less), but one thing was sure; The right influencer will lead to sales on a Webshop if done properly. 

Another thing which is a guarantee; the wrong influencer will NOT lead to any sales at all! 

FIRST CONCLUSION OF INFLUENCER MARKETING: A research to find the right influencers for you market niche are EXTREMELY important.

And that leads us to…

How to find blogger or Instagram influencers

While there are, several options to pay between 50 to 300 USD per month for a tool to find online influencers I prefer to do the hard work myself. 

The best thing about doing it yourself? It’s FREE!

To get started with influencer marketing you don’t need a big budget or a huge network of influential insta’s or bloggers. 

So what do you need to do before can start your research, testing and making a plan? I’ll tell you but first a very important note:

Track your sales growth through influencer marketing

Before we continue I would like to point out that KPI’s are important to write down before you begin. It’s key in order to track your success. I track orders directly through affiliate link OR unique discount codes OR just simple Google analytics tracking. Shopify, which is where my e-commerce is located also has a great tracking source on recent orders.

SO, let’s find those influencers now!

3-Steps to research and find THE RIGHT marketing influencers

I use 3 steps in the influencer research process and I go over all of them in the following:

  1. Step 1: Use popular hashtags on Instagram to find popular Instagrammers which has 10.000+ followers and seems like an ideal fit for your brand.
  2. Step 2: Reach out to the influencer and make a deal/partnership (Win-win)
  3. Step 3: Ship them your products together with a simple but direct plan as agreed in step 2.

This is why I believe the influencer marketing technique will work for you:
It’s natural to be attracted to the best. People get inspired by other people they would like to identify with. These people are considered “the best” at wearing a product (Hint -> your product) or riding a product or making food of a product.

What we are doing here is to find the most inspiring Instagrammers in your niche. These people inspire other people (Your customers) that would like to identify with those Instagrammers and buy your product in order to identify themselves as “the best” in the category.

And suddenly YOU have the product that everyone wants to wear, and talk about, and link to, and BUY.

Note: The above technique is just one of many. But you can easily use it to get started with influencer marketing with inspiration from my case – which is about to come.

Step #1: Find influencers on Instagram through hashtags

First of all, you need one basic thing: An Instagram account. Why? Because influencers can tag you in their photos which will guide the users to your site. 

You’ll probably also need a dedicated Instagram account. What do I mean by this? Well, in order to get followers on inspire people, you need to have the best photos of your products on your own account. A high-value Instagram account can inspire users over and over again.

But how do you know if your account is going to inspire people on Instagram?

It’s really not that difficult: Find other Instagram accounts in your niche which already generated thousands of likes and followers – Do what they do in your own way and then your influencers will throw followers your way. Your own profile will convert them to followers and later potential buyers.

Your best social media influencers will probably be the ones that already shares your content for similar brands like you. It could even be your competitors but many influencers are open to post photos from several brands (Or with products from several brands)

Increase SEO rankings with influencers: This is a huge bonus! When people are starting to talk about your brand you’ll probably see your SEO ranking goes up. 

I find influencers through hashtags. It takes time, but so does stuff which drive sales – nothing is easy! When I find potential influencers I check the following:

  • Do they have +10.000 followers
  • Are they audience engaged? (Do they like or comment on photos). An account with +10.000 followers with on 100 likes on a photo a probably a “bought audience” – yes you can buy followers! (For no good reason at all)
  • Is the influencer in line with your product and brand?

Step #2: Reach out to marketing influencers

Don’t hesitate a minute to reach out to the influencers to start the conversation. You really need to be good a networking with people if you are dreaming about the sales to go up. The right influencers are probably used to speak with people like you, so before you reach our do this:

1st. - Have a plan!

  • What is your goal? Test a product placement post
  • Do you want to include a link to your shop on their blog or link in bio?
  • How is this case a win-win?
  • Do you want to include a discount to the campaign?

Important Note: Instead of contacting random people, I suggest you reach out to siteinfluencers that have already linked out to similar content or are working with other brands.

When you find the right influencer you know that:

  1. They are posting about your niche.
  2. They are passionate about your products.

Those two elements will give you a higher rate of successful partnerships with influencers.
Go give them a personal and friendly heads up about your idea. Be personal when you are contacting social media people and content creators.

Chances are when you are working with the right influencers your new customers will continue to spread the word about you in a viral trend since they often are very active people on social media.

Step #3: Send them your package and wait for it.

Now, you may think this is the fun an easy part

WRONG!

You should always make sure that you have a clear agreement with your marketing influencers.

You should have a simple plan written down to send them.

Most importantly, I suggest you send them a follow-up email after the first campaign. This to make sure both you and the influencer was happy about the result and… it will give you a stronger business relationship in the future.

FIND YOUR INFLUENCERS NOW
You got it so far? Then start the process in step 1.
And remember, hard work wins the game.
 

Note: This post has been created as a SEO test of Anders Berendt