Influencer marketing has become an inescapable fact for brands and marketing agencies that must now grapple with the task of selling influencers on their product or idea. Linquia’s 2017–2018 State of Influencer Marketing Report reveals that in 2017, 86% of marketers used influencer marketing, and 92% of them found it effective. These are no small figures.
As traditional celebrity wanes and social media influencers take centerstage, influencer outreach must make a dramatic shift. Thanks to the direct feedback that social media offers, influencers feel accountable to their followers in an unprecedented way. This means that money—even big money—is no longer enough of an incentive for the most engaged influencers to accept brand sponsorship.
As a savvy marketer, you need to show influencers how their brand aligns with yours and how their audience could benefit from learning about your product. All of this starts at the first point of contact: the outreach email. Make sure your email ticks the following five boxes before sending it out.
Look for Brand/Influencer Alignment
If you are selling a product that you claim empowers working women, you want to make sure the influencers you pick are, firstly, working and, secondly, women. This might seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how many brands send out cold emails to a bunch of influencers without considering the optics of alignment.
Personalize Your Emails
Make sure to start with “Hi (influencer’s name)” rather than using a generic greeting. Mention additional details that are specific to the influencer, for example, a video or post by them that made you think they would be a good fit for the brand or something about their position as an influencer that sets them apart from others.
Keep Your Content Informative and Succinct
No adding fluff to your note. What sets your product apart, especially if it’s in an already saturated market? What claims do you make about it that you can back up? How does it and your brand’s vision align with the influencer you’re reaching out to? If you can answer these questions readily, you’ve done the bulk of the work already.
Lay Out Incentive
Ultimately, this is where you are pulling the influencer in, so it should be impressive. Put down any monetary figures you have in mind, but also take care to emphasize the marketing value your platform can bring to the influencer.
Lay Out Expectations
Be careful here to not make this seem like a heavy or one-sided relationship. Explain broadly what you’re looking for i.e. a post a month or a one-time piece of content, and leave it at that. You can discuss the specifics once the influencer signs on, but in this first email, you just want to give them a sense of the time and logistical commitment they’d be expected to make. As a cautionary note, be professional throughout the email (no cursing or innuendos, please!) and keep the tone friendly without crossing any lines. In a sea of carelessly crafted spam outreach, these strategies will help move your emails to the top of the pile.