How to Cultivate a Team of Social Influencers

By Lianne Wiker Hedditch, August 29, 2016

Only a decade ago, a small population had a smartphone; select university students knew about Facebook; and Instagram and Snapchat were futuristic phenomena. Fast-forward to 2016. The entire world of marketing and public relations—including how you market your event, association or hotel/venue—has changed. Reputations can be built (or broken) in an instant, thanks to sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor. Bloggers and individuals who are hyperactive on social media sites now have a bigger reach than some major print publications, and new online outlets are popping up by the minute. Social influencers, or individuals with extremely large followings on social media channels, are becoming an integral part of a successful event communications plan or brand marketing strategy. Here are a few ways we at Heron Agency assist our clients with determining the best way to discover and work with social influencers.

Find relevant influencers for your brand.

First, think about your favorite news source, go to the website and look up journalists you like to read online. Generally, they will include social media handles in their bios so you can find them with ease. Visit their social media pages and see whom they interact with online; sometimes their connections will have large follower bases as well. Second, see what hashtags they are using. Click on those hashtags to discover other writers engaging in conversations online about the same topics. 

Define the best method for working together.

Are you looking for advance promotion of your event from an influencer who will blog, tweet and Instagram about it to help maximize your message to potential attendees? Lay out ahead of time what kind of coverage you are looking for, and then make sure your event message, theme or topic aligns with the influencers you reach out to.

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