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Give Influencer Content Programs a Promotional Edge with Digital Advertising

It happens almost every single time. I’m finally settling in to stream a few episodes before I go to bed for the day. I fire up the old Netflix machine and there it is… options… lots of them.

There are shows I’ve seen before that I might want to watch again. Genres that I’m interested in. Highly rated shows. Maybe I watch one of those trending shows that everyone is talking about? I mean I’ve never seen that Making a Murderer show… did I miss out on that one? My mind continues to jump around with the unlimited options in front of me.

When you have virtually unlimited options in front of you it’s almost impossible to make a choice. This is probably why I’ve watched the American version of the Office about one million times (either that or it’s a really good show).

As marketers we consistently run into situations like this. We are asked to promote a product or a service or a piece of content and when we sit down at our desk we are hit with so many options. We have to choose the right channel, the right audience, the right messaging, the right offer, the right image, the right… Anyone else getting cold sweats just thinking about this?

I want to help you with this problem. Specifically as it relates to influencer content (because that presents a whole new set of challenges that need to be addressed).

Promoting Influencer Content With Digital Advertising

Why focus on influencer marketing? In my opinion influencer marketing is one of the most challenging thing to promote with paid digital advertising. Many people look at influencer marketing and content marketing in general as some magical piece of content that, when published, turns prospects into customers in a completely organic way.

In reality, simply creating great influencer content is not enough. Right now, as I write this, there are over one billion websites (in fact the number grew by about 500 in the time it took me to finish that sentence).

So what does that mean? In very broad and simple terms you aren’t the only one that has to make a lot of choices. So when it comes to influencer content you have to help your audience find it and help them choose it.

5 Steps to Promoting Influence Content with Digital Advertising

The 5 steps below will help you successfully promote your influencer content with digital advertising in a way that attracts and entices your target audience.

Step 1. Change How You Think About Influencer Content

Often marketers don’t change their approach to promotion when deploying an influencer driven content campaign. Instead of thinking of your influencer content as a part of your standard marketing mix think of it as a product.

This is really important. You are not promoting content, you’re not boosting a post, you are selling influencer content. That is your job.

Step 2. Know Your Audience

It seems simple, but is often overlooked. But did you know that now you can really know your audience. For example, if you are using Twitter you can gather awesome insights with Twitter Analytics.

I mean… take a look at this.

The top lifestyle type in my organic audience is “Online Buyers.” I can make assumptions from this. For example, one thing that is often debated is how much info do I ask a prospect to give in exchange for a gated asset? Well an online buyer is comfortable giving over name, phone number, address, credit card info, and more in exchange for goods.

This information can help you determine what to “charge” or how much information you should ask for in exchange for content.

You can gather similar information using tools such as  Google Analytics Demographics and Interests and the Facebook Audience Insights tool.

Step 3. Segment Your Audience

Knowing your audience is important. Segmenting your audience is even more essential.

Don’t make the mistake of lumping everyone together into one audience when promoting your influencer driven content. While this tactic may be necessary if you are working with a really small audience, a larger audience that you can segment will allow you to tailor your message to a smaller, specific group of people.

For example, let’s say that you have created influencer content to target HR professionals. It’s possible that you could segment that audience by tenure in the HR industry.

With an audience like this you could tailor your call to action like so.

  • Tenure of 0-5 years – Jumpstart your HR career with….
  • Tenure of 5-15 years – Bring your HR career to the next level with…
  • Tenure of 15+ years – Learn from the top HR professionals…

Segmenting your audience can help you tailor your sales pitch. Remember, you are selling your content not promoting it.

Step 4. Challenge Your Assumptions

What’s the one thing I have heard more than anything else when it comes to promoting B2B influencer content with digital media? Give up? It’s this, “we are a B2B company so we only want to promote this on LinkedIn.

Well first of all, we are selling the content not promoting it. Second of all, you don’t think those same professionals have a Facebook account?

Facebook is on pace to hit 2 billion users. I’m willing to guess that some of those 2 billion users are in the market for B2B goods and services.

Challenging your assumptions has it’s rewards. Currently I am running a campaign for a B2B company and the results look like this…

Challenging assumptions and running a campaign on Twitter was a great bet!

Step 5. Don’t Fall in Love With Your Bets

It’s bound to happen. You’ll do all of the tips above. You’ll create a segmented audience on a social network that sits outside of your assumptions. You’ll create tailored calls to action and you’ll fall in love.

Then it happens… nothing happens… it fails.

When it fails, one of two things normally happen.

  1. Marketers ignore the failure in disbelief
  2. Marketers say, “just give it more time. One more conversion will make this look better.”

Neither of these are going to change anything. In this situation only one thing will work.

Make some changes.

Change your ad copy. Broaden your audience. Change your bids. Try to identify why it isn’t working and fix it.

The Keys to Promoting Influencer Content With Paid Digital Advertising

So there you have it, 5 keys to promoting content with digital advertising. Below is a quick recap that you can use of a checklist of sorts to begin guiding your influencer content and digital advertising journey:

  1. Remember you’re selling your content not promoting it.
  2. Know your audience. Use tools to understand their online behavior.
  3. Segment your audience. Tailor your message in a way that speaks to the individuals in your audience.
  4. Challenge your assumptions. Try something new. Run tests.
  5. Don’t fall in love. Make changes quickly and don’t wait for a campaign to turn into what you want it to be.

I know you have over a billion options to choose from when it comes to internet content. Thanks for choosing this piece. I’d love to hear about any time you challenged an assumption and won or when you fell in love with a campaign. Feel free to share your insights in the comments below.


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© Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®, 2017. |
Give Influencer Content Programs a Promotional Edge with Digital Advertising | http://www.toprankblog.com

The post Give Influencer Content Programs a Promotional Edge with Digital Advertising appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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About Daniel Rodgers

A lot of news that you will not see in the paper. A lot of technology that is coming out that will not see in the paper.

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Social Media Secrets: 5 Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

It's plain to see that B2B marketers, at large, see the value in social media. The latest B2B benchmarking research from CMI and MarketingProfs found that nearly two out of three respondents (61%) increased their usage of social media for content marketing purposes in the previous year. Another new report shows that social content is atop the list of focal areas for B2B marketers in the coming year.

It’s also fair to say, based on various data points and conversations with folks in the biz, that most of us feel we could be doing better with social. The size of the audiences on these platforms make them essential to any digital strategy, but breaking through suppressive algorithms and showing clear ROI is a perpetual challenge for brands.

One pivotal key to excelling with social media marketing is understanding all the tools you have at your disposal. Each platform offers a number of capabilities that seem to be underutilized by marketers who either don’t know they exist, or don’t fully recognize their potential impact.

With this in mind, we’re setting out to highlight some of the most useful yet overlooked features for driving results on social media platforms. Today we're focusing on the channel most pertinent to B2B marketers: LinkedIn*, with its member base of more than half a billion professionals.

Take Notice of These 5 Marketing Tools & Features on LinkedIn

Whether your goal is building brand awareness, generating leads, or boosting conversions, these five fundamental functionalities can provide a big assist if you aren't taking advantage of them already.

#1: Robust (and Now Simplified) Audience Targeting

LinkedIn recently overhauled its Campaign Manager tool (the interface through which marketers build, manage, and measure ads) around an objective-based advertising framework. The basic purpose of this initiative was to make it easier for users to align every element of their campaigns with the overarching objective. One of the slickest improvements to come out of this is the audience setup experience, which is now simpler and more intuitive.

From a B2B marketing perspective, the depth of available professional targeting parameters is by far LinkedIn’s biggest relative advantage compared to other social platforms. Nowhere else can you accurately filter audiences based on facets such as Job Title and Job Seniority. This provides unparalleled ability to reach decision makers and purchase influencers directly.

The revamped interface makes it quicker and more straightforward to select a qualified audience in line with your campaign goals.

[embed]https://youtu.be/AAx60JxxWFg[/embed]

#2: Revamped LinkedIn Analytics

The latest Social Media Marketing Industry Report via Social Media Examiner found more than half of respondents (54%) either uncertain or disagreeing that they are “able to measure the return on investment (ROI) for my organic social media activities.”

This is another area of Campaign Manager that LinkedIn recently spruced up. Given that advertising on this platform tends to be more expensive than other social networks, it’s especially important to ensure you’re getting return on that spend. The new reporting experience makes it easier to see results at a glance, and make optimization tweaks on the fly.

The underlying appeal of LinkedIn’s targeting facets also applies to its reporting mechanism; you can get an aggregated look at who is viewing and engaging with your content (i.e., which companies, which job titles, which experience levels). These insights can help you align your LinkedIn strategy and even your content marketing strategy more generally.

#3: Content Suggestions

Can’t figure out what to share on social media? That’s a common enough challenge. The Content Suggestions tab, found on the top nav bar within LinkedIn Page admin center, offers ample inspiration. It serves up a list of third-party articles your defined audience is engaging with — essentially a readily available stream of targeted, trending content.

Not only does this make it easy for marketers and social media managers to find share-worthy content that’s more likely to resonate with their followings, but it can also fuel employee advocacy efforts.

#4: Website Retargeting

Retargeting is a popular digital marketing tactic, which involves serving ads to people who’ve already encountered your brand. The element of familiarity, plus a concrete demonstration of past interest, tends to drive considerably higher clicks and conversions than standard ads.  

Through its Matched Audiences feature, LinkedIn allows you to place a pixel on your company’s website, then serve ads to people who’ve visited it before, while they’re on LinkedIn. It’s a great way to follow up with someone in a different context. One especially savvy approach is to create customized retargeting creative based on the specific section of your site a person visited (i.e., upper-funnel messaging for someone who went to your “About” page, and lower-funnel for someone who checked out a solution page.)

[embed]https://youtu.be/SgXlOH-1pPk[/embed]

#5: Lead Gen Forms

This might be my favorite marketing tool on LinkedIn, and it definitely seems like one that more B2B brands could be utilizing. Lead Gen Forms are leveraged in combination with various types of ads, enabling your company to collect valuable contact info (and additional data about a prospect) from an individual who downloads something of value with minimal friction.

Unlike most gated-asset forms, which require a user to tediously fill out multiple fields, Lead Gen Forms automatically populate based on the member’s LinkedIn profile data. As such, it takes only a couple of seconds to get through the process. Because you’re attaining a more comprehensive snapshot of people who download, you can better qualify them as leads in comparison with other form-fills that often procure only a name, phone number, and email.

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34Xe1E59N6A&feature=youtu.be[/embed]

Step Up Your LinkedIn Marketing Game

LinkedIn can be one of the most valuable components of a holistic B2B marketing strategy. As mentioned earlier, there’s no denying it’s a pricier place to play than most other social networks, but you’re also paying for access to a higher-quality audience. Using the five features above can help you understand, segment, reach, and engage this audience efficiently while closely tracking the impact of your efforts.

Another underutilized tool on LinkedIn is video, which has been a key focus for the platform recently. Learn about all the metrics and specs for video on LinkedIn, as well as every other major social network!

*Disclosure: LinkedIn is a TopRank Marketing client.

The post Social Media Secrets: 5 Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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