How to develop an effective outreach strategy

Influencers can dramatically increase your marketing reach. An effective outreach program can help you build quality links, boost your brand, and attract new customers. But, outreach rarely happens organically. An outreach program takes time and effort to build.

Outreach programs work in much the same way, irrespective of whether you are targeting a local market or an international one. However, there are a few key differences, which are explored in this article from Ingenuity Digital. In essence, developing a successful outreach program means following a few simple steps.

Top influencers attract millions of followers. YouTube is one of the top influencer channels. The most popular YouTubers have more than seven million subscribers to their channels and earn $25k for a sponsored guest post or $300k for a video collaboration. For a video collaboration on Instagram, that figure drops by 50%, but it’s still eye-watering.

Research your target audience

Clearly, not many brands can afford to spend that much on an outreach strategy, so it pays to target the right bloggers and social media influencers. Before you do this, however, take the time to understand your brand, who your target audience is, and what your unique selling proposition is. If you can’t answer these questions, you are essentially dancing in the dark.

Build a relationship

Identify target bloggers and influencers and then build a relationship with them. Don’t rush this process. Most bloggers and social media influencers will want to make sure your brand is a good match for theirs. If it isn’t, they risk alienating their followers – which is bad news for them.

To begin with, follow their channels, like their posts, and interact with them in a low-key, non-threatening way. It’s an opportunity to test the water and find out if you have enough in common.

Connect with influencers

Once you are certain this person is a good fit for your brand, and vice-versa, make contact. Send them a direct message or email. Be honest about what your intentions are and focus on how you can help them rather than the other way around.

Create exceptional content ripe for sharing and your job will be a thousand times easier. Ideally create content the blogger or influencer doesn’t already have on their site, as this will be more appealing to them. Look at creating new and interesting content. Dig deep and try to come up with something that is useful to the person’s target audience.

Remember that a blogger or social media influencer won’t want to share poor quality content, as it reflects badly on them.

Nurture your influencers

Be sure to thank your blogger or influencer. This is a mutually beneficial relationship, so nurture it. Engage with them, make them feel valued. You are building a network, so once you have this person on board, you gain access to their followers, and so on.

Try not to take rejection personally. There will always be people who, for whatever reason, don’t want to engage. If this happens to you, don’t lose any sleep over it – just move on to the next target instead.