Here are my tried and tested ways for searching for influencers and distribution partners.
These are the grass roots strategies I’ve used for years! They have never failed me so I know (without a shadow of doubt) that they will be useful for building out your influencer marketing campaigns!
Bold statement, I know, but check the list below and see for yourself…
You will get lots of results by simply writing search terms relevant to what you are looking for. For example, if you are in the fitness nutrition space, you can search for “top fitness influencers” or more specific searches like “top bodybuilding influencers” or even “top 10 bodybuilding influencers on instagram.”
#2 Website Ranking Sites and software
Ranking sites can help you analyze rankings based on social channels, subscriber numbers, industry categories and some even allow you rank the audiences of specific influencers. Some examples of these are Alexa.com, similarweb.com, socialblade.com and distrochannels.com
#3 Social Media Platforms
Most social media platforms have search functions which means you can research categories, hashtags and keywords giving you access to all the content creators within that criteria.
#4 Google Alerts
Set up google alerts for industry specific terms. These give you alerts on relevant topics in your industry and you’ll start to notice who is regularly writing and producing the content aligned with your brand.
#5 Forums and social news sites
Join forum threads and discussions related to your industry and see who regularly engages in discussions. These are great places to find both nano, micro and mid-tier influencers who you can align with. Some forums also show you how many followers or subscribers users have.
#6 Twitter feeds
Twitter feeds allow you to search for influencers who have highly engaged and organic followers. You can set up feeds for specific hashtags, topics or even influencers you already know. Monitor your feed and you will start to identify influencers as their posts will consistently be rising to top tweets.
#7 Influencers who promote your competitors.
Search for industry related hashtags and topics on your chosen social media platforms and see who is regularly creating content related to your competitors. If they are willing to create and share content relevant to your brand and already working with brands similar to yours they may be open to work with you.
#8 Find Influencers who share your audience
You do not need to find influencers tied directly to your industry. You can market to indirect customers by working with influencers that create content for a different niche which is also complementary to your own.
#9 Follow the follower
People who become influencers tend to be inspired by other bigger influencers out there (your prime candidate). By following their followers you can find smaller versions of your prime candidates offering you a slightly different, untapped audience with potentially better engagement rates and better prices.
#10 Influencers Referrals
If you are already working with an influencer it might be a good idea to simply ask for a referral. They already understand your company and since many influencers collaborate with one another they may know exactly who to refer. Being directly referred to another influencer or better yet introduced is very powerful.
#11 SHARK tactic:
Look at your competitors and start by finding out how much they payout and which influencers, affiliates, distributors they use. They’re easy to find, they’re the ones promoting that company’s products. Once you know this, you know exactly who to target and how to get them interested with a payout level which is better than what they are currently receiving. Reach out to their influencers to entice them into your channel while at the same time, also reaching out to all the other lookalike or comparable influencers.
Points 1 through 10 are all great ways to find influencers. Point 11 is where you start burning bridges.
Using shark tactics can have repercussions so weigh that decision carefully. You should consider any potential legal recourse from that company to the influencers and distributors since they may have signed some water tight contracts. And generally consider your long term goals before burning potential collaborations like that.
Hope that was helpful!
By the way, you can use software like DistroChannels to find influencers and lookalikes based on the influencers your competitors use. Check out the platform here!