Mar 15, 2017
One of the most common questions we get asked at CrewFire is “How do I find and recruit micro-influencers to become my brand ambassadors”? Many marketers know what micro-influencer marketing is and can see how it can help them reach a bigger audience, get better engagement, and make more sales. It’s the recruiting part that people get hung up on.
As you’ll see below, there are numerous ways to recruit micro-influencers. Some of them require little work on your part and can be done by making small tweaks to your existing processes. Others require more effort and possibly some new skills and tools.
This blog post is not meant as a comprehensive list of all the ways to recruit micro-influencers. Instead, it’s meant as a starting point and a source of inspiration.
Before digging into specific recruiting tactics, it’s important to analyze your brand and determine who your potential micro-influencers are. Theoretically, anyone connected to your company is a potential micro-influencer. Your fans, employees, customers, friends, and family members can all help you promote your brand.
Not all brands are the same though and some will find it easier than others to find people willing to be their ambassadors. A lifestyle brand with a “cool image” (e.g. GoPro, Daniel Wellington, etc.) will have a much easier time finding people passionate about their brand and willing to share their content.
If that description doesn’t fit your brand then you might have to get creative with how you reward your micro-influencers. If your rewards are exciting enough then you’ll find more than enough people willing to promote your brand. Don’t just rely on monetary rewards though (read the blog post if you don’t know why!).
We’ll start by going over a few recruiting ideas that you can implement right away by integrating them into your existing processes. These cost little to no money and you’ll have your first micro-influencer team members within a few days.
If your company sells anything online then you probably have follow up emails that you send to customers. These emails usually provide value (they include receipts, a user guide, etc.), ask for something (feedback, a review, etc.) or are sales emails (showing related products, upsells, etc.).
If you’re looking to recruit micro-influencers then you can either create a new follow up email introducing your program, mention it in your existing emails, or both. Create a landing page for your program that goes over the benefits, include a sign up form and link to it.
This is a great tip for all ecommerce sellers out there. Design a flyer describing the benefits of becoming your brand ambassador and include it with each product. Making flyers is inexpensive and your customers are guaranteed to see them. They’ll also be in a great mood when they read it since they’ve just received the package they have been waiting for. Just don’t forget to include instructions telling them how they can sign up!
Many companies either have email newsletters or send out regular emails with content to their email lists. This is another great opportunity for recruiting. You can advertise your program by talking about it indirectly, e.g. by introducing an ambassador of the month column. This works on multiple levels because it also encourages your other micro-influencers to step up their efforts and increase their chances of getting mentioned in a future email.
While the previous recruiting tactics could be implemented by simply altering an existing process, the following ones require you to do something you haven’t done before. Don’t be intimidated though, they won’t require much more time or effort than the previous ideas.
This is one pretty straightforward and can be implemented quickly. Let’s say that your business sells yoga mats. In that case, make a list of the most popular places for yogis to hang out online. Look for Facebook groups, Subreddits, forums, etc.
Then, make a post stating that you’re starting an ambassador program and that you’re looking for people to join. Link to the signup page you created. A word of warning: always make sure that your post is within the rules of the community. If you’re not sure then clear it with the moderators/admins beforehand.
A simple way to drive signups from already existing traffic is to link to your signup form on your website. Take a look at the Maker’s Mark website for example:
The benefit here is that you’ll be getting highly qualified traffic. People already browsing your website are probably already interested in your brand.
If you have a following on Facebook then it’s another potential source of micro-influencers. Make sure to mix it up though, don’t just post links to your signup page. Get creative: just like with the newsletter, you could use this as an opportunity to have a “ambassador of the month” series.
This strategy works both for your existing customer and fan base as well as if you’re trying expand your recruitment efforts even further. How effective it will be depends on your skills in creating ads, sales pages, and audience targeting. Create a landing page describing your micro-influencer program and the benefits of joining. Then start running ads driving traffic to that page, e.g on Facebook.
Target Facebook Groups that you know your audience likes, competitor pages and other specific places your potential micro-influencers hang out. You can even create a lookalike audience of your customer base on Facebook.
This is probably the step that will take the most time setting up, but crucial to scaling your micro-influencer recruiting.
The goal is to set up an ongoing process where your existing ambassadors recruit new members. First, you will need to set up a reward structure that incentivizes them to do so. Then you’ll need to provide them with unique links and make sure that you’re attributing new signups correctly.
This may seem like a lot of work but it will be worth it. If executed well then your recruiting efforts could eventually be on autopilot and your ambassador team will be growing without you having to do a thing.
Finally, let’s talk about the proper mindset when you’re looking to build a team of micro-influencers for your brand.
You should be looking at your list of ambassadors as an asset - just as you would with an email list for example. The effort you put in upfront will pay off exponentially later on. Let’s assume that your average ambassador has 1,500 followers. If that’s the case then your potential reach with 10 ambassadors is 15,000 people. If you just add 10 more micro-influencers to your team however then your potential reach goes to 30,000 people! Also, just as when building an email list - think of your recruiting efforts as an ongoing process, not a one time action. Constantly look for new members and for ways to grow your team.
Getting people to join your team is just the first step. After that it’s your job to make sure that your micro-influencers are motivated and share your content. If you want to know more about how to do that then check out this blog post we published about rewarding and motivating micro-influencers.
When it comes to reducing the friction then it’s your job to make it as easy as possible to share your content. By using an app like CrewFire, where it takes just one click for influencers to share your posts and where they get notified by sms and email each time you want them to share something, you’ll keep friction low and your engagement high.
There’s no need to keep inactive ambassadors on your list. Regularly check who isn’t contributing and remove them. It’s easy if you use a micro-influencer management software like CrewFire.
If that all sounds like a huge headache then there’s one final option I haven’t mentioned yet: outsourcing your micro-influencer recruitment and management. If you read this post then you’re aware how much work goes into building a list of micro-influencers. It’s unquestionably worth the effort but some companies simply don’t have the manpower or time to figure out the ins-and-outs of ambassador marketing. If that’s you then you can drop us an email at [email protected] and inquire about our micro-influencer and brand ambassador management services.
Thanks for tuning in. Hopefully you learned a few new tips and tricks to recruit micro-influencers and build your team of brand champions.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through email or drop your two cents below in the comment section.