How To ID Social Influencers

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social influence

It’s social media time. Do you know where your social influencers are?

Social influencers are not the “noisy” fans who ‘Like’, comment or share for the heck of it – they share with intent (and typically have large, attentive audiences).

So while your cat memes may get shared by 50 peeps, if your brand messaging isn’t shared at all or gets “crickets” (no response at all) you’re really not influencing your community to promote your brand.

Catch my drift?

The Three Types of Social Influencers

Jay Baer of Convince and Convert has done a nice job of drilling down and pinpointing who your social influencers typically are:

  1. Enthusiastic Employees: These are typically long-term employees whose motivation for sharing your brand messaging is PRIDE. 
  2. Social Publishers: Normally these authority figures have high clout (and Klout!) in the social sphere; their motivation is to SHARE worthy content to their following of information hungry peeps.
  3. Passionate Customers: These aren’t your run-of-the-mill patrons. They most often have a history with your brand, or have had an exceptional experience. ENTHUSIASM is the motivator here.

social influence

 How Do I ID My Social Influencers?

Enthusiastic employees and social publishers come down to grooming, management and luck. However, there are a few ways in which you can start to identify your potential passionate customers.

Look for these traits:

  • Active online presence 
  • Already talking about your brand (‘Liking’, commenting and sharing your fun stuff AND your brand messaging)
  • Are they active beyond Facebook & Twitter? (Think forums or discussion boards)
  • Have they already given you some ‘social proof’ or a testimonial regarding your brand?
  • What are their email behaviors like? (Opens and CTRs)
  • *Note: Focus on past, not presumed, behaviors

Put Social Influencers to Work!

  1. First you must identify your influencers
  2. Next, approach these influencers about collaborating with the brand, or a project
  3. Have a ‘Give to Get’ for the influencer as a way to thank them for helping you
  4. Follow up and follow through

Are you working to identify your social influencers? Tell us how you’re doing and please share any tips or tricks you have for doing so below in the comments.

See you in the social sphere!


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Brooke B. Sellas is the in-the-trenches Founder & CEO of @HelloBSquared, an award-winning social media, advertising, and social media customer care agency. She's also the author of Conversations That Connect -- a book all about social listening and social media customer care. Brooke's marketing mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout on the socials!
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