Influencer marketing continues to grow in popularity. Between social media accounts and lifestyle blogs, there are thousands of influencers working in almost every industry. However, some businesses are still hesitant to work with influencers. It can be hard to justify paying for influencer if you are unsure whether or not it will add value to your company. That is why in this article we will cover whether or not you should use influencers, how influencers affect SEO, and how to track the impact of influencer marketing.
Should Your Brand Use Influencer Marketing?
Part of why many businesses hesitate to use influencers is because influencers are such a new commodity. Influencers are to the internet what radio sponsorships were to the last half-century of marketing. It can be seemingly impossible to track how effective the marketing tool is, and many companies worry about whether or not their influencers are charging a fair price. The return on investment can vary greatly based on a variety of factors. We highly recommend that companies that are considering working with influencers, start by working on their own website’s SEO strategy first. Influencers should be a supplemental effort and not your main digital strategy. A company’s website is under their complete control and ensuring that it has the right landing pages, listings, and metadata is much more valuable long term than having the right influencers.
That being said, if you plan to use influencers make sure to avoid these do-not’s.
- Do not work with influencers that also promote your direct competitors. Many influencers work in a specific industry and can often represent conflicts of interest.
- Do not work with influencers that create content that could hurt your brand. You want influencers to reflect your brand’s positioning.
- Do not work with influencers that work without contracts. You want to make sure you get what you pay for. Consider working with an agency that acts as a liaison between influencers and brands.
How Does Influencer Marketing Affect SEO?
Influencer marketing can be optimized for your SEO strategy. From providing backlinks that improve your referral traffic to creating new content that actually has healthy traffic, there are many ways influencers impact your SEO. Improving your ranking on SERPs (search engine result pages) is dependent on many factors. Influencers can create backlinks to your website that improve your referral traffic as well as create new content for your website. As a note on backlinks, Google and other search engines will weigh a backlink based on the authority of the website that hosts it. For example, if a website is linked in a blog from a professional news website, it will gain more benefit than if it was linked on a scam website. This is why you should vet influencers who put your link on their website. The stronger their website is, the more benefit you can expect.
Improving Your SEO Content Strategy with Influencers
SEO is a field about optimization and getting the most out of the work you do. When you work with an influencer, make sure that backlinks are set up. Whether they use social media or their own blogging website, you should always require that they create links to your website. Word of mouth is powerful, but only in the short term. The links they build to your website can continue to affect your page ranking long term. One of the best strategies to use while working with influencers is to create an exclusive special. This encourages users to go from influencer content to your website and to convert into a sale. This can also encourage your own social media followers to interact with the influencer and therefore cross-promote. In order to do this, you need to instruct your influencer to include the special’s details and custom link on their blog or social media posts. Then you can use your own social media to promote the influencer’s content that they created for you.
Measuring the Impact of Influencer Traffic for Your Website
The beauty of digital marketing is that almost anything can be measured. Gone are the days where a marketing agency has to rely on print media that’s impressions, clicks, and conversions cannot be measured. However, many influencers that market themselves and companies that use influencers do not track the benefits. The first thing any company that plans to use influencers should do is set up tracking in Google Analytics. Utilizing Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager, you can track how successful traffic is that comes from social media and influencer blogs.
Tracking Influencer Blog Traffic
A great way to do this is to set up a landing page on your website. Make sure to set it up with “no index, no follow” meta tags, so that the page cannot be found by search engines. Next, add relevant content and calls to action. We highly recommend a contact form as well as click to call and click to email. Have your influencer use this link in their social posts or on their blog. After a month, check on Google Analytics how many users land on your page, and the subsequent actions they take. Remember, your influencer is responsible for bringing traffic, whether or not the traffic converts is based on how well you create meaningful calls to action. However, be wary of traffic with high bounce rates, and low engagement (time spent on a page). This could be an influencer using a traffic bot to inflate their perceived impact.
Tracking Influencer Social Media Impact
As mentioned above, you can easily set up a landing page on your website that influencers share in their social media. Using a custom link that leads to a landing page is the best way to track how many people are coming to your website through an influencer. However, another strategy is to create a unique special. Not only does this improve how you track the value, but it also will likely increase your conversion rate. Similar to the above strategy, the special should utilize a coupon code or a custom link to your website that leads to an orphaned landing page. This will allow you to track how many conversions are brought through your influencer.
Contact Boston Web Marketing to Learn More
Boston Web Marketing provides top to bottom digital marketing strategies. We work with hundreds of companies in varying industries to create unique and tailored strategies to improve our client’s search engine results and overall digital presence. If you are interested in getting a tailored plan, contact us for a free website audit.