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The 5 W’s of Creating Your Social Media Strategy: How to Find Influencers

The first of a 5 part series. Social Media StrategyYour social media strategy is the one thing that you actually need to spend a little time on before jumping into running social media platforms for your company. Although you go through some of the same steps you go through in creating a social media campaign, the research and processes you put in place for your strategy will last a lot longer than a simple campaign. A social media strategy consists of the 5 W’s: Who, What, Where, When, and Why.

  • Who – who is your target audience?
  • Where – where are they hanging out?
  • What – what do you want them to do once you reach them?
  • When – when will you engage with them and how often?
  • Why – why are you on social media in the first place? What do you want to get out of it?

WHO: How to Find Your Target Audience

From a product/service perspective you probably already know who you are targeting and you already know that it shouldn’t be the entire internet. You should be able to answer a few basic questions about your target audience such as: age, location, sex, annual income.  You may have other information about them such as their other interests, whether or not they are single/married, when their birthday is, how they feel about politics, if they are religious, etc. All of these elements will also help you create strategic campaigns. But part of finding out your target audience is figuring out who the influencers are for your industry. By definition, the reason you want to find influencers in your industry is because they have an audience and they not only pay attention to trends but can also aid in defining trends. How do you identify, learn, and engage with the influencers who are creating conversations that are impacting your brand or industry?

  • You can do a Google or Bing search on “influencers in x industry” and surely someone has put together a list.
  • You can sign up with Traackr which has a pay as you go plan for small busineses. The software allows you to export lists and put you in touch with influencers in your industry.
  • To find influencers on Twitter you can try using: Twtrland.com, FollowerWonk.com or Commun.it
  • To find blogging influencers you can try InkyBee.com
  • To find influencers in your industry you could post on Google+ and view the Ripples
  • To find influencers on Facebook or Twitter you could search for your keywords using hashtags.

How to engage with your influencers: Once you find your influencers you’ll need to possibly segment them and determine what you want from each group. You’ll also need to start engaging with them.

  • Subscribe to their newsletter
  • Subscribe to their blog
  • Follow them on social media
  • Leave a comment on their blog or reply to a tweet or Facebook post
  • Ask them a question – influencers love to showcase their expertise, so by asking them a question makes you memorable when you ask them to review your product/service

Do you know of any other tools or tips to help find influencers? Please share them in the comments below.

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About Tracy Sestili

Tracy Sestili is CEO and Chief blogger at Social Strand Media. She is also the author of Taking Your Brand from the Bench to the Playing Field -- Social Media Fundamentals for Business.

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  1. […] part one of this five part series I talked about the first W: Who and how to find and engage with influencers in your industry on social media. The next part of your strategy will be the Where and picking the […]