Although influencer marketing is taking the marketing world by storm, it’s primarily concentrated in B2C companies.
That said, B2B companies brave enough to explore influencer marketing and master best practices report excellent benefits.
Unfortunately, most B2B companies aren’t sure where to begin or how exactly influencer marketing works, so they don’t even attempt it.
As a result, they’re missing out on opportunities to connect further with their audience, grow their brand, and establish their business as a top contender in their industry.
This article can help start your influencer marketing journey off on the right foot. Before diving into how B2B companies can properly use influencer marketing, let’s analyze how it differs from B2C influencer marketing.
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The Difference Between B2B and B2C Influencer Marketing
There’s a distinct difference between B2B buyers and B2C buyers, which means the way they convert will be different.
The B2C buyer’s journey is much shorter, involves more emotion, and is usually just a single person.
On the other hand, the B2B buyer’s journey can take weeks, if not months, to close a deal, and involves a lot of strategic decision-making and a team of decision-makers.
Therefore, lead quality is much more important than the number of leads you get in B2B marketing because you are required to spend so much time with them.
So, you must choose the right influencer with a similar target audience and ensure they understand how to speak to a team of decision-makers rather than a single consumer. Furthermore, there are significant advantages to using influencer marketing in B2B businesses.
The Benefits of Using Influencer Marketing in B2B Businesses
The main benefit of using influencer marketing in B2B businesses is its positive influence on conversion optimization.
Influencer marketing can positively impact your company’s conversion optimization rate because more and more qualified leads will land on your website and complete your desired action.
Of course, this depends on if you choose an influencer with a target audience that is incredibly loyal and mirrors yours.
All in all, the power of word-of-mouth marketing is amplified when it comes from people who are experts and genuine leaders in your field. Now, let’s dive into how you can adequately utilize influencer marketing in your B2B business.
How to Properly Utilize Influencer Marketing in Your B2B Business
Ready to implement Influencer marketing in your B2B business marketing strategy? Read on for how B2B companies can properly use influencer marketing.
Learn the ins and outs of influencer marketing
What do you know about influencer marketing? If this article is the extent of your influencer marketing knowledge, be sure to do quite a bit more research on the strategy before making it a permanent part of your marketing efforts.
Study B2B influencer marketing specifically to ensure you’re equipped with all the knowledge you need to choose the right influencer.
Immersing yourself in the details of influencer marketing also enables you to select the influencer marketing campaign that will get you the best results, whether product demonstrations, referral codes and programs, brand collaborations, or social media “takeovers.”
With some knowledge about B2B influencer marketing under your belt, move forward with defining how influencer marketing can be a part of your business.
Define your influencer marketing goals
Your influencer marketing strategy is nothing without clearly defined goals. Ensure your influencer marketing goals are as realistic, attainable, and detailed as possible.
Create Key Performance Indicators with these goals to ensure you can track their progress. Your influencer marketing goals should also be attached to a broader business goal and lay out how influencers can help achieve that goal.
Next, properly vet potential influencers.
Properly vet potential influencers
Properly vetting potential influencers is one of the most important steps to take.
The worst-case scenario is bringing an influencer on board that isn’t aligned with your brand, and they end up doing something that jeopardizes your business reputation.
To ensure this doesn’t become your reality, you must spend a lot of time researching and getting to know your potential influencers.
In addition, put potential influencers through the wringer when you meet with them. Don’t be overbearing or unkind with it.
Simply ask the questions that need to be asked and hold a lengthy conversation about who they are, what they can bring to the table, and how a partnership with your business could work for both of you.
Lastly, be sure to map out the details of your influencer partnerships.
Map out the details of your influencer partnerships
Once you’ve found an influencer you want to work with, it’s time to draft an influencer agreement.
An influencer agreement ensures that the influencer knows what you expect from them, the results you’re trying to garner, and how you’ll support them throughout the relationship. An influencer contract also ensures both parties are legally protected.
Your influencer marketing agreement should detail:
- How much will the influencer be paid
- When they’ll receive the payment
- Where and how will any disputes be solved
- A detailed scope of the work
- How the influencer is to remain in alignment with your brand
- What content is the influencer to publish, and how often
- The expected length of your partnership
- Which products/services they’ll promote
- Who will be involved in maintaining the relationship
- Communication expectations
- What you don’t want the influencer to do
- How and why would the partnership be terminated
- Any legal implications
When you map out the details of your influencer partnerships, it ensures everyone involved understands their role, how to execute their responsibilities, and the expected results.
Implementing influencer marketing in your B2B business is a wise decision.
However, you must know best practices and be committed to figuring out how to make influencers work for your unique business model.
Start with the tips above to properly use influencer marketing and enjoy all the benefits that come with it.