Baotris Blog

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Master the art of finding the right influencer for your brand with this comprehensive guide.

In today's digital world, influencer marketing has become an essential strategy for ecommerce brands seeking to engage with their target audience. Partnering with the right influencers can boost your brand's visibility, credibility, and sales. But how do you find the perfect influencer for your brand? In this comprehensive guide, we'll share a step-by-step process to help you identify and collaborate with influencers who will amplify your brand's message and drive results.

Note: This is guide would be greatly enhanced by having a target buyer persona first. You can still run influencer programs without one, but it will be easier with one, as you will see in the steps below.

Step 1: Define Your Goals and Target Audience

Having a clear understanding of your marketing goals and target audience is crucial to finding the right influencer for your brand. Here's a detailed breakdown to help you define your objectives and audience before embarking on your influencer search.

Identify Your Marketing Goals

Determine what you aim to achieve through your influencer marketing campaign. This will guide your influencer selection and help you assess their performance later on. Common influencer marketing goals include:

  1. Brand Awareness: Increase visibility and recognition of your brand among your target audience by partnering with influencers who can introduce your products or services to their followers.
  2. Drive Sales: Generate revenue by collaborating with influencers who can promote your products, offer exclusive discounts, or showcase the benefits of your offerings to encourage their followers to make a purchase.
  3. Customer Engagement: Improve audience interaction by partnering with influencers who can create engaging content, host giveaways, or initiate conversations about your brand.
  4. Lead Generation: Attract potential customers by collaborating with influencers who can create content that encourages their followers to sign up for your newsletter, download an ebook, or register for an event.
  5. Content Creation: Enlist influencers to create high-quality content featuring your products or services that you can use on your own marketing channels, such as social media, websites, or email campaigns.

You may be thinking that obviously, your goal is all the goals listed above. While all the goals are appealing, please pick just one and focus on that. Otherwise, you end up with a mess of a campaign and it will ultimately be a failure.

Secondly, you may be thinking "well then obviously I want to drive sales." It is important to note that if people don't know your brand, you need a Brand Awareness campaign before you can drive sales. I'll say it again louder for the people in the back. YOU CANNOT DRIVE SALES THROUGH INFLUENCER MARKETING IF PEOPLE DON'T KNOW YOUR BRAND. BRAND AWARENESS COMES FIRST.

Define Your Target Audience

If you already have a defined buyer persona, congrats! You can skip most of the below as you will be using that persona to answer most of the below. If you haven't done this yet, it's not too late! Click the link for the guide on how to create a buyer persona - or hire us to do it for you. Your buyer persona is used a TON in marketing so it will be an investment of time and/or money, but it is definitely worth it in the long-run.

Understanding your target audience is essential for selecting influencers who can effectively communicate your brand message. Consider the following factors when defining your target audience:

  1. Demographics: Identify the age, gender, location, income level, and education level of your ideal customers.
  2. Psychographics: Understand the values, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles of your target audience to ensure your chosen influencer's content will resonate with them.
  3. Online Behavior: Determine which social media platforms your target audience frequents, the type of content they prefer, and the influencers they already follow.
  4. Pain Points: Identify the challenges or problems your target audience faces that your products or services can help solve. This will guide your influencer's content creation and messaging.
  5. Buyer's Journey Stage: Consider which stage of the buyer's journey your target audience is in – awareness, consideration, or decision – to tailor your influencer marketing strategy accordingly.

By defining your marketing goals and target audience in detail, you'll be better equipped to identify influencers who align with your objectives and can effectively communicate your brand's message to their followers.

Step 2: Choose the Right Platform

Selecting the most suitable social media platform is essential for maximizing the impact of your influencer marketing campaign. Each platform has unique strengths, audience demographics, and content formats. In this comprehensive exploration, we'll guide you through the process of choosing the right platform for your brand and campaign goals.

Understand Platform Demographics

Research the user demographics of each social media platform to ensure your target audience is active and engaged on the chosen platform. You want to meet your target audience where they are in the most natural and seamless way possible so be sure to consider that when choosing one or more platforms to target. Key demographic factors to consider include age, gender, location, and interests.

  1. Instagram: With a predominantly younger user base, Instagram is ideal for targeting Millennials and Gen Z. It's a visual platform, perfect for lifestyle, fashion, beauty, and travel brands.
  2. TikTok: Popular among Gen Z users, TikTok is a short-form video platform that fosters creativity and virality. It's suitable for brands looking to create entertaining and engaging content to capture the attention of younger audiences.
  3. YouTube: With a wide range of demographics, YouTube is an excellent platform for long-form video content. It's ideal for tutorials, product reviews, and in-depth storytelling that appeals to a broader audience.
  4. Facebook: With a more diverse user base, Facebook is suitable for brands targeting a wide range of age groups. The platform offers various content formats, making it a versatile option for brands seeking to engage users through a mix of posts, videos, and live streams.
  5. Twitter: Popular among an older and more tech-savvy audience, Twitter is a text-based platform ideal for real-time communication, news sharing, and thought leadership.
  6. LinkedIn: Targeting a professional audience, LinkedIn is a great platform for B2B marketing, thought leadership, and networking. It's ideal for sharing industry insights, company news, and career opportunities.

Align Platform Strengths with Campaign Goals

Consider the unique strengths and content formats of each platform and how they can help achieve your marketing goals.

  1. Brand Awareness: For visual storytelling and audience reach, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube are excellent choices. If you're targeting a professional audience, LinkedIn is a strong option.
  2. Drive Sales: Instagram's shoppable posts, YouTube's product review videos, and Facebook's advertising capabilities make them ideal for driving sales. Tiktok has a new affiliate shopping feature that would also be great here.
  3. Customer Engagement: Engage audiences with interactive content on TikTok, Instagram Stories, Facebook Live, and Twitter chats.
  4. Lead Generation: Utilize LinkedIn's professional network and targeted advertising, or leverage Facebook's lead generation ads to attract potential customers.
  5. Content Creation: Partner with influencers on Instagram, TikTok, or YouTube to create visually appealing content that showcases your products or services.

Assess Platform Competition and Saturation

Lastly, consider the level of competition and saturation on each platform. While popular platforms may offer higher reach, they may also be more competitive, making it harder for your brand to stand out. Analyze the competition in your niche to determine the most effective platform for your campaign.

By understanding platform demographics, aligning platform strengths with your campaign goals, and assessing competition and saturation, you can choose the most suitable social media platform for your influencer marketing campaign. This strategic approach will ensure your chosen influencer can effectively engage and convert your target audience.

Step 3: Determine Influencer Type and Niche

Selecting the appropriate influencer type and niche is essential for a successful influencer marketing campaign. In this in-depth section, we'll walk you through the process of determining the right influencer type based on their follower count and identifying the niche that aligns with your brand.

Influencer Types Based on Follower Count

Influencers can be categorized based on their follower count, each offering distinct advantages and drawbacks. Consider your budget, campaign goals, and desired engagement levels when choosing an influencer type.

  1. Nano-influencers (1,000 - 10,000 followers): Nano-influencers often have a highly engaged, niche audience and offer a cost-effective option for small-scale campaigns. They are typically more approachable and responsive, allowing for easier collaboration.
  2. Micro-influencers (10,000 - 50,000 followers): Micro-influencers strike a balance between reach and engagement, offering a larger audience while still maintaining a personal connection with their followers. They are often considered experts in their niche and can drive targeted results.
  3. Mid-tier influencers (50,000 - 500,000 followers): With a larger following, mid-tier influencers offer increased visibility and reach, but may have slightly lower engagement rates than nano and micro-influencers. They often have more experience collaborating with brands, resulting in higher-quality content.
  4. Macro-influencers (500,000 - 1 million followers): Macro-influencers provide significant reach and visibility, making them ideal for larger campaigns or broader audience targeting. However, their engagement rates may be lower, and they often command higher fees.
  5. Mega-influencers (1 million+ followers): Mega-influencers have massive followings and can provide unparalleled reach and visibility. However, their fees can be substantial, and their engagement rates may be lower than those of smaller influencers.

We said it once already, but we'll say it again here. When considering what size influencers to work with, think about your budget. Influencers are a brand, for the mid-tier and above, this may be their only gig. You're not paying for one post - you're paying for their clout. If you don't have the budget to work with larger influencers, don't bother reaching out - they don't want your affiliate links, they don't want a commission, they want to be paid for their time and their clout, end of story.

There's nothing wrong with using micro and nano influencers, in fact, at Baotris we prefer it unless working on a campaign that is strictly brand awareness (but even then it will be at least half nano and micro). Your budget goes further, these level influencers tend to have more engaged followers, they're easier to work with, the list of benefits goes on and on. Plus, thanks to the deinfluencing trend, you want to focus on authenticity: authenticity of the influencer and of the brand relationship.

Identifying the Right Niche

Choosing influencers who operate within a niche related to your brand is crucial for audience alignment and campaign success. Here are some steps to help you identify the right niche:

  1. Analyze your product or service: Determine the specific market segment or category your product or service falls under. This will help you identify influencers who create content in the same area.
  2. Understand your target audience's interests: Research the interests and preferences of your target audience to ensure the influencer's niche aligns with their passions and hobbies.
  3. Research industry trends and hashtags: Explore popular industry trends and hashtags to discover niche influencers who are actively creating content related to your brand or product.
  4. Review competitor collaborations: Analyze your competitors' influencer marketing efforts to identify niche influencers within your industry. This can provide valuable insights into what works and what doesn't in your market.
  5. Utilize niche influencer marketing platforms: Use influencer marketing platforms that specialize in connecting brands with niche influencers to streamline the search process and discover relevant creators.

Going Off Niche

Another great way to find influencers to work with is to do so by matching audiences, otherwise known as a lookalike. At Baotris, we use Influencity to find influencers who have audiences that look like the brand's social media audience and ones who have audiences that match the target persona. You can achieve these same results using the search filters that Influencity offers such as demographics, but more importantly items like brand affinity. This strategy is data-driven and all but guarantees the success of your campaign when you launch it because you know that your targeting is correct and you have chosen relevant influencers. This is another reason why persona research is SO important in marketing.

By carefully determining the right influencer type and niche for your campaign, you can ensure a strong connection between your brand and the influencer's audience. This strategic approach will help you maximize the impact of your influencer marketing efforts and drive targeted results.

Step 4: Research and Vet Potential Influencers

Once you've defined your goals, platform, and influencer type, start researching potential influencers.

  1. Start with a broad search: Use search engines, social media platforms, and relevant hashtags to find influencers in your niche. Don't limit yourself to a small number of influencers during this stage; cast a wide net to ensure you have plenty of options. As mentioned above, you can also search by lookalike profile or lookalike audience based on parameters with a tool like Influencity.
  2. Narrow down your options: Based on your initial search, compile a list of influencers who seem to align with your brand, goals, and target audience. Look for influencers who consistently produce high-quality content related to your industry or niche.
  3. Analyze engagement rates: Evaluate each influencer's engagement rate by dividing their total likes, comments, and shares by their follower count. There are plenty of free tools that also do this for you. To evaluate influencers, we use a paid for software called Upfluence. A high engagement rate signifies a strong connection with their audience and is more likely to result in better campaign performance.
  4. Examine content quality and consistency: Review the potential influencers' content to ensure it aligns with your brand's values, aesthetic, and messaging. Look for influencers who consistently produce high-quality content and engage with their audience through comments and direct messages.
  5. Investigate follower demographics: Use tools like Demographics Pro, Upfluence, Influencity, or social media platform analytics to understand the demographics of each influencer's followers. Ensure their audience aligns with your target market, in terms of age, gender, location, and interests. If you start your search with the audience in mind and use tools, you won't have to do this step.
  6. Check for authenticity: Verify that the influencer's followers are genuine by examining their profiles for signs of fake followers, such as minimal engagement, suspicious usernames, or spammy comments. Avoid partnering with influencers who have purchased followers, as this can harm your brand's reputation. Many tools calculate an authenticity score based on the factors listed that can help you identify fake influencers. Nowadays, you can buy real-fake followers so it can be harder to sleuth out, but look for sharp increases in the influencers following in short time periods. That's usually a give-away.
  7. Review their online reputation: Conduct a thorough background check to ensure the influencer's online reputation aligns with your brand values. Look for any controversies, negative press, or inappropriate content that could potentially harm your brand image.
  8. Assess past collaborations: Review the influencer's previous partnerships to gauge their ability to effectively promote brands and drive results. Analyze the success of their past campaigns by looking at engagement, audience sentiment, and any available performance metrics. Do they respond to follower comments? How do they speak about the brand outside of the caption?
  9. Reach out to potential influencers: Once you've narrowed down your list of potential influencers, reach out to them with a personalized message outlining your campaign goals, expectations, and potential collaboration terms. Pay attention to their response time, communication style, and enthusiasm for your brand, as these factors can impact your partnership's success.
  10. Negotiate terms and set expectations: Clearly communicate your campaign objectives, deliverables, timeline, and compensation to potential influencers. Establish mutual expectations to avoid misunderstandings and ensure a successful collaboration.

Step 5: Track and Measure Results

Evaluating your influencer marketing campaign's performance is crucial to understanding its effectiveness and guiding future strategies. In this section we'll explain the importance of monitoring your campaign in real-time, and the key performance indicators (KPIs) you should track to measure success.

The Importance of Monitoring in Real-Time

Keeping a close eye on your campaign as it unfolds allows you to:

  1. Identify issues early: Detect and address any problems or misunderstandings before they escalate, ensuring a smooth and successful campaign.
  2. Optimize performance: Make data-driven adjustments to your campaign strategy to maximize results and achieve your goals.
  3. Maintain brand reputation: Monitor audience reactions and sentiment, allowing you to respond appropriately and maintain a positive brand image.
  4. Capture learnings: Document insights and experiences that can inform and improve future influencer marketing campaigns.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to Track

Your KPIs will differ depending on what your campaign goals are. For instance in brand awareness campaigns, you would not have a goal for conversions but you may still track them because its good to know the numbers. Ensure your KPIs align with your goals.

  1. Engagement Metrics: Measure the effectiveness of your influencer's content by tracking likes, comments, shares, and saves. Analyze engagement rates by dividing the total engagement by the influencer's follower count.
  2. Reach and Impressions: Evaluate the total number of unique users who viewed your campaign content (reach) and the number of times your content was displayed (impressions). This helps you understand the visibility and awareness generated by your campaign.
  3. Follower Growth: Monitor the increase in your brand's social media followers during the campaign period. This indicates the level of interest and potential new customers generated by the influencer collaboration.
  4. Clicks and Referral Traffic: Track the number of users who clicked on campaign-specific links shared by the influencer. Use tools like Google Analytics or UTM parameters to monitor referral traffic from the influencer's content to your website.
  5. Conversions: Measure the number of users who completed a desired action, such as making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, or downloading an ebook, as a result of the influencer campaign. This helps you understand the campaign's direct impact on your marketing goals.
  6. Return on Investment (ROI): Calculate the ROI of your influencer marketing campaign by comparing the revenue generated or value of the conversions to your campaign spend. This will help you evaluate the overall cost-effectiveness of your influencer marketing efforts.
  7. Audience Sentiment: Analyze the sentiment of comments and reactions to the influencer's content to gauge audience reception and perception of your brand during the campaign. This helps you understand the impact of the collaboration on your brand reputation.
  8. Earned Media Value: EMV can be calculated in a few different ways as it involves estimating the monetary value of various types of organic content and engagement. There is no universally accepted formula for calculating EMV. It is a metric used to measure the impact and effectiveness of earned media on a brand's marketing efforts. Earned media refers to publicity or exposure that a brand receives without directly paying for it, such as organic social media shares, press coverage, reviews, and word-of-mouth. EMV represents the estimated value of this exposure, helping brands understand the ROI of their marketing activities and the effectiveness of their public relations strategies.

By monitoring your influencer marketing campaign in real-time and tracking key performance indicators, you can effectively measure your campaign's success, optimize its performance, and gather valuable insights for future strategies. This comprehensive approach to campaign measurement will ensure you maximize the return on your influencer marketing investment.


Finding the right influencer for your brand may seem daunting, but with careful planning, research, and measurement, you can unlock the power of influencer marketing to grow your ecommerce business. Follow this comprehensive guide to find influencers who align with your brand, resonate with your target audience, and deliver tangible results.

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