How to Pick and Reach out to Influencers With Email?

You have probably heard about the effectiveness of influencer marketing in a B2C context. Can this strategy also work in a B2B environment? Sure it can.

The reason why people trust influencers is that they are regarded as experts and opinion leaders in their field. You can leverage their authority to promote your product or service, and in effect, grow your brand reach to get to new customers.

In today’s post, we’ll take a closer look at how to find and get into contact with influencers via email. Is there a recipe for success? Keep reading to find out.

Choose a social media channel most used by your customers

Before you start looking for influencers, research which social media channels your prospects and clients use most often. There’s no point in wasting your resources in promoting your product where your target customers don’t stick around.

Keep in mind that every social media channel follows its own rules. For example, Twitter is very popular in some countries, while in others it didn’t really catch on. Facebook has become a great place for building communities. Instagram loves beautiful visuals and people mostly look for inspiration there. If your customers favor video over text, then YouTube may be the best pick.

As you can see, when it comes to choosing a social media channel, much depends on your customer preferences and needs. Research your target group to find that out.

Pick the right influencers to promote your brand

This is probably the most tricky part of the process and the least predictable. However, here are some guidelines that should help you determine whether an influencer will be the right one to promote your brand.

The most basic criterium is whether your brand matches an influencer’s personal brand. Do they represent similar values? Do they share your way of thinking and brand philosophy? If they have an opposite view on matters crucial for your brand identity, the cooperation may seem unreliable, won’t be effective, or may even put your brand in a negative light.

The next important thing is the audience influencer targets. Are they the people who would potentially be interested in your product or service? How close are they to your Ideal Customer Profile? For your influencer marketing campaign to be effective, you should aim at influencers from the same industry or niches related to your business.

Also, keep in mind that influencers are not all equal. Some may have a medium reach, but their followers are very engaged. Others may boast with a huge follower base, but don’t inspire trust in their audience. How to make a wise choice then?

There’s a couple of things you should pay attention to before you start cooperation with an influencer. The most important ones are:

  1. Posting frequency – check whether they post on their channel regularly;
    Followers’ engagement – take a look at the number of comments, likes and shares their content gets from real users, not bots.
  2. Influencer’s interaction with their audience – do they respond to, e.g. Instagram comments and answer questions asked by their followers?

With all that in mind, you can take a more fact-based approach to pick the influencers you will cooperate with.

Reach out to influencers via cold email

Ok, you know who to reach out to, so now let’s see how to do it the optimal way.

STEP #1 Collect their email addresses

The majority of influencers use email as the main contact channel for collaboration queries. Usually, the email address is featured somewhere in their bio or channel description, like in this example:

Best practice is to create an influencer contact list in the form of an excel spreadsheet. It’s an easy way to have all the data in one place. Apart from the email address, include their full name and a link to their social media profile. You can also note some pieces of information that will help you personalize the content of your email. And this takes us to the next step…

STEP #2 Write a personalized email

When you have your influencer email list ready, it’s time to draft the content of your email. Having a clear picture of who you want to reach out to will allow you to tailor the email content to each recipient, make it sound unique and more appealing.

Nobody likes impersonal, robot-like or generic messages. They look as if they were copy-pasted to thousands of people without changing a single word. One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to writing an outreach email.

So what to write in a message to an influencer? The focal point of your message should be their work, not your brand. Refer to one of their latest posts or videos. Mention what you particularly liked about it. Break the ice.

Then, ask whether they would be interested in a collaboration with your brand. Keep in mind that your idea must be relevant to their audience. The value your idea has for their followers is what matters the most for an influencer.

Writing such highly personalized messages one by one may take a while and as you scale the outreach you may want to automate this process by using snippets. These custom fields auto-populate the data from your excel spreadsheet into the copy of your email, so you save time on doing it manually.

This is how your message with snippets might look like:

Want to learn more about high-level personalization? Some time ago we asked Magda from Brand24 about how she approaches personalization in influencer outreach. Read the full interview here:
How to Use High-Level Personalization in Influencer Outreach? >>

STEP #3 Don’t forget to follow up

Following up is pivotal. It may happen that an influencer misses your email among hundreds of emails they get a day. Or they simply forgot to get back to you. When you follow up you increase the chance they will see your message and reply this time.

How many times should you follow-up? One follow-up email is a must, but according to our research, the optimal number is two or three follow-ups in the sequence. The point is to be persistent but not come off as pushy.

A question that follows is what to write in each follow-up message? Treat a follow-up as a continuation of the previous message. It’s your chance to get into some more details that you didn’t mention in the first email. Avoid making the follow-up message sound like a reminder that someone hasn’t replied to you yet. This approach is more likely to annoy the recipient than encourage them to consider your idea and answer to you.

To sum up

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to influencer outreach and some things like the choice of a social media channel are very business-specific. However, when it comes to planning your email outreach to influencers there are two pillars which you should base on: narrow targeting and personalization.

And what are your tips for influencer outreach?