Hey, I feel for you. You’re launching a new campaign and you want to find the most influential people to inform and to win over as advocates. Your CEO asked you to put together a list of influencers but you know the score- every famous person is inundated by such requests and you feel your product or service will be lost in the noise. Luckily, you are a Socially-aware CMO and you have the right answer: the little “i” influencer- those unsung folks who can help supercharge your brand and make your campaign a true success.
In an ideal world, you’d be able to excite the most influential people on the planet and have them gravitate towards your brand. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Bill Gates endorsed your software product or Lebron James evangelized your new running shoe? Financial services product? Wouldn’t it be amazing to have Alan Greenspan stump for you?
Well the problem is that these people are incredibly busy and celebrities are frankly incredibly expensive to work with. Furthermore, you want to leverage the power of social media as much as you can- to extend your reach, to be able to get real-time data and feedback, to leverage the power of technology, and to do so without breaking the bank. And not all influential people are engaged in social media. So the ideal model might not work.
You can then turn to your PR agency. But very likely they will trot out the same predictable names and offer to pitch on your behalf. The fact is that folks like Walt Mossberg are on everyone’s list– digital doesn’t mean accessible!
What you really want to do is to identify the true social influencers- those folks who might not sport household names but who tweet and retweet, creating a cascading momentum for your brand, product, or service.
The power of social media is precisely this- the power to uncover diamonds in the rough, to find advocates and influencers who ordinarily would not make the list. And those people are hard to find unless you have the right tools.
Paul Dunay is the Chief Marketing Officer of Networked Insights, a leader in social media analytics, and author of four “Dummies” books: Facebook Marketing for Dummies, Social Media and the Contact Center for Dummies, Facebook Advertising for Dummies and Facebook Marketing for Dummies 2nd Edition. You can learn more here.