Dropshipping is a buzzword nowadays. With 20-somethings showing off their Lambos, dropshipping has gained the limelight as one of the easiest ways of starting as an entrepreneur with minimal risk But starting a dropshipping business and sustaining and scaling one are two very different things. You need a variety of smart strategies in order to build a good sustainable business out of it. One such strategy is Influencer marketing which has helped a number of drop shippers in gaining visibility for their brands as well as do good numbers in sales.
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What is Influencer Marketing?
When was the last time you tried to copy something that one of your favorite actor or fictional character was doing/wearing? Not too long ago, right? We often tend to copy people we hold in high regard; we like to copy what they do, what they wear, how they carry themselves, and most importantly, stuff that they endorse. If you have ever indulged in such activities, then you have already seen what influencer marketing is.
Now just bring yourself on the other side of the table and try to leverage this thought into marketing your products/services. You find a niche, you find someone who has a considerable authority in that domain and you ask them to endorse your product or service, or simply speak highly about it. The result? Their followers tend to transfer that person’s authority to your product/service, and you get sales.
Types of Influencers
Influencers can be broadly categorized into three main groups based on their follower count and their authority :
These are hands down, the thought leader/ celebrities of the industry. Their social media following of over 1M is only a subset of their overall fan following. Just like their huge following, they charge huge prices, too but it is all worth it if your pockets are that deep. These are ideal for big brands looking to take things to the next level.
The Rising Stars:
They are people who are stars on social media but not much outside of it. Their social media following is generally around 30,000 – 1M, and they mostly have set prices for brand collaborations. If your business is out of its tough initial phases and starting to gain momentum, these rising stars might do wonders for you.
They may have a small following on social media, but because of that, they have higher engagement rates too. Plus, their communities mostly resemble themselves, so something that they endorse has a high chance of doing good numbers. They are ideal for brands operating on a low budget, and many times, you might get the best value for money out of them.
Identifying the Right Influencers for Your Dropshipping Business
The first step to a successful influencer marketing campaign is to find the right influencers. The right influencer aligns with your budget, your brand values, target audience, product offerings, etc. Here are some best practices to keep at the back of your head while hunting down influencers in your niche :
Use Influencer Marketing Platforms
Platforms such as Heepsy and InfluencerDB allow you to search through millions of influencers across various social media channels, filtering them based on factors such as niche, location, engagement rate, and follower count. These platforms can save you time and effort in finding the perfect influencers for your campaign.
Analyze Influencer Authenticity
Don’t finalize on an influencer just because they have a huge following count. Many times it could be some fake followers that have spiked up the number, or even if they are genuine, their reach might be dead due to recent inactivity. Make sure to go through their engagement rates, their comments, etc., before you finalize one.
Examine Past Brand Collaborations
Nothing provides more authenticity than samples of past work. In this case, it would be past brand collaborations. Check how they endorsed the brand, how much response they got etc. This will help you decide whether to go ahead with them or not.
The Power of Influencer Marketing for Dropshipping
Influencer marketing can be a game-changer for your dropshipping business, offering several benefits that can significantly impact your bottom line. Some of these benefits include:
Increased Brand Awareness
Collaborating with influencers can help you reach a wider audience and increase your brand’s visibility. Influencers have a dedicated following that trusts their opinions and recommendations, making them excellent ambassadors for your brand. Having good influencers promote your product can help immensely with creating trust in ecommerce.
Higher Conversion Rates
Influencer endorsements hold more weight than traditional advertisements, as they are perceived as more authentic and genuine. As a result, potential customers are more likely to trust an influencer’s recommendation and make a purchase from your dropshipping store.
Cost-Effective Marketing Strategy
Compared to other marketing methods, influencer marketing can be a more cost-effective way to drive sales and generate a higher return on investment. By collaborating with the right influencers, you can effectively target your desired audience and see significant results without breaking the bank.
Improved SEO Performance
Influencer marketing campaigns often involve the creation and sharing of content that includes backlinks to your dropshipping store. These backlinks can improve your website’s search engine ranking, making it easier for potential customers to find your store online.
Connecting with Influencers: A Step-by-Step Guide
Now that you understand the benefits of influencer marketing for your dropshipping business, let’s explore how to connect with influencers and form successful collaborations.
Step 1: Define Your Campaign Objectives
Before you start walking, you need to be certain of your direction. Similarly, before you start reaching out to influencers, it’s recommended to clearly define your campaign objectives which might range from increasing traffic to your prebuilt shopify stores, getting more sales, generating leads to just better brand visibility.
Step 2: Find the Right Influencers
Once you have defined your objective, you can go ahead and start your hunt for influencers. You can manually scrap on social media platforms, or you can use some tools which help you filter influencers according to strict criteria. Keep your budget, the influencer’s reach, and your campaign objective in mind before you finalize the deal.
Step 3: Choose a Collaboration Format
Once you have finalized your influencers, decide on a collaboration format which may range from product reviews, giveaways, endorsements, etc. Choose the one that bests suits your needs in the given situation.
Step 4: Craft Your Proposal
When reaching out to influencers, it’s crucial to communicate your campaign objectives, collaboration format, and any other relevant details clearly and professionally. Be prepared to negotiate fees and other terms, and ensure that both parties are on the same page before proceeding with the collaboration.
Step 5: Monitor and Analyze Results
Once your influencer marketing campaign is underway, it’s essential to track and analyze its performance. Utilize tools such as Google Analytics and UTM codes to measure website traffic and conversions generated by the campaign. Additionally, monitor the engagement on the influencer’s content to gauge its effectiveness and make any necessary adjustments to optimize your strategy.
Influencer marketing can be a powerful tool to elevate your dropshipping business, driving increased brand awareness, higher conversion rates, and improved SEO performance. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can effectively connect with influencers, forge successful collaborations, and ultimately reap the benefits of this impactful marketing strategy.