Episode #32


How to Find Social Media Influencers for Your Franchise with Sarah Kurtenbach

Social media influencers are the newest trend in the marketing world and something franchisees need to embrace in their marketing mix. But where do you find and connect with influencers? How do you know if it’s a marketing platform that will work for you? Sarah Kurtenbach, a social media expert, is here to answer questions about finding and using social media influencers.

Sarah launched her career in the social space with BLiNQ Media (now Cofactor Digital). She worked her way through the ranks and was VP of Sales before getting married and moving to South Dakota. She launched the KB group and works as a consultant helping businesses navigate social media and influencer marketing.

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:55] Influencer marketing with Sarah Kurtenbach
  • [3:55] How has influencer marketing changed?
  • [5:30] The basics of influencer marketing
  • [7:25] Influencer Marketing on a local level
  • [10:10] What could a social media campaign look like?
  • [15:30] How to find social media influencers
  • [21:30] Standard of pricing and negotiation
  • [23:35] Engagement vs. likes
  • [25:50] Exploring the concept of nano-influencers
  • [33:15] What does a consumer look for?
  • [36:40] Why franchise owners should give it a shot

The basics of influencer marketing

If you’re not familiar with the concept, influencer marketing is when a brand partners with trusted people to promote the brand on the influencer’s unique channels. This includes Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, a personal blog, etc. Influencers are people who have a following that trusts them and they offer content of value to the consumer.

As a brand, it’s hard to gain traction when you’re the one constantly advertising that you’re the best, have the best product, and so forth. But if you work with an influencer who is unbiased and they are the ones advocating for your brand—it’s completely different. They can tap into a different market with their followers that you wouldn't normally have access to.

What could a social media campaign look like?

I’m opening a yoga studio in Denver and am in the presales and construction phase. Right now I just have one location and I wanted to pick Sarah’s brain on how I would go about working with influencers. Sarah pointed out I need to focus on two things: What is the goal of the campaign? Who is my target market?

She helped me further narrow target categories to college-aged women, moms, and fitness influencers. So what women in Denver fall into those categories and have a social media following? Sarah said she’d aim for finding 2 influencers in each of those categories to reach my desired audience.

Sarah takes a deep-dive into influencer analytics and how to attract customers in this next segment—so keep listening!

How to find social media influencers

Finding social media influencers is a very manual process that consists of working with people over a platform. Sarah has a few recommendations for sourcing influencers:

  1. Influencer Databases: Sort by location, gender, age and the specific keywords you’re looking for.
  2. Instagram: Search on the platform by location or hashtags.
  3. Google: Google “top yoga instructors in Denver” to find options and then search for them on Instagram.

Once you have a list of potential influencers that you’d like to work with, you have to reach out to them. It’s a process of inquiring about their rates, informing them what their role would be, and providing guidelines. It’s not quick or easy, which is why many entrepreneurs outsource to consultants like Sarah.

Nano-influencers and the role they play

When most people think about an influencer, they think of a celebrity or people with hundreds of thousands of followers. Sarah notes that instead of focusing on large numbers of followers, you want to focus on their engagement level. It does your brand no good if no one cares about what the influencer is posting!

There is also a place for what she termed “nano-influencers”.

They typically have anywhere from a few hundred to a couple of thousand followers. They’re great if you’re looking for an influencer that has deep roots in a specific community. A restaurant in that neighborhood could offer them a gift card to eat their food and post about it on Instagram—and they could grow in popularity quickly.

Sarah and I continue to chat about specific examples, common misconceptions, guidelines and what consumers look for. Don’t miss this engaging episode!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Sarah Kurtenbach

Connect With Erik

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