June 2, 2021 |

I think it is fair to say that we have hit peak influencer. It seems impossible to make it down the street nowadays without seeing someone posing against an aesthetic backdrop to pursue that follower count. No one is safe! With the rise of B2B influencers, that includes commercial sales teams now too.

B2B Influencer Strategies

Ok, so this is not a piece encouraging your sales team to fire up the studio lighting and strike a pose (unless that is their thing, of course!) – but they should be encouraged to think about who their target audience is and innovate in how they are reaching them.

This focus on channel strategy is essential now that our collective taste for content mediums has shifted so much. Studies have shown that the use of influencer content in B2B environments has grown rapidly over the past few years. In 2020, 65 per cent of influencer marketing budgets increased, and 50 per cent of corporations planned to incorporate this new tactic to grow their client base.

So how can your business leverage the substantial word-of-mouth benefits associated with collaborating with B2B influencers to start feeding your funnel? We have detailed three straight forward methods your sales team can employ today to start building profitable relationships with influencers to start growing your revenue streams.

Shine a spotlight on your team.

Your employees are an excellent asset to your brand. They are the ones that know your products inside out and are best positioned to speak about them with in-depth knowledge. With that in mind, offering support to your team members to help them build their profiles can prove an effective route to creating in-house B2B influencers that can become trusted voices in your industry.

Support your team members by engaging them on how and where they want to develop their profiles. Ensure that part of this support incentivises them to go out there and confidently share the insight they have worked hard to develop. Consider supporting them with optimised marketing content for their LinkedIn audiences or helping create media content, such as informational videos, which they can share with their connections and prospects.

Above all, ensure your employee engagement strategy is flexible and adapts to how they feel most comfortable. Not everyone gets excited about sharing their views in a piece to camera, so be flexible in collaborating with them to share their insight through whichever channel they feel most excited about.

Collaborate with your clients.

Working with some of your existing clients can be a great way to maximise the reach of your messaging and tap into new audiences. For example, if your brand is entering new markets or accessing a broader demographic, collaborating with clients who already reach those audiences can provide a great route to engage those individuals.

The key to success when collaborating with clients is to aim for strong relevance. Rather than utilising their networks to reach new audiences, think about co-creating content propositions that factor in essential elements of your relationship with that brand in defining your message.

For example, was there something particularly notable about the collaboration between your brands? Did it generate a new approach to a particular problem? Did the engagement develop a new product or service that you now use? Ultimately, what did you learn from that engagement that potential customers might be looking for.

Finding engaging routes to tell these stories with the involvement of your customers can prove a great route to reaching and engaging new B2B audiences with a strong sales message. These can be delivered via webinars, talks, or via content hosted on third party sites.

Push for new platforms.

Events often provide tremendous opportunities to share insight in front of audiences interested in what you have to say. For an event strategy to be effective, you need to identify who the critical voices are within your industry and formulate a plan for targeting those individuals with a strong sales pitch.

Identify who your key spokespeople are and create a strong speaker pitch for them. These should include details of previous speaking engagements, videos and specialist topics. Look for these industry leaders and build relationships based on what value you can add to their events.

Events are only half the story when collaborating with influencers to share your insight on a platform. The rise of the podcast has taken the world by storm, and the B2B world hasn’t escaped the whirlwind. Factoring in podcast opportunities alongside events, you have the chance to reach more people and collaborate with a broader range of influencers within your industry.

Similarly to your event strategy, having a strong sales pitch will help you target the right opportunities and demonstrate where you can add value to their platform, and most importantly, the audiences they have worked hard to cultivate.

As with any collaboration, it pays to ensure that the people you are working with to share insight and generate a buzz around your business share the values and beliefs that you do. So, ensure proper due diligence forms part of your planning to avoid any associations that could create issues with existing customers and clients.

The goal here should be great results and a return for your business. The stats show that there are some serious deals to close through influencer campaigns, so make sure you are factoring these into your planning sooner rather than later.

If developing a strategy has your head in a spin, you can reach out to our team of experts for some friendly advice. You can ‘meet’ them over on the team page or get in touch with them using the form below to see how we can work together in creating a profitable B2B influencer strategy for your brand.