It’s no secret that finding and targeting influential individuals on social media is a vital component of any successful marketing campaign.
However, what is less well known is that conducting background research on these individuals is just as important – and can often have a more significant impact on the success of your campaign. In this article, we’ll explore why background research is so crucial for influencer marketing and how you can do it, and then we’ll turn everything on its head and look at how you can use an influencer’s background to your advantage.
Why is Background Research Important for Influencer Marketing?
There are a few key reasons why conducting background research on an influencer is so important:
- It allows you to vet the person before entering into a partnership.
- It helps you understand their audience and what type of content they are most likely to engage with.
- It gives you insights into their values and beliefs, which can help you to align your brand with theirs.
- It helps you avoid any potential PR disasters if you partner with someone who has a shady past.
- It allows you to see if the person is genuinely influential or if they are just riding on the coattails of someone else.
Speaking of riding the coattails of someone else… be sure to read our recent post about a shady new tactic we’ve been seeing more and more of – hashtag hijacking.
How to Conduct Background Research on an Influencer
There are a few different ways that you can go about conducting background research on an influencer:
- Google them – This is the most obvious way to start your research, but it’s also one of the most effective. Simply type their name into Google and see what comes up. You can also try adding other keywords, such as “scandal” or “controversy,” to see if anything negative pops up.
- Check out their social media profiles – Take a look at the type of content they are sharing on their social media profiles. Are they sharing controversial or inflammatory content? If so, this could be a red flag.
- Use a background check service – Several online services will allow you to conduct a background check on an individual. These services will usually give you access to public records, such as criminal records, bankruptcies, and civil judgments.
- Talk to people who know them – If you know anyone who is acquainted with the person you’re interested in working with, see if you can get some insights. Ask them about the person’s values and what type of content they usually share.
- Hire a private investigator – This is usually only necessary if you’re interested in working with a very high-profile individual or if you have reason to believe that there could be some skeletons in their closet.
Do your research! You’ll find that some people have been less-than-nice to people, and it could hurt your brand.
A girl that was really mean to me in high school is trying very hard to be an Instagram influencer and she really sucks at it and I know it’s petty but I do not care, it makes me really happy inside.— Avril (@AvrilAmaka) May 23, 2022
How to Use an Influencer’s Background to Your Advantage
Once you’ve conducted your research and gathered all of the information, it’s time to start thinking about using it to your advantage. Here are a few ideas:
- Use their values to align your brand – If you’ve done your research and know that the influencer shares your brand’s values, you can use this to your advantage in your marketing campaign. Create content in line with their values and beliefs, and make sure that your branding is consistent with what they stand for.
- Use their audience to reach a new audience – If you know that the influencer has a large and engaged following, you can use this to reach a new audience for your brand. Create content tailored to the interests of their followers and make sure that your branding is visible.
- Use their background to create a story – If the influencer has an exciting or unique background, you can use it to create a story around your campaign. Share their story with your audience and use it to promote your brand.
- Use their influence to get media coverage – If you can get the influencer to mention your brand in their content, you’re likely to get some media coverage. This is a great way to raise awareness for your brand and get more people interested in what you have to offer.
- Use their platform to launch a new product – If you’re launching a new product, you can use the influencer’s platform to generate buzz and excitement. Share previews of the product, launch a contest or give away some free samples.
As you can see, conducting background research on an influencer is a vital part of any successful marketing campaign. By taking the time to learn about the person you’re working with, you can use their background to your advantage and create a campaign that is more likely to succeed.
When you’re targeting someone to be an influencer for your brand, it’s important to remember that they represent your company. You need to be sure that they are someone you can trust to represent your brand and values accurately.
If you’re not sure how to find the right influencer, read our recent blog post to learn how.
Bear in mind that this isn’t a one-size-fits-all process. Consider Dior and the recent Johnny Depp/Amber Heard trial. Dior didn’t end their contract with Johnny Depp even though his wife at the time, Amber Heard, accused him of domestic violence.
So, in this instance, did Dior do their due diligence? If so, did they make the right decision?
It’s not always clear-cut, and there is no easy answer, but what is important is that you take the time to consider all of the information before making a decision. And once you find your ideal match, you need to start doing influencer outreach. We can help you with that! Visit our service page to learn more!