In my last blog post I was talking about the mistakes you need to avoid when interviewing an influencer, this blog post is going to help you to find the influencers to interview. You may have some already in your network but the chances are you are going to want to find some more.
Here are some ideas on how you can find the influencers that you want to interview and do it without being a pain.
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Look for authors of trade magazines articles or industry blogs. Since anyone can and should start and write a blog, look for blogs that are widely read and trusted in your industry. It’s even better if the author has an established reputation offline in the media as well. You can do a Google search for blogs using keywords in your niche, take the results with the highest page rank, and look at their authors.
Another great way to find influential authors is by searching on Amazon, all of the authors will have an authors page so you can see exactly how influential they are with what they are doing on Amazon. You can see the books they have written or contributed to along with the feedback /reviews they have received, nothing says influencer more than a stream of people saying how great their work is.
Use hashtag searches to find influencers on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The great thing about social media is that it delivers stats about influencers directly through their number of followers. However, you shouldn’t just go by followers alone (of course nobody in the history of Twitter has ever bought followers have they?). See how much actual activity there is on their profile and the kinds of conversations they’re having. You can also search on social media to see who people are mentioning, Facebook is great for tagging and sharing and if you know who is being tagged to give advice or contribute to a topic you have a good place to start when searching for those in the know.
Use your own followers to find out who else they follow. You can sometimes glean this information by simply looking at their social media profiles and the other content that they share. Social media sites like Facebook allow you to see who your friends and followers like providing the accounts are set that way within their privacy settings. You’ll also see their shared content. Another great way is to simply ask or put up a poll, you may be surprised at just how helpful your own network can be. Remember as a business you have been growing your email list. Reach out in your emails ask there as well, the chances of your request being seen are higher and it helps to keep your list engaged.
A great place to look is offline. Look at trade shows, events, and seminars. Who’s hosting them or presenting at them? What are the biggest names? This is a great way to find local influencers in a specific geographical area. An advantage of finding influencers offline is that it gives you a good chance to start building an authentic relationship with them in person, which is much easier than connecting only online.You can search for Facebook events and see which events are being held and where and who you know is going, another great resource for this is Meetup where you can search by industry or location. Again ask your network for referrals for events.
There are also tools you can use that are specifically designed for finding key influencers. These include Klout, Traackr, Kred, Twellow and more. These tools measure the influence of a person using internet, social media, and search data. Some of them offer very detailed profiles that can help you get a good start on your research.
Once you find an influencer somewhere, you should look for them everywhere else as well. For example, if you attend a trade show and come out with a list of potential influencers, check out each through Google search, social media, tools, and so on. Cross-check to get a big-picture view of just how influential the person is and to which audience.
Let me know how you found influencers to interview as iI’msure there will be some more great ideas out there
To your Success
Kevin Arrow is the CEO of the Online Visibility Academy where ethical entrepreneurs can train in digital marketing skills
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