Event Recap: “Get Social: How to Approach Online Influencers Now”

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By Brianna Rooney

On Tuesday, October 30, PPRA invited six panelists to discuss the fast-changing field of working with social influencers. Some panelists work with influencers daily, while others are influencers themselves who shed light on best practices. Participants included:

• Alex Bodgen, Visit Philadelphia
• Emma Fried-Cassorla, Philly Love Notes
• HughE Dillon, Philly Chit Chat
• Paige Knapp, Devine + Partners
• Kevin Chemidlin, PhillyWho Podcast
• Ja-mel Vereen, Cuba Libre Digital Media Producer and co-founder, Wooderice.com
• Moderated by Michelle Conron, Cashman & Associates

The panel kicked off with participants talking about why social media influencers are important and all were able to reinforce the same point – you’re showing content through the eyes of someone your audience trusts, someone they’re already following and creates an authentic conversation. With a lively conversation, audient members scribbled down notes on three key points: how to work with influencers, how to engage influencers and how to measure campaign outcomes.

In order to make sure PR pros set them up for success while reaching out to influencers, panelists broke down the best way to work with influencers:

• Build and invest in personal relationships.
• Understand their work and how a project can fit what they’re already doing.
• Keep an open mind – consider the influencers opinions as well and make it a collaborative effort.
• Offer them an exclusive.
• Compensate them for their time – respect their time and create an appropriate business relationship.

The audience was highly engaged and backed up a little – asking how to find these influencers before engaging them. Panels broke down a few easy ways:

• Look at top photos from Instagram locations.
• See who other influencers follow.
• Post a call to action – looking for photographers? Post about it!
• Look into business trade associations to see who members are.

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Finally, once you’re able to successful engage influencers, evaluation and measurement is important. Below are some tips for showcasing success:

• What content did you get? Can you re-use this on your website, social media and more?
• Qualitative measurement is as important as quantitative – look at the engagement and comments, highlights would include commentary such as “Wow, this is a cool event, where can I get more information”
• Make sure to get analytics from the influencers to see number of followers gained, Instagram Story views, etc. This will be part of your initial business contract and important in showing the value of the partnership

Do you work with influencers and have best practices? Tweet us @PPRA to share!

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