34% of marketers consider finding influencers to be the biggest challenge when dealing with influencers.

My company (HypeAuditor) surveyed 124 brand and marketing agency representatives to find out what they think is most important when finding influencers and how they work with the process of choosing influencers.

In this article, we share a squeeze of their responses with comments on how you can make this process easier and more efficient.

Define the goal of the campaign and describe the target audience

The right way to start your search for influencers is by setting a campaign goal and defining the target audience.

The goals can be different, in the top three most popular goals of an influencer marketing campaign were named:

  • Increase Brand awareness and recognition (82.4%)
  • Lead generation and sales (55.9%)
  • Grow social presence (54.8%)

73.5% of the respondents answered that they pay great attention to the definition of the target audience. This is a key moment of the campaign’s success because when looking for influencers, you have to be sure influencers have the target audience among their subscribers.

If you advertise a brand of women’s cosmetics with creators that mostly have a male audience, then it will be an unreasonable waste of the budget.

50% of brand and agency representatives answered that after defining the target audience, they create the ideal portrait of an influencer, and based on the campaign budget, they get an idea of what type of influencer(micro, mid-tier, macro, or mega) they can attract.

This is the right step. In the US alone, there are over 670,000 Instagram accounts with over 10,000 subscribers. To simplify your search, you need to narrow down the criteria and describe the influencer’s ideal portrait.

Such criteria can be: Gender, Age, Profession, Number of Subscribers, Posting Frequency, Influencer, and Audience Location.

Find Influencers

Now that you have a campaign goal, an understanding of the target audience, and an influencer’s portrait, you can start directly searching for social accounts.

The most popular ways that influencers are looked for are:

  • Searching for hashtags on Instagram (52.9%)
  • Leveraging my internal influence base (50%)
  • Using specialized tools like HypeAuditor (47.1%)

It’s great if the company has its base of influencers with whom it has already worked and has an idea of the quality of its audience and content.

If there is no such database, then you can search either manually using hashtags and mentions on Instagram, search on Google or use specialized services for influencer research.

Searching using services is more convenient and faster because you can filter influencers by the characteristics of the target audience and use the internal metrics of services to find out about the quality of the influencer’s audience (real or bots).

Considering that, on average, to find one influencer for a campaign, marketers scan from 10 to 50 accounts, a manual search can consume a lot of time and resources.

Most important metrics to use when selecting an influencer

If we talk about metrics when selecting influencers, then the top 5 most popular metrics among surveyed marketers are:

  • Engagement Rate(82.4%)
  • Influencer content quality(64.7%)
  • Number of followers (55.9%)
  • Influencer language (57.8%)
  • Influencer Location (50%)

For many marketers engagement are the most important metric and a popular KPI of brand awareness. It can determine if an influencer is connecting with their audience.

To calculate engagement rate sum up likes and comments and divide by the number of subscribers

In the influencer’s content, marketers pay the most attention to how the audience perceives the content, content frequency, and whether or not the influencer’s content and voice align with the brand.

Conclusion

Now you have a basic understanding of how the process of influencer research is set up in agencies, where to start it, and what metrics to look at.

If you do this process in stages, starting with a campaign goal, describing the target audience, and a portrait of an influencer, then you will quickly find the right influencers without unnecessary complications.