A hot topic for every marketer today is working with influencers. But how do you find the right influencers? How do you manage those relationships and how do you scale programs?
Basically, what tools do you need when it comes to B2B influencer marketing?
Here is a collection of social media and influencer marketing tools you might find useful whether you’re a B2B or a B2C marketer. But definitely if you work in B2B.
Outside of the promotional tools you might use for the content marketing that goes along with most influencer marketing programs, there are three general areas of opportunity to scale with technology when it comes to working with influencers.
1- Identification, qualification and recruiting
Finding the right influencers based on social data among other sources is much easier with a tool made for that purpose. Followers can be faked so digging in to more details to validate influencers is just as important. Finally, collecting enough information to initiate a relevant and personalized recruiting effort is made much easier with certain tools.
2- Monitoring and engagement
Once you’ve identified and engaged with a group of influencers, it’s essential for your sanity that you use tools to monitor their social media activity and get alerts for opportunities to engage. Maintaining relationships with B2B influencers in between campaigns is key if you want to keep the brand love alive.
3- Measurement and reporting
How you measure depends on your goals but being able to track shared URLs and report their reach, engagement and contribution to conversion is essential. Measuring the influencer’s activity is important and so is measuring the impact of the influencer on their network as well as that network’s impact on their networks. Then you can wrap it all up in a nice report.
As far as types of influencer marketing tools, there are many. To simplify, I’ll say there are two general categories for B2B (specialty and platforms) and I’ll include a few examples for each. This is not a comprehensive list, but a collection of tools that I have often used.
Speciality Influencer Marketing Tools:
To identify influencers, you can use:
- Followerwonk – Twitter specific search
- BuzzSumo – Twitter specific, but there are also options to find blog post authors by topic and the social share popularity of their content
- Keyhole – For tracking keywords, hashtags and Twitter or Instagram handles. Also gives you the most influential individuals for a keyword or hashtag
- Brandwatch Audiences – Twitter specific search with advanced query options and filters
- LinkedIn Sales Navigator – For business professionals, there is no better tool than LinkedIn. Sales Navigator offers many more search and tracking options.
To monitor and engage influencers, you can try:
- Nimble – Full featured and low cost influencer CRM platform
- Linkfluence Radarly – Full social media monitoring solution (client)
- Agorapulse – For social media monitoring and management
- Zoho Social – For social media monitoring and management
- Talkwalker – Full social media monitoring solution
- Brand24 – Full social media monitoring solution
- Mention – Full social media monitoring solution
Influencer Marketing measurement: While many of the tools above offer some element of tracking and reporting, here are some additional options for measuring social influencers and influencer marketing efforts:
- Google Analytics Campaign URL Builder – To encode your URLs with tracking parameters, making it easy to know which influencers performed best.
- Bitly URL shortener – Mask those ugly tracking urls with this tool which also allows you to use your own short domain.
- Google Analytics – Full featured and free web measurement platform.
- Sprout Social – Full social media monitoring and reporting solution
Influencer Marketing Platforms
For some companies, a single solution is a better fit and for that, there are three comprehensive influencer marketing platforms I am most familiar with that are particularly effective for B2B:
Traackr – From finding and validating to monitoring and engaging to tracking and reporting, this platform does it all and with stye. A great user experience makes it easy to use all aspects of this platform yourself or you can get help from their professional services.
Onalytica – Offers robust influencer identification, engagement and measurement capabilities. Some of the features you can use as you like and others require professional services. One unique feature is the ability to upload content for analysis which then makes influencer recommendations based on the content.
GroupHigh – A full influencer marketing platform that focuses on bloggers which can be quite helpful for finding and engaging with B2B influencers as well as reporting on when those bloggers mention your brand.
Of course a tool or technology is only as effective as the expertise of the person using it. If you’re looking for that kind of expertise with B2B influencer marketing, my team at TopRank Marketing is here to help. We’ve been helping major B2B brands like LinkedIn, SAP, Dell, Oracle, GE Digital, 3M, Treasure Data, Prophix, DivvyHQ and Content Marketing Institute succeed with content marketing programs and we can help you too.
A version of this post originally published on LinkedIn.