So you did your homework, and found the perfect influencer to promote your optical business. Now what? It’s time to enlist the influencer and set the terms.
You just need to do three things:
- Connect with them and gauge their interest
- Figure out what to offer them, and negotiate payment
- Then put it in writing!
Reach out to your influencer
The simplest and most effective way to make contact with an influencer is to direct message them on the platform where you found them. For example, if you’re trying to enlist an Instagram influencer, send them a direct message on Instagram from your business account.
Some influencers get a lot of DMs from bozos, so if you don’t hear back from them in a day or so, try another method. See if there’s a website in their bio, and look there for contact info. They may have a form specifically for collaborations, or they may have an email there you can send to.
Your message should be simple and direct:
“Hi, I’m Peggy from Heck Yeah Optical Boutique here in Albuquerque. We saw some of your posts, and we think you’d be a good influencer for us in this area. Can we talk about a collaboration?”
Note that I didn’t mention an offer or terms, just started the conversation. If you’ve tried two contact methods, and you don’t hear from them within a week, move on. They are likely not interested. But if they do show interest, it’s time to talk terms!
Make the offer
At this point, move the conversation to email. Ask for their email, and say you’ll send them details about what you’re looking for.
Then, write an email that describes:
- What you want from them (say, 1 Instagram Post and 3 Stories promoting your shop),
- What it will take to get there (an eye exam and a fitting at your shop), and
- What you will offer in return.
For a local influencer whose following is in the tens of thousands, it’s usually enough to offer a free eye exam and fitting along with a free pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses. This gives the influencer the customer experience with you, which is probably the best source of content for their posts. It’s also the best choice for promoting a local business, so start with that.
However, some influencers work strictly for money. This is their full-time job, or they may be a local celebrity and an endorsement from them is quite valuable. In my experience, influencers who have 1M followers or more can command up to $2,000 per post. Under 1M followers, and it’s more like $250-$1,000.
But before you commit to a paid endorsement, please make sure that they have the audience you’d like to reach. Read my last blog post, and run reports on their audience. Did they artificially inflate their audience size with fake followers? Is their engagement percentage actually low, so people might have followed them, but don’t listen to them? Does something seem fishy, like they have millions of followers, but are a local average person you’ve never heard of?
Another consideration: be honest with yourself about the state of your business, and what effect you expect from influencer work. Social media marketing is a long game. Its effects are rarely instant.
Are you using it to build awareness, trust, and engagement among a community so its members patronize you? Or are you desperate for a quick fix?
If your business is sinking and you’re hoping for a miracle by paying top dollar to a big influencer, don’t do it. It won’t work, and you’ll be out the money.
Write the contract
At this point, you’re in tentative agreement with your influencer on terms. Now you just need to nail it down with a contract.
I am not a lawyer, and this is not a substitute for legal advice. I will just share with you what has worked for me in terms of drawing up an influencer contract.
If you Google “sample influencer agreement,” you will get any number of templates you can download and adapt to your purposes. Just make sure it includes:
- Deliverables (posts and follow-up stats reports)
- Cancellation terms (for both sides)
- Exclusivity terms (so they can’t go do the same work for your competitors within a certain time period)
- Compensation terms (goods and services, or payment)
- Signatures, names, and titles of both the influencer and the owner of the business
The most critical point to discuss and include in the contract is exactly what you want them to post (Instagram Post, Instagram Story, Facebook Post, Facebook Story, etc.), how many posts of each kind you expect, and that they be published by what date. These should be posted to their account – remember, they have the audience. And they should give you a follow-up report on how well the posts did: likes, comments, shares, views/impressions.
Once your contract is drawn up, get signatures from both parties. Then see how you can help your influencer as they create content for you!
Not sure how to find the right influencer? Read our last post.
Need someone to run a comprehensive influencer campaign for you? Contact us.
Peggy is the founder of The Social Eye, a social media agency for optical businesses. She led social media efforts at ZEISS Vision US for 4 years, and prior to that created digital marketing for the tech and music industries. She has far too many pairs of eyeglasses, but can always find room for one more.