How to Get Your Content Noticed by Influencers

The business of marketing and monetizing your know-how is one of building authority and credibility. One of the fastest ways to do this is to harness the “halo effect”, i.e. build relationships with influencers so that their authority reflects on you. To build that relationship requires you to be on their radar.

It’s not who you know, it’s who knows you.

If you want to make progress in this industry, you need to put yourself and your work out there. It’s not a business for the shy. However, influencers can be particular about who they engage with as (a) they are inundated with requests, (b) they want to protect their own brand and reputation and you are an unknown quantity to them, and (c) you may not have given them sufficient reason to connect with you.

Here’s some tips on how to get noticed by leaders in your industry, the right way:

  1. Find out how you can help their audience. Read your chosen influencer’s blog. What problems are they trying to solve for their target audience? Can you contribute in some way? Perhaps you can create an infographic based on one of their posts and send it to them? (You can commission one on Upwork). Or produce “content upgrades”, i.e. worksheets, checklists, spreadsheets etc. to augment something they wrote. Be genuinely helpful without expecting anything in return and without asking for anything – but have an email signature link so the influencer can learn more about you. Expect to do this several times. This is not a quick “hack” but an authentic way to build a genuine working relationship.
  2. “Be helpful, be charming, be interesting and point to remarkable things”. This advice is taken from Copyblogger (see link below). The same qualities that will help you succeed in the offline world transfer well to the online world – perhaps more so. In an environment that facilitates anonymous critics, sniping and even trolls, being a personable, intelligent and considerate person makes you stand out.
  3. Be their case study. Have you followed the advice of an influencer and achieved something noteworthy? Share your story with them. Keep it concise, don’t ramble, but give concrete examples of how applying their teachings brought you positive results. This is incredible validation for influencers – it’s proof that what they do matters – and that’s a powerful foundation for creating a meaningful connection. Note, we’re not talking about a gushing “your work changed my life” account. We’re talking about a case study, i.e. be specific and ready to backup your story with evidence as the influencer may want to learn more about your story.

An action plan to connect with the leaders in your industry

Copyblogger has created a useful 10-point action plan to connect with influencers. From their article:

  1. Build something worth talking about. Influential people — whether they’re celebrities, business leaders, or web publishers with large audiences — virtually always have one thing in common. They have a lot of people coming forward who would like to engage their attention. If you’re known for doing something interesting and useful, it makes it a million times easier to make the connections you want to make.
  2. Be interesting. Everyone likes to hear “I love your work.” But if that’s the sum total of what you have to say, the conversation fizzles fast. Have a point of view, think critically about your topic, ask interesting questions, and stay informed. No matter how crowded your topic, there’s always room for someone who can think and speak intelligently about it.
  3. Spark the connection on Twitter. Twitter works because it’s easy to find your favorite influencers and it’s a low-risk environment. It’s relatively easy to approach even folks with large audiences … just “@” them. It’s also a noisy environment, so it can take some time to make yourself heard. Don’t let that worry you. Get out and start putting your friendly, useful face forward.

Read the full post here:

Takeaway points

  1. Influencers are inundated with requests. Your best chance to make a connection is to be creating or doing something noteworthy.
  2. Find ways to help the influencer help their audience.
  3. Beware being awestruck. It’s OK to respect and admire others but not to the detriment of your own progress.

Action steps

  1. Identify an influencer you want to connect with. Read their blog to find a recent post dealing with a problem. Create/commission an infographic based on that information to share with the influencer and their audience.
  2. Apply some of the lessons the influencer teaches and tweet the results ‘@’ them.
  3. It’s nice to be able to connect with influencers but if it doesn’t seem like it’s happening, get back to your own work; create an extraordinary signature product; and promote the hell out of it. Don’t dismiss the value you bring to the market in favour of some guru. You may find, as you focus on your own journey, others will see you as an influencer without you even realising.

Photo credit: Alexis O’Connor via / CC BY 2.0

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