B2B influencer marketing: How to make it work for your brand

It’s no secret that influencer marketing has become one of the most popular digital marketing strategies of late and is set to be worth up to $21.1 billion by the end of this year.

More and more businesses are incorporating influencer marketing into their B2B (business to business) strategy, but what does that look like? Let’s jump in and take a look at what influencer marketing is and how you can make it work for your brand.

What is influencer marketing?

Influencer marketing is the process of collaborating with influencers to promote a brand, business, products or services. Depending on the extent of a campaign, content could vary from an image of an influencer using a product to featuring it in a number of videos. 

The main purpose of influencer marketing is to increase brand visibility and build credibility amongst a target audience. We all value the opinion of those around us including those on the internet and that’s why influencer marketing is so effective! 

In the B2C (business to customer) space, influencer marketing’s primary aim is often to generate sales, with 56% of consumers stating they’ve purchased a product after seeing it used by an influencer (it’s happened to the best of us!).

But what about B2B?

Businesses are learning that influencer marketing is one of the best ways to increase brand awareness and reputation by having creators spark conversations about their brand or product. 

Linkedin is an obvious choice for B2B influencer marketing as the platform has a professional focus and offers the opportunity to harness the power of thought leaders operating in a specific niche. The platform has identified the opportunity by launching the Linkedin Creator Accelerator Program designed to support creators with coaching, recognition, and resources. 

Although B2C and B2B influencer marketing share some of the same tactics they differ in terms of audience and how to communicate with them. When it comes to B2B there are some things to consider…

Considerations for B2B influencer marketing

Longer timeline

Factor in that you probably won’t see results immediately as B2B purchases can typically take longer and involve more decision making and approvals. A business may notice your brand but not be able to work with you until the next quarter (or even year) due to contracts or budget. 

Finding the right influencer

When creating your campaign it’s important to understand the different types of influencers so you can identify which is best for your brand and audience. A decision will vary depending on your objectives, audience, and of course budget – a great idea could be to look for an existing advocate of your brand. When it’s time to set a brief and think about creative control don’t be too strict, after all an influencer knows their audience and can create engaging, authentic content. 

Harder to track metrics 

Tracking the success of your campaign may come with challenges as awareness and built up trust can’t be tracked using traditional metrics. An idea would be to monitor your website traffic and social engagement before, during, and after your campaign to spot any changes. 

What are the benefits of B2B influencer marketing? 

Increase brand credibility and authenticity  

Partnering with an influencer who’s respected in the area or topic you want to target and can create believable, engaging content catered to an audience who trusts them can increase brand credibility as you have identified someone who matters to them. 

Target a specific audience

To build a loyal following, influencers target a specific niche which can come in handy when creating an influencer marketing campaign. Why not identify a type of business, employee, or customer you wish to reach and find an influencer that allows you to do so. 

You now know what influencer marketing is in the B2B space and what to consider when incorporating into your strategy. 

If you want a little more guidance why not check out our ‘Influencer Marketing 101’ course which includes featured content from experts Amy Ralston and Fadzi Nyama! You can access this as part of the Girls in Marketing Membership.

You can also hear the Girls in Marketing team chatting about all things B2B Influencer Marketing in this episode of the Girls in Marketing Podcast!