A reader persona describes a person who may never buy anything from you, but wants to read and share your content. Targeting reader personas is just as valuable as targeting buyers, because it extends your reach—and that's what being an influencer is all about.
For example, online store experts AmeriCommerce created an infographic about the history of web design. Not only does this content appeal to someone setting up an online store, but it also attracts a larger audience of people with a general interest in how web design has changed.
In the tweet below, AmeriCommerce targeted huge influencers in the web industry to help give their content further exposure.
Create content that targets buyers and reader personas to increase your reach.
Use your understanding of your reader persona to create the content you need to expand your social media influence.
#2: Make It About Your Niche
No matter what content you create, keep it tailored to your niche to set you apart.
Whether you specialize in sales, design or marketing, you want to be the go-to person in that niche. You can help establish yourself as an influencer in your field by creating valuable content that people can learn from.
In the tweet below, GoPro highlights their niche: the cameras they sell. Every post includes a striking image taken with a GoPro camera. Not only do these visual posts help push their product, but the eye-catching images also appeal to a wider audience.
Highlight your niche with every piece of content you publish.
Whether you're sharing a blog or posting a tweet, keyword research can help you optimize your content to build a large following.
There are plenty of web tools you can use to find the best keywords for your content. One of my favorite platforms is Topsy. This tool lets you analyze keywords side by side to find the most popular one.
The graphic below is an example of keyword research using Topsy. It compares the keywords content marketing, B2B marketing and social media marketing. The graphic makes it easy to see social media marketing was the best-performing topic for that day.
Use keyword research to speak in your audience's language.
Keyword research is a great way to make sure you're creating content that reflects what your audience is talking about. Once you've narrowed down the most popular keywords for your audience, don't forget to use them as hashtags to target your personas.
BuzzSumo is a great platform for finding top-performing content. Also, do your own research and monitor the responses you get from different types of content.
Keep in mind that your audience may just like one type of content. For example, Nikeuses a simple but effective content approach. Their social feeds are filled with quotes and images, inspiring their followers to #justdoit.
Visual content on platforms such as Instagram helps drive engagement.
The more you understand what your audience wants to see, the more success you'll have.
#5: Use Data to Add Value
Many successful influencers use data in their content to reinforce the points they're making. Data educates, adds value to a piece and gives the reader something to take away.
An infographic is a valuable tool to use in this instance. It presents data in a visually appealing way, making it inherently sharable. If you create an infographic, make sure you tell a story and think about your niche.
Check out the snippet below of an infographic from Wyzowl about the rise of video as a valuable marketing tool. Sharing this data in an infographic is more effective than a written post, making it a content type people will want to share.
Infographics provide a highly shareable way to produce stats and tell your brand's story.
Adding relevant data to your content is a great way to increase the value you deliver.
#6: Engage With Your Followers
Engaging with your audience is a crucial aspect of becoming a social media influencer. Engagement helps show off the personality behind your brand and demonstrates that you care about what your followers are saying.
A great way to engage with your audience is to ask questions that relate to the content you're posting. You'll build brand awareness and invite people to engage with you.
Ford has mastered the art of engaging with their audience. In the tweet below, Ford asks their Twitter followers a question, as well as invites them to submit a photo of their car, which builds brand awareness.
Ask your audience questions and incorporate your products or services for increased exposure.
Find the best ways to engage with your audience on social media.
The biggest takeaways are that your content needs to be tailored to your niche, offer value and, above all, engage your followers.
Becoming a social media influencer takes time, dedication and nurturing, but the results are worth the effort.
What do you think? How do you use content to boost your social profile? Do you have any more tips that offer further insight into how to use content to become a social media influencer? I'd love to hear them in the comments below!
Tips for creating influential content with social media.