Many influencer relations professionals are supremely confident in their strategies. After all, they’ve been practitioners of PR or AR for years, they know the influencer landscape well, they’ve built relationships with the leaders in the space, and they’ve gained the trust of most (if not all) internal stakeholders. But even for those with the strength of these convictions, there are moments to stop and ask a few questions:
What’s missing from our influencer strategy? What could we do better? Is this program providing meaningful results?
These kinds of questions are not a sign of weakness, but the mark of a true influencer relations professional. Strategies change, markets change, influencers change, tools change – influencer strategies that are stuck in in the past will not help the organization capitalize on emerging trends, new voices or big ideas.
On the other hand, organizations should temper this need to regularly re-evaluate with the understanding that influencer relations is a long game. The goal is to shape perceptions and build relationships, and a willy-nilly influencer strategy that is constantly upended by impatient executives is the worst-case scenario. In organizations where backseat driving by internal subject-matter experts and executives has become the norm, influencer relations leaders often are rightly hesitant to open up their strategy for internal review – knowing that the work of months and months may be scuttled by the “idea of the day.”
The key to creating a balanced, stable and effective influencer strategy is to have a structure and cadence that ensures the right mix of organizational participation, role clarity and a willingness to adjust course. Does your influencer strategy have these six keys to balance and stability?
Following these steps can put you on the path toward true influencer enlightenment (and you’ll probably find that you won’t be having as many internal battles). If you need help in building a long-term influencer strategy, connect with us to learn more about our Strategic Communications Management service. We look forward to helping you build a balanced plan.
Julie Ogilvie is a Senior Research Director of Strategic Communications Management at SiriusDecisions. She has held a variety of leadership roles in marketing and communications in her 20+ year career, for both B2B and B2C companies. Follow her on Twitter at @julieogilvie.