This article first appeared on mwalimurachel.com
Social Media has taken over the world, no doubt! Matter of fact, there are lots of people making A LOT of money thanks to Social Media. Social Media Managers and Digital Consultants are earning 6-figure incomes, and brands are steering towards the use of Social Media Influencers to push their messages. So how can one become an Influencer?
Let’s start here – Who/What is an Influencer? Someone who has the ability to influence many people through social media and/or traditional media. You also know them as bigwigs. A lot of influencers are media personalities, and thanks to their celebrity status, they gain followers faster than most. However, there are those who have grown their online presence without necessarily being in the media industry. You don’t have to be a celebrity to become an influencer.
First things first…
Be Seen Online
This one seems pretty obvious for anyone hoping to become an influencer. You need to be active online. Note that this does not mean that you have to be on every social media platform. Start with the basics – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn, whichever platform that works best for you or your brand. It could be a challenge to grow your audiences on all these platforms at once, so choose two that you will focus on.
Identify your interests, and talk about them
You have obviously heard the phrase “Follow your passion”. Some of you probably think, “That’s BS! I don’t have a passion. I don’t have special talents.” I won’t convince you to think otherwise. So let’s just stick to your Interests.
What do you do, at school, at work? What do you like to do in your free time? What are you good at? If you’re that one person who gets football like no one else, talk about it online! Do you like to eat out. How about you create a hashtag and go to several restaurants to give your review? Do you like to dance. How about every week, you post a video of yourself, doing your thing. Are you an environmentalist at heart? Share your passion with others online.
Or you work in a specific industry and you’re very good at what you do! Think of whatever you love/like and think of how you could be the voice behind it.
Create a schedule and stick to it
It would not make sense to wait until you have an “Aha!” moment to post a tweet that you hope will go viral. If you did do this, you will keep waiting for your “Aha!” moment, and in the process, you will never post anything! To create an online presence, you have to dedicate time to it. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to be online all the time. Instead, create a schedule for every day of the week, and stick to it. Will you post a video every Monday? How about a tip or two, every Tuesday?
Create quality content
Quality is more important than quantity. When you have great quality, it’s only a matter of time before your followers come to you for more. Don’t just tweet your opinions… Start a blog. Don’t just post funny memes, create interesting images using tools like Canva. Post videos related to your interests. Make videos using your phone.
Engage with others and share their content
If you don’t engage with others, why should others engage with you? If a hashtag is trending, contribute. Interact with your followers. Also take it further by identifying other influencers that you can relate to and sharing their content. Something else you should note – In real life, you don’t really talk about “Me, Me, Me”. People who do are considered self-centered. Same thing applies to social media. Don’t just talk about you. Talk about other things or people too. In fact, only 20% of your content should be self-promotional.
There are so many things I could share to help you become a Social Media Influencer. These however are the fundamentals. Start by identifying who you are, what you would like to be associated with, then look at your audience and see what they want. Once you understand yourself, and the audience you’re targeting, work on creating quality content. Don’t forget to actually engage with others. All in all, it takes patience to grow your social media presence, so give it time.
If you like these tips or would like to share more, please feel free to do so!
Love, Mwalimu’s Sidekick
Find me on Twitter – @MissOlendi