It’s not about budget, it’s about reach. You’ve continuously see the headline “how we grew our followers/reach/marketing impressions bootstrapped and with no budget”, but if you’re like most people your response is probably “ya right!” We’re about to tell you how those title can be true and why you shouldn’t be discouraged to go out there and do it yourself!
You can grow your reach with no budget, you just have to find the right people to spread your message. Bam, as simple as that. OK maybe not… but, throwing thousands of dollars at Google AdWords and boosted social posts no longer work as well as they use to! Finding real humans to talk on behalf of your brand can work a lot better than pushing your message in front of people and switching up your click-baity titles every few months. Here’s how to do it.
Find the right people
Ya, this may seem obvious, but some brands truly believe that paying someone with high reach (aka lots of followers aka celebrities) will get them the results, and often times are disappointed by the lack of return on their investment.
Look for people with genuinity to their accounts. Those individuals who actually interact with their followers, take relevant images/videos/content pieces to share and most importantly - have grown their following organically. These individuals probably don't have the highest followers compared to Kim Kardashian and Selena Gomez, but they often reach and engage with more of their following then mega-celebs.
Work with them
Don’t fire off demands at an influencer once you get them interested in your brand. Being bossy isn’t nice, like… ever!
Let the influencer know why they’d want to spread your message and what they’d get out of it! Obviously the right people who believe in your brand will post for you with little to no payment, but incentivizing them or ‘gifting’ them products, services or in-kind monetary value is always a nice gesture.
Do you speak to your mother with that mouth?
Building relationships in personal life or business is often like going on a first date. You have to warm them up, take your time, and be truthful about the entire experience. Don't catfish a influener, promise them the world then drop off the face of the earth; in dating, we call this 'ghosting'... and nobody likes it. Be polite and genuine about the outreach and the campaign details, once the conversation starts flowing then you can lay all the specifics on them.
Secondly, athough this is a fun campaign and things can get creative - to put it nicely - you should have guidelines when it comes to content and language used alongside your brand. For example, no swearing, duh. But some other examples have gone as far in depth as “please include your face with our product and do not include any other branded products or services in your post.” This helps guide the user to create content that your brand can re-use and magnify because people will get the message.
Pull the family and friend card
We get it, you run a startup, you’ve already sleep in your parent’s basement and you’ve asked every single friend you have to go out for lunch this week but you “forgot” your wallet. Startups are tough. Living on a bootstrapped salary (or none at all) often has you feeling homeless rather than business-like. But when it comes to influencer posting on your behalf, you have one last thing to ask all those family and friends - please go like the post! ❤️❤️❤️
Growing relationships with influencers can have an absurd amount of positive impact on your brand awareness metrics, social following and (cross your fingers) online sales! When influencers feel like a well received post (sponsored by a brand) has better resignation and impact with their audience than other posts, the feel-good vibes equate to a stronger relationship. Go like, comment, follow and engage with your influencers - and get everyone else you know to do it too! Think of how many relationships are built on false notions, well this relationship is no different.
Track it all
Tracking is free. Google is free. UTM codes … you guessed it, free.
Tracking is often times something people miss out on when bootstrapping their marketing tactics. Paid advertising has rolled up reports, dashboards of analytics, and beautiful reporting software you couldn’t even dream of. But not here. So you need to find the free tracking method that works best for you. It may be as simple as giving discount codes for specific accounts so you can compare one account's sales against another, or it could be as easy as coordinating the time someone posts and the web traffic that it drives with unique URLs.
So, it’s finally time to quit asking yourself “how can I grow my marketing reach with zero or no money?” and start getting out there and getting sh*t done! Consistency is key, so it’s not about finding out what works right away (or we’d all be rich and have 100’s of thousands of website traffic), but just starting! If you need help finding the right influencers to work with your brand, I think we can help you with that 😏.
Socialpeeks is an influencer discovery platform. Our software is always scraping live-data across social media platforms to find you the latest and greatest micro-influencers to work with your brand. Head to the Socialpeeks page to sign up for a free trial today!