6 Steps For Building Authentic Relationships With Influencers

Influence campaigns are being used to do everything from increasing sales to public education campaigns, event promotions, fundraising, new product introductions and reputation management. Public relations has always been about building and maintaining relationships. Some of the biggest brands in the world are utilizing influencer marketing today for growing this business.

However, it may seem like a daunting task to launch an influencer campaign if you have never done it before. It can be rather overwhelming and you have to find the right influencers for your brand. Over the last few years, I’ve launched a handful of successful marketing campaigns with the help of influencers.

Here are 6 steps for building authentic relationships with influencers:

1. Put Together a List of Industry Influencers

Finding the influencers is the easy part, but only if you do it the right way. Too many people focus on followers, but you have to find influencers that fit your industry and have good engagement. If you spend a lot of time reading blogs and interacting with people within your industry, you should have a pretty good idea of who some of the big names are.

Start by making a list of every influencer within your industry that you can find, even if they aren’t the perfect candidate. Keep in mind that some influencers have more engaged followings than others and that audience size isn’t everything when it comes to influencer marketing.

2. Reach Out And Build A Relationship With Your Selected Influencers

Once you have identified your influencers, you need to reach out to them. To be successful in your initial outreach, there are some essential things that you need to take into account. Let’s talk about a few of these factors now.

Influencers are people, so you need to make a personal connection with them first. Before proposing a relationship, you need to gain their interest, demonstrate value and start building a relationship. So rather than just shooting your proposal cold, it’s best to warm up your influencer first. Consider sharing and commenting on their posts or complimenting them about something.

3. Make A Connection

It’s time to start following the influencers of your choice on their preferred channels. Also, consume their content, look at what they share and whom they engage with. This can lead you to find other important influencers who are also experts in their niche.

Engage, state your opinions, ask questions, give likes and share good articles through social media. Don’t be a silent observer, show your knowledge and capacity to be an essential part of the engagement process. You want your connection with your influencers to be authentic. People can tell when things aren’t genuine and your campaign will suffer.

4. Pitch A Win-Win Idea That Offers Value To You, The Influencer And Their Audience

Once you’ve made a connection, you should take steps to realize your goal of using influencer marketing. Before creating a proposal, take the time to consider how influencer marketing fits in with your overall marketing strategy and other marketing activities you are executing in the target market. Make sure your proposal is highly targeted to the individual influencer and their audience. You need to demonstrate that you care about working with this influencer and keen to deliver value to their audience.

Finding a mutual benefit for both parties is extremely crucial for having a successful campaign. You can pay influencers or come up with other creative ideas. With one of my brands, we would set up giveaways where the influencer would get the benefit of higher engagement and our brand would get exposure to a new audience.

5. Be Consistent

Building real relationships takes time. That’s why it’s important not to get discouraged and to remember that influencers have many people asking for their attention. Thus, if building a relationship with them is important to you, then you will need to be consistent and put in the time.

6. Find Opportunities To Collaborate

Once you’ve had a few meaningful interactions with the influencer you’re trying to build a relationship with, now is the time to reach out with a collaboration offer. Remember this is not about you, it’s about them. So you need to focus your offer on helping them. This is your opportunity to take your relationship to the next level and to create a collaborative effort that can help both sides.


There are many levels of influencers that you can interact with, ranging from celebrities to what we call “micro-influencers.” Remember that recognition and interaction with a celebrity influencer can help your brand, but potential customers will much rather take a recommendation from someone they trust and is an expert in a field. In this post, I shared with you 6 steps for building authentic relationships with influencers.

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