You may be tempted to choose the influencers that have the largest amount of followers for your brand, but you should first take a deep dive back into your brand book and make sure that the influencers that you choose to work with align with your identity. Your most loyal customers are dedicated to your brand because they identify with you. If you choose to work with an influencer solely based on numbers and your customers can’t relate, they will be thrown off and confused by your messaging. 

There are thousands of brands trying to tell thousands of different stories. The good news is that there are also thousands (seriously!) of digital influencers that align specifically with your brand. Finding the influencers that are just as excited to work with you as you are to work with them will be the first challenge to overcome. These are a few things you will want to consider when choosing an influencer for your brand: 

Do they fit into your target demographic?

How old are they? Where do they live? How much do they spend on the shoes that they’re wearing? If you find an influencer that is wearing American Eagle, Forever 21, and H&M and has over 1 million followers, you’re probably not going to want to gift her your $1,500 bag. Her audience follows her because she knows how to shop accessible, fast-fashion brands and make them look rich. They trust that if she’s wearing it, they can more than likely afford it for themselves. Instead, choose someone that regularly rotates product with a more comparable price point into their wardrobe. If the influencer is regularly wearing their Iro leather jacket and designer denim, their audience is more likely to shop similar brands and be much more inclined to spend $1,500 on a bag.

Does their voice align with yours?

It’s important to listen to what the influencers you’re considering to work with have to say and how they say it. Take time to look through their social feeds, not only to see the beautiful visuals that they create, but also what they are saying in the caption underneath. Are they unique, authentic, and consistent? Is their tone youthful or mature? Does their voice align with your brand voice?

What other brands are they choosing to align with?

Take a long scroll through their social feeds. Make note of the other brands that they have chosen to work with in the past. Do those brands generally evoke the same feeling as yours? If they do, then that influencer will most likely be interested in showcasing your product too. 

How engaged is their audience?

How engaged are their followers with the posts that they make? How engaged are they with their followers? Some of the best people to work with are the ones that care enough about their followers that they take the time to respond back to comments and questions left on their posts. This is part of community management and is essential to growing a community on social media (read more about the importance of community management here). You can also get a pretty accurate feel for an influencer's engagement based on their average likes. To determine a percentage to reference, divide the average number of likes by the total amount of followers to get the average engagement rate. For example, if an influencer gets around 7,000 likes per post and they have 830,000 followers, their average engagement is 2.3%. A good Instagram engagement rate will fall between 2-4%. 

What quality of content are they producing?

Beyond getting your product in front of a new audience, the hope is that you, too, will be able to share the content that the influencers you choose to work with create. Take a look at their blogs and social channels to get a feel for the quality of content you can expect to see from them. You want to work with influencers that create beautiful, stimulating, and unique content for their audience and yours.