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Why You Need a B2B Influencer Marketing Strategy–And How to Build One

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B2B influencer marketing has essentially been around since the beginning of commerce. When the dairyman told all the bakers on his delivery route that they should purchase flour from a certain miller, and when the miller gave the dairyman flour for his household as repayment, B2B influencer marketing was born. So, how can you make this marketing strategy work for your business, and why should you want to?

Why is B2B influencer marketing important?

At its core, influencer marketing is a field of marketing that focuses on using key leaders to drive or showcase a brand message to the larger market. Rather than selling directly to a big group, instead you can inspire, hire, or even pay market influencers to promote what you have to offer.

In the world of networking, we see B2B influencers guide, direct, and even enhance the experience a business has with another business. While we would like to think that slick ad campaigns and ad spend are directing traffic, it is still the word-of-mouth influence that guides people and businesses to each other.

A quick guide to B2B influencer marketing

Where to find influencers

Ask yourself who your current advocates are. Who already speaks highly of you? Who refers business to you?

Advocates aren’t always clients or customers. Sometimes, they can be our vendors and suppliers. Other times, we must look at other professionals related to our industry. Advocates speak highly of your people, products, or services.

Do your clients connect on social channels? Do they tag referral partners? Do they recommend services and providers to their own clients as a value-add? Where are they also sharing information on non-social channels, such as podcasts, speaking events, and books?

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Consider sponsoring a speaking event where a potential B2B connector will be presenting. Build a relationship with them off-stage in order to get their shout-out on-stage. Feature potential B2B influencers on your own company podcast. Showcasing your relationships with influencers and companies will add to the trust factor so that other businesses will be comfortable connecting with you.

Build a B2B influencer connection

Think about tires. If you are a fleet manager and you are purchasing new tires for vehicles in your fleet, you might discover you need brakes. You might then mention to the tire dealer that you need to have some new decal work done. Your tire provider suggests a brake shop that specializes in fleet maintenance, and suggests a painting and decal service that one of their other clients uses.

Did the tire provider need the brake guy or decal person? No. Most likely the brake shop and the decal creator reached out to create a B2B connection which would benefit the tire dealer (and themselves). If you know of other businesses that your clients regularly utilize, your business can build a B2B influencer connection with benefits for all.

Did the tire provider need the brake guy or decal person? No. Most likely the brake shop and the decal creator reached out to create a B2B connection which would benefit the tire dealer (and themselves). If you know of other businesses that your clients regularly utilize, your business can build a B2B influencer connection with benefits for all.

Make sure to vet any potential connections

It is easy to speed forward and engage a B2B business as a possible connector or influencer. However, you need to take some time to vet the affiliations and relevance of the connection. Checking affiliations and relevance is as simple as doing a Google search, website review, or social media audit.

While it might seem like a particular business would be an ideal connection and influence, their affiliations and company culture may not be a perfect fit and could create some reputation, brand, and image problems in the long run.

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What is your plan for co-creation?

If you are just hoping your B2B influencer is sharing your service/product accurately or is referring potential clients through the right contact at your company, you are not going to receive the impact you are looking for through this influencer.

B2B influencing is about co-creation. Co-creation means you are working together with the influencer—it is collaboration and partnership. It is developing a relationship, not just a tactical means to an end.

In a number of instances, a company hires an influencer from a transactional perspective, and only provides the influencer with what is needed to achieve a given result. However, the more you develop a relationship, and provide the influencer with the education and resources to make the most impact for your company, the better the result and outcome.

How do you plan to compensate influencers?

Not all influencer marketing requires you to pay for time. Sometimes, B2B connections are made that are just about giving valuable connections.

Could a “paid” influencer provide value? Absolutely. But you should determine the best influencer for your product or service first. Then determine if that influencer relationship should be a compensated one or a value/connection one.

B2B influencer marketing and your business

Just a few years ago, B2B businesses would have balked at the idea of using influencer marketing as a marketing strategy; it was considered “celebrity” and a hack. However, businesses have been using this technique long before it was given a trendy name and celebrity status.

Influencer marketing is all about relationships—your relationship with an “influencer” and their relationship with your client/customer or prospects. The key is to know the purpose, audience, and tools necessary to make it work effectively. Knowing your audience and the key influencers in your industry, professional network, or community can make the biggest difference.

My guess is that you have already been using this technique or are an influencer yourself. You just didn’t know you were doing it. Now, do it with purpose!

Via AB

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How to become Freelance Education Consultant to Make Money

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Becoming a freelance education consultant can be a great way to make money while also helping others. Whether you have a background in teaching, counselling, or another related field, there are many opportunities to use your knowledge and expertise to assist individuals and organizations with their educational needs. In this blog post, we’ll explore some tips on how to become a successful freelance education consultant.

Determine your niche

Before you can start offering your services as a freelance education consultant, it’s important to determine what your niche is. This will help you to focus your marketing efforts and position yourself as an expert in a specific area of education. Some possible niches include college admissions consulting, academic coaching, curriculum development, and teacher training.

Build your credentials

While it’s possible to start freelancing as an education consultant without any formal credentials, having a degree or certification in education can help to boost your credibility and attract clients. Additionally, you may want to consider pursuing continuing education opportunities to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and best practices in your niche.

Create a portfolio

One of the best ways to showcase your expertise as a freelance education consultant is to create a portfolio of your work. This could include case studies, testimonials from satisfied clients, and samples of curriculum or training materials that you have developed. Your portfolio should be professional and visually appealing, so consider using AI-generated images to add some visual interest.

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Market your services

Once you have established your niche, built your credentials, and created a portfolio, it’s time to start marketing your services. You can use social media, your website, and online marketplaces like Upwork to connect with potential clients. Be sure to communicate your services, pricing, and availability, and consider offering a free consultation to help potential clients understand how you can assist them.

Provide excellent customer service

Finally, it’s important to provide excellent customer service to your clients to build a strong reputation as a freelance education consultant. This means being responsive to their needs, communicating clearly and professionally, and delivering high-quality work on time.

By following these tips, you can become a successful freelance education consultant and start making money while helping others achieve their educational goals. Remember to use AI-generated images to add some visual interest and help your portfolio stand out from the crowd!

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Bulk Buy or Bullion Bonanza? Costco’s $100 Million Gold Bar Haul Explained

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Costco, the retail giant synonymous with bulk bargains on everyday items, has made waves in financial circles by achieving a surprising feat: selling $100 million worth of gold bars in its inaugural quarter. This unexpected development has set the financial and retail sectors abuzz, prompting industry experts and consumers alike to delve into the intriguing phenomenon driving this newfound demand for precious metals at the local Costco.

1. The Allure of Gold in Turbulent Times:

Historically, gold has been perceived as a haven asset during periods of economic uncertainty. With prevailing concerns about inflation and the looming spectre of recession, it appears that some investors are turning to gold as a hedge against potential market downturns. The age-old appeal of gold’s stability in times of crisis may be drawing individuals seeking to safeguard their wealth amidst a backdrop of financial volatility.

2. Convenience and Price Dynamics:

Costco’s online store has become an unexpected hub for gold enthusiasts, offering 1-ounce gold bars at approximately $2,000 each—often slightly below prevailing market prices. The combination of accessibility and affordability appears to be a compelling factor, enticing new buyers who may not typically consider investing in gold. The retail giant’s foray into the gold market presents an interesting intersection of bulk retail and high-value commodities.

3. Member Appeal and Brand Loyalty:

Costco’s unique approach to selling gold also leverages the loyalty of its members. With an established reputation for offering unique and valuable products, Costco has managed to tap into its members’ trust in the brand. The two-bar limit per membership adds an element of exclusivity and scarcity, further fueling the demand among its dedicated customer base.

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4. Beyond Investment:

Interestingly, it’s not solely investors partaking in this gold rush at Costco. Some shoppers may be acquiring gold bars for personal reasons, such as gift-giving, creating heirlooms, or simply fulfilling a long-held desire to own a piece of this precious metal. The allure of gold extends beyond its financial utility, touching upon personal and sentimental motivations.

5. The Future of Bullion at Costco:

While the $100 million in gold sales is undoubtedly an impressive figure, it represents only a fraction of Costco’s overall revenue. Nevertheless, this venture into gold sales may herald future developments. If demand remains robust, Costco could potentially expand its precious metal offerings, or even introduce dedicated bullion sections within its sprawling warehouses. This move signifies a strategic exploration of new markets and revenue streams by the retail giant.

The Verdict:

Whether Costco’s gold sales are viewed as a shrewd investment strategy, a passing trend, or a reflection of current economic uncertainties, one thing remains evident: it’s a bold move that has disrupted the traditional retail landscape. Observers are keenly watching to discern if this trend will persist and whether other major retailers will follow Costco’s lead in integrating high-value commodities into their product offerings. The intersection of bulk retail and precious metals has opened a unique chapter in the retail playbook, inviting speculation on the future of unconventional retail ventures and their impact on consumer behaviour.

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Embracing the Future: The Rise of Hybrid Working and its Impact on the Workplace

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man standing by table and working

Introduction

In recent years, the way we work has undergone a significant transformation. The traditional 9-to-5 office job is no longer the only norm, and remote work has become increasingly prevalent. But what’s even more intriguing is the rise of hybrid working, a model that combines the best of both worlds – office and remote work. In this blog post, we will delve deep into the 10 ways in which hybrid working is taking root at the workplace and at home, and how it’s reshaping our professional landscape.

1. Flexible Schedules:

One of the most noticeable aspects of hybrid working is the flexibility it offers. Employees are no longer tied to rigid office hours. Instead, they can adapt their schedules to fit their personal lives better. This newfound flexibility allows for a better work-life balance, which, in turn, boosts employee satisfaction and productivity.

2. Remote Technology Advancements:

Hybrid working wouldn’t be possible without the rapid advancements in technology. High-speed internet, video conferencing tools, project management software, and cloud-based storage solutions have made it easier than ever for teams to collaborate seamlessly, regardless of their physical location.

3. Cost Savings:

For both employers and employees, hybrid working can lead to significant cost savings. Companies can reduce expenses associated with maintaining large office spaces, while employees can save money on commuting, work attire, and dining out. This financial relief has been a major driver in the adoption of hybrid working.

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4. Increased Job Opportunities:

The geographical constraints of traditional office work are no longer a hurdle for job seekers. Hybrid work models open up a world of opportunities, allowing employees to work for companies located in different cities or even countries. This expansion of the talent pool benefits both employers and employees.

5. Enhanced Productivity:

Contrary to initial concerns, many studies have shown that employees often experience increased productivity when working from home or remotely. Fewer distractions, personalized work environments, and flexible schedules can lead to better focus and output.

6. Work-Life Integration:

Hybrid working promotes a more integrated approach to work and life. Instead of rigidly separating the two, employees have the freedom to blend their professional and personal responsibilities. This allows for greater adaptability and responsiveness to life’s demands.

7. Improved Mental Health:

The flexibility offered by hybrid working can contribute to better mental health. Reduced commute times, the ability to work from a comfortable home environment, and increased control over one’s schedule can alleviate stress and improve overall well-being.

8. Customized Workspaces:

Employees have the opportunity to create workspaces that cater to their needs and preferences. Whether it’s a cosy home office, a local co-working space, or the traditional corporate office, hybrid working allows individuals to choose the environment that helps them perform at their best.

9. Focus on Output, Not Hours:

Hybrid working shifts the focus from hours spent in the office to the quality and quantity of work produced. Employers are increasingly valuing outcomes over the number of hours logged, encouraging employees to manage their time efficiently.

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10. Environmental Benefits:

Reducing the need for daily commutes and maintaining large office spaces can have a positive impact on the environment. Fewer cars on the road lead to reduced emissions, and smaller office footprints mean less energy consumption. Hybrid working aligns with sustainability goals, making it an appealing option for eco-conscious individuals and organizations.

Conclusion

Hybrid working is changing the way we work by merging office and remote work. This has many advantages for both employers and employees, such as more flexibility, cost savings, increased productivity, and better well-being. As technology advances and our concept of work evolves, hybrid working is expected to become an essential part of our professional lives. It is not just a trend but a significant change that is happening in workplaces and homes worldwide. Embracing this shift and adjusting to the hybrid work model is crucial for success.

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