By Vann McDuffie on May 26, 2016
Growing up in rural North Carolina had two perks that I loved: everyone knew your name, and all the kids in town played recreational sports together. Baseball was my favorite sport as a kid, and the movie “Field of Dreams” was religiously played in the McDuffie household.
The movie follows an Iowan farmer, played by Kevin Costner, who hears whispering voices telling him: “If you build it, he will come”. Costner interprets this as building a baseball field on his farm. He builds the field, and the ghosts of the Chicago White Sox, who were banned for throwing the 1919 World Series, appear and play.
“If you build it, he will come” is a true statement. But just building your crowd will not bring with it millions of influencers. Building, seeking, and engaging is the perfect combination for influencer growth. You won’t have any influencers if you don’t start building your crowd.
Digital advocacy influencers follow that same quote. Influencers are users who care about your issue or brand and are the ones who are most likely to take the next step in supporting your cause. Influencers can help by signing up for newsletters, retweeting/sharing content, or spreading your message on other platforms. In digital advocacy, building an active crowd is the most important element. Once you have a solid foundation, influencers are attracted to your account through the content you post.
One aspect that makes a great social media marketer is never being satisfied with the norm. Great social media marketers always strive to do better. You will have many initial influencers, but now you’ll have to search for more. Keep a list of keywords that are associated with the issues you care about. Scan through social media and Google to see who is talking about your issues and what stories are being written. You will notice that there are MANY influencers and advocates for your issues. You just have to start a conversation with them and show your interest. Sparking a conversation and creating a relationship is the easiest way to gain influencers.
Now that you have a solid list of influencers, you must constantly engage with them. Most social media managers believe that if you post good content, the engagements will come naturally. Though this can be true, it is not a guarantee. Conversation with users can give you the POP your content needs to become great!