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Being an online influencer is more than just posting an Instagram Story of your new pair of strappy heels or uploading your no-makeup makeup look on YouTube.

Currently, the influencer marketing industry is valued at a whopping $10 billion. Businesses consider influencer marketing as a powerful tool in increasing their brand awareness and boosting their sales. Almost 17% of companies allocate half of their marketing budget solely for social media influencers. With a 90% return of investment, it is no wonder that brands are cashing in on this modern-day marketing strategy.

That is why more and more millennials are trying to get into the influencer marketing arena. However, becoming an influencer is not as easy as it sounds. You still have to put in the work to become successful in this industry. So, what are the steps to launching a promising career in social media?

Choose an Area of Expertise

You won’t find success in becoming a social media darling if you don’t have a niche. You have to cater to a specific market and belong to a specialized category.

Choose a niche that you are interested in and passionate about. You can dabble in fashion, sports, makeup, food, travel, art, pets, technology, fitness, health, and interior design — you name it. Just make sure to select an industry that you are knowledgeable about. To become a credible influencer, you have to be an expert at a specific discipline. That’s why it’s essential to align your niche to your passion so you won’t have a hard time navigating your way in.

Aside from that, you also have to look into the demographics and psychographics of your niche market. Determine the age bracket and gender of your target audience.

Decide whether you’re catering to women or men, or whether you’re servicing to teenagers, Millennials, or adults. You also have to take in mind the values and interests of your chosen niche market. Are they a bunch of young creatives, adrenaline junkies, gamers, pet owners, health buffs, makeup enthusiasts?

Once you determine your niche, it will be easier for you to shape your content and find out the most effective way to communicate your message.

Settle With One Main Channel

Instagram

Decide which social media platform will be your primary distribution channel. When choosing one, take into consideration your niche and your type of content.

Social media sites have different features and strengths. Instagram, for example, is the primary platform for online influencers because of its versatility. Instagram makes for an incredible catalog of content with its grid-like profile aesthetic and other interactive features. Since it accommodates both photo and video content, almost 93% of influencers choose Instagram as their primary content distribution platform.

Facebook, on the other hand, is just as versatile as Instagram. It allows photo and full-length video content, perfect for influencers with a niche in fashion, cooking, travel, beauty, and fitness. Also, the best thing about having a Facebook page is that it has the largest online audience, with over 2.7 billion active users per month. It’s impossible not to get noticed in this massive platform.

Meanwhile, influencers with content heavily geared towards tutorials, vlogs, hauls, or instructional materials should consider YouTube as their leading platform. This video-sharing platform contains an enormous collection of videos and boasts 2 billion monthly users. Not only does it promise increased virality, but it also pays a handsome amount of money to successful video creators.

Meanwhile, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Apple Music are also great channels for influencers with a niche in singing or creating podcasts. But don’t worry because you can use one or two platforms in launching your career as an influencer. Utilizing multiple channels can strengthen your online presence and increase your audience reach.

Keep Your Content Seamless and Balanced

Make your content consistent. You can always produce a variety of content while staying true to your core. Don’t veer away from your niche because that’s your main selling point, so capitalize on that. Have your ear to the ground and provide your market audience with the content they need from you.

Also, to be an effective online influencer, you have to strike a balance between personal content and sponsored content. Often, you will be creating content under the vision of the brands you’re working with. Whether they’re a skincare brand or a healthcare consulting company, they have a say in your process of content creation.

However, you shouldn’t forget that it’s also part of your job as an influencer to share slices of your life. People are more drawn to influencers that they can relate to, so don’t remove elements that make you who you are. That will help maintain your followers’ trust and interest in you. You give them half of what you get paid to do and half of what they love about you.

In the digital age, being an online influencer is a legitimate career. So, if this is a job you want to take on, these simple steps will propel you towards that goal.

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