A how-to guide on collaborating with influencers

Wells Fargo’s Nicole Dye-Anderson shares the best ways to work with influencers.

When you’re looking to get your message out to the world, it’s often smart to enlist the support of an influencer who speaks to your audience. But staying on top of all the latest trends and figuring out the perfect influencers to help promote your product isn’t necessarily an easy task to pull off. We recently spoke with Nicole Dye-Anderson, head of media relations for cobrand cards at Wells Fargo, about how she handles media strategy and how she identifies the right influencers ahead of her session at Ragan’s Social Media Conference, taking place March 15-17 at Walt Disney World.

Finding the right voice

It’s hard enough finding the precise strategy and rollout for a messaging campaign. But it’s arguably just as important to find the right voice with which to deliver that message. According to Dye-Anderson, it’s all about figuring out the audience you want to reach and how to share your story with the proper influencers and the right demographic.

“You have to ask yourself some questions before you can determine whether or not to work with an influencer. Are they on-brand with their messaging when they are sharing information about a product, and just as importantly, are they on-brand with regard to their own voice? Also, you need to take a look at not only who these influencers are impacting, but who they’re being influenced by. I keep an eye out for an ‘influencer’s influencer’ if you will.”

The current scene

With so much digital noise out there, it can pose a challenge to suss out the landscape and determine where your message fits in. According to Dye-Anderson, being open to new trends can help figure out who you want to spread your message to the masses. She emphasized that literacy around the correct platforms is necessary, as you might find the perfect person to distribute your message in all the fog of social media. In addition, she affirmed that while it’s great to have an influencer on board, you need to make sure it’s the correct sort of influencer for your organization.

“It’s important that you’ve got authentic influencers. It’s also key to figure out the micro-influencers on different platforms, especially on things like TikTok that are somewhat new but full of influential figures.”

She also spoke to the value of blending a corporate voice with that of an influencer – this can help add a fresh perspective to the story you’ve been telling and can help unlock new demographics to target with your corporate story. Audiences will know when a message is pay-for-play, which Dye-Anderson says she works to avoid.

Tips of the trade

Much like media relations, working with an influencer is all about relationships and maintaining them, Dye-Anderson .

“It’s important to truly partner with an influencer and listen to them. You should let them tell you what they’re seeing out there and how it can help shape your message and distribution,” Dye-Anderson said. She went on to add that once you develop a relationship with an influencer, it can help lead to new ideas and ways to tell the story.

However, paramount among Dye-Anderson’s concerns is the fact that her storytelling efforts reach her intended audience – current and prospective Wells Fargo customers, in her case.

“I want to make sure that I’m able to provide my audience what they’re craving. It’s critical to have the right people telling your story to the right audience,” she said.

While there are times in which audiences might tire of always seeing influencers getting a corporate message out to the masses, she also knows how important it is for reaching demographics that you might not otherwise be targeting or even be aware of.

Influencers are so much more than someone you might see on your Instagram feed hawking the latest tech product or luxury items. In a corporate storytelling sense, they’re truly invaluable messengers that can help get a story to places you didn’t previously anticipate.

If you’re looking to break into a new market and get your story to a whole new set of people, do your research and listen to what the influencers in your space are saying and how they’re communicating. With a smart comms strategy and a little relationship building, working with an influencer can help take your corporate messaging to new frontiers.

You can learn more from Nicole at Ragan’s Social Media Conference, March 15-17 at Walt Disney World.

Sean Devlin is an editor at Ragan Communications. In his spare time he enjoys Philly sports, a good pint and ’90s trivia night.


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