5 Simple Ways to Run a Better Business as an Influencer – Episode 6

James Nord
March 2, 2022
Updated Feb 09, 2024

Today’s episode focuses on how to run your business as an influencer, build your career, and foster better relationships with brand partners.

Each episode will focus on your most pressing questions about the space. You can submit your questions here.

This episode includes:

  • Today’s Topic: 5 Ways to Run Your Business Better
  • #1 Have a clear explanation for your pricing
  • #2 Ask ‘What does success look like?’
  • #3 Above & beyond: Consider bonus content
  • #4 Say thank you
  • #5 Approach Partners about Competing Opportunities

5 Simple Ways to Run a Better Business & Book More Deals (for anyone)

James Nord: Welcome to Negronis with Nord episode... something. Negronis with Nord episode number six. I am back from vacation. My spray tan has faded unfortunately. What are we going to talk about today? We're also going to talk about making a bigger effort. The job that y'all are doing. Right? This is a job. It's a different job. It's certainly not a traditional job, but it's a job. At the core of it, success as an influencer is going to be about your ability to build an audience and keep them engaged, create compelling engaging content that people want to interact with. That is the crux. Let's say that's 80% of the job is that. Right? And if you do an amazing job at that, you could probably be pretty shitty at the business side of things and get by, but it is getting more and more competitive out there. There are more and more influencers that are doing this full time.

James: It's right now, 10 million people consider them themselves influencers. Right? That's an enormous number. That's 3% of the US population that considers themselves influencers. There's a huge amount of competition. Right? It can be a super power if you run a tight back of house as an influencer and you run your business really effectively, and it's not even that hard.

It can be a super power if you run a tight back of house as an influencer and you run your business really effectively, and it's not even that hard.

I'm going to go through five things right here. Each of these things is adding a couple of minutes, maybe, to the work that you do. And these five things will absolutely help you book more deals if you are at the level, as an influencer, where you're getting brand deals.

1. Have an explanation for your pricing

James: So now let's talk about first before a campaign. We're going to go in coming episodes much deeper into pricing and negotiation and how you do that more effectively. I want to say though that as an influencer, whatever the price you're charging is you should have a clear explanation of how that price gets built up.

What goes into that? If it's $2,000, how are you getting to that number? And this is not necessarily to in Fohr's case to justify it to us. Right? For most of our clients, we have transparent pricing. So we tell them exactly what we're paying each influencer. So we don't make any more or less money depending on what the influencer is charging. That's just not how our business works. So for us, let's say you have a hundred thousand followers. And let's say the average price that people are charging, you have a hundred thousand followers is $1,500 for an Instagram post, just using this for easy math. Okay? Let's say you charge 3,000. That's fine. Okay? But if you are charging 3,000, if you feel like you're two times higher than the market, you need to have that clear explanation of why.

It's $3,000 because I get 50% reach on average, which I find is higher than the market. And you can see my engagement rate is higher than normal. And I drive a lot of sales generally. Or it's because I also run a business. And as an entrepreneur, I feel like what I do is less common and thus, I charge more or I put a lot more time and effort into the content shooting, editing, doing posts, all of that. And thus there is a $1,500 production charge on top of the $1,500 you're paying for the post. Understand and have a reasoning behind what you are charging for.

And even if you're in line with the market, have an explanation of how and why you're charging what you're charging. It's just going to make your life if much easier. And again, for us at Fohr, it's not about justifying it to us. It's giving us something to go back to the client to and say this is why we think you should pay for this. Right? This is the reasoning. Again, it's not to question your worth or push back on that, but for you it's having a clear understanding of what is building up your pricing. That's something that anyone would really ask for as they buy a product or they hire somebody. They want to understand why.

Tim Jeffreys: If you're sending that three K rate out, are you sending the explanation with that? Or are you sending that if they follow up a question?

James: Good point. When somebody reaches out, you don't have to send the explain with the pricing. If they just say, sounds great, then you don't need to explain yourself. Right? But have that on hand and be super confident in it so you're ready to deliver it.

2. Ask what success looks like

In the corporate world, we talk about accountability structures. You know, in management, you have to help your employees understand what success looks like and hold them accountable for that. So as an influencer, if you don't know what success looks like, if you don't know what winning looks like, then how are you going to win? How are you going to be successful? Right? It's a super simple thing to ask the campaign manager or the person that you're working with at the brand. And I guarantee it as a question they almost never get. And they will be super thankful that you asked.

Now, if you work with Fohr, we should be communicating that regardless. But if they don't tell you, ask them what success looks like so that you can make sure you're building your content. If success is driving traffic to their website, you're going to create much different content than if success is creating the most beautiful content possible, and if you don't know which one it is, then you're creating in the dark and you could make something absolutely incredible and be totally wrong.

It's not just about asking what success looks like before the campaign. Let's say it's multiple posts. Check in, ask how you did, right? Again, if this is a normal job, you're asking for feedback all the time. If it's a 3-post campaign going out over 3 months; how did I do? What did you think? Anything I should focus on? Again that's not something we ever really get from influencers. It's something that would be hugely appreciated from the brand partners you're working with.

3. Go above and beyond: Consider bonus content

Next up, should influencers be doing bonus content or not? I have heard from managers of high ranking influencers that say absolutely not. You get what is contracted and absolutely nothing more. And look, I understand that. This is the key point. It's not about the current campaign you're in.

You are not producing bonus content for the campaign you are contracted for. You are producing bonus content to close the next campaign.

You are not producing bonus content for the campaign you are contracted for. You are producing bonus content to close the next campaign. You're producing it so that they come back. We talked about retention a few episodes ago. Retention is key. Retention is your key to building a sustainable repeatable business that can help you build wealth. You can't have that without retention. That is how you should think of organic content. Not I'm giving the brand something for free they didn't pay for, but I am giving myself an opportunity to continue to work with this brand because the people that work with these brands, they're people. Right? They're passionate about these brands. They care about it and they want to feel like you care about it. It's why at Fohr, we talk about don't spend good money on fake love. Brands want to feel like you're excited. And if you're excited, you're going to find ways to talk about the product more than you're being contracted. Build a relationship with that client and make sure they keep coming back.

4. Say thank you

Next up. Campaign's over. Say thank you. This is the easiest one. Send an email after you sent the invoice, after the reporting is done, any of the, all the stuff like, after all the work is done. Put a reminder in the calendar however you do it. Just send an email. Thank you so much. It was great working with you. Hope to work with you in the future. You know, we have 80 employees now, many of them who are working on these campaigns. At any given time, we're probably working with between 700 to a thousand influencers. It is rare enough for one of those employees to get a thank you that they can remember people that sent them. That's insane. They're like five influencers a year that might send them a thank you. Let's imagine you work at a company. You leave for another opportunity. Are you just going to walk out the fucking door and not say bye to anyone?

You're working with the brand and you're just walking out the door and not saying, bye. Just wave bye. Better yet, if you're working through an agency, a platform, something like that, ask for the brand's email and send them a thank you. It is five minutes tacked onto every campaign that will make an enormous difference. Again, these are people. This is a relationship business. Build a relationship. Your content, your data, all of that is important, but your engagement percentage isn't building a relationship with someone. Say thank you.

5. Approach partners about competitive opportunities

Last one. Brands understand they cannot afford exclusivity. What's difficult for an influencer is that while they can't afford exclusivity, they get hurt when you work with a competitor, especially if it's close to a campaign you've worked on with them.

So let's use Nike and Adidas as examples. Let's say, you know, for the last year you've done a number of campaigns with Nike. You had a great relationship. You've really enjoyed it, but you haven't heard from them in three months. You get an email from Adidas. Right? And Adidas wants to work with you on a project. That could be really exciting. Again, you have no exclusivity with Nike. That said the person you work with at Nike, when they see the Adidas post, they're probably going to be off. Again, fairly unfairly, that's just the fact. This is a simple hack I heard from Brandon who works at Fohr, which is just reach out to that other brand. In this case, reach out to Nike and say, hey, I have an opportunity in my inbox from Adidas. I would love to continue working with you, Nike. And so I'm just checking in before I go back to them to see if you have anything that we could work on together that would allow me to turn this down.

The reason this is genius is that either, one, they do and you get to continue to build this relationship, have that retention, build the relationship with the brand that you work with consistently. If they don't, they will be blown away that you asked and what would've maybe hurt them and made them feel like a little slighted, they're going to feel good about. You go do that post for Adidas now. And they feel like, well, I feel like they did a standup job. They asked me. We didn't have anything. I totally understand. And it doesn't impact your relationship at all. Now, three months later, Nike comes back to you. You continue working with them. Right? But it's a super simple thing.

I would say it only applies to those brands that you've worked with consistently, more than once, who you have built a relationship with or brands that you have very recently worked with and they're direct competitors. Just pop in and see if they have anything and they will absolutely think different of you.

Cheers, and thanks for watching.

Make sure to subscribe to the Fohr YouTube channel to get notified of new episodes.

Psst… You can still watch all 202 A Drink with James episodes here. Binge it – we dare you!

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