An introduction to working with social media influencers

How to create and manage a social media influencer program

What is an influencer program?

In the rapidly evolving social media landscape, working with influencers has become a popular way to reach a desired audience. A social media influencer is anyone with a social media following beyond their personal friends and family who has the ability to impact others’ decisions with their digital content.

Why partner with social media influencers?

Working with influential people is an established communications tactic and public service announcements have featured celebrities for many years.

More recently, the rise of social media has made working with social media influencers an effective communications tool, especially in commercial marketing. Government agencies are also recognizing the potential for social media influencers to achieve non-commercial sales goals, such as public health information.

For example, the U.S. Food and Drug Administrations (FDA) Center for Tobacco Products works with influencers on their public health education campaigns to prevent and reduce tobacco use.

How to design, implement, and measure an influencer program

Blue cover of the FDA publication has the title, Influencers 101: Best practices and practical approaches for public health campaigns, in white text.

The FDA published Influencers 101: Best Practices and Practical Approaches for Public Health Campaigns. Drawn from nine years of experience, this award-winning guide explores key aspects of influencer programs and addresses frequently asked questions like:

  • What are some examples of influencer program goals?
  • How can I get buy-in from my organization’s leadership to work with influencers?
  • What types of content can influencers create for my organization?
  • How can I mitigate risk in my influencer program?
  • What are some ways to measure the success of an influencer program?

Influencer programs can require extensive planning. Use this resource to make it easier to design, implement, and measure an influencer program to achieve your program’s goals.

What can I do next?

Explore the full guide, Influencers 101: Best Practices and Practical Approaches for Public Health Campaigns.

Then, check out some multilingual examples of how this guide has been put into action by the Tobacco Education Resource Library (TERL).

Finally, if you want to connect with others interested in or experienced working with social media influencers, join the Digital.gov social media community.