I recently published a list of 250 #fintech influencers that ought to be on the radar of any startup, investor, incumbent business, or interested observer in the banking and financial services space.
In publishing this data and discussing it with lots of folks, it became clear to me that many people see the value of this data in its ranking of individual #fintech influencers. While the data is clearly useful in this way, there are more strategic uses for this kind of influencer that often seem to be overlooked.
This article seeks to identify several common use case scenarios for influencer data and briefly outlines how this information can be used strategically in these scenarios.
Let’s start with a few of the most common use case scenarios:
1. INFLUENCING: You want to become a #fintech influencer
There are many people that are active and influential in the #fintech space who could benefit by increasing their online visibility. Perhaps you’re a #fintech startup CEO, an investor, or a journalist and you want to establish your profile and increase your visibility within the #fintech community. Or maybe you’re already on the list and want to move up.
2. COMMUNICATING: You want to get your message out to the #fintech community
The people on the #fintech influencers list have accumulated a targeted group of followers who trust them and rely on their informative content feeds. Perhaps you are promoting a conference, a publication or a specialized consulting practice focused on the #fintech sector. This is a group you want to get you message out to.
3. LISTENING: You want to stay on top of #fintech news and developments
Maybe your primary interest is in staying on top of news and developments in the rapidly changing #fintech space. Paying attention to the discussions and content shared among #fintech influencers is an efficient and powerful way to filter vast amounts of information and get a sense of what they’re talking about – and not talking about.
Having established a number of use case scenarios, let’s look at some tactical ways the #fintech influencer data can be leveraged.
Before looking at the tactical uses, though, we need to understand the breadth of data that is available. First, the top 250 #fintech influencers come from a dataset containing almost 7,000 online identities. The data includes location data, links to other social media profiles such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+, as well as supplementary sites like blogs.
How to grow your influence
If you wanted to increase your own influence and position yourself as a top influencer in the #fintech space, you should consider undertaking the following activities:
Earning the right to tell your story
Most people and businesses have a message to communicate in social networks, but an influencer list is not best approached with a bullhorn in hand. A more nuanced approach would take into consideration the following:
You’ve got two ears and one mouth, so listen
Listening is central to both of the aforementioned use case scenarios. Social networks are highly conversational and conversations can’t exist without listening. Here are some tips for listening to #fintech influencers most effectively:
It’s called social networking
These are fairly generic tactical steps that can be applied to any group of influencers, not just #fintech ones.
And these tactics are more akin to networking and public relations, than sales or marketing. That’s because influencers are not typically your sales prospects – but their followers may be your best prospects.
By building genuine relationships and engagement with online influencers, you can increase your visibility, gain valuable social proof and meet some amazingly smart and generous people along the way.