Brands of all kinds using social media will find there are certain online personalities who have cachet in one area or another. This may be a person with many friends who is a taste-maker for their social group, or an industry influencer whose opinions are important to a company's prospective leads. Inviting these influencers into marketing initiatives can be extremely valuable. People tend to trust information they receive from peers more than what they hear from marketers, and liaising with influencers is a way to reproduce that reaction of trust.
Businesses should ensure they target people whose influence is relevant to them. Ways to do this include following industry-specific hashtags on social media and blogs related to the field. Once it's clear who the most influential people in the industry are online, companies can create a marketing strategy that includes them. There are many forms this may take. Giving influential people exclusive access to useful content may be well-advised, especially if it is understood they are welcome to review it and share it with their networks. It is also possible to invite them to a brand's social networking platform, according to ClickZ.com. Rewards for this kind of collaboration can range from digital badges to physical gift bags.