Industry learnings

Making it work: Influencer marketing for small businesses

Find out how DateMyFriend, a small business used influencer marketing to grow their audience in social media.

So how does a small business that is new compete with the large ones who seem to have an endless advertising budget get out there so people know who you are and what you offer? Our new dating site DateMyFriend has been in development for the last 2 years and only fully launched 8 months ago. So once the website was built, our next step was to get those wonderful singles out there to join us. With the current frustrations growing with Tinder and other online dating sites coupled with the thousands of singles out there wanting to meet “the one”, it’ll be easy to get singles on-board right? No, wrong.

I thought my go to to spread the word about our new site was going to be Facebook, again I was wrong. Understandably so but nonetheless incredibly frustrating for us was that Facebook are very strict with their advertising policies and even more-so with dating sites! DateMyFriend had a two-pronged marketing strategy; the first getting singles on board and the second, reaching individuals in a relationship who have single friends they could sign up. Straight away we found out our second approach was null and void through Facebook as dating website ads are not allowed to come up on newsfeeds when relationship statuses are “in a relationship” or “married”. Half our strategy out the window immediately and advertising creativity immensely restricted so what do we do? How do we reach our intended audience in a creative and unrestricted manner?

Photo of DateMyFriend small business

So here I am trying to think outside the square and thought why don’t I contact a modelling agency with single models on their books and get them signed up. We all want our fair share of beautiful singles to attract other singles, don’t we? In came Google to source agencies I could work with and I came across the Wink agency. I made that call and they were very helpful suggesting I consider using Influencers or Bloggers to help me advertise our business. Something I had never thought of before and particularly as I had never really got into Instagram. I am fast learning that’s where everyone is turning to with talk out there that users are moving away from Facebook and turning more to Instagram. I was then introduced to the platform “The Right Fit” where you can source all sorts of talent for your advertising whether it be bloggers, models, influencers, MC/presenters and so on.

So, my journey with Influencers then started and I haven’t looked back. I am now onto my 4th project and have been overwhelmed at the reach Influencers/Bloggers have. Their posts receive thousands of ‘likes’ which means our name is front and centre and traffic is directed to our Instagram page and website. Within 2 weeks I had gone from 3 Instagram followers to 108 (and now at close to 400) with more and more people signing up but most importantly, our name is now more familiar to our target audience.

Photo of DateMyFriend small business
Photo of DateMyFriend small business

I am grateful to have brilliant influencers to work with who I have found very helpful, insightful and engaged with what I am trying to achieve. It’s a slow burn for most small businesses in their growth phase but knowing I have an opportunity to work with great people who can assist me with my goals is comforting and exciting, and gives me confidence I can reach a larger, targeted audience.

Written by Tiffany Villaluz
Director and Founder of DateMyFriend


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