In this article, I will show you proven steps on how to become a social media influencer in Kenya.
I can see why you want to be a social media sensation in Kenya.
Today more than ever, it pays to be popular and adored on these social platforms. But make no mistake, there is a fair share of love and hate on these corridors.
The moment you start shining, there will be keyboard warriors right there on your back.
I guess you are unlike me, I hate attention so much. And would never dream of becoming anything close to social media celeb.
But hey, you aren’t me and that is why we are here, to show you how to become an influencer in Kenya.
Being an influencer like Jalang’o pays top bucks now more than ever.
The advertising world is moving towards personalized recommendations rather than advertising on mainstream media like TV ads.
This explains why influencer marketing in Kenya (use of influencers to market products and services) is gaining traction.
In fact, based on a study conducted by GeoPoll on Kenyans and Nigerians, they found that 80% of respondents said they have bought a product or service recommended by an influencer they follow.
Think for a second:
That is a huge trust we put into recommendations of products online today. And that explains why brands like Oppo are using influencers to market products.
Top influencers in Kenya
According to the same study conducted by GeoPoll, here are the top 5 influencers in Kenya.
- Njugush The Comedian
- Eric Omondi
- Size 8
- Betty Kyalo
I bet you know all of them because they are very vocal on social media. It is like they are everywhere. We will look at what makes them stand out and popular so you can apply the same to your brand.
How to become a social media influencer in Kenya
Here are steps you can take now to become an influencer in Kenya.
Step 1. Pick a niche
A niche is an industry or a topic. Here, you are deciding to focus on a specific topic that you want to be known for.
You can be a fashion influencer, technology, and politics.
According to the same study we mentioned earlier, the most followed influencers in Kenya come from the following niches.
If you want to become an influencer in Kenya, pick any of these topics.
Why do you need a niche?
There is so much noise online today, making it hard to get your messages across and get noticed. The only way to cut through the noise is by putting out specific and targeted messages.
If you start posting food recipes, you will attract the attention of #foodies. The same applies to fashion and travel.
Here is another important reason why;
When it comes to making money as an influencer in Kenya, those who have a targeted audience (niche) make more than those without.
Let me explain.
Brands dealing with fashion will be more willing to spend thousands of shillings on a fashion influencer in Kenya than other influencers. The reason being, these celebs have access to the target market the company is looking for.
So you have picked a niche, what next?
Step 2. Optimize your social media accounts
Often, an influencer is successful in 1 or 2 social media platforms. So get to decide the ones you want and start to optimize your profiles.
The study by GeoPoll showed that 73% of Kenyans follow influencers on Facebook, followed by Instagram, and only 54% follow Twitter Influencers.
So you can pick both Facebook and Instagram as your preferred social media channels.
Do not forget YouTube. It is a worthy option actually.
Once you have the channels, create your profiles, or optimize the existing ones.
- Add engaging bio – should say who you are and why people should follow you
- Use profile and cover photo – they should high quality pictures representing your personal brand perfectly. The profile picture should be a headshot of yourself (smiling, maybe?).
- Add contact information and a website if you have one.
Step 3. Go for the business account rather than a personal profile
If you want to become an influencer in Kenya, you need to switch to a business account instead of the personal profile.
On Instagram, turn your account into a business account. On Facebook, create a business page.
Business accounts give you more benefits than personal accounts.
You can track analytics of each of your posts (reach, likes, shares, save, etc), understand the demographics of your followers, and the ability to run ads.
Step 4. Understand your audience
This is a very important detail on learning how to become a social media influencer in Kenya.
See, you can only sway over the decisions of an audience with who you have a strong connection.
So, before you start posting anything, you need to understand who you are targeting. It is after this fact you can create persuasive content that garners a ton of engagement.
To get started, you first need to analyze your current follower base. That is why it is important to have a business account. You can easily access basic demographic data like gender, age, and location.
- You need to know what time they are online – this way you can be posting at such times
- Like and dislikes.
Some of this stuff you learn by asking them questions.
Just create a post asking them if they like A or B. Wait and see them telling you what they want.
It is only after understanding your audience, that you can start delivering valuable content.
Step 5. Create and post valuable content
When learning how to become a social media influencer in Kenya, content is the King.
Content is only valuable if it is relevant to the target audience.
Based on the insights you picked from step #4, create content targeting that audience.
If they find it valuable, they will reward you with likes, comments, shares, and saves. And in turn, you make money as an influencer in Kenya.
I can’t stress this enough, nobody wants another mediocre content online. We have enough already.
To get started, you will need to come up with a content strategy. You can test content types mixes such as short videos, images, and articles. And then see what they like most, then put out more of that.
What I have seen notable influencers doing is focusing solely on putting out content on their niches. If they are talking about food, all their posts are all about food and nothing else.
On the other hand, others mix things up a little bit by injecting their personal lives. This helps them connect well with their audience because they now seem more authentic and relatable.
Whichever way you go with this, think about the future brand collaborations. Make sure the mix can accommodate paid endorsements in the future.
You can introduce regular reviews to pave way for paid reviews in the future.
Looking at the study we mentioned, 23% of Kenyans loved product reviews and 17% adored live videos.
So you can combine both as in reviewing products on live videos.
Step 6. Posting regularly and consistently
Once you start putting out content as an influencer in Kenya, you need to be consistent. This way you don’t lose the audience’s attention and stay on top of mind.
More importantly, most of these social media algorithms favor accounts that post regularly. If you stop posting for a while, it will be hard to gain momentum later on.
To help you with that, you need a posting schedule and frequency.
You can post 3 times per week and twice per day.
Alternatively, you can post daily, do what you can. Although, the platform you are using also affects your frequency.
Posts on Twitter tend to have low shelf-life. Meaning, they get pushed down pretty quickly. As such, you may need to post more regularly.
Step 7. Engage with your audience
Engaging with your audience means replying to every comment and message promptly, this helps you connect with them more deeply.
As an influencer in Kenya, you will benefit more from this connection especially when it comes to promoting paid posts.
Another way to engage with them is by asking questions and then stirring up a conversation on the mutual topic of interest.
Step 8. Approach brands for collaborations
This is the final step in learning how to become a social media influencer in Kenya.
The best way to let brands that you are open for business is through proposals. Here, you can craft an email proposal demonstrating to the company how they stand to benefit by collaborating with you.
Remember to mention crucial things like engagement rates, audience size, and demographics.
Also, be sure to mention on your bio that you are open for business collabs and provide contact information.
Wrapping up influencer marketing in Kenya
These are proven tips on how to become a social media influencer in Kenya. Use them to get started now but do not forget that good thing takes time.
Do not expect to be an influencer overnight, it will take consistency and strategy to build a solid base. Good luck.
Marketing is my profession, been working as a digital marketer for over 5 years now. Back then, things were different from what you see today. That is the reason why I started this blog, to share my experiences and how I handle marketing challenges I encounter. I hope you find them useful. When not watching cartoons, (yes, I know what that means), you will find me creating content for my blogs.