12 Influencer best habits

Hi there! This is Johanna, your friend & Fairy Talent Manager, checking in. I know you’ve been busy with the many demands of being an influencer, but when was the last time you stopped to think about your workflow? Today, we’ll be diving into the Top 12 Best Habits of Successful Influencers that I’ve honed after years of influencer talent management.

Just like any full-time job, becoming a successful influencer requires hard work, dedication, and certain habits that differentiate you from the rest of the ever-more-crowded field. So, let’s explore these key habits that can help turn potential influencers into highly successful people.

12 influencer best habits checklist
12 influencer best habits checklist

What makes an Influencer so successful checklist

1. Be consistent with what you do. Post consistently. Write consistently. Create consistently.

Consistency is the cornerstone of any successful influencer’s content creation journey. It’s essential to post new content regularly, whether it’s a blog post, social media posts, or even sponsored content.

As Oprah Winfrey once said, “Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.” Embrace this mantra and stay consistent with your content pillars to keep your engaged audience hooked. 

Also, remember that consistency doesn’t have to mean posting 10x a week! Pick your cadence — even if that’s 2 blog posts per month, or 1 Instagram reel + 2 static posts a week — and stick with it.

12 influencer best habits
12 influencer best habits

2. Have boundaries. Flex the muscle of using your voice and standing up for what’s best for you and your brand.

Setting boundaries is crucial for maintaining your brand image and mental well-being. As an influencer, remember that it’s okay to say ‘no’ to certain types of content or collaborations that don’t align with your brand values. 

Be super clear on what’s a “hell yes!” project, opportunity, and/or client for you. It’s also just as important to identify what doesn’t make sense for your brand. Keep in mind that an opportunity may make sense for you personally, but just not for your brand. 

In the words of Arianna Huffington, granted, “We need to accept that we won’t always make the right decisions, that we’ll screw up royally sometimes — understanding that failure is not the opposite of success, it’s part of success.”

For example, you have a cat and get a great opportunity to partner with a cat food brand for 3 months. Free cat food, plus a paid gig? Sounds great, right? But here’s the catch: your social content is all about being a Mexican food blogger. That’s what people come to you for, not for your cat food recommendations. Don’t make the mistake of diluting your brand!

So, until you’re the next Martha Stewart, stay in your lane.

What I also mean is, if a brand is pushing you on a really quick deadline but you need 2 more business days, ask for them. If an agency is wanting to add just one more Instagram story set to the scope after you’ve signed the agreement, say no. 

If you really want to do a project with your dream brand and need them to come up $5k in their offer, ask for it. (Better yet, ask for $7k to give yourself some negotiation wiggle room. Here’s some other negotiation tips for ya!)

3. Never stop learning.

Stay up-to-date with industry news and influencer marketing trends. Successful influencers invest time in learning new social media platforms and expanding their skill set. Always be open to learning and adapting, because that’s what keeps you relevant in this ever-evolving digital world.

Instagram, Tiktok, and whatever other social media platforms are in our future, are constantly changing features, algorithms, how they work, and how we interact with them. Don’t be discouraged. Embrace them as opportunities to learn, perfect your skills, and grow. 

As the late, great Eartha Kitt once said, “I am learning all the time. The tombstone will be my diploma.” Follow her lead and it’ll serve you well. 

4. Continue to engage with your audience. Remember, your followers are your superfans.

Successful influencers understand the importance of engaging with their followers on social media channels. Responding to comments, hosting Q&As, and going live on Instagram or other platforms are great ways to build connections with your audience. 

As Maya Angelou once said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Make those superfans feel like they are important to you, and they’ll reward you with greater engagement, greater conversions, and plenty of referrals to friends.

5. Hire a team.

Managing multiple social media accounts, creating content, and negotiating deals with brands can be overwhelming. While you may think that you can be the photographer, editor, stylist, dish washer, makeup artist, AND chief creator behind all your projects, that will quickly get old. 

Successful influencers know the value of delegating tasks and hiring a team to help them stay focused on the important things. As the saying goes, “Teamwork makes the dream work.”

(And if you’re wondering if a Talent Manager like myself should be on your radar as part of the team, check my article on how to find one.)

6. Triple check your work.

Successful influencers are detail-oriented and committed to delivering valuable content. Triple checking your work ensures that you’re putting your best foot forward every single day.

Before you even get started on a project, it’s important that you fully understand the scope of your brand agreement. How many posts/reels/articles are you responsible for? Have you reviewed the brief? What are your due dates? Are there any parts of the video where you forgot to mute something?

You can never look at the brief too many times ESPECIALLY that dos and don’ts page. Are your hashtags, brand messaging points and hero shot all aligned with the brief? Oh, and before hitting ‘publish’ or ‘post’, make sure to review your written content for errors or inconsistencies. Are there any spelling errors? 

7. Update your media kit regularly.

A media kit is a vital tool for showcasing your work and attracting new brand partnerships. As a creator, your Media Kit is essentially your CV. Successful influencers keep their media kit updated with their latest achievements, updated follower count, and any relevant information that will appeal to potential partners.

At the very least, make sure to include your most recent projects and social media statistics. Think of this as your carte blanche opportunity to do a real humble brag. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you start fiddling around:

  • Does your introductory summary still describe the services you provide? (Is it the best up-to-date description of who and how you serve?)
  • When was the last time you adjusted your social stats? Better yet, are they hyperlinked?
  • Have you learned any new skills or created any new partnerships that are desirable to future clients? Sing about them from the rooftops! Showcase them and include links to view the content in real-time.
  • Does it  look attractive? Are your logos, colors, fonts, and taglines consistent with where your brand is now? Would you want to hire you — I mean seriously?!
  • Did you pick up any new social handles?
  • What new testimonials can you add?

Remember, you want to be concise, so be ruthless as you separate your personal wheat from the chaff. The marketing managers you’re working with are short on time, and this is a competitive business. Keep it clean, keep it tight — and make sure you’re shining bright!

Influencer media kit
The power of influencer media kit

8. Audit your social media channels.

Regularly review your social media posts and analytics to ensure you’re reaching your target audience and achieving your desired engagement rates. Successful influencers use these insights to refine their content marketing strategy and adapt to their audience’s preferences.

Before we get started, I want you to take a deep breath and recenter yourself. This one can be a little touchy. It’s not going to be easy. But I just know you can do it. Inhale for 5, exhale for 5. Ok. Let’s do this.

Every time you create something, you are gifting a part of your inimitable self. I get that. It’s part of what makes me respect the profession of influencing enough that I’ve made my career about supporting you and other incredible women like you.

But, as Patricia Fuller put it, “Writing without revising is the literary equivalent of waltzing gaily out of the house in your underwear.” As an influencer, you need to revise your work just the same as an author. This is your craft!

As you prepare to “kill your darlings,” the questions to ask yourself with EACH AND EVERY POST are:

  • Is this photo (and caption) still on brand?
  • Is this post representing me and my brand in the very best light?
  • Do I love it? Is it a hell yes? 

If not, it’s time to archive it. Don’t delete it, but put it off your feed. Dorothy Parker put it beautifully: “Creativity is a wild mind and a disciplined eye.” Be disciplined in this part of the creative process.

Then, in another year, if you’re in need of a real confidence boost? Go back. Look at the graveyard of all the things you created to get where you are today.

9. Send thank you notes (preferably hand-written) to past brand partners. Keep the relationship alive!

In this business, even more than in most other businesses, relationships are everything. As we enter the season of gratitude, take a moment to show your appreciation to the people who gave you a chance to pay your bills doing the thing you love.

Write a handwritten note. Or at least a personal email — make sure you mention something specific about the project you worked on, and not just copy and paste! 

Showing gratitude goes a long way in maintaining strong relationships with past brand partners. In my experience, successful influencers who make it a habit to send hand-written thank you notes to their collaborators are more likely to keep the relationship alive and create openings for future opportunities. Remember the wise words of Melinda Gates: “A woman with a voice is, by definition, a strong woman.” Use your bright, shiny, gracious voice to separate yourself from the competition.

Influencer best habits
Influencer best habits

10. Make time every quarter to compare your beginning-of-year goals to your YTD progress.

Tracking your progress towards your business goals is essential for growth. Every quarter, successful influencers take the time to evaluate their achievements and adjust their plans accordingly. This habit ensures that they stay focused on their goals and continue to make strides towards success.

It’s time for you to check the math. How close are you to your goals? There are lots of ways to measure what that means to you personally, but we can’t know if we’ve hit a target if we don’t state what the target is. 

And, if you didn’t do any written-down goal-setting last year, now’s as good a time as any to start. Here are some metrics to examine:

  • Financial Goals – Too many women don’t talk about $. As a businesswoman, you need to talk about $. How close are you to where you expected to be at this point in your life? What do you need to do to fill the gap? If you’ve exceeded the gap, a.) AMAZING! And b.) what are your plans for the surplus? 
  • Work-Life Balance – Part of this also comes down to $. Are you making enough per job to make the time-for-service transaction worthwhile? If not, how much of a raise are you going to need? Do you have the skills to command it? If not, how do you get the skills? 
  • What did you want your social numbers to be in January? What are they now?
  • What awesome client projects did you add to your portfolio?
  • What new relationships do you have that you can leverage?
  • What did you learn about yourself as a businesswoman?

11. Continue to sell yourself. Pitch like there’s no tomorrow!

Successful influencers know that self-promotion is key to growing their business and reaching new audiences. They don’t shy away from pitching themselves to brands, fellow influencers, or media outlets. As the iconic Beyoncé once said, “Power’s not given to you. You have to take it.” So, embrace the hustle and pitch like there’s no tomorrow!

12. Pour yourself a glass of something celebratory. You did it!

Doesn’t that feel better? Now you’re primed and ready to start whatever your next project is on the very best foot possible. Cheers to you — for having the sticktoitiveness to make it through this housekeeping list, for being your own boss, and for always 👏making 👏 progress. That’s no small feat!

Until next time, friends. I’m rooting for your success!

what makes an influencer so successful FAQs
What makes an influencer so successful FAQs

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What makes an Influencer so successful FAQs

What makes an influencer successful?

How do you determine an influencer’s success? Do you think it’s their follower count, or how much content they create? For example, let’s say Oprah was just starting out on Instagram with 247 followers. Would you still consider her influential? The point I’m trying to drive home is that we now live in a world where the assumption is the bigger the size of the audience, the greater the success. I’m not sure I buy that. I think it’s much more nuanced.

Successful influencers are genuine and transparent with their followers, and they are true to themselves and their values. Those who have a distinct brand identity and are strategic about the collaborations they engage in tend to be more successful that those who don’t. There’s a lot of noise in this space, so it’s important to stand out!

They also understand that consistency is key. Successful influencers post on a regular basis, engage with their followers, and create content that is aligned with their personal brand and that resonates with their audience, whether it’s through humor, inspiration, education, or something gripping.

The biggest influencers out there are treating social media like a business. They are proactive about seeking out opportunities, negotiating deals, and managing their finances.

Social media is constantly evolving and the algorithms are always changing, so the most successful influencers are lifelong learners who stay up-to-date with new trends and technologies. They’re also willing to experiment with new approaches to see what works best for them.

At the end of the day, an influencer’s success can be determined by many factors such as their follower count, how often they put out new content, or how much social influence they have. These are all factors that will make them appealing to brands for paid sponsored content which means they could also be successful financially as well.

How much do successful influencers make?

When it comes to successful influencers, their income can vary widely. I’d say most folks would consider that “success” typically starts in the six-figure range. But it’s important to keep in mind that there are many different ways for influencers to earn money. 

For example, some influencers get paid for creating content on their own social media platforms, while others create content for brands to use on the brand’s social media channels. This is known as UGC, or user-generated content. 

Additionally, many influencers earn revenue through website ads on their personal blogs. Some influencers also offer e-courses, paid speaking engagements, or consulting services for brands. 

Successful influencers typically have multiple income streams, so they don’t rely on just one way to earn money. When you string ALL the sources of your influencing income together, if you’re making enough to live comfortably and pay all your bills, I think that’s totally worthy of the title of “success,” but that’s just me.

Are personal blogs successful?

Personal blogs can definitely be successful. Back when I first started as a talent manager and launched my agency, most of the content requests from brands were for blog posts and even Twitter chats (remember those?). Nowadays, as a talent manager, I actively seek out clients who have a blog. 

Your personal blog is like your digital home; it’s a place where you can create and share valuable content that is entirely your own. And the best part? Even if social media were to disappear (who knows?), you would still have your blog to fall back on. So, if you’re thinking about starting a personal blog, don’t hesitate! It can be a great way to build your personal brand, share your thoughts and ideas, and connect with others.

Who is the most successful influencer?

That’s a great question! It’s hard to say who the most successful influencer is since success can be measured in so many different ways. Plus, with so many different niches and platforms, it’s difficult to compare influencers across the board. 

For example, how would you compare, say, Ina Garten and Steph Curry? That’s weird, right? Put another way, how would you compare a fitness influencer with a travel influencer or a mommy blogger with a fashion blogger? It’s like trying to compare apples and wingnuts.

So, I’d love to hear your thoughts on who you think the most successful influencer is! Please feel free to leave a comment below. Who has been the most influential public figure in YOUR life? Let’s start a convo!

What percentage of bloggers are successful?

It’s worth noting that only a minority of bloggers are truly successful. I don’t have the exact stats, but I’m certain more people tap out than keep pushing towards their version of “success.” Building a successful blog or social media presence takes an enormous amount of hard work, grit, determination, and resilience — just like building any other type of business. 

Whether you’re running a hair salon, photography studio, restaurant, or influencer business, it takes a lot of effort to achieve success. Being an entrepreneur (especially a solopreneur) is not for the faint of heart. 

So, if you’re thinking about starting a blog or pursuing a career as an influencer, be prepared to put in the work and stay committed to your goals. While success may not come easily, it is possible with persistence and dedication.

Will influencers ever go away?

Great question! In my opinion, influencers are here to stay. While the way we think of influencers may change over time, the concept of leveraging social media and digital platforms to promote products and services will likely continue. As long as companies have marketing and advertising budgets and are looking to reach new audiences, there will be a demand for influencers who can help them achieve those goals. 

So, while the specifics of what an influencer looks like (here’s to hoping we get more diversity out there!) or how they operate may evolve over time (Lemon8, who?), I think it’s safe to say that influencers will remain an important part of the advertising landscape for the foreseeable future.

Do I really have to follow the habits of successful people in order to be successful?

The short answer is no, you don’t necessarily have to follow the habits of successful people in order to be successful yourself. As the kids say, “You do you, boo boo!”

However, it can be incredibly valuable to look at what habits successful people have and see which ones might be applicable to your own life and goals. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel or copy everything someone else does, but why not learn from those who have already achieved success? 

Many successful people are quite open about what they’ve done to achieve their goals, whether it’s through books, podcast interviews, or social media content. In fact, some successful people’s habits, such as Oprah’s morning routine, even become industry news! 

So, while you should always stay true to yourself and your own unique approach, there’s no harm in learning from the habits of successful people and seeing which ones might work for you.

What do you think about influencers?

As a talent manager, I have a great appreciation for influencers. After all, they are my line of work, my full-time job, and how I make a living. I have a ton of respect for successful content creators — whether they’re my client or not — who are able to make a living through brand partnerships, content creation, and digital marketing. Let me tell you: it’s not easy to do!

Apart from my job, and solely as a human being who loves Instagram, I also appreciate influencers for the insights and recommendations they provide. I love learning about the products they use and why they like them because it saves me time and effort in researching things on my own. I also appreciate getting travel itineraries, recipe ideas, and home design inspiration from people whose interests, tastes, and/or aesthetic I vibe with.

However, I do understand that not everyone is a fan of influencers, and there can be definitely be moments where they can be seen as annoying or overly promotional. (If that describes you, you might get a kick out of this Instagram page.) But ultimately, I try to remember to give everyone grace and appreciate the value that influencers can bring to the table. The way I see it, if they’re good at their jobs, they’re the guinea pigs for life that I get to learn from!

Do habits directly influence our progress and life?

Lordy, I could really word vomit some cute lil’ instagrammable quote about habits all over you right now! As the famous dancer Twyla Tharp once said, “Creativity is a habit, and the best creativity is the result of good work habits.” This couldn’t be truer for all you aspiring influencers!

What we do repeatedly and consistently is a reflection of our priorities, values, and how we show up in the world. Our habits demonstrate our desire of how to spend our time and money and contribute directly to our progress and our life choices. 

On the other hand, if we consistently make poor choices that don’t align with our values and priorities, we may find ourselves struggling to achieve our goals and feeling unfulfilled in our lives.

I’ll share a bit about myself as an example. I’m a morning person who is very active, is constantly drinking water, eats well, and surrounds myself with amazing people who are smarter than I am, love me unconditionally & make me laugh my sweet buns off. 

Yes, I’m probably just as you imagine me to be — super fit, healthy, happy, and an all-around positive person who makes the most out of the moments that I have. My body is my temple because my health is my wealth. I work for myself so I need to stay healthy in both body, spirit, and mind. 

No doubt we both know people who don’t make the best choices to live a life of great health but have found success (Mick Jagger, perhaps?) & yes, I know it’s all relative. It’s important to remember that we have the power to shape our own habits and therefore our own destiny. 

What are the common drinking consumption habits of successful people?

While I can’t speak for all successful people, from what I’ve read, listened to, and experienced, many successful individuals tend to keep their drinking consumption to a minimum or are even teetotalers. 

While there’s nothing inherently wrong with consuming alcohol in moderation (I’m a fan of G&T for happy hour, myself), it’s important to remember that excessive drinking can have negative impacts on our health (both mental and physical), relationships, and overall success. 

By keeping drinking to a minimum or choosing to abstain from alcohol altogether, it’s easier to maintain focus, productivity, and overall well-being. When it comes down to it, just make choices that align with your own values and goals, whether that means limiting your drinking or enjoying a glass of wine with friends from time to time.

Do successful people follow a timetable?

Yup! You might not want to hear this, but successful people do tend to follow a timetable, whether that means having an outlined plan of action, online schedule, or paper calendar to keep them organized and on track. 

This is especially true for influencers in the content marketing world. There’s no other way to survive having multiple brand campaigns and social media content pieces going live on different days. It’s absolutely crucial to have a well-organized plan in place to ensure that everything runs smoothly and that no exclusivity or posting requirements are overlooked or missed. 

In fact, having a solid plan in place can not only help you stay organized and focused, but it can also help your team members stay in the loop and on the same page. So, if you want to be successful in any field, not just the brave new world of Social Media Influencing, it’s important to prioritize organization and planning as part of your overall strategy.

How can brands build successful relationships with influencers?

I wrote this article about how to work with brands which will give you some insight into how to open those doors of opportunity. The way I see it, relationships are a 2-way street, so even though the article was written from the perspective of an influencer trying to work with brands, the same rings true in reverse. Here’s a brief overview:

Building successful relationships with influencers requires a thoughtful and strategic approach. One key element of this is to do your homework and make sure that you understand the influencer and their platform. All too often, brands will send blanket emails that are not tailored to the influencer’s specific interests or niche. This can come across as spammy and turn off potential partners.

To build successful relationships with influencers, start by researching and identifying influencers who align with your brand’s values and target audience. Then, take the time to get to know each influencer individually, and reach out with personalized pitches that demonstrate that you understand their platform and their audience. Be sure to provide clear details about what you’re looking for in a partnership, including compensation and any deliverables you expect.

Finally, remember that building successful relationships with influencers is a two-way street. Just as you want to demonstrate that you understand and value the influencer, they also want to feel valued and appreciated. Make sure to listen to their feedback and suggestions, and be open to their ideas and perspectives. By building a strong and respectful partnership, both brands and influencers can benefit from increased exposure, engagement, and success.

What is important in understanding consumer behavior from a marketing perspective?

Oh goodness, isn’t it so fun figuring out consumer behavior and really dialing into when, where, how and why on earth your customers buy what they do? 

Understanding consumer behavior is crucial from a marketing perspective. It allows you to better target and engage with your audience, and ultimately drive more conversions and sales. One of the most important things to keep in mind when studying consumer behavior is that assumptions can be dangerous. Remember the old adage about assuming makes an ass of you and me? Don’t assume that you know everything about your target audience, and be open to surprises and unexpected insights.

For example, as an influencer, you might assume that your audience is made up of people who are similar to you in age, gender, or other demographic characteristics. However, this may not always be the case. Your audience may be more diverse or varied than you initially assumed, and it’s important to be open to these insights and adapt your marketing strategy accordingly.

For example, I’ve got one client Lorraine, who is turning 60 in 2023. She writes about health issues as she gets older, the craziness of menopause, aging skin concerns, for just a few examples. Are you thinking that her audience is only women around the same age, going thru the same experiences with the same concerns? If so, you’d be wrong. She’s got quite an engaged audience of younger women who turn to her for inspiration. Not only is that really cool (Go Lorraine!) but who would’ve guessed?

Another key element of understanding consumer behavior is to focus on the “why” behind people’s purchasing decisions. What motivates your audience to buy your products or engage with your content? By understanding the underlying drivers of consumer behavior, you can better tailor your messaging and marketing efforts to resonate with your target audience.

Ultimately, the key to understanding consumer behavior is to be curious, open-minded, and willing to experiment and try new things. By staying attuned to your audience’s needs, interests, and motivations, you can build more successful and engaging marketing campaigns that drive results.