Finding local influencers can be challenging. Even more so if you’re not physically located in that city, or if you need to reach influencers with audiences in lots of different target cities at scale.
- Influencer marketplaces don’t have enough talent that is specific to your city.
- Small-scale local influencers are often not proactively looking for brand partnerships.
- Influencer audiences are rarely ever entirely focused on one precise city. Rather, they’re often spread across multiple locations.
With the right techniques & tools, it’s possible to find the perfect partners to promote your brand with local influencer marketing. Here’s how.
9 methods to find local influencers
1. Use an influencer search tool
By far, the most effective of these techniques is to use an influencer search tool. In particular, I’m going to demonstrate how to find local influencers using Modash.
The short version is that you can search every influencer on Earth based on target cities & countries. For example, you could say: "Show me every influencer with 10k-100k followers, where 50%+ of the audience is based in Paris".
You can see the audience demographics breakdown for each profile too. Here's an example using Mari Maria, a Brazilian Instagram account with 20M+ followers:
You can jump in and try analyzing searching for local influencers by city (for free), or keep scrolling for more details & methods.
Here’s more on how it works, step by step.
Head to Discovery, then choose a platform & location
When you land in the Modash dashboard, you’ll see a screen that looks something like this:
The first thing you’ll notice is the platform tabs. This process works to find local influencers on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. I’ll demonstrate here by finding Instagram influencers, but the process is similar for the other channels.
Obviously, for local influencers the most important filter to apply is location. You can specify locations for where the influencer is based, or where their audience are (predominantly).
Naturally, you’ll never find an influencer who has 100% of their audience in one city. For that reason, once you choose a location, you’ll also see a 2nd dropdown for percentage granularity.
What we’re saying in the example above is that we only want to see influencers that have at least 30% of their audience being in Paris.
Run your search
There are a ton of other filters you can use in Modash to find laser-targeted audiences. First though, I recommend that you run your search and take a quick look at the results.
This technique is known as layering. Apply one filter, check your results, then apply more one-by-one if you still have enough profiles. If you start off by being too specific, you may accidentally exclude creators that could be perfect for your brand. Layering prevents that.
Since we’re searching in a large city, we still have tens of thousands of results this time:
Tip! By default, your search will be sorted by most followers. Use the ‘sort by’ to change this to audience location if that’s critical to your search. You’ll quickly see which influencers have the highest percentage of their audience in your desired location.
Narrow your search with additional filters
Now, let’s try being more specific, matching creators that have a relevant audience for our niche.
There are a ton of relevant filters you could choose from here:
- Follower range (e.g. to find micro influencers)
- Keywords used in influencer bios or post captions
- Hashtags and mentions used by influencers
- Minimum engagement rate
- Minimum growth rate
- Audience gender, age brackets, and languages
- Whether or not influencer contact details are available
Testing out 1-2 of these at a time will narrow your search, and help you identify creators who are the best possible fit for your brand.
Here’s a short 6-minute video with more tips that’ll quickly help you get better at searching & filtering influencers for your specific niche. Your perfect partners are inside Modash, you just have to know how to find them.
Replicate your past wins with influencer lookalikes
If you’re already working with some creators successfully, you could try using the lookalike tool inside Modash to find similar profiles.
All you need to do is scroll down to the search bar, and type their username. After you run the search, their profile will appear below:
Then click on the profile to bring up more details. In the sidebar, you’ll see profiles that have similar interests & audiences.
You can then click into any of these profiles to analyze their audiences, recent posts, engagement rates, and more.
From here, there’s an element of trial and error. Test different filters, refine your search. Shortlist creators, export their contact details, and try to reach out to strike up a partnership.
2. Manually search local hashtags
Influencers that are focusing on a specific area will very often be using popular local hashtags. Examples of local hashtags could be anything from #newyorkcity, to #dogsofnewyork, to various local trends, & everything in between.
Look at posts by local creators
If you know a few local influencers already, visit their profiles. Review their top content, and see which hashtags they’re using. You can click through and find other profiles that are posting with the same hashtags. Then follow the rabbit hole, and see which other hashtags those people are using.
Simply search keywords
You’ll quickly be able to find ideas for local hashtags by checking the suggestions for a town, city, or state name.
Don’t be afraid to be as specific as possible, drilling down to smaller locales rather than a whole city. If you are a food business looking for local influencers in London, you can try hashtags like #LondonFoodBlogger. This hashtag alone gives 371K+ results on Instagram.
After you find influencers, you can use Modash to analyze their audience breakdown. What percentage of their audience is in your target location, check their engagement rate, audit for fake followers, and more.
3. Network with the local community
Lastly, let’s not forget the basics. This isn’t easy to do at scale if you’re operating in multiple cities. However, if you’re a smaller local business focused on one location, you can see a huge benefit by networking & building relationships in the local community.
If you are physically located in the area you’re targeting, research & attend events. That could be a specific networking event, a local fair, or anything else. You could even choose to take it a step further, and get involved with volunteering or organizing at local events.
Networking can absolutely be done online, too. Engage with as many local profiles as possible. Follow them, share their posts, and leave comments. Find ways to add value for them, and you’ll soon start to build relationships.
4. Search on Google
Google is a great way to find local influencers in a particular region in any niche.
Type in "your industry + influencers in X city," and you will get hundreds of search results. You will also see some articles with lists of the best influencers in that region.
Try to be as niche specific as possible. If you are a cosmetic company, you can be more specific by typing "skincare influencers in Chicago" or "acne influencers in New York City."
Also, check out the Video tab and go through the top videos Google brings up to find the local influencers in your industry.
But remember that a lot of influencers who end up on these lists are well-known influencers with huge followings, so it might be hard to find those smaller untapped creators.
5. Create a brand ambassador program
A brand ambassador program is a great way to drive inbound interest to your brand. You can also build long-term relationships with your brand ambassadors and rely on them for future campaigns.
A brand ambassador program also gets the attention of people who are genuinely interested in your brand and want to create content in your niche. You could aim to recruit at least one ambassador in each of your major target cities as a starting point.
Sephora has a great brand ambassador program, the #SephoraSquad, that collaborates with influencers from various cities and countries. Their program focuses on a "unique and inspiring group of storytellers with a diverse range of followers, points of view, and interests."
Look at this post by Kristina Rodulfo, announcing her year-long collaboration with Sephora.
6. Analyze your competitor's campaigns
Keep an eye out for your competitors and the type of campaigns they are executing. It can be extremely helpful to find influencers for your campaigns, see the content they are creating, and analyze what's working for them and what's not.
You can have a look at the influencers your competitors are working with and find similar influencers for your brand through the lookalike tool in Modash.
It will also cut your research time short as you can see what type of influencers are driving results for your competitors and collaborate with the same kind of influencers.
Looking at your competitors also gives you unique ideas on content creation and different types of campaigns you can execute to stand apart from your competition.
7. Ask for recommendations
The easiest thing you can do is ask for recommendations.
If you have worked with influencers before, ask if they know some local influencers in a particular city or area you can collaborate with. You can also look at an influencer's past videos and check out the other influencers they worked with.
The only downside of this method is — there is no guarantee that the recommendations you get will be any good.
8. Search your social media followers
Your social media followers are the ones who like your content and are interested in your business.
And if you are a local business, looking through your social media followers and finding out the influencers among them can be a great idea.
Suppose you are not a local business and are looking to launch in a particular region. In that case, it can be pretty difficult to find local influencers, especially if you have a lot of followers on social media. Nevertheless, this is a great idea to try.
Who knows, your idea influencer is already a massive fan of your brand and can't wait to collaborate with you.
9. Use a local influencer marketing agency
An influencer marketing agency can be a great help in not only finding the right local influencers for you but also in creating and executing your campaigns.
Working with an agency is a great option if you have the budget, as it allows you to spend more time on other aspects of your business. An influencer marketing agency can help you with everything, including:
- Researching your target audience
- Finding the right influencer for your campaigns
- Creating content
- Tracking relevant metrics, including ROI
- Campaign analysis
Importantly, they're also likely to have existing relationships with local influencers to tap into quickly.
3 steps to nailing your local influencer marketing campaigns
By following the steps mentioned above, you will successfully find the most relevant influencers for your brand. So, to make sure your influencer marketing campaign is a huge success, let's go through some of the things that are critical to executing a campaign.
1. How to vet local influencers
By now, you must have a list of local influencers you are excited to work with. So, how do you know which one is the best fit for your brand?
Here are a few things you should consider before going ahead with an influencer.
Check out the kind of content they are creating. Does it align with your brand values? Is their content relevant to today's socio-political environment?
Do people engage with their content in a constructive way? Does it inspire conversation among your target demographic? What kind of engagement do they get on their content?
Adrienne Mishler is a yoga influencer who creates meaningful content around yoga sessions and provides encouragement to beginners. Her videos are always motivational and encouraging and inspire love and kindness.
Credibility in the industry
Influencers need to have some credibility in the industry they are creating content in. If you are a parenting brand working with an influencer who doesn't have much experience with parenting, your message isn't going to land.
Work with influencers who know what they are talking about and are at least a little bit knowledgeable in your industry.
Kelsey Heenan, a fitness influencer, creates content around exercises and fitness while ensuring her audience knows the importance of a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Look at her Instagram post, where she talks about the impact of nutrients on the body.
People are doing all sorts of things to make themselves seem famous, and one such thing is buying followers.
If an influencer has a lot of fake followers, you wouldn't want to collaborate with them. Modash gives you the percentage of fake followers an account has in less than a second.
More than 25% of fake followers is typically considered a sign of fraud.
Check audience locations
Last but definitely not least, if you're looking for a local city-specific influencer, you need to make sure their followers are in the right places. Modash can also help you check audience demographics & locations.
Here's an example. Travel influencer, Penny Roumeliotis, creates content around her various travels all over the world. By analyzing her profile in Modash, you can easily which cities her followers are in, as well as fake followers, engagement rate, audience gender, age brackets, and more.
2. How to reach out to local influencers
After shortlisting a few influencers you would like to collaborate with, now is the time to reach out to them.
First, you need their contact details. Most influencers have their email address in their bio. You can also find the contact details of your selected influencers in Modash.
Write a personalized pitch that shows how much you like their content, how their brand values are similar to your brand's, and what it would mean to your business if they collaborated with you.
You can have a look at these free influencer outreach templates to help you with the process.
3. Create influencer briefs
Now comes the most important part of your local influencer collaboration — influencer briefs.
Having an influencer brief in place is important as it improves the content output quality, ensures all the parties are on the same page, shows that you are professional and organized, and makes the whole process easier.
An influencer brief should have the following things:
- Company and product overview: the team, what the product is, and who it is for
- Campaign overview: the purpose of the campaign, when it will begin, target audience
- Objectives and KPIs: the goal of the campaign, metrics/KPIs to determine the success
- Deliverables: what you expect from creators and by when
- Caption guidelines: brand's tone of voice and other specifications for the caption
- Visual guidelines: a specific theme (if applicable), company logo, etc.
- Invoicing details: add any important invoicing details for the influencer
Start collaborating with local influencers today!
With the steps mentioned above, you are on your way to collaborating with the best and most relevant influencers for your brand.
What's left for you is to track the local influencers you contact, manage all your influencers and campaigns, and measure your campaign performance. Sign up to get a 14-day free trial of Modash to scale your local influencer marketing efforts to the moon!