It's no secret that certain high profile social media personas have brands lining up and offering big bucks to be associated with them. The popularity of Social Media has enticed big companies to capitalize on aligning key social media influencers with specific products, resulting in everyone from celebrities to every day people working their social media profiles to pull in a range of perks from free products to big paychecks.

From this fast-growing trend has emerged a new industry of it's own, influencer agencies that serve to matchmake companies and influencers.

FOHR is one of those intermediaries that serves to help brands run influencer marketing campaigns and also supports their community of influencers to help them connect with brands that are endemic to their specific audiences.

We caught up with Fohr's founder and CEO James Nord, to chat about how influencers can help grow their businesses. James has a popular YouTube series called A Drink With James, that answers questions about the Influencer industry and best practices. With 112 episodes on YouTube so far, it is clear that he sees value in creating video content to capture audiences attention and help build a following. Here are James' thoughts:

Why should influencers be using video as part of their marketing strategy?
James: If you’re an influencer who doesn’t do video, you need to consider starting. Yes, it’s time consuming, it’s a massive amount of effort compared to the average still post and it can get expensive. But the pool of influencers who do video is small and the pool of influencers who do it well is even smaller. Impressive video content makes influencers stand out, it is essentially adding a layer to shrink your competition. Video posts also tend to generate higher engagement than regular posts and that’s a great way to get people talking to you and about you. Also video has a way of creating a relationship with your audience that still images can't do.

If a brand is smart, they will actively look for influencers who regularly work with videos for partnership, it opens up a ton of doors for takeovers, tutorials, interviews, editorial videos, stories. Video leaves room for more personality, and when content is more off the cuff and relatable, that's when you tend to see higher engagement.

What are the best platforms to use for publishing influencers videos? Which channels are most effective?
James: Youtube has been the leading video platform for a long time now and what really sets it apart is that it’s searchable, there is literally a video for everything on their platform. It’s the second largest search engine in the world behind Google and you can’t search other platforms including Instagram for video content in the same way. That said, we’ve seen Instagram come out with first stories, then highlights and now they’ve released IGTV which will become more important in the coming months. They're making video more relevant and incorporating it all over the place.

Youtube and Instagram have very different users and very different audiences. If you talk to an influencer with a large Instagram following who is actively trying to build a Youtube following and vice versa, they would tell you that it isn’t as easy as you might think, because those same users aren't moving over to Youtube to follow them. I think of Youtube as a more specialized search platform with raw content, whereas Instagram's new video features will give lifestyle influencers the ability to present their usual editorial content in a more engaging way.

Do brands tend to favor influencers who use video?
James: If a brand is smart, they will actively look for influencers who regularly work with videos for partnership, it opens up a ton of doors for takeovers, tutorials, interviews, editorial videos, stories. Video leaves room for more personality, and when content is more off the cuff and relatable, that's when you tend to see higher engagement.

What are your top 3 tips for influencers to help make their videos stand out?

James: Learn how to shoot and get good at being in front of the camera.
You can increase the quality of your videos without too much effort, especially if it’s just you speaking directly at the camera, just make sure to get tripod and a camera like a Canon G7 X with a screen that you can flip around on yourself.

And of course what’s most important is being good on camera or filming content that matters. Like anything else in this space if you don’t have something impactful to add to the conversation with your videos, you shouldn’t be pushing them out in the first place. You need to get creative and feel natural or else the video is going to feel forced.

Name a few influencers that you think are doing video really well

Marianna Hewitt, Janelle Lloyd, Patrick Janelle

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