In the summer of 2017, a client came to us with a unique proposal. He has been hearing how using social media influencers can increase his ROI. Just like everybody else, he thought the bigger the number of followers the better. When he came to us, we researched and gave him a list of top 20 influencers in his niche arranged according to the number of their followers.
What follows next was just as expected, with just a glance at the list, he chose the number one influencer on the list upon seeing the number of his followers. We advised that quantity is not always the yardstick for success but he was bent on using that particular influencer. In the end, we were able to convince him to split the budget between two influencers – the first one is a celebrity who has about 751,600 followers while the second one has about 129,078 as at then.
We contacted the influencers and ran the campaign for a period of two weeks. In the end, we measured the results differently and it was nothing but shocking. We got more likes and comments from the influencer with 751,600 followers (as a result of his celebrity status) but higher engagement, leads, and sales from the influencer B who has just 129,078 followers.
Shocking, right? If you are like our client, you will be left with just one question:
In this article, you will learn of the reasons why marketers are increasingly making use of micro social media influencers rather than macro influencers.
Who Are Micro-Influencers?
Before we go into micro-influencers proper, let’s take a look at overall social media influencers. In the recent years, influencer marketing has been described as one of the fastest growing and best online customer acquisition methods. Social media influencers are people with large followers on social media. You can find them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. Last year, spending on influencers on Instagram alone passed $1 billion and this number is expected to double by next year (2019).
Marketers and brands are becoming keener on discovering how and who to partner with for effective campaign. To this end, many brands and marketers believe they need to go big and invest big to get results from influencer marketing. This is a total myth. It has always been a common knowledge that “quality is better than quantity”.
According to a study, consumers prefer genuine recommendations from family members, friends, acquaintances, and micro-influencers who tend to hold small, but fiercely loyal followings. Due to the new trends in the way people now absorb ads, businesses are starting to use micro-influencers to promote their products and services on social media.
Now, Who Are These Micro-Influencers Exactly?
Micro-influencers are social media influencers with a small number of followers. The range of the number of followers an influencer must have to qualify as a micro-influencer is subjective. However, it could range between 10,000 and 500,000 followers on social media channels.
The attraction factor is NOT the number of their audience. Instead, it is because these people have better-targeted audience. While the number of followers micro-influencers have tended to be small compared to mega influencers (celebs with millions of followers), the loyalty and engagement these micro-influencers inspire have been proven to be higher. According to a stat, micro-influencers average around 8% engagement compared to 4% of influencers with over one million followers.
Marketers and brands love micro-influencers because they have direct, personal connection with their audience. These influencers know their audience well. They understand and respect their audience. They know exactly what will resonate with their audience and can tell brand stories to them. Similarly, the followers of micro-influencers are loyal to him not because he is popular (as in case of celebs) but because they want to learn from him. They trust his recommendation because they believe it will help them grow and achieve their goals.
Some Examples of Micro-Influencers and Their Niches
Micro-influencers are mostly followed by people interested in a particular niche. Some examples of micro-influencers in various niches include:
- Health and Wellness
Alexandra Lerner (Allie Lerner) passionately writes about yoga and wellness on her Instagram and her blog as well. She has about 433,000 followers on Instagram. These followers are mostly people who are very much interested in health, yoga, and wellness.
- Beauty and Fashion
Marta Pozzan is a globe-trotting influencer who travels from fashion week to fashion week promoting brands from Kenzo to Bulgari and beyond. She is followed by 257,000 people who are interested in learning more about beauty and fashion.
While the number of followers these micro-influencers have may not be in millions, their followers are dedicated, passionate, loyal, and are following these influences because they see them as experts and trust their recommendations.
How Can Micro-Influencers Help Brands?
Micro-influencers are personally invested in their crafts. They are considered as trusted sources of recommendations for followers. Micro-influencers can help your brand in a number of ways. Below, you will find reasons why choosing a micro-influencer for your social media campaign may be a better option for your brand:
- Increased Engagement
The number one reason why many marketers and brands are increasingly using micro-influencers is because of the number of engagement they inspire. A study showed that 60% higher campaign engagement rates are driven by micro-influencers. According to the same study, those campaigns are 6.7 more efficient per engagement than mega influencers who have a large following.
According to a recent study on Instagram, the more followers you have the lower your like rate. This study showed that influencers with 1k to 100k followers have 4% like rate compared to 1.6% of influencers with around 10 million followers. Nonetheless, influencers with 10K-100K followers are deemed to be the best as they get just the right amount of reach and engagement.
- More Bang For Your Buck
Social media influencers base their prices on follower count. According to Forbes, influencers with more than one million followers can earn upwards of $50K for one single sponsored post. On average, micro-influencers charges around $250 per post.
Choosing micro-influencers will allow you to maximize your marketing budget. Whether you are on a tight budget or you simply want to maximize your marketing budget, working with micro-influencers is the way to go. You will get more engagement and can even spread your budgeting across many micro-influencers in your targeted niche instead of paying all that money on just a single influencer.
Since the followers of micro-influencers are often a lot more targeted and specific to the industry of the influencer, you are likely to get better results. Imagine when you spread your budget among 5 trusted micro-influencers in your industry; you will have 5 people promoting your brand instead of just one mega influencer. This brings more engagement, trust, and sales. Don’t get wrapped up in the number of followers, it is the engagement that brings ROI and micro-influencers are the king of engagement.
- Better conversion rates
Since micro-influencers are focused on a particular niche, they are considered experts in such niche. Thus, they have loyal followers and much higher power of conversion.
But that’s not all.
Since these followers trust them, their recommendations are generally seen by their followers as trustworthy and credible which makes marketing with them more impactful. Thus, micro-influencers generate a higher conversion rate for brands.
How To Find Micro-Influencers
There are a lot of micro-influencers on social media but finding the perfect one for your brand can be difficult. To ensure that your marketing is impactful, you need to find micro-influencers that are a natural fit for your product and can tell your brand story.
Some of the ways you can find and work with micro-influencers include:
- Research On Your Own
You can find micro-influencers by making your own research. We will recommend that you start by searching through your brand’s Instagram followers to see if any of them is already following you. It will be easier for them to promote your brand if they are already following you. You can also search for profiles using a keyword and filters to narrow down your result.
- Hire An Agency
Like we mentioned above, finding micro-influencers who are a natural fit for your brand can be difficult. The best way to find them is to make use of an agency. An agency such as Cleverativity considers many factors when choosing micro-influencers. They look at the niche, size, engagement, and other important factors that affect the success of social media campaigns. We ask important questions such as:
- Does the influencer have a relevant audience for your business?
- How much engagement does the influencer have with his/her followers?
- Does he/she have enough number of followers?
Cleverativity also makes use of state-of-art social media tools to find the perfect micro-influencers and manage your campaign. Cleverativity is social media agency for big and small businesses. Working with Cleverativity will ensure you save money and get the right result from your social media campaign. Click on this link to find out how Cleverativity can help you with your next campaign.