How Brands Can Use Micro Influencers to Raise Awareness

Mega Success With a Mega Budget?

Brands or marketers who are looking to work with influencers might think that mega influencers – those influencers who have more than 1 million followers and may also be celebrities – can offer them the most bang for their buck. It’s easy to understand why brands might make that mistake when trying out digital marketing.

You may recall a 2016 collaboration between singer Selena Gomez and CocaCola. When Gomez shared a photo of herself holding a bottle of the soda on Instagram, it became the site’s most-liked photo ever. The campaign was clearly successful at raising brand awareness: the post was liked over 4 million times in less than a month and has since been liked over 7 million times. In fact, Instagram users are still commenting on it almost four years later!

However, the effectiveness of this campaign is due not just to the fact that Gomez has a large following; Coke’s product is relevant to pretty much every demographic. Had a brand tried to advertise a niche product or service, the young singer’s followers may not have engaged quite as much. And that’s a big risk to take when brands are paying Gomez $800,000 per post. Not every brand has a budget of that size.

When Bigger Isn’t Better

Fortunately, marketing with micro influencers can be successful despite the influencer’s smaller network. In fact, an expert who is a thought leader in her field can earn the trust of a loyal group of followers who are specifically interested in that niche. Those followers may be able to communicate more directly with the influencer rather than being lost in the crowd. And that engagement can form the basis of an ongoing dialog.

This isn’t just speculation. ExpertVoice found in their study that 82 percent of consumers are very likely to follow the recommendation of a micro-influencer. Industry experts are already recommending that brands focus on influencers with between 1,000 and 10,000 followers (influencers with fewer than 1,000 followers are known as nano influencers). Brands should take advantage of those loyal followers, who may be more swayed than the followers of mega influencers who are not experts or able to maintain such personal relationships with followers.

Compare the cost of working with a single macro influencer to that of working with micro influencers with followers that are more likely to be converted to buyers. Some of these influencers charge just $50 per post, which any brand can afford, while influencers with larger networks can charge $1,000 per sponsored post. Micro-influencers may also agree to work with a brand in exchange for a product rather than a fee.

While a smaller influencer engages more with your campaign, they may also be more flexible than bigger ones and more concerned with impressing the company. This already works well for some brands that often use influencer marketing and it is often the insider tip for a successful campaign.

Micro Influencers Are Perceived as “People Like Me”

This is why companies shouldn’t overlook micro influencer marketing, with influencers who have between 1,000 and 50,000 followers. This category includes bloggers who have always used the written word to describe their experiences or vloggers who use videos to tell a story. Followers can not only learn about new products or companies from bloggers but may seek out those bloggers’ opinions before making a purchase. Blog posts are also easily searched whereas multimedia may not be. Brands can even use Google to find the top influencers whose networks overlap with the brand’s desired target audience.

Brands should look for influencers whose niche aligns with their own brands. The following are a few common niches for product marketing with influencers:

Icon for Beauty and Fashion category in micro influencers marketing campaign
Beauty & Fashion
Icon for Baby and Parenting category in micro influencers marketing campaign
Baby & Parenting
Icon for Travel category in micro influencers marketing campaign
Travel
Icon for Home and Car category in micro influencers marketing campaign
Home & Car
Icon for Fitness category in micro influencers marketing campaign
Sport & Fitness
Icon for Lifestyle category in micro influencers marketing campaign
Lifestyle

Furthermore, consumers may be more likely to believe that the micro influencers whom they follow have actually used the product or service that’s being discussed. Buyers often recognize that mega influencers and celebrities have rarely – if ever – used the products in their sponsored posts. If consumers ignore social media marketing because they do not believe the message, the money spent on those influencer campaigns is wasted.

Some influencers are considered lifestyle influencers because they relate their everyday lives to their followers rather than following a specific niche. This fact highlights the idea that many social media influencers are everyday people who have worked diligently to grow their networks.

Brands should examine the type of content that the influencer creates and shares to determine if they will be a good match. When a company collaborates with an influencer with aligning values, niche, and brand, the content appears authentic. Inauthentic content can harm both the influencer and the advertiser’s brand.

Finding Influencers to Work With

Illustration of business man planning a video for a micro influencers marketing campaign

An influencer marketing platform can help brands look for suitable influencer partners. These platforms allow brands or marketers to search influencer databases that include information such as network size, social media channels, conversion rates, amount of engagement, and niche. A platform can also help a brand find an influencer who is open to sponsored content on a specific site. For example, you might want to reach consumers on Youtube or Twitter rather than Pinterest or Facebook. A brand may even be able to find an influencer to work with on a longterm basis rather than simply working together for a single sponsored post.

These platforms can then help brands invite influencers to campaigns and manage those campaigns, including amplification and payment. The power of these platforms becomes obvious when managing tens or hundreds of micro influencers rather than a single celebrity influencer. Influencer marketing campaign management tasks can become quite time-consuming.

Brands that are willing to try a micro influencer campaign will soon understand why bigger isn’t always better, at least, when it comes to influencer marketing.

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