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The Inbound Playbook

Micro Influencers: Taking ‘Influencer Marketing’ To New Heights!

13 Jun 2017

Consider this: Kim Kardashian tweets about how she loves the new ‘detox tea’. She also posts a picture of her sipping the tea at her Instagram feed, with the packet of the brand displayed on the side… 

Now, if you’re one of the million fans following her on Social Media, you’re sure to take her endorsement on the brand with a positive note. You could even go ahead and purchase the ‘tea’,  if you’re a health enthusiast, after all, brands earn $6.85 in media value on average for every $1 they spend on Influencer Marketing campaigns. 

There’s no denying, we do time and again get convinced by such celebrity ‘Influencers’ to buy a product or a service. We’ve all been there and it’s also a logical move to ‘listen to’ and ‘follow’ the activities of those whom we perceive as ‘thought leaders’, ‘experts’ or ‘influencers’ in the related field or niches. 

However, with consumers becoming more aware and savvier by the day, it’s getting harder for advertisers and marketers to convince the masses on the authenticity of influencers’ engagement with products and services. 

Let’s assume for a moment Kim Kardashian does love the ‘detox tea’ and drinks it every day for her health, even then, we cannot negate the fact she could actually be doing this as an endorsement campaign, and it’s equally possible she has never tasted the product in her life. 

When the media (be it traditional or digital), is filled with celebrities and experts endorsing products left, right and center, consumers have every reason to be skeptical on the authenticity of the product, or the intention of the ‘influencers’ endorsing it – That’s where ‘Micro Influencers’ come into the picture. 

As per the definition given by author Dr. Jonah Berger of the best-selling book Contagious: Why Things Catch On, and Keller Fay Group, the leading authority on word of mouth marketing research: 

Micro-influencers are not traditional celebrities, but rather individuals who work in their category or are truly knowledgeable, passionate, authentic and are seen as a trusted source when it comes to recommendations for what to buy. 

Unlike the typical influencers including; celebrities, experts, movie stars or public figures who have ‘larger-than-life’ personas, ‘Micro-Influencers’ are mere ‘mortals’ like the rest of us. They’re those ‘mommy’ bloggers, wellness or lifestyle writers, recipe podcasters, video bloggers or fashion enthusiasts who are passionately involved in their craft and have a loyal following above 10,000 but below 100,000 in Social Media. 

Here’s why brands (and especially small businesses with not-so-deep pockets) are increasingly engaging with these ‘micro-influencers’ for their product campaigns and branding strategies, and are clocking in higher ROIs:
 

1.  Micro-Influencers Are ‘Budget Friendly’

How much do you think a top celebrity would charge you for a single post in social media to endorse your product? Studies have shown that an influencer today charges up to $300 for a job, however those having followers over 100,000 in numbers charge up to $800 per post. 

Now you can imagine how much a top celebrity with more than 1 million followers would charge you per post. Take a look at the chart below to see how much is the average price per post for each niche and average numbers of followers associated with it:

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Courtesy: We Are Social Media

On the other hand, 97% of Micro-Influencers on Instagram charge less than $500 for a branded post and 90% of them charge less than $250 per branded Facebook post. 

Given the insurmountable rates charged by celebrities (up to $7500 per Instagram post), even 100 micro-influencers would cost less than a single celebrity on Instagram. Also many micro-influencers are also happy to receive in kind, rather than cash. For instance, La Croix Sparkling Water is said to have compensated its micro-influencer by sending vouchers for free products, instead of cash.


2.  Micro-Influencers Are Authentic

How would you react if Taylor Swift endorses a premium brand of ‘dish soap’ through her Instagram feed? Would you buy into it? I highly doubt it, because not many of us can actually believe a super-rich celebrity superstar would actually do her own dishes. 

On the contrary, if a micro-influencer is posting the recipe of her new ‘salad’ or a remedy for a ‘glowing skin’ on her social media, we know she’s working on her own content, and not using a Social Media Manager to populate the feed. 

The stories are more authentic when such micro-influencers engage with full passion with the followers, reply to their questions and comment on related issues. They relate more to the ‘average person’ who find more value and trustworthiness with their product endorsement and thus base their purchase decisions on micro-influencers’ honest reviews and opinions. 

Also, as per changed algorithms of Facebook and Instagram, quality, content is prioritised more than promoted content from big brands, making authentic and organic content from micro-influencers more visible in the social media feeds.
 

3.  More Targeted Audiences – Better Engagement Rates!

Let’s say you partnered with a top of the line celebrity for your new shoe brand. Though the celebrity has over a million following on Instagram, if only a small portion of them is interested in fashion or shoes, then you’re not getting the right value on your investment. 

On the other hand, ‘micro-influencers’ are said to have more ‘targeted’ followers than the celebrity influencers or ‘macro-influencers’ that have a large but ‘divided’ follower-base. If the same shoe brand partners with 100 different ‘micro-influencers’ of serious fashion bloggers who have, say just over 1000 following each, then they would be able to connect to more targeted audiences. 

Studies from Makerly on Instagram engagement found that the more the number of followers an influencer has, the lesser is the engagement from followers with regards to ‘likes’ and ‘comments’.

The study concluded that Instagram users with fewer than 1,000 followers generated ‘likes’ 8% of the time, whereas users with 1-10 million followers earned ‘likes’ only 1.7% of the time! 

Another study from Experticity found that ‘micro-influencers’ have 22 times more conversations each week regarding recommendations on what to buy than the average Instagram users.  This way brands have more leverage in targeting more followers with high engagement rates, even though the numbers are limited to just thousands. 

Below is an awesome infographic on ‘micro-influencers’ from Shane Barker, a leading expert in Influencer Marketing:

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Finally…
 

Have you started your ‘micro influencer’ marketing yet? 

We’ll be back with more on ‘micro-influencers’ and successful industry practices/examples that have proven ‘micro-influencing’ to be the ‘go to’ tactic for generate higher ROIs. 

If you'd like further assistance or would like to discuss anything covered today, we'd love to hear from you.

Call Andy Fox (me) on (03) 5249 5570 or email andy@element7digital.com.au

Our Website is element7digital.com.au

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