The Microinfluencer Advantage: Why Marketers Must Pay Attention + How They Can Find Their Match😎
We don’t really buy stuff off the shelf or online without first having someone recommend it to us. Usually, these recommendations come from either our family or friends. Of late, however, another set of confidantes who are known as ‘microinfluencers’ have been shouldering the responsibility quite well.
While it’s good news for those ‘getting’ a free advice, what could it mean to brands? Should marketers really be chasing this new brigade and get them onboard? The answer is YES. And, here’s why.
#1 They have a niche audience
Micro influencers pick a niche that interests them and so cater to a specific audience. Fans trust them for their knowledge. They value their opinions and are far more accepting of their advice and suggestions so much so that they won’t hesitate to make a ‘recommended’ purchase!
A study by Twitter and Annalect confirms the same. Apparently, around 40% survey respondents admitted having made an online purchase after seeing it being used by an influencer.
A mega or a celeb influencer (who is often seen as a larger than life figure) on the other hand, may not exercise the same level of influence over their diverse fan base. You may be seduced by their massive fan following but let me tell you that numbers don’t matter anymore. In a study, Markerly found that more the followers an influencer has, lower the engagement rate. After analysing 800,000 Instagram users with at least 1K followers, they found out that there is a downward correlation between follower count and post likes.
#2 They get more engagement
Let’s talk stats. Micro-influencers get a 60% higher engagement than the big fishes. They have 22.2x more conversations than an average consumer!
This two-way communication is feasible because of a manageable subscriber count and also because they are passionate about what they do. They have an authentic voice and can create the buzz for your brand. In comparison, the big guys with hundreds of thousands of followers are almost always hard pressed for time. Besides, they aren’t likely to do more than just post content on their profile.
#3 You won’t go bankrupt collaborating with them!
A micro-influencer charges significantly less than top influencers. Some of them may even partner for FREE or in exchange for free goodies. Ideally, you should collaborate with a group of micro-influencers. This way you can expand your reach to different demographics and see better engagement.
If you are wondering how much micro influencers charge this survey results may help. However, let me tell you that these figures are only indicative. Because the influencer marketing industry is unregulated, every micro influencer (at least those who aren’t aware of their status) will charge a distinct fee. So, technically it’s impossible to quote an estimate or a range.
How do you find a RIGHT micro-influencer for your brand?
It’s true that it can be challenging and time-consuming to find an exact match. After all, you don’t want to just work with anybody. But what’s also true is that you WILL find one!
Before I give you a rundown on your search strategy remember this: their values must align with your brand image and aesthetics. For example, let’s say you are a sustainable clothing label. It will be sheer blasphemy if you collaborate with someone who wears or reviews brands that care little about the environment. Moreover, if you are scaling up your efforts on one platform, it’s important that the micro-influencer is well-versed in it.
Now, over to how you can cherry-pick micro-influencers.
#1 Use tools to analyse
There are tools like BuzzSumo, Klear, NeoReach, NinjaOutreach that can make your search more relaxed. You can narrow down your search for various networks, locations, and categories. What will be better and rewarding is if you take into account the demographics of their followers too. Reason? Your message should reach an interested and relevant audience base.
Let’s say your target audience is females between the ages of 20 and 30 years in London. But, if you partner with someone whose followers (maximum) are based out of Edinburgh and are between 35–40 years in Manchester then your decision is no less than a disaster.
#2 Approach a micro influencer who’s already your follower
It will be so much easier for you to work with someone who already knows and adores your brand. Then, you won’t have to go back and forth convincing them to become your brand advocates. Your association would be organic and authentic. When they review or promote your products, their followers also won’t feel like they are being talked into. This way every piece will fit into the puzzle.
But, you can’t manually search for a micro-influencer from among your fanbase! Use tools like Gatsby.ai that give you access to the customer database of micro-influencers who’ve bought your products. It will definitely put you in a sweet spot.
#3 Fine tune your search with #tags
Make a list of popular industry hashtags as it narrows down your search. Use these #tags on Twitter or Instagram to filter the results. In fact, I must add that I quite like the “similar accounts” suggestions on Instagram. Perhaps, next time you are on a shortlisting spree you should check out ‘suggested’ accounts too.
You can also do a general search of blog posts where your brand name is featured or look at popular bloggers here, on Medium. If you’re looking for a YouTuber then add YouTube in the search bar. In the end, it all boils down to going on the right platform to look for your influencer partner!
#4 Look at how engaged their audience is
By engagement, I don’t mean to say ‘likes’ their video or photo posts receive. Rather, look at the number of shares and comments. More of both suggest that their audience connects with the post and have taken out time to write back or shared it so that more can read or see it. A ‘like’, on the other hand, is an effortless tap on the screen. After this, observe the nature of interaction between the micro-influencer and their fan. It should give you a fair idea of whether your brand and their values vibe or not.
What after finalising the micro-influencer?
Celebrate, celebrate! Ok, not just yet because you are yet to ideate on the campaign. Here’s what you should do right now.
#1 Solicit ideas
Micro-influencers know their community and the kind of content their followers respond to. Since they have an authentic voice they can create content that will generate the right amount of noise your brand can benefit from. They are also a creative bunch so it’s a good idea to talk to them and exchange ideas.
#2 Embrace the power of storytelling
If you want to really strike a chord with your audience then you have got to pick a narrative and tell a story. It is what will set you apart from your competitors. In fact, 92% of consumers WANT brands to make ads feel like a story! Not that they won’t know you’re selling your product despite your storytelling, but at least with a story you create a more believable, humanistic angle. Wait. It gets better. Messages that are delivered as stories are 22x more memorable. It creates a chance for people to get intrigued and to draw them into your world and turn them into customers!
Final step: Measuring the ROI
Start looking at metrics like engagement rates, brand awareness (increased social media following), impressions, comments, traffic, reach etc. These may not be financial earnings and don’t really fit the balance sheet but they do throw a light on your campaign success and shortcomings. You can accordingly strategise and improvise. Use the same tools you use to search influencers from your industry to closely analyse your campaign performance.
Over to you guys! Find the best micro-influencer who can be the torch-bearer for your brand!
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