January 3, 2019
Influencer marketing takes the idea of the traditional celebrity endorsement and places it into today’s content-driven marketing campaigns. We’re all familiar with ads featuring trusted, well-known personalities, but he majority of brands are not able to fork out the required marketing spend to capture big celebrities for their marketing campaigns. However, there are other routes to gaining exposure from well-known personalities!
Part of the beauty of influencer marketing is that it isn’t limited to expensive movie stars or famous musicians. Thanks to social media, smaller influencers with highly-engaged fan bases are readily available to marketing teams for a fraction of the cost.
The difference between celebrities, macro-influencers, and micro-influencers
Macro influencers have huge social media followings, but their fame is not as far reaching as that of celebrities — generally limited to the one or two platforms they are successful on. This makes them a little more specialized, but also much more effective in converting audiences.
Social Baker looked into engagement data on influencer collaboration and found that macro-influencers with between 250,000 and 1 million followers can increase engagement by up to 180%. Furthermore, when using a macro influencer with over 1 million followers, a single post can result in an 1000% increase in engagement when compared to vanilla social media posts.
Micro influencers are the best option for small brands, or those in niche markets. Generally featuring a follower count of 5000 to 250 000, these influencers are much more accessible. They generally manage their own social media profiles and are much more affordable than other options.
Don’t let the small follower numbers deceive you — when it comes to conversions, micro influencers are at the top of the tree. When compared to the macro influencer engagement rates outlined above, micro influencers convert 60% more (Social Baker). Combine that with much cheaper costs (a few hundred a post compared to a few thousand) and micro influencers quickly start to make good business sense.
What they lack in reach, micro influencers make up for in authentic, targeted messaging to their highly-engaged audience of followers. When choosing your micro influencer, opt for authenticity and alignment — you want a spokesperson that is right for your product and brand.
In the glorious history of marketing, there was a period when celebrities were the epitome of high-impact campaigns. From Michael Jackson to Michael Jordan, celebrities have been dominating brand endorsements for what feels like forever.
Just tune-in to any Super Bowl to see star-studded advertisements that reach audiences (and budgets) of well over 6 figures.
Celebrities command large, loyal fanbases, with millions of followers on any given social media channel. The clear distinction between a celebrity and a macro influencer is exposure: a celebrity is generally a pop-culture icon and instantly recognizable by almost anyone.
Luckily for brands, celebrities are no longer the only ones with enormous fan bases.
How to find the right influencer for your brand
In reality, most businesses won’t be looking at celebrities for their influencer marketing — nor should they. The beauty of social media influencers is that when chosen correctly, they can create a swell of brand advocates who are highly receptive to your brand image.
As mentioned before, this comes from choosing influencers who can authentically vouch for your product, and are already aligned with your brand’s products. But how to find this perfect influencer? Here are some quick tips to help you on your search:
Tip #1: find out what they cover and who their audience is
Crawl potential influencers’ profile pages to find out what their audience looks like. Check the comments section, shared posts and other content to see if it’s the right audience for you. Doing so will give you a good idea if they are interested in what you have to offer.
Like in any marketing campaign, there has to be a clear connection between your product/brand and the audience’s interests. Take your time doing this — a mistargeted influencer campaign can backfire very quickly.
Tip #2: Check out their metrics
Performance metrics are of course, incredibly important in any marketing campaign. Influencers are no different. Some influencers will have recorded their performance as part of their sales pitch, but it’s more reliable to check their numbers for yourself.
Look at the likes, comments and/or shares they’re receiving per post over a 30 day period. Then, divide that number by how many posts they’ve uploaded in that same 30 days. This should give you an average, which you can multiply by 100 to get a percentage-based engagement rate for the 30 days.
Keep in mind if a page has a large following but a disproportionately small amount of engagement, it could be inauthentic, or a fake.
Tip #3: set clear and realistic goals
Communicate clearly with influencers about what KPIs you are expecting, and try to be realistic.
Be clear what you are trying to achieve and set realistic goals for the influencer.
Ask them to share what’s worked well in the past — this is great as a reference point and inspiration source for content ideas. Try to set KPIs relative to their channel, follower count and average engagement rates.
Make influencer marketing a key part of your social media strategy. With authentic and aligned influencers on your side, you’ll be able to access new and engaged audiences faster than ever before.