Social media has given rise to a relatively new phenomenon: Everyday people have a chance to build huge brands and make a name for themselves. As a result, many people on social media have become modern-day, mini-celebrities. Like Hollywood stars, their words and actions influence people’s fashion, music preferences, and buying decisions.
A small portion of social media celebrities have huge followings and reach millions of people every day. Most influencers fall in the nano and micro-influencers categories; they have fewer followers but add a ton of value to their audiences. In fact, in many cases, having a smaller audience can be a good thing.
If you’ve ever felt that influencer marketing was out of reach for your brand, working with micro-influencers may be an option. Read on to find out what micro-influencers are, how to find micro-influencers on social media, and the benefits of working with them.
What Are Micro-Influencers, and Why Do They Matter?
A micro-influencer is a content creator with a relatively small following when compared with macro or mega-influencers. Their audiences are typically between 10,000 and 50,000 followers on a single platform. While they may seem small, they are mighty; a growing number of creators fall into the micro-influencer category. In fact, nearly half of all influencers fall into this category, whereas macro and mega-influencers make up less than 7% of all content creators.
This distinction is important because the world of social media tends to believe that bigger is better and that more followers will always drive more action. However, in this next section, you’ll see why this isn’t always true. It can often pay big dividends to consider micro-influencers more closely.
Why You Should Work with Micro-Influencers This Year
Brands need to know that working with big influencers is not the only way to gain traction on social media. Micro-influencers can be hidden gems, providing immense value to your content marketing strategy. Top brands like Coca-Cola, Sperry, Glossier, Sephora, Nike, and Fitbit are working with micro-influencers already and finding success!
If you’re not yet convinced, here are five primary reasons you should work with micro-influencers in 2023.
1. Easy Access
Many of social media’s most prominent influencers are represented by large agencies. Additionally, attorneys negotiate and control their public image, posted content, and brand deals. To work with these mega-influencers, you must reach out to their agent, as it is unlikely that they will (or can) respond to you directly.
Micro-influencers don’t usually have these arrangements with agency gatekeepers, which means easier access and transparent answers about financial requirements. Micro-influencer deals are great for startups and smaller brands that may not have the bandwidth for complicated negotiations and legal processes.
2. Highly Relatable
Sometimes social media influencers can seem larger than life. They spend time with A-list celebrities, attend high-profile events, and may not respond to comments on their posts. Some have a separate public relations team to handle that.
On the other hand, micro-influencers are usually real people who remain highly active on their social media profiles, responding to and interacting with followers in real-time. As a result, their followers are likely to trust their opinion and listen to them when they recommend brands. This, in turn, makes brands that work with micro-influencers look more relatable to the average person.
3. Targeted Audience
Effective marketing requires targeting a small niche with offers specific to their needs and interests. Fortunately, working with micro-influencers allows brands to achieve this goal quickly.
Big influencers build their audience across a wide range of niches. For example, the “lifestyle” industry encompasses beauty, clothing, home decor, and more. However, micro-influencers typically draw a very specific set of viewers; for instance, plant moms or theme park enthusiasts. This means their audience has already been segmented for you, making it easier to create a buyer persona, craft a relevant message, and measure results.
4. Solid, Authentic Engagement
It is common to find social media influencers with large follower counts that don’t have the time to engage with their audiences. They are often busy creating content and attending events and speaking engagements. If they do engage, someone else is usually commenting on their behalf. Unfortunately, some followers may eventually tune these influencers out because they lose their personal connection with them.
In contrast, micro-influencers are usually passionate about their niche beyond just doing business. They care about every follower and are still active on their social media profiles and groups. As a result, their followers are often more engaged with their content. Because of this, they’ll see more of that influencer’s content in their feed and believe them when they say your product or service will solve their problem.
How much do micro-influencers make? According to MagicLinks data, micro-influencers earn an average of $1.6K per casted campaign. If that sounds like a lot, compare it to the nearly $4K average of macro-influencers and the $7K average of mega-influencers. That’s part of what makes this space even more exciting: there are opportunities for great ROI. With the right micro-influencer, the fee can be well worth it.
Because micro-influencers have a more targeted and engaged audience, they can often deliver a higher conversion rate and better performance for brands they work with. In 2023 alone, MagicLinks data reveals that micro-influencers have a 24% higher average order value, compared to creators with 1M+ followers. The bottom line: micro-influencers can have a seriously positive impact on your bottom line!
Ultimately, the higher ROI makes micro-influencers a more cost-effective choice and can make all the difference for brands that are just entering influencer marketing or spending every marketing dollar wisely.
Finding Micro-Influencers Without Spending Hours Scouring Social Media
Now that you understand the benefits of working with micro-influencers, you may be excited about striking a mutually-beneficial brand deal with someone in your niche. However, you might need a clearer understanding of where or how to find micro-influencers on Instagram. After all, if they aren’t well-known, how do you find a micro-influencer to work with?
Here are a few tips you may find helpful in your search:
- Define your budget, goals, target audience, and key performance indicators
- Identify and search popular hashtags, including those unique to your location
- Take Instagram’s suggestions through the search and explore functions
- Check out which accounts are following bigger influencers
- Go where micro-influencers might hang out, including industry-based forums and social media groups
- Use an influencer marketing platform or service dedicated to matching your brand with influencers
Once you know how to find micro-influencers you’d like to work with, don’t just start sending direct messages with introductions or offers. Instead, take the time to research them, see how they represent other companies, and make sure they’re the right fit for your brand.
Influencer Marketing Is a Smart Move
Influencer marketing is a great tactic to add to your content marketing strategy because it allows you to leverage other people’s audiences to increase brand awareness, engagement, and even sales. The space is maturing and becoming more nuanced, which is a positive thing for brands. However, it’s vital to avoid getting caught up in the social media celebrity craze. When partnering with micro-influencers on YouTube, Instagram, or Tiktok, your approach should still be authentic, targeted, and intentional.
The good news is that working with a micro-influencer allows you to achieve those objectives in an accessible and cost-effective way. When you find micro-influencers willing to work toward a solid partnership, you’ll be able to meet your business goals while working with people well-aligned with your brand.