Influencers are a big deal in marketing and have been for some time. These powerhouses who can move consumers from casual window shoppers to full blown brand ambassadors are hugely important for brands. What has become apparent in recent years, is how using influencers with smaller audiences can be more effective in getting your brand’s message out there than going after the bigger players. These smaller influencers, known as micro-influencers have fewer followers on social media and their reach is not nearly as wide, so how do we as brand managers locate these micro-influencers that will benefit our business the most? And how useful are they in the fight to increase sales?
Firstly, micro-influencers are far more cost-efficient than their large-scale contemporaries. Seeking out micro-influencers who are not celebrities or well-known figures, means you can sidestep paying any additional costs and instead focus on multiple micro-influencers for a single campaign. This is guaranteed to increase your chances of getting your name out there.
Going after micro-influencers also allows for better targeting. It is a common misconception that effective influencers have a larger audience. This may be true in some cases, but is an audience really large if it isn’t engaged? Many large scale influencers do not have the type of followers who hang on their every word. Their followers may have followed them when their popularity was at its highest or because they were merely following the crowd, but no longer engaged these followers are now redundant in terms of their use. Micro-influencers due to their niche appeal, have more often than not got a fanatical following who follow them out of conscious choice and not due to mob mentality. Micro-influencers have an authentic and organic group of followers, who are loyal and trustworthy. What this means for brands, is that once a micro-influencer has championed you to their followers you are much more likely to gain committed customers, who will keep coming back to your brand. In short, this means, repeat purchases and higher sales.
How to find & reach micro-influencers
You need to seek micro-influencers who have an engaged audience and a credible image. A good starting point is to use your social channels to seek out followers of your brand who are already engaged with you or your industry. This can be clearly seen through the content they post in relation to experiences they have had with you. Search relevant hashtags to discover those niche influencers. Manual search is not the only option, however, there are a number of third-party tools in circulation which allow you to search for and connect with influencers. There are listening tools that search through profiles on social platforms, or third party influencer marketing platforms that will manage the entirety of your influencer marketing campaign.
What to look for in a micro-influencer
The general feeling is that a micro influencer should have somewhere in the region of 10,000 to 100,000 followers. It is always important to note that you don’t need to focus on one micro-influencer throughout your campaigns. Sharing the content of a range of micro-influencers from established micro-influencers to very niche ones will prove useful. Working with a mixture of differently sized influencers means that you can create a varied stream of fresh content and users will want to keep coming back for more.
In the case of the opening of a new store or a live event, it is important to reach out to local influencers. These people will have strong ties with the people in the area you are operating in and will be pivotal in bringing these people to your door. These local influencers must be well respected and able to bring all aspects of the community together.
Finally, whatever you do make sure you reach out to micro influencers who share your values. You want your brand at the end of the day to be championed in a tone of voice and style that will resonate with the audience you seek to target.