The Rise of The Micro-Influencer


“Influencer”
influencernoun 

/ˈɪn.flu.ən.sər/ /ˈɪn.flu.ən.sɚ/

Someone who affects or changes the way that people behave

Is there such a thing as being too popular?

From the Kardashian’s and the Kylie Jenner’s plastered on your social media feeds promoting their latest detox teas (insert eye rolls) to the relatively unknown blogger teaming with brands, it’s safe to say that influencers have changed the marketing world drastically in a very short space of time.

An influencer can be described in two ways: by the number of followers they have on their social media and the expertise a person can share on a subject.

OR let’s put it this way: Influencers= Following + Knowledge

When we classify influencers, we put them into 3 categories based on their following:

  • High- (Kylie Jenner). These are your high profile celebrities with millions and millions of followers.
  • Medium- These are also known as the magic middle/power middle 100,000-200,000 followers
  • Micro-influencer- 100,000 followers and under. (Remember them- they will be important later)

There has always been debate on quality versus quantity in the influencer world when it comes to brand partnerships. In an oversaturated market of social media ‘wannabes’, who are the people to trust? Who are the most genuine?

Celebs are constantly being accused by the public of promoting products just for the revenue and, as a result, their credibility is questioned daily, leading to the inevitable “unfollow” button being clicked. Noted, this tends to happen once a follower spots the third body scrub or teeth whitening product sitting on their page from multiple brands- leading followers to question their loyalties. We wanted to find out if this was indeed the case and whether celebs were in fact losing at the influencer/brand partnership game.

We surveyed the UK public of 2000 UK adults, with the help of Atomik Research, to find out the public’s perception of influencers to see if there was an impact (if any) on their lives and where their trust lies.

Turns out when it comes to trust, the micro-influencers win! Of those surveyed, 63%, of people say that they are more likely to trust an influencer with a smaller following over a larger following (36%).

However, the trust when it comes to brand collaborations is a mixed one. 41% admit that they are more likely to trust an influencers recommendations more while only 18% feel they trust them less. On the other hand, 41% say that it makes no difference to them.

It’s safe to say that influencers certainly peak the interests of their network, no matter their following. 45% of people admitted that seeing something on an influencer’s page would make them intrigued to try the product or more likely to buy it, while 40% said that they would certainly click on the product even if this didn’t end up in a purchase.

So what about results? How much of this marketing is actually turning into an increase in sales? Does this kind of activity work for brands?

It would seem so.

73% of the nation admitted that an influencer’s recommendations have encouraged them to buy a product. 37% say this has only happened once or twice while 36% say this has happened several times.

So now that we know that you don’t have to break the bank hiring a big time celebrity to promote a product, perhaps micro-influencers, or many micro-influencers may be the way to get results.

The advantage of a micro-influencer is that while they are trying to build their own brands and social media advocates, they will work for very little- or free of charge in fact! Perhaps keeping your audience engaged with 10 micro-influencers instead of one celebrity is the better route to take.

Now that this is a potential option, the next question is, which areas do you concentrate on and where are the most loyal followers?

According to the poll, the most popularly followed influencers turned out to be Lifestyle bloggers (36%), Food bloggers (34%) Celebrities (33%) and Beauty Bloggers (32%).

Facebook wins the social media award for most followed (78%), followed by Twitter (38%), Instagram (31%) and YouTube (41%).

While there is no hard and fast rule, perhaps your next campaign could use the help of the micro-influencer. Like an army, their power certainly comes in numbers and for a generation who are searching for genuine people and credibility, they could just be the best way to win over your audience.

And if you happen to pick an Instagrammer worth their salt, you end up with your product in some pretty creative and visually attractive shots.

 

 

BY ABIGAIL CRAMP

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