The Power of Micro-Influencers
If you open up your Instagram right now, you’ll probably find your favorite celeb raving about the latest weight loss tea, or showing off their brand new watch followed by #ad at the end of their caption. Although still fairly new, influencer marketing is a tactic that social media users are accustomed to seeing while scrolling through their favorite platforms, and has proven to be extremely successful to many brands, big or small. However, as influencer marketing becomes more and more common, consumers are starting to become skeptical of mega-influencers who post sponsored content. Users are less likely to feel a connection with someone who has over a million followers, and therefore are less likely to purchase the product they are advertising.
The solution: Micro-influencers.
Micro-influencers are defined as online personalities that have less than 10,000 followers. Brands are finding it more beneficial to collaborate with micro-influencers to reach a niche market, rather than huge influencers to reach a mass market. Micro-influencers are also known to have a higher engagement rate on average compared to mega-influencers. This is because their audiences are more likely to relate to the influencer and develop a level of trust with someone who shares similar interests as them.
Microsegmentation is key for brands seeking to expand into new target markets. Reaching a niche-market has proven to be a profitable growth strategy for companies implementing micro-influencers into their marketing approach. To make a bigger impact with a target demographic, a skin care brand can, for example, micro-segment their target from “females ages 15-25” to “females ages 15-25, who live on the west coast, and love playing sports.” Companies such as Sephora and Fashion Nova have implemented this strategy and have seen successful results.
Although still a fairly new brand, Daniel Wellington is an accessories brand that pioneered the micro-influencer movement. Rather than investing in 1-3 mega-influencers, the brand made the bold decision to reach out to a handful of Instagrammers with 10,000 or less followers and a high engagement rate to promote their watches. According to Forbes, within four years of investing about $15,000, they made a profit of around $200,000,000 from micro-influencer marketing.
With high engagement rates and even higher profit margins, brands should consider affiliating with micro-influencers. However, influencer marketing will only benefit businesses with a good strategic marketing plan. It’s important for brands to know how to have a good balance between micro-influencers and mega-influencers in order to see a high return on investment.
The fashion brand Revolve is a fantastic example of a business with a strategic influencer marketing strategy. According to fashion and beauty blog Glossy, 70% of Revolve’s 2018 sales came from promotions of its 3,500 affiliated influencers, while the other 30% came from promoted Instagram posts.
Revolve collaborates with a wide array of influencers from supermodel Kendall Jenner, who currently has over 117 million followers, to micro-influencers with less than 10,000 followers. They also added a section on their website that allows fans of the brand to apply to be an affiliate, opening up the opportunity to add more influencers to their team. Revolve has their influencers add #RevolveAroundTheWorld to their posts, allowing potential customers to search through photos of both mega and micro-influencers wearing the brand’s latest styles. This fashion brand has truly mastered the art of influencer marketing.
It is pivotal for companies to develop a data-driven strategy when seeking influencers to collaborate with to ensure they are reaching their target demographic.
Due to the success of adding micro-influencers to the mix, it’s critical for brands to be aware of who their niche market is and who can best connect with them. Social media is a powerful tool, and the right influencer can be what your business needs to bring in a massive amount of new customers.
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