In the endless ocean of the digital world, social media posts by companies and brands are often overlooked or do not attract the attention of its audience at a desired level. To improve engagement, brands often choose to promote their products by cooperating with influencers thought to be fit for the brand. Influencer marketing – which is often described as the digital version of word-of-mouth (WOM) – is deemed highly advantageous for brands because it increases visibility and recognition on social media platforms.

Who are these influencers?
By definition, an influencer is a person who influences or changes people’s behavior. In today’s new media world, an influencer is a social media personality who has the power and popularity to influence their social media followers.

When considering an influencer marketing campaign for your brand, it is important to understand the differences between the two primary types of influencers: mega-influencers and micro-influencers.

Who is a mega-influencer?
Mega-influencers have 50,000+ followers and their online presence is often related to their fame from other arenas. Mega-influencers are often paid to post brand-owned content, and they deliver this content to a large number of followers. It is an example of a full paid promotion in the influencer marketing world.

Who is a micro-influencer?
Micro-influencers are content creators who use social media actively. Even if they do not earn money in return, these people share info about the products they love. Many people are included in the micro-influencer category, from customers who have a modest number of followers to brand advocates. These people typically have less than 50,000 followers.

Studies show that micro-influencers’ posts are often much more successful than posts of mega-influencers who have hundreds of thousands – or sometimes millions – of followers. Mega-influencers’ lifestyles and attitudes are often considered fake and serving only the advertisers’ needs, while micro-influencers are considered to be more sincere and trustworthy.

Furthermore, consumers often generally aware that mega-influencers get paid for their promotional activity, and are less likely to believe in the mega-influencers’ endorsements for products. Micro-influencers, on the contrary, share posts about their favorite products and they do so not because they get paid for it, but because they love the products and use them.

Why brands should use micro-influencers more often
According to a report published by influencer.co, micro-influencers with 2,000-100,000 followers get paid between $130 and $260 per Instagram post. And for influencers with more than 100,000 followers, the price tag can reach up to $1,000 per single post.

Micro-influencers generally stand out as people who inform their followers in the most credible way. They are experts on a particular subject and they tend to have a content-focused follower base. They are credible and trustworthy and they are followed as people who share their passions and interests honestly.

Micro-influencers have a certain degree of originality which is hard to get elsewhere. Their personal and sincere relationships with audiences lead to successful influencer marketing campaigns.

Micro-influencers often have above-average interaction rates. In addition, participation rates of micro-influencers channels are usually higher than average because the audience is interested in the subject matter they cover, and this works well with social media algorithms.

Thus attention is shifting from access and number of followers to participation rate, which is becoming an increasingly important criteria marketers consider when choosing the right influencers for their brands.

Last but not least, micro-influencers are extremely cost-effective for small businesses and brands that want to implement marketing campaigns at a reasonable price point.

Until recently, consumer brands have tended to opt for promotions and events involving mega-influencers. However, as the most recent research findings suggest, brands might want to rethink their spending patterns and seek other solutions to get closer to their audiences through the use of micro-influencers. Will brands remain indifferent to these most recent findings or will they apply the newly discovered channels? We’ll have to wait and see.

Raci Seymen is the senior copywriter at Aristo Communications in Istanbul, Turkey. You can read more on the work and expertise of Aristo Communications here: www.aristoiletisim.com

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