The Ultimate Guide To Influencer Marketing

What is an ‘influencer’? 

Have you ever recommended a restaurant, a fun day out or even your favourite perfume to a friend? Yes! Congratulations, you’re an influencer! This is because you have given out an honest review and recommendation to someone you believe would enjoy and be inspired by a product or service.

Social Media Influencers work in the same way. We classify an Influencer as someone with 1,000+ genuine followers on a social platform. Every influencer holds their own niche audience with like-minded tastes and opinions. Influencers have built their own following from scratch and keep their followers because their posts are inspiring, engaging and useful to their followers buying decisions.

If not, we simply just unfollow.

Why use influencers for your brand?

Stuck at home with little to do during 2020, social media usage surged on many platforms such as Instagram, Tiktok and YouTube.

Statista reported in October that the UK was home to 45 million active social media users in 2020. That translated to a social media penetration rate of 66 percent of the population of the UK! This shift in consumer habits should ultimately transform your budget to follow where your audience’s eyeballs are now looking. If that doesn’t turn yours, then the recent survey by Influencer Marketing Hub should. They found that users aged 16 to 64 now spend 2 hours 29 minutes, PER DAY, using social media!

These trends show us that Influencer Marketing cannot be ignored as a way to build conversation, awareness and engagement through authentic, relatable and trustworthy reviews among brands target audiences. Influencer Marketing works because consumers trust those they follow.

Around 65% of people discover a new brand or product through an influencer at least once a week (24% say they find one daily!)

Understanding the difference between each tier of influencers

The industry now categorises influencers under 3 key tiers (as if we haven’t heard enough about tiers already!) based on the number of followers on their social media account. These tiers provide a convenient way to understand what to expect from each level of influencers and recognise what influencers will work best for your campaigns objectives. Let’s break down the tiers and what differentiates them.

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  • Micro influencers have between 1k and 30k followers on their social platform. These influencers nourish their relationship of their loyal following community and are trusted to make reliable brand recommendations. When it comes to strong engagement, authenticity and truthful brand story telling, these are your go to guys!

  • Mid-tier influencers have between 30k and 300k followers on their social platform. They tend to have an engaged audience and are still to be considered authentic. This tier hits the sweet spot for an impactful reach and awareness.

  • Macro influencers are well known internet stars and have between 300k – 1million followers on their social platform. If you want your campaign to get lots of eyeballs without using a celebrity, macro-influencers are a good place to start! They have a diverse follower range and are considered to have authority within their field.

Recognising the high value of micro influencers – it's not all about the followers!

As the influencer industry has matured and marketing measuring technologies have improved, brands have realised that large follower count isn’t necessarily the best option for reach, awareness or even influence!

Study after study shows the positive impact of micro influencer marketing campaign.

Influencer Marketing Hub analysed 100,000+ influencer profiles across leading platforms; Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter to see if there were variations in the engagement rate depending on number of followers. They made a definitive conclusion: influencers with a high number of followers have lower engagement than those with fewer followers.

The traditional approach to influencer recruitment was to pay the influencer with the biggest following in order to reach large amounts of people.

However, Influencer Marketing is not a one-size-fits-all strategy. The key is to work with a powerful mix of micro and mid-tier influencers on a campaign to allow for a diversity and authenticity. They are more likely to have a greater influence and provide the same reach as using one macro influencer!

Working with a powerful mix of micro-influencers on a campaign allows for a diverse range of stories and reviews that connect with audiences on a more personal level and provide the same reach as using just one macro influencer!

Micro influencers are seen by many as a ‘go to’ source when it comes to deciding on a purchase intent in the area that they specialise in. They have higher engagement, having grown and formed close relationships with their niche audience by responding to comments, questions and direct messages. As a result, micro influencers give brand related advice which feels as if it’s coming from a trusted friend.

Dr Jonah Berger reported that influencers have up to 22.2 times more conversations each week regarding recommendations on what to buy versus an average consumer. Demonstrating the high impact of these recommendations, 82 percent of consumers who were surveyed for the study, reported they were highly likely to follow a recommendation made by a micro influencer. They deliver on the promise of connection and that’s why audiences love them!

The reality is, people trust and take note of micro influencers as the relationship between an influencer and a follower is earned rather than just a follow because they are a ‘celebrity’.

Therefore, I firmly believe brands must move towards using micro-influencers to build successful influencer marketing campaigns!

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