Welcome to Stratezine’s Guide to Micro-Influencer Marketing

Utilizing micro-influencers in your marketing strategy increases your return on investment by eleven times. Micro-influencers, accounts that have 1,000 – 100,000 followers, are more trusted by their audience than a macro-influencer, accounts with more than 100,000 followers. Over 44% of consumers that responded to a survey by Adweek said they trust recommendations from influencers more than other forms of advertising. This trust is shown by the engagement rates we see on micro-influencer accounts. Studies show that influencer accounts that have fewer followers have a higher engagement rate. 

As you can see in the graph above, micro-influencers have the highest engagement rate. This high engagement rate leads to sales. About 50% of consumers reported to Adweek that they made purchasing decisions based on an influencer’s recommendation.

We met with social media marketers from a variety of industries to discuss their success utilizing micro-influencers in their marketing strategy. Each podcast below discusses important aspects of working with micro-influencers.

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Episodes

In this episode, we met with Kinkade to talk about why he chooses to use micro-influencers and giveaways in his social media marketing strategy.

We met with Meriah to discuss the benefits of using micro-influencers when trying to reach your audience. We discussed which metrics to focus on when partnering with a micro-influencer.

We sat down with Brent Fisher and talked about what he looks for in micro-influencers. We discussed micro-influencers’ authenticity and compensating micro-influencers through affiliate links.

We met with Briana and talked about creating lasting partnerships by working with micro-influencers who are invested in your brand. We discussed the importance of creating a contract and having clear communication with your micro-influencer.

Hailey, Tia, and Olivia from Stratezine sat down and discussed the previous podcasts and what they learned. They discuss the need for micro-influencer marketing especially since the COVID-19 pandemic pushes more and more people on to social media.

Episode 1 – Kinkade Wildman from Infuze Hydration

Ep 1 - Infuze Hydration

by Stratezine | Stratezine's Guide to Micro-Influencer Marketing

Episode Description

In this episode, we met with Kinkade to talk about why he chooses to use micro-influencers and giveaways in his social media marketing strategy.

Key TakeAways

  • Paying micro-influencers in product can be better than monetary compensation.
  • Partner with micro-influencers that create content that is similar to yours.
  • Micro-influencer marketing is experimental.

 

Why Product?

Kinkade states that he chooses to pay micro-influencers in product because it makes more monetary sense (7:55). Considering the cost of your product, if it is under $1,000, paying in product may be the best option for your brand because an influencer may charge between $100 – $1,000 for a single post on Instagram. Paying micro-influencers in product also frees up money in your budget to use in other areas of marketing because you are only expending the margin of the product. 

Another advantage to paying in product, is allowing micro-influencers to actually experience the product they’re promoting. Products are the preferred compensation by roughly 90% of micro-influencers. Kelly Fox, a micro-influencer with 2,500 followers, was paid in free product by LaCroix sparkling water and said, “I know that I am being genuinely rewarded for being an advocate…” So, both your brand and the micro-influencer win. As an added benefit, if they actually enjoy your product they are more likely to continue the conversation about your brand even after the contract is over.

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Episode 2 – Meriah Grove from Scout Social

Ep 2 - Scout Social

by Stratezine | Stratezine's Guide to Micro-Influencer Marketing

Episode Description

We met with Meriah to discuss the benefits of using micro-influencers when trying to reach your audience. We discussed which metrics to focus on when partnering with a micro-influencer.

Key TakeAways

  • Micro-influencers’ invest a lot of time to create quality content.
  • Micro-influencers reach niche audiences your brand may be unable to.
  • Micro-influencers’ engagement rates are more important than follower count.

Treat Influencers As Business Partners

Meriah stated that something she wished she’d recognized sooner was the value of influencers as content creators (23:40). Many people scroll through feeds without realizing the amount of time an influencer can spend creating a single post. Studies show that 75% of influencers can take up to three hours to create their best work. Influencers have spent years of their lives developing their skill sets and have invested in expensive equipment and software to create amazing content. This is an added value to your brand when using micro-influencers as business partners. 

A micro-influencer’s curated feed involves a huge investment of time creating content and connecting with their audience. According to Forbes, influencers can spend between 2-3 hours a day working on Instagram: responding to comments, private messaging with followers, or reposting follower content. In 2017, 12.3% of influencers reported to #Hashoff that being an influencer was their sole form of employment. Working as a micro-influencer takes time and effort to develop their brand. Treating an influencer as a business will allow you to develop a higher level of cooperation and a lasting partnership.

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Episode 3 – Brent Fisher from MainGear

Ep 3 - MainGear

by Stratezine | Stratezine's Guide to Micro-Influencer Marketing

Episode Description

We sat down with Brent Fisher and talked about what he looks for in micro-influencers. We discussed micro-influencers’ authenticity and compensating micro-influencers through affiliate links.

Key TakeAways

  • Align with a micro-influencer that matches your brand’s style and audience
  • Micro-Influencers are perceived as more trustworthy
  • Professionalism in things such as spelling and communication can be telling on how the partnership will go 
  • Influencer marketing can be compensated through product trade or affiliate links

Influencer and Brand Consistency

Finding the right influencer is an important tool for success in social media marketing. Brent said many of the influencers he uses are gamers on Twitch (2:41). These gaming influencers connect to his market. Gamers rely heavily on well-known influencers to make purchasing decisions. While 74% of consumers actively avoid advertisements, 67% of consumers rely on influencers to determine product viability. Brent cautions, however, to be careful of picking the wrong influencer because you could turn off your audience entirely.  

To find the right influencer for your brand you must know your target audience. Anna-Marie Odubote, the Creative Copywriter at Social Chain said, “To find influencers that fit your business, you need to have an in-depth understanding of your own brand and how you want to be perceived.” You can develop this in-depth understanding by utilizing social listening tools, monitoring your competitors’ audience, and understanding what your audience expects from your brand. From there you can discover the micro-influencers that your audience gravitates towards by monitoring hashtags and being active on influencer marketing platforms such as, BuzzStream, HYPR, and TRIBE

One final thought on choosing the right influencer is staying true to your company’s style and brand voice. If you choose to partner with a micro-influencer who creates content that doesn’t align with your brand image, you run the risk of losing the trust of your followers. 

The influencer’s style is important to their audience. As Statusphere puts it, “Followers know their influencers’ personalities and if something doesn’t match, they’ll immediately suss it out as being fake.” Without authenticity on both ends, the partnership is ineffective.

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Episode 4 – Briana Fisher from Purple

Ep 4 - Purple

by Stratezine | Stratezine's Guide to Micro-Influencer Marketing

Episode Description

We met with Briana and talked about creating lasting partnerships by working with micro-influencers who are invested in your brand. We discussed the importance of creating a contract and having clear communication with your micro-influencer.

Key TakeAways

  • Partnerships can last beyond a single campaign
  • Partner with a micro-influencer who is invested in the brand
  • Follow up and communicate with your micro-influencer
  • Be transparent with the micro-influencer about expected results from the campaign

Building successful partnerships

Briana explains that when you work with an influencer for the first time it is a testing ground to decide if you want to continue working with them (8:25). When you and a micro-influencer are starting a partnership, it’s important to have open and consistent communication. This is where you will start to learn about their reliability as an influencer. If they are struggling to respond, you may need to rethink working with them. 

We strongly recommend that, like any outside hire, you establish a written contract with clear deadlines and expectations. If you want an Instagram Story, that needs to be in the contract. If you want posts on multiple platforms or content completed by a certain date, that needs to be in the contract. Without clear directions, don’t be surprised if they fail to meet your expectations or take an alternate route. 

However, too much micromanagement stifles the influencer. Allowing creative liberty encourages the influencer to want to work with you in the future. Shane Barker noted that “71.2% of influencers in a study felt that their honesty, openness, and sense of humor are all necessary to keep their audience engaged.” Micromanaging what they create prevents them from showing that personality, turning their content into just another branded ad. This defeats the purpose of working with them.  

Working with a micro-influencer more than once allows you to try new platforms and strategies. It also lessens risk because you have become familiar with their style and work habits. The micro-influencer, on the other hand, will feel more secure interacting with your brand because they know they will be compensated appropriately for their hard work. Forward Influence explained that having a micro-influencer that is associated with your brand on multiple platforms for an extended period “can build stronger brand recognition and exposure to their audiences that may result in purchases.”

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Episode 5 – Wrap up

Ep 5 - Wrap up

by Stratezine | Stratezine's Guide to Micro-Influencer Marketing

Episode Description

Hailey, Tia, and Olivia from Stratezine sat down and discussed the previous podcasts and what they learned. They discuss the need for micro-influencer marketing especially since the COVID-19 pandemic pushes more and more people on to social media.

Key TakeAways

  • Micro-influencer marketing relies both on the image of the brand and the influencer
  • Micro-influencers can engage with their audience more because of their smaller followings
  • Using micro-influencers that share a similar audience with you can increase your success with micro-influencers
  • Micro-influencer marketing works because consumers trust people over brands
  • The current social media marketing climate, especially with COVID-19, relies heavily on micro-influencers

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