What Is Influencer Marketing And How Can It Help Your Brand?

The online marketing realm has evolved considerably over the past decade. We’ve gone from creating backlinks via bottom-of-the-barrel web content to requiring long-form content that engages and informs. We’ve gone from gimmicks that try to fool search engines to requiring organic SEO practices that take more time to implement but perform better in the long run. Social media marketing has ballooned from a would-be-nice item in your marketing budget to a necessity that should be finely honed, analyzed and optimized.

Influencer marketing is one aspect of social media marketing that has become ever more important as the need for authentic, user-generated content has increased. Nowadays, there’s an entire universe of influencers, particularly on Instagram, who can help brands gain traction and establish a core following.

Influencer marketing is the practice of brands partnering with these influencers to promote their products. If you’re trying to sell a product to a public which is almost automatically skeptical of new companies, doubtless you can see the value of influencer marketing.

To the consumer, a trusted influencer is similar to though not as trustworthy as a friend. According to a Nielsen study in 2015, 83% of consumer respondents said they trust recommendations of friends and family. According to Forbes, a 2019 study reported in Adweek found that 49.3% of consumers have made a purchase based off an influencer’s recommendation. This demonstrates that, although influencers aren’t trusted anywhere near the level of a friend or family member, just about half of consumers still trust them enough to integrate them into the purchase decision-making process. That statistic combined with a ROI of at least $6.50 for every $1 spent makes influencer marketing a must if you’re trying to promote a product that may not otherwise gain traction.

Different Types Of Influencer Marketing

You don’t have to look too hard on Instagram to find some sort of celebrity endorsing a product. While it may seem that your ultimate goal should be to come to the attention of one of these mega-influencers, that kind of exposure is not all it’s cracked up to be. Meanwhile, much smaller nano-influencers can bring you huge return on your investment while sticking with you for the long term, which is something social media audiences look for.

Here’s a rundown of the four types of influencers, from most followers to least, as well as how effective they can be for your brand.

  • Mega-Influencer: This is a famous person, first and foremost. They have at least one million followers and a very diverse audience. But since they’re so big, they tend not to have a very close relationship with their audience; hence, their audience trusts them the least compared to smaller influencers. Given the amount these influencers tend to charge, this is the least cost-effective influencer group to tap.
  • Macro-Influencers: These are generally popular personalities with between 100,000 and 1 million followers. Many of them started as virtually unknown bloggers who struck the right chord with their audience and watched their follower count balloon. Unfortunately, when this happens they not only start charging much more for endorsements, but they receive so many offers that their credibility with their audience begins to take a hit. For instance, if they’re seen promoting a particular product, and thereafter they never mention that product again, their audience is sensitive to this, and that can damage trust. This in turn reduces their cost-effectiveness to brands – especially smaller brands.
  • Micro-Influencers: These guys and girls have between 10,000 and 100,000 followers and are generally considered industry or niche experts. These people have worked their way up and become the go-to person that consumers and other influencers look to for expertise. They’re growing, but they’re still pretty close with their audience. They may command a high cost, but they’re also highly effective at promoting products they love to a trusting following. If you can afford to engage with them, the relationship is likely to pay huge dividends.
  • Nano-Influencer: This is a rapidly growing segment of influencers with less than a thousand followers. Some are scam artists, but if you engage with PopTribe you won’t need to worry about them. The rest are passionate pursuers of their favorite type of product. No matter your product, there’s almost certain to be several nano-influencers who just love your exact niche. Tracking down these people can be a challenge, but once you partner with them, they’re likely to grow as you do, which makes for a rewarding, long-term relationship. Nano-influencers are increasingly sought-after because they’re likely still in the hobby stage of their Instagram account. It’s not their profession, which makes them much more genuine because they’re not constantly bombarded with offers. Add several of these community leaders to your influencer portfolio, and watch your ROI soar.

Which Type Of Influencer Is Right For You?

In general, it makes sense for small, startup companies to partner with several nano-influencers and possibly one or two micro-influencers. As you grow, you may be able to reel in a macro-influencer who will be able to really blast word of your brand around the social media sphere. But strange things can happen in the influencer marketing world, and sometimes it’s possible to snare a macro-influencer without much capital outlay.

At PopTribe, we’re your partner through this entire process. We’ll analyze your situation, talk it over with you, and make recommendations of what we believe will be the most effective strategy going forward given your requirements. If you opt to execute an influencer marketing campaign with us, we’ll utilize our tried-and-true expertise to engage with the most trusted influencers we can find that fit your budget. And at campaign’s end, we’ll put our heads together with you to determine whether to continue with your current  crop of influencers, replace one or more, or bring more widely followed influencers onboard. We’re here to take the influencer marketing journey with you and help you achieve the greatest ROI we can. Talk to us today!.

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