Social media influencing is one of the most effective marketing tools for social media today. Whether it’s on Tik Tok, Instagram, or Youtube people seem to have an obsession with influencers. This type of social media marketing proved itself to be a powerful way to connect with your target audience in a relatable way.
2020 proved this to be especially true as traditional marketing floundered in the face of the pandemic. Companies were left scrambling to find ways to reach buyers who were stuck at home. With commerce being done more and more online and a global pandemic, influencers thrived. In fact, the IPA reported a 20% decline across advertising while influencers enjoyed a 46% increase. Just imagine the promise the coming years have post-pandemic!
If you’re wondering what exactly a social media influencer is, we’ll break it down for you.
Influencer marketing is a form of social media marketing involving product placement and endorsements from influencers. Influencers are typically people and occasionally organizations who have a perceived level of knowledge, experience, or social influence in their market or field.
Really, influencers are simply put social media users who regularly produce content and have an active and engaged following. Mainly, they have built trust within their sphere of influence online. This can be on one social media platform or many.
When you think of influencers, you may think of celebrities or younger users. Back when influencing first came on the scene this was definitely true, but times have changed. It’s also no longer for just younger users. Social media influencing has seen a steady increase in popularity amongst older users. Really, they span across numerous fields, interests, ages, and demographics. No matter the audience you’re trying to reach, you can find someone to influence them.
With nearly 3.5 billion people in the world actively using social media, influencers have more opportunities than ever before. That’s why companies love partnering with influencers to promote their products or services. Their followers have come to trust them and are more likely to engage with a brand that is promoted by someone they trust. This social equity can pay off huge for businesses who chose to invest in influencer marketing.
Types of Influencers
Let’s dig a little deeper and break down the types of influencers. This can be done in a few different ways: the number of followers, their level of engagement and influence, their niche, and the type of content they produce. Today we’ll be focusing on the number of users. While you may be tempted to simply look at the number of followers, we caution you to beware. You could be missing out on a huge opportunity to partner with effective influencers!
Typically, mega-influences are social media influencers with over a million followers on any given platform. While this isn’t a hard and fast rule, it is a commonly accepted definition of this type of influencer.
Often, this type of influencer can be a celebrity of some sort like a tv star or musician. On the other hand, there is an increasing number of influencers who have grown their audience organically through clever and effective social media marketing such as giveaways or going viral.
These types of influencers are best suited to work with larger companies with the marketing budget to afford them. With some charging upwards of a million dollars per post, it can be a huge investment. To help them, many will work with agents to streamline their job.
The next tier of influencers falls within the range of 40,000 to 1 million followers. They are referred to as macro-influencers. Often, these can be the best fit for companies as they are more affordable to work with and often easier to get in contact with.
When it comes to macro-influencers, they are frequently lower-level celebrities and savvy social media users who have built up their following on their own. The great thing about this level of influencers is that they are much easier to come by, easier to reach out to, and they are often accustomed to branding deals.
Be aware though, this is the easiest level of social media users to engage in influencing fraud. Make sure to do your homework and ensure that their followers are legitimate rather than purchased.
This is by far the most niche of the influencer types. These accounts range from 1,000 to 40,000 followers (although that number can be higher). Typically, these influencers have built up a significant following within their particular field or niche.
You may be wondering if this level of influencer is effective. The short answer is absolutely, yes! While their number of followers may be smaller, their level of trust is often higher. Another beneficial aspect of micro-influencers is that they often are much more selective of the brands they partner with. They typically require real, first-hand experience with a product or service before they promote it. To them, it’s important that they genuinely love the brands they promote so that they can maintain a high level of expertise and trust with their followers.
This type of influencer is the most accessible and can often yield the strongest level of influence. It’s also becoming the most popular type of influencer. As it becomes more popular, you can also see more niche influencers rising to fame and going viral online. This is especially true amongst younger users. This is so important to keep in mind if your target audience is gen-z!
This is the newest type of influencer to arise in recent years. This category often sees less than 1,000 followers because they are experts in a truly niche field. Brands with extremely niche users will be the best fit for this and will definitely benefit from it. While their number of followers may be small, their level of influence is definitely not! Nano-influencers often have extremely high levels of trust built with their followers. While this isn’t a fit for most brands, it can be extremely effective for more specialized ones.
We hope this information is helpful in your understanding of and potential work with social media influencers. With the number of marketing dollars being spent in this unique field of marketing, it’s important to know the basics before you dive in. Contact us if we can help you with any aspect of your digital marketing strategy!