As the influencer marketing trend continues to take hold on marketing budgets nationwide, brands are taking a deep look at an emerging influencer classification: the Micro-Influencer.
But what are Micro-Influencers and how do they compare to an Everyday Fan, someone who engages regularly with your brand on social media? Over the next few weeks, we’ll break down the difference between the Everyday Fan and the Micro-Influencer.
Why the Dramatic Rise in Influencer Marketing?
Influencer Marketing isn’t exactly a new trend. Celebrities have been used to promote products as far back as the 1760’s. Since then it’s been a fairly common tool in ye olde marketing toolbox. However, with the rise of ad blockers (up to 30% of all internet users are using ad blockers) and the ad-blindness of millennials, marketers are doubling down on this classic marketing tactic.
Only now, instead of focusing on expensive celebrities with huge followings (we all can’t afford to work with Kendall Jenner), they are focusing on Micro-Influencers and the brand’s own Everyday Fans to drive their message to consumers.
Comparing Micro-Influencers to Everyday Fans
First off let’s compare the audience size. To be considered a micro-influencer, an individual would need to have between 10k and 90k followers, although for users with specialized audiences (male cider consumers in Spokane, for instance) the audience size can dip down to as low as 5,000 followers.
On the flipside, your average Everyday Fan is connected to 400 people, though at SocialToaster we regularly see networks between 600 – 700 followers. An Everyday Fan’s network is typically comprised of friends and family connections, vs Micro-Influencers which are usually built around content and aspiration.
Micro-Influencers tend to build their audiences around a core topic (beer, travel, or fashion as an example). This naturally pulls in an audience comprised of people with an affinity for that topic. Face it, you aren’t going to follow a stranger on a social network if you aren’t at least somewhat interested in what they’re posting. This topic affinity leads to an average engagement rate for Micro-Influencers of 2.8% – 8%. The smaller the audience, the higher the engagement rate on the post.
Alternatively, your Everyday Fan might see smaller total engagement numbers, but end up with higher engagement rates and organic views on what they post. Since your Everyday Fan is publishing to their personal page, their audience penetration isn’t governed by the same algorithm as brands. This means that an Everyday Fan is more likely to have their posts seen by their friends and family, leading to higher engagement rates and audience penetration.
As we’ve already established, a Micro-Influencers’ audience is built around a central topic. As such, Micro-Influencers share content aligned to their niche. For example, someone who is considered an expert in the climbing space is going to post content about rock climbing. Likewise, a wine fanatic is going to share pictures and articles about the latest wine trends. To capitalize on this fact, brands need to align themselves with Micro-Influencers that best fit their target demographic.
Your Everyday Fans, on the other hand, post a variety of content. Their social streams can be comprised of anything from personal updates, to memes, to articles that resonate with their interests. Content Everyday Fans share to their social media platforms tends to have a more organic look and feel to it, which is perfect for brands that want their content to be a natural extension of the conversations their Everyday Fans are already having in their personal lives.