Last week we introduced you to two sets of influencers that brands utilize to support their influencer marketing efforts: The Micro-Influencer (influencers with network size between 5k-90k) and your brand’s Everyday Fans (individuals that follow your brand on social media and regularly engage with your content). In today’s post, we’ll take a closer look at some additional differences between these two types of influencers.
Comparing Micro-Influencers to Everyday Fans
Countless studies have been completed on which media consumers trust the most, and, no surprise, the answer is almost always credible 3rd party sources (people not directly affiliated with the brand). It’s this trust that makes word-of-mouth marketing (WOMM) one of the most effective lead and sales driving marketing channels available. However, WOM marketing as a whole can be broken down even further. If you picture WOMM as a bullseye, at the core lies an individual’s family and friends (Everyday Fans). Years of trust and shared experiences make for a strong foundation for WOMM to build on. This circle of trust tends to have the greatest influence on our buying behavior.
One step removed from this would be your Micro-Influencers, individuals we perceive as experts on a dedicated topic. This expertise is what allows Micro-Influencers to effectively guide their followers towards a certain brand, product or promotion. Maintaining this level of trust can be a tricky tightrope walk for a Micro-Influencer, though. Aligning with too many of the wrong brands or promotions can result in the influencer’s Fans losing trust in in their recommendations and messages. Once eroded, this trust is near-impossible to get back.
So how does this trust translate to conversions? One study by the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania found that Micro-Influencers have up to 22.2 times more buying conversations each week than the average person a.k.a. post something on social with a buying CTA. What’s more, 82% of consumers surveyed said they were “highly likely” to follow a recommendation made by a Micro-Influencer.
Additionally, 73% of those surveyed were also “highly likely” to follow the recommendation of other trusted individuals (friends and family). The more buying conversations your friends, family and Micro-Influencers are having about your brand, the more conversions you’re going to see come through.
With Micro-Influencers, the size of their audience is the size of their audience. While a good Micro-Influencer will continue to grow and cultivate their audience, you can’t expect a sudden 10,000 person increase in audience size overnight. To scale your efforts with a single micro-influencer, you’ll typically have to publish multiple messages with the influencer over a period time. If you’re paying on a per-message basis, this cost can easily scale alongside your message frequency.
Everyday Fans however, are a little different. The power of the Everyday Fan is not to have one Fan, but instead to have thousands that live inside your Advocate Marketing Program (AMP). As we’ve established already, the average user is connected to between 400-600 friends and family. Scaling with Everyday Fans involves adding new individuals to your AMP, each bringing with them their network of 400-600 Fans. Thus, the total audience reach of an AMP grows exponentially with each new member. It’s not uncommon for some of our clients’ SocialToaster programs to have a reachable audience of over a million people.
Cost is obviously the most important factor of any marketing tactic. Even though they aren’t huge celebrities, working with Micro-Influencers isn’t exactly going to be cheap. A Micro-Influencer with a following of a couple thousand might only cost you a few hundred dollars per post; however, as their audience size grows, so does the cost to work with them. It’s not uncommon to see per-message prices of several thousand or even tens of thousands of dollars if you’re working with influencers with audiences in excess of 75,000. To help manage costs, we recommend partnering with a Micro-Influencer that is still growing their brand over a set period of several months. Lock in a fixed cost-per-promotion early on, then as their audience grows over a period of months, you’ll continue to pay the lower amount. Platforms like Influence Logic can help brands identify influencers that are up-and-coming to lock them into a cheaper rate.
On the other hand, for the Everyday Fan, if you’re utilizing a SocialToaster Advocate Marketing Program, there is no additional cost for each message sent or for each new member that joins. Everything is covered under a simple monthly platform fee. Whether you grow your Fans by 1,000 or 10,0000, your costs remain the same, which is ideal for brands that don’t want any surprises in cost or those with a strict marketing budget.
Next week, we’ll break down some specific cases for utilizing both types of influencers. In the meantime, if you’re ready to get started with influencer marketing, let us know! We can help answer any questions you may have.