Social media has grown into a dependable marketing tool. Every serious entrepreneur has used social media to promote their business or brand.
Initially, it was all about content creation, but with everyone creating content, getting noticed and followed became much more difficult. Because larger, established accounts have more credibility, it made things difficult for small businesses.
To compete on social media, you have to keep up with the strategies that work today, not yesterday. Currently, many businesses have turned to work with influencers – especially micro-influencers – to boost their visibility. Take a few moments to discover how you can use influencer marketing for your business.
Influencers and Micro-Influencers
Generally, an influencer is an individual who can affect users' behavior on social media owing to their authority in a niche. This individual typically has more than 5,000 active followers in a specific niche.
Celebrities are some of the top influencers and may have over several million followers. Specific categories of influencers include mega (celebrities), macro, micro, and nano-influencers.
For our discussion, we’ll define micro-influencers as having between 5,000 and 25,000 followers. People follow micro-influencers for value rather than fame.
Micro-influencers find it easier to gain users' trust than other influencers. They have a close connection to their audience driven by their dedicated engagement efforts. Unlike other influencers, they're likely to have an active and engaged audience.
Using Micro-Influencers in Your Marketing Campaigns
Why should you choose micro-influencers over their larger counterparts? You need value for each marketing dollar when you're growing your business. Regardless of your industry, you have to consider which influencers are closest to their audience. You also must evaluate if their audience is likely to contain a substantial number of the type of people you want to attract to your business.
You also want a good ROI for each decision when you're growing a business, don’t fall into the “bigger is better” trap. Targeting a large audience may water down your campaign as some followers may have lost interest in the influencer's content. Look for the number of meaningful actions such as comments, likes, follows, forwards, etc., their social media accounts produce for every 1,000 followers in the last six months.
Studies show that as follower counts increase, engagement rates may drop. A lot of times the more followers an influencer has, the fewer comments and likes they get. This is why a micro-influencer is more likely to help improve your per 1,000 marketing performance. A larger audience may bring in a larger quantity of leads even though the per 1,000 performance is lower.
A micro-influencer is a safer bet when you're looking to increase conversations. 82 percent of customers say they're likely to buy after a micro-influencer recommends a product. Micro-influencers have more power when it comes to driving buying conversations.
Using a micro-influencer is also cheaper than going after in-demand or popular freelancers. You'll have to compete with the top brands to access a macro-influencer or celebrity. You can collaborate with a lot of micro-influencers with a smaller budget.
Use Sponsored Posts
One of the best ways to maximize an influencer's audience is through sponsored posts. Sponsored posts usually appear on an influencer's timeline like their content. The difference between an influencer's content and sponsored content is the brand tag.
The influencer tags your brand in the sponsored post which boosts your brand's awareness. Sponsored posts on an influencer's account appear more authentic and help drive engagement.
Sponsored posts are a form of influencer and brand partnership. An influencer creates and publishes a post on their timeline in return for money, free samples, or gifts.
On Instagram, the partnership allows you access to campaign insights. You can see the level of engagement from the number of views, likes, and comments. This will enable you to tell whether the partnership with an influencer is productive.
Leverage User-Generated Content
User-generated content (UGC) is any content created by a micro-influencer to represent your brand. It can be videos, photos, infographics, reviews, testimonials, and more. An example is a micro-influencer taking a photo in your store and sharing it with your audience.
Content from influencers appears authentic and credible. It's likely to reinforce your brand image and enhance its reputation. Brand engagement increases by 28 percent after exposing users to various forms of UGC.
An easy way to boost web traffic is to ask influencers to post on your blog. It's a win-win because you'll increase traffic while the influencer reaps from your audience.
Blog posts still are very relevant and useful for brands. 60 percent of internet users read blog posts.
Your audience views micro-influencers as niche experts or leaders. Their post boosts your site's credibility and encourages people to trust your content. Users are more likely to believe your content is valuable.
Micro-influencer guest posts can create a sense of authority and expertise. Your Google EAT (expertise, authority, trust) score may improve your search engine rankings.
This form of marketing has a massive potential of snowballing sales because you can recruit many affiliates. Micro-influencers already enjoy a good following that can quickly translate into your sales. With several influencers, you can hit your sales targets easier and increase your revenue.
Micro-influencers can spice up your platforms by taking over for a particular period. They can create posts or engage your audience through videos.
You'll give the influencer the free reign to interact with your audience. A channel takeover is a great way to capitalize on a micro-influencer's social media power. They'll attract their loyal audience to your channels while helping to perk up your audience.
An effective channel takeover is a great way to drive meaningful engagements around new products and brands. It's also an effective strategy to entertain audiences and boost their interest in your brand.
A successful takeover also helps you to build new content. It allows for close and impactful collaborations.
Another way to capitalize on an influencer's power is through guest podcasting. More than 36 million Americans can access podcasts on their smartphones. You can invite influencers to your podcast or request to be a speaker in their podcast.
Campaign Specific Hashtags
Launching campaign-specific hashtags can boost brand exposure and drive more sales. Instagram posts with one hashtag get 29 percent more interactions (for accounts with less than 1000 followers).
Quick Review: A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by a hash sign (#), used on social media websites and applications to identify digital content on a specific topic.
Micro-Influencers can amplify hashtag campaigns and escalate your brand's exposure. On a platform like Twitter, your posts will enjoy extra retweets. Your hashtags may even go viral or trend. [quoteright]Hashtag tweets can increase engagement by up to 50 percent. [/quoteright]
How to Find the Right Micro-Influencers
As a business owner, it can be a challenge to gain customers' trust. Working with a micro-influencer helps your brand to come across as authentic. Micro-influencers can add a human touch to your promotions.
Audiences see micro-influencer endorsements as honest reviews and trust their word. But for the strategy to work, you need to find the right micro-influencers. The right micro-influencers can ensure you're getting the highest possible ROI in your campaigns.
Another straightforward way is to use search hashtags. Search on your favorite channels using your primary keywords and see which accounts show up. For example, if you're in adventure tourism, you can use mountain climbing or skydiving keywords.
Looking for micro-bloggers in your niche is also an excellent way to search for influencers. Google using your long-tail (more specific to your business) keywords. You can also reach out to high authority bloggers within a micro-niche.
Learn More About Micro-Influencers to Boost Your Brand
Micro-influencer marketing can be a valuable strategy if done correctly. Take your time to choose the right micro-influencers. Finding one within your niche is the best way to make sure you're target audiences are aligned.
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