MICRO-INFLUENCER MARKETING

Micro-Influencer Marketing: The Ultimate Guide

Daniel Cruz

By Daniel Cruz
22 min READ | Mar 4 2022

Influencer marketing is a billion-dollar industry used by huge names like Coca-Cola and North Face, but also small-scale companies. Influencers also range from well-known celebrities like Dwayne The Rock Johnson to niche stars like Richard Fanders, a UK driving instructor with an impressive following.

That loyal audience follows these social media influencers actively. Thus, when Richard Fanders recommends specific insurance companies or apps that help regular people study for their driving exams, they trust him and buy these products.

That’s how micro-influencers work and why you should hop on this train, if you find the right influencers for your brand, chances are that you will start a successful influencer marketing campaign.

Read below to learn how to draft an effective strategy to get the best out of this practice.

Table of Contents:

What Is a Micro-Influencer?

A micro-influencer is a social media “idol” with a 10,000-100,000 follower count. People follow/subscribe to these influencers because they’re interested in their opinions or advice.

But that follower count isn’t set in stone.

TikTok micro-influencers vs Instagram micro-influencers:

Instagram micro-influencers usually have 10,000 to 50,000 followers. Conversely, TikTok micro-influencers can reach 500,000 followers.

YouTube micro-influecners vs Twitch micro-influencers:

  • YouTube micro-influencers have 5,000 – 25,000 subscribers, but:
  • Twitch micro-influencers have 10-30 ACV (average concurrent viewership).

As you can see, even the measuring units differ. Twitch’s unique MO is keeping people engaged with live videos streamed right then. By comparison, YouTube followers can watch those videos anytime they want to.

This follower count difference between platforms boils down to:

  • Engagement
  • Platform algorithm
  • User behavior

For example, Instagram delivers people content from the influencers they follow, but TikTok shows the most viewed videos all over the platform. Thus, an Instagram micro-influencer’s engagement rate will be much higher, and that’s why they need fewer people in their community. To save your social media marketing efforts, you can use social media scheduler tools to schedule Instagram Posts in advance to increase your engagement rate.

Nano vs. Micro vs. Macro influencers

The first variable that sets these content creators apart is their community size. Nano influencers have:

  • Less than 5,000 YouTube subscribers
  • 1,000-10,000 Instagram followers
  • 5,000-50,000 TikTok followers

Macro influencers have:

  • 250,000-1,000,000 YouTube subscribers
  • 500,000-2,500,000 Instagram followers
  • 750,000-2,500,000 TikTok followers

Their engagement rates are also different.

  • Nano-influencers: 5%
  • Micro-influencers: 1.7%
  • Macro-influencers: 1.3%

But while nano-influencers take the cake with a 5% engagement rate, that number still means only 500 people out of a 10,000 audience.

Micro-influencers’ 1.7% rate translates into 850 people for a 50,000 audience. Macro-influencers can convince at least 13,000 people if they’re followed by 1,000,000.

Micro-Influencer Statistics

Now that you’ve seen how content creators persuade people and the potential benefits of hiring a micro-influencer let’s see what the numbers say.

Micro-Influencer Engagement Rates

Let’s start with the essential prequel to engagement: trust.

Micro-influencers are more trustworthy than brands for 61% of people.

That’s why:

A micro-influencer has a 60% higher average engagement rate and a 20% higher conversion rate than a macro-influencer.

And as a result:

75% of brands intended to allocate a specific budget for influencers in 2021.

Pro-tip: use inBeat's TikTok engagment rate calculator and Instagram engagment rate calculator.

Average Price per Collaboration

Influencer marketing values $13.8 billion in 2021 worldwide. Luckily, that’s not how much you can expect to pay for a collaboration.

Statistics show that:

  • The average initial spend on an influencer is $174.
  • The average cost for content is:
  • $410 on Instagram
  • $530 on TikTok
  • $1025 on YouTube

However, these numbers include all types of influencers.

Other data shows that micro-influencers receive:

  • Up to $100/post: 43.48%
  • $100-$500/post: 44.57%

Of course, the numbers depend on the content creator’s expertise, type of content, and whether it’s a recurring engagement or not. Keep in mind that specific industries are more expensive than others. For instance, a blockchain website will have to fork out more than a restaurant for paid collaborations.

Even so, these costs are excellent if you consider the engagement ratio they bring.

What sets micro-influencers apart?

Micro-influencers can reach more people than nano-influencers, and they’re less expensive than macro-influencers or celebrity endorsements.

Side-note: Nano-influencers are still fantastic for niche audiences/ segments because they can DM or reply to their followers quickly. Besides, inBeat’s nano-influencers usually have high engagement rates, up to 15-20%.

However, micro-influencers can technically convince a wider pool of people to make the right purchase decisions. At the same time, they’re cost-effective and fairly involved with their community.

Here’s what to consider:

Micro-Influencers Have Better-Performing Content

Let’s start with an example.

Angela Onuoha is a fashion and beauty industry influencer, offering excellent tutorials for skincare and hairstyles. Her fans look up to her because she’s a natural; she gives unique insights and truly understands her audience. More importantly, she practices what she preaches, which brings social proof.

An Instagram screenshot of an Angela Onuoha's feed.
Angela Onuoha is an awesome Instagram micro-influencer.

Micro-influencers are relatable, likable, and approachable. That’s why they can generate increased engagement.

Content creators seem like run-of-the-mill people, but they also lead glamorous lives that their loyal followers look up to. Thus, micro-influencers seem more genuine than celebrities or mega influencers.

As a result, consumers trust them more.

And as you’ve known for some time, trust is a significant issue in advertising. Your audience knows that your company’s goal is to sell. So, even if you’re 100% focused on your customers’ needs, there will always be a lingering suspicion in the background.

Knowing that, the best thing you can do is let someone else speak for you.

That leads us to the next point:

Micro-Influencers Generate More Engagement

Micro-influencers have 22.2x more conversations than typical users. They know how to choose argumentative topics that engage and convince their followers.

You can utilize that engagement and split your marketing budget between various micro-influencers.

It’s a worthwhile alternative to spending it all on one massive celebrity or a macro-influencer.

That way, you can target and engage potential customers from different audiences—even niche audiences that don’t directly connect to your brand.

Here’s one example:

Daniel Wellington, the famous watch brand, has a surprisingly big audience size through some very diverse influencers across the globe. These influential people have different sized audiences from all corners of the world and, sometimes, polar-opposite interests.

Micro-Influencers Have a More Authentic Audience

Shaina Fata is an excellent example because she addresses an audience of people who love sports and are self-conscious about their health. These people:

  • Are genuine fitness enthusiasts. They work out because they love to do that.
  • Are not snobbish about their appearance.
  • Prefer natural supplements.
  • May have anxiety. Thus, they use those supplements and fitness routines to decrease their anxiety levels.

Shaina addresses her own problems and clarifies her mindset regarding the points above. Her community follows her because they have similar backgrounds and values.

By comparison, a macro-influencer’s or celebrity’s audience is less authentic.

What we mean by that is the celebrity glow gains a force of itself and can, therefore, attract more followers. However, micro-influencers aren’t famous, so they use their personality and beliefs to gain more followers.

Ultimately, this authenticity is what converts followers into buyers.

Remember that your micro-influencer is speaking to a targeted audience who are already loyal followers. That way, the influencer’s reach grows organically on social platforms, and they’re perceived as trustworthy.

When a trustworthy micro-influencer recommends a product, their audience listens… and converts.

Beware: ensure that your micro-influencers don’t push your products too aggressively toward their audience. The process of increasing social exposure and speaking to a new niche should go smoothly.

For example, the US has enlisted an influencer army to fight vaccine-related myths on all social media platforms in 2021. Having such a broad array of influencers allowed authorities to reach a larger pool of people, from very young audiences through the voice of 18-year-old pop star Olivia Rodrigo, to skeptic communities of color, through the voice of police officer Carlos Cornejo.

Who said police officers couldn’t also be social media influencers?

How Much Do Micro-Influencers Cost?

From our experience at inBeat, micro-influencers’ fees vary from $50 to $500.

However, these social influencers don’t have a set-in-stone salary or fee they demand. Their payment depends on things like:

  • Their engagement rate
  • The duration of the influencer marketing campaign
  • Their degree of involvement in the micro influencer marketing campaign
  • The type of content provided
  • The usage rights agreement
  • The social media platform used

Just look at the Instagram pay gap for influencers to see how much the price fluctuates.

For example, a 15-second TikTok video with a 2% engagement rate can be more expensive than a 15-minute YouTube video with a 0.5% engagement rate. And it’s obvious which influencer worked harder for that content.

However, if the first content creator doesn’t give you usage rights, you might just pay them less in the end—or you might pay them more if you want to continue your relationship with them.

It may sound very complicated, but don’t worry; it’s pretty straightforward. Once you get used to the process, you’ll see it’s like hiring any other employee for any different job position.

Pro tip: Many content creators prefer recognition or supporting a specific cause over money. You may also have more success at negotiating with potential micro-influencers by offering them specific products or exclusives.

Pro tip (2): Use our Instagram Money Calculator to evaluate potential cost.

How to Find Micro-Influencers

You can read more in our article about how to find relevant influencers. In the meantime, let’s summarize the main ways of zeroing in on the right people for your needs:

How To Find Micro-Influencers Using Your Databases

Do any of your already-existing loyal fans, employees, or customers have a 10-100k following? Because if they do, they certainly qualify as micro-influencers. And if they already love your brand, what more could you want?

How To Find Micro-Influencers By Hashtags

These hashtags point you toward micro-influencers who appreciate your company and want to share your products with the world. You just have to choose the correct ones.

For example, #fitspo, #fitspiration, #lifting, and #cardio are standard for the fitness industry. So, if you’re selling fitness equipment or supplements, you can use these keywords to narrow down on specific influencers.

You can also use #sponsored or #paidad to look for content creators who specifically work with companies in your niche. Don’t forget to check branded hashtags (using your company’s name) and seasonal hashtags (e.g., #Fathersdaygift).

How To Find Micro-Influencers By Locations

Instagram and YouTube both offer suggestions to influencers that would fit your brand based on location. This tool is specifically helpful if you have a local business, such as a restaurant or gym.

In this case, you want local content creators to come by and sample your products/services.

That means they can:

  • Take better pictures and post relevant content showcasing your business and:
  • Convince a local audience who’s more likely to visit your brick-and-mortar shop.

How To Find Micro-Influencers Through Platforms

inBeat.co is an excellent place to start because you access an extensive database of influencers and the platform’s additional features. inBeat will help you:

  • Keep track of your influencers’ posts
  • Measure their success
  • Maintain close contact
  • Incentivize them

Using our keywords is very straightforward and intuitive; you can even choose what keywords the engine should omit when looking for specific creators.

Besides, inBeat offers you all the right details at a glance for every influencer, such as:

  • Engagement rate
  • Average likes
  • Average comments
  • Follower count
A screenshot of inBeat's platform.
inBeat's micro-influencer marketing platform.

Examples of Micro-Influencers

Here are some micro-influencers you can find on different platforms:

TikTok Micro-Influencers Examples

Lydia Bielfeldt is a lifestyle content creator. She advises on grooming, dressing, eating, and more. Lydia has so much success because she is a genuinely likable person, very down-to-earth and witty. She shares all aspects of her life with her community and knows how to engage her followers.

Besides, she’s very authentic.

Look at her slew of unboxing videos where she isn’t trying to push those products to her audience. Instead, she is filming her genuine happiness at discovering said items.

Even her description reads, “Excuse my faces, but it was a good week.”

Next, you can see some of these products in her subsequent TikToks. For example, the Gratitude book is seamlessly fitted in a TikTok clip showcasing a regular day in her life. Moreover, the book is actually the first thing we see, which means it sets the tone for the rest of the day.

This TikTok video expertly triggers people’s subconscious need to copy Lydia’s actions. This content creator knows that advertising isn’t about selling a product; it’s about selling people better versions of themselves.

Instagram Micro-Influencers Examples

Berna is a digital creator who shares tips on fashion and lifestyle. Being a Celtic Arab is her unique selling proposition that puts another spin on everything she shares.

So, Berna talks to a very niche community of Muslim women, but she can also address people from other cultures. Besides, sharing pieces of her family life is another asset.

Here’s why:

This versatility and authenticity mean that Berna can promote different products without problems. She needs fake eyelashes, head scarves, and cakes just like any run-of-the-mill person.

So it’s no wonder that her collabs cover such a vast pool of products.

YouTube Micro-Influencers Examples

Erin Clarke is a food blogger who has a YouTube channel where she shares her best healthy recipes. These meals are easy to prepare, affordable, and don’t use fancy ingredients.

Besides, Erin shares tips on making vegetable-based meals more appealing for kids. As a result, Erin can collaborate with various brands related to the food and parenting industry.

4 Micro Influencer Marketing Strategies for Stellar Results

Micro-influencers can determine (many of) their followers to make specific purchase decisions. However, you have to pick the right strategy according to:

  • Your company’s profile
  • Your campaign’s requirements
  • Your audience’s interests

Influencer-Generated Content

Use micro-influencers to run your entire content strategy for all of your social media marketing. The advantage of using micro-influencers in this process is that you can address your target audience efficiently. After all, the content creators have unique insights into your customers’ minds, so they know what works.

Of course, user generated content also means relinquishing some of your control over the content.

That’s why you need a solid contract – but we’ll discuss that further below.

Alternatively, you can ask micro-influencers to sample and review your products. This strategy works if you have low-cost products and can afford to gift some to specific content creators.

Here’s how to do that:

  • Make a database of potential collaborators. Ideally, you’d have at least a few hundred influencers – we go into deeper detail in this podcast.
  • Send them some cold emails, no-strings-attached, explaining why you would love for them to test your products and post some genuine content about them.
  • Don’t send the products without getting in touch first. You need to underline your expectations and see if the influencer is willing to test/post about your company.
  • Package the product neatly and include a personal touch, such as a handwritten note.
  • Reach out to the content creators a few days after sending the products to ask what they thought about your gift. In the majority of cases, these influencers will post user generated content about your products.
  • Make sure you repost that content and mention specifically the micro-influencer on your website/ social media.

Events

Bring people that have a niche following to your event. After getting their RSVPs:

  • Tease their presence at your event on your social media.
  • Give shout-outs and mentions to these influencers.
  • Remember to take plenty of photos during the event.
  • Ask your micro-influencers to post their branded content before, during, and after that event.

Contests

Grow your following through contests. For example, Jonas Furstone (@furstonetravels) has partnered with Harry McNulty (@saltynuts) for a unique giveaway.

Participants worldwide could have won a helicopter flight over Ireland’s staggering Cliffs of Moher. All they had to do was follow certain accounts, share the reel, and tag the person they wanted to share the flight with.

Now, consider that the adventure tour for two over the Cliffs of Moher is €200, while the post got 500+ likes and 229 comments.

Therefore, each new follower gained cost the team of six influencers less than €1. And that’s genuine value for money.

Ambassador Marketing

Onboard influencers on a long-term relationship to create a base of ambassadors that will support your brand. These content creators will build your social proof on an ongoing basis.

One excellent example is the #Cokeambassador campaign. Micro-influencers worldwide post regularly using this hashtag, thus:

  • Creating desire
  • Showcasing Coca-Cola as part of their daily lives
  • Associating the brand with specific feelings (freedom, family, happiness, etc.) and values (veganism, minority rights, etc.)

How to Work with Micro-Influencers

How exactly do you work with micro-influencers? It all starts with a plan.

1. Create a Plan

Before choosing your micro-influencers, make sure you’re very clear on your campaign goals and target audience. These things will help you zero in on the proper KPIs, so you’ll also know the correct metrics that will help you measure your campaign’s success.

But back to those goals.

Ask any CEO, and they’ll say their primary goal is to increase ROI.

Usually, marketing people have a good sense that this should be their end goal, even if they know that sometimes you want to raise awareness or drive traffic to your website first.

There are two problems. First,  78% of marketers say measuring their influencer campaign’s ROI is challenging. Second, 86% of marketers consider raising brand awareness the primary goal of their influencer marketing campaigns.

You can’t have all the companies out there using influencers just to increase awareness. Besides, that would be a waste of money, so it’s more likely that marketers feel overwhelmed by influencer campaigns.

To solve this problem, you need to have faith that your influencers will deliver those desired results. Just go ahead and outline your campaign goals and objectives.

Remember also to include:

  • Types of content
  • Unique selling proposition you’re looking to put forward
  • Content examples to share with your influencers

Next, choose the right influencers for the job.

2. Find Micro-Influencers

The first step of choosing a micro-influencer is seeing how well they fit your brand’s values and target audience. You should also look at their:

  • Engagement rates—personal comments, shares, and questions show more social engagement than likes or drab comments.
  • Audience—make sure the influencer isn’t buying any fake accounts or fake followers (you can use inBeat's fake follower audit).
  • Posting frequency – you need a micro-influencer that consistently posts because you want your brand to become your audience’s top of mind.
  • Personality—that influencer should have a unique voice; they should bring unique insights and create value for their followers.

Here’s a quick summary of how to find micro-influencers:

  • Manual: Hashtags, locations
  • Platforms: inBeat
  • Social media groups: Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Employee, customers’, or distributors’ databases

3. Contact Them

The best way to contact micro-influencers is:

  • Email
  • Direct message

Unless you meet them at a specific event, in which case, face-to-face is the non-weird way to go.

Avoid calling them on the phone if it’s your first contact. Recent studies show that 81% of Millennials and Gen-Z find phone calls rude and disruptive.

And chances are your chosen micro-influencers fit this age group.

4. Negotiate Collaborations

Your first email or DM should be reasonably light, without strings attached. You should outline your expectations and goals, asking that content creator whether they can support you.

Be very honest and upfront about your budget too.

Pro tip: Most influencers have rate cards where they include their fees.

You’re probably already good at negotiations, but here are a few tips anyway:

  • Remember to ask what they would like to get out of your collaboration. Some content creators don’t want financial rewards; the chance of being part of something bigger is often more valuable than money.
  • Ask for the influencer’s advice or input regarding your campaign. Keep in mind that content creators are your partners, not your employees. Thus, you’ll have to offer them plenty of creative freedom.

5. Set up the Contract

You need a solid contract to ensure your campaign runs smoothly. You need your micro-influencers to stick to the plan and deliver the content you agreed on. You also want your content creators to be satisfied with what you offer them.

The contract should include details such as:

  • Payment method, time, and deadlines
  • Briefing materials
  • Expected deliverables and social channels
  • Content deadlines
  • Approval process
  • Contract length
  • Copyrights
  • Exclusivity clause
  • Cancellation policy

You can download our time-saving, ready-to-use influencer agreement template and influencer creative brief template.

6. Track and Monitor Results

It’s vital to track and evaluate micro-influencer campaigns carefully. We already told you that many marketing managers and digital marketers are apprehensive about this point.

But if you’ve set the right KPIs according to well-thought campaign goals, you shouldn’t have any problems.

Here are some strategies you can use for following your campaign’s performance:

  • Instagram’s tools. Seeing as the micro-influencers’ preferred platform is Instagram, you’re probably using this channel, too. There’s no reason you shouldn’t also use its tools. As each micro-influencer uses the “paid partnership” hashtag, you can easily track their performance.
  • Trackable links. Tracking your links allows you to centralize all of your influencers’ posts. That way, you can evaluate all the numbers and see the campaign’s success.
  • Promo codes. Putting a unique discount code on each influencer’s post will tell how many people have converted using each code. That way, you’ll know how many sales each of your influencers generated.
  • Google Analytics. This tool allows you to quantify traffic increase from a new market, which is tough to do unless everyone uses hashtags and trackable links.
  • Task management tools. To run effective marketing campaigns, you need a tool where you can skim through all data and determine what needs to be done and what's is already in process.
  • UTMs. These codes help you track the traffic generated through a post. This strategy is usually used for more expensive products that people don’t buy after seeing the first recommendation.
  • inBeat tracking software. inBeat is an influencer marketing agency that identifies your KPIs and automatically tracks each of your influencers’ performance. Besides, inBeat organizes all the types of content created by Instagram and TikTok micro-influencers. You will get overall influencer marketing campaign metrics, top performance, and one-click reporting to make your life easier.
An Instagram screenshot of one of inBeat's campaign showing a branded hashtag and a promo code.
An example of an inBeat influencer marketing strategy with branded hashtags and a promo code.

7. Whitelisting & Paid Media

Double down on your top-performing creators, and amplify their content through whitelisting.

Whitelisting implies influencers have advertising access to run paid media on Facebook and Instagram about your brand.

These paid ads complement the user-generated content created about your brand. The main advantages are higher visibility and recall, ultimately leading to more conversions.

Brands Using Micro-Influencer Marketing

We’ve featured several examples of micro-influencers throughout this article. Now, let’s see how inBeat-helped brands are leveraging micro influencers:

1. Phone Loops

Phone Loops has hired a slew of micro-influencers to advocate for its easy-to-use system that keeps your phone steady while taking selfies.

These content creators first aimed to normalize the device. After all, using this attachment to avoid clumsiness may have been perceived as uncool by the younger generation.

That’s why we at inBeat cherry-picked confident, fashionable micro-influencers across platforms.

Secondly, the aim was to create desire in that these loops were perceived as necessary and in-demand. Micro-influencers showed that phone loops are easily matched with any outfit, stylish, and hip.

Source

The constant flow of content increased the brand’s visibility, memorability, and desirability.

2. Mogo.ca

Mogo is a financial app mainly aimed at Gen Z. The brand wants to educate and empower the younger generation to save their money. People can use the app to invest, save, plan their budget and contribute to protecting the environment in the process.

Mogo managed this with a slew of influencers.

Carter Sullivan, for example, has posted YouTube content showcasing in detail how the app works and, more importantly, its benefits. However, Mogo also used TikTok content.

Source

3. Thera Ice RX

Thera Ice is essentially a sleeve that people can use to alleviate muscle pain, such as post-workout soreness. inBeat collaborated with several influencers across platforms for this, including Carla and Larry, a famous TikTok couple.

Their videos depict scenes from their otherwise everyday life, with challenges, joys, and a good dose of humor.

The couple’s TikTok clip on Thera Ice RX has over 200,000 views because everyone can relate to post-workout soreness and because the couple is so genuine about sharing their life advice online.

Side-note: Notice the discount code we used to monitor the purchases made following these influencers’ recommendations.

4. TS Shampoo

TS Shampoo is another brand that inBeat worked with. This organic shampoo is made with natural ingredients that help promote healthy hair.

Thus, we had to choose trustworthy influencers across tiers that could honestly showcase these advantages.

@heyzulai is one of them. As a mom of a 7-month-old at the time, she experienced post-pregnancy hair loss first-hand. Thus, her post was genuine and helpful to an audience going through similar difficulties.

After discussing the shampoo’s benefits at length on her Instagram post, @heyzulai offered two more incentives:

  • The prize giveaway hosted by TS Shampoo, and:
  • The discounted link in her bio to purchase the product.

Of course, that link was used across influencers for campaign monitoring purposes.

How to Scale Micro-Influencer Marketing

Now that you’re here, you know why micro-influencers can be the backbone of your content marketing campaign. You also learned how to find, connect, and work with them.

What happens after onboarding, though?

Organization happens.

Managing your micro-influencer campaign effectively is essential. That’s why you need online software and tools to:

  • Set goals/objectives
  • Communicate with your content creators by using CTI, email, or other means
  • Monitor the campaign

The tools you’ll find most helpful are:

  • Google spreadsheets to keep track of what’s happening
  • Type Form to build engaging polls
  • A cold email system to send bulk messages
  • Facebook groups and Instagram DMs to brainstorm

Also, remember that getting in touch regularly with your micro-influencers is essential for your campaign. On the one hand, you’re showing your interest, and on the other, you’re reminding them about their contractual obligations.

Besides, some content creators may get overwhelmed or disregard deadlines if the Muse hasn’t hit yet. As such, you have to set clear expectations but also be there to support your partners.

Alternatively, consider using inbeat.co if you’re new at this because we can help you with organization, monitoring, and communication from A to Z.

We can schedule a complimentary consultation at any time to discuss your goals and see what the logistics would entail.

Head over to Marketo's blog and read on Micro-influencer Marketing: A Comprehensive Guide.

Read More About Influencer Marketing

inBeat, for free

Get your Influencer campaign started.

Sign up — No Credit Card