How Micro-Influencers Can Help you Boost your Brand
A study conducted by Twitter and analytics company Annalect found that social media influencers hold nearly as much clout with consumers as recommendations from friends or neighbours. Around 40% of respondents said they’d bought an item online after seeing it used by an influencer on Instagram, Twitter or YouTube. In addition, 20% of respondents said they shared something they saw from an influencer.
I’ve talked about the power of influencers for PR in previous blogs, but the landscape is changing. Brands are finding that working with ‘famous’ influencers, such as celebrities and top industry minds is costly, and the content they generate may not come across as authentic as they’d like. After all, they’re paid big bucks to promote products, whether they believe in them or not.
An alternative that’s picking up steam is working with micro-influencers. They’re regular people that have between 1,000 to 100,000 followers and are considered to be experts in their respective niches. These smaller niche experts tend to connect on a deeper level with their audiences and generate greater engagement.
Here are three ideas to help you harness the power of micro-influencers to boost PR and drive conversions:
Turn micro-influencers into fans
Although micro-influencers are subject matter experts, they’re also regular consumers. And when they find a product or a brand they love, they’ll often promote it without any monetary compensation and become key brand advocates. This worked for drinks brand Koa Organic Beverages. Koa drinks contain organic minerals, antioxidants, vitamins, and electrolytes. They don’t contain any preservatives or additives, making them perfect for health-conscious consumers. The brand launched an influencer marketing campaign with seven yoga influencers who specialise in health, fitness, and organic products. The goal was to create brand awareness among an audience that’s interested in health and fitness. At the time of the campaign, each of the influencers had no more than 100,000 followers, putting them in the micro-influencer category.
Koa sent out samples of their products to these influencers, such as Andrea Taylor, who featured images of the products on her Instagram page and promoted the benefits in her captions, which helped Koa connect with a relevant audience. Andrea and the other micro-influencers ultimately helped increase online sales by 500% and generated more than 10,200 likes, which was quite a result, considering Koa didn’t have to pay for the endorsements. All they did was choose relevant influencers who they thought might appreciate their products and sent them samples to try.
Create a unique discount code for your micro-influencer’s audience
Having a micro-influencer promote your product will ideally stir the interest of your target consumers. But in some cases, those consumers may need an extra nudge to get them to take action. When they see someone they admire raving about a product, they might check it out, but fail to take the final step of making a purchase. To improve your chances of converting those consumers into customers, give them something that will push them to purchase. You could ask your micro-influencers to promote a unique discount code, giving their followers a special price on their first purchase, or have them promote a link for a free trial of your service.
To incentivise the micro-influencer, you could set up a payment contract where the influencer earns a percentage from each conversion they generate. You can track their conversions by using a unique URL or discount code. This can help you track your conversions while ensuring your campaign is yielding the desired results.
Get your micro-influencers to create tutorials
Before people decide to buy your product, they may want to have a better understanding of how it works. According to a study funded by Experticity, people consider micro-influencers to be better than brands at explaining how a product works. So, it may be worth asking your micro-influencers to create a tutorial or user-guide for your products.
This strategy worked effectively for PepsiCo to promote their Quaker Oats brand. The fizzy drinks brand worked with a community of micro-influencers, who posted Instagram images featuring the product, along with suggested ways of using it. For example, food influencer Samantha Hillman (@_samhillman), who has 27,500 followers, created her own recipe using Quaker Oats, to encourage her audience to try the product.
In addition to Instagram posts, micro-influencer bloggers provided readers with recipes involving Quaker Oats. Lily Kunin, of Clean Food Dirty City, created a unique recipe using the oats and provided detailed instructions on how to make the dish.
Working with micro-influencers costs very little and can do wonders for brand awareness and engagement. And if your campaign takes off, it can be great for attracting the attention of the media too.