As the hype of influencer marketing is followed by its more efficient successor micro-influencer marketing, marketers need to know what to look forward to when migrating to this new leading domain in online marketing and fully understand what are the main 3 types of organic micro-influencer engagement.
The definition of micro-influencer is still fluid, some defining it as beginning with anyone with over 1000 followers, others starting at 5000 followers all the way up to a lowest bar of 10 000 followers. As for the maximum number of followers “allowed” to remain defined as a micro-influencer, these vary from 100k to 500k followers. So, as you can see, this new field of micro-influencer marketing is still in flux, yet, this is the time to jump in to maximize your ROI as rates are likely to go up once it stabilizes.
Whichever number you choose as your baseline for the definition of a micro-influencer, the only metric that really matters is the micro-influencer engagement rate. That is the number of genuine comments and likes your chosen micro-influencer does collect from his followers.
However, these metrics are not the only elements to take into account when contemplating entering the micro-influencer marketing. Choosing the right candidate also depends on the type of impact you are looking to achieve. The easiest way to look at this is to compare to the way you are investing more in an SEO or a PPC strategy depending on your goals.
In order to do that, you will need to understand the 3 main types of organic micro-influencer engagements:
- Microcontent: Short-form quotes, memes, picture, tips or insights from individual influencers added to your brand content.
- Campaigns: Longer-form content contributed by individual influencers often as a part of a larger campaign.
- Community: A dedicated group of influencers that contribute a variety of short- and long-form content for brand communications.
Maximizing Organic Micro-Influencer Engagement Step 1: Micro-content
If you are just getting into micro-influencer marketing, you should start with micro-content. This will let you get to know your influencers, evaluate each one’s impact and verify how well their image and the posts they create fit with your brand.
Bartr Brand platform is ideal to let relevant micro-influencers find you, as they will actually volunteer to promote your products, a clear indication that they do identify with them. This is essential, as it increases the odds that the micro-content will garner likes and comments in line with the average micro-influencer engagement rate.
Also, it saves you time and efforts needed to search for potential candidates and see them turn your offers down as they deem it incompatible with the image they spent months or years carefully building. Typically, at this stage, the micro-influencer will create the content as best suits him and you should only set “negative instructions”, that means, only indicate what you do not want them to do. These instructions only purpose is to ensure they will not produce content that would be damaging to your brand image.
- It might open your eyes to a completely unexpected creative angle
- It enables you to fully evaluate the micro-influencer’s fit with your brand
- It saves you the effort of coming up with a creative brief
This stage is like PPC with a twist. It will bring immediate results, as PPC do, but will also stay online indefinitely, bringing residual traffic for a much longer period than a PPC ad would do.
It is also a teaching experience for marketers who have to get used to the concept that
Maximizing Organic Micro-Influencer Engagement Step 2: Campaign
A campaign is more complex than micro-content.
It requires you to exert a certain level of supervision on your selected micro-influencers.
Let’s say that, out of your first ten micro-influencers, you feel that 4 are especially valuable. This might mean be based on any number of considerations. The most obvious one, though by no means the most relevant one, is the number of followers. This is actually far less important than the micro-influencer engagement rate, as this is a key factor to achieve impact. Yet other factors are also important. The influencer’s creativity, for example. The more creative the influencers, the more likely it is that their post will attract attention. Also, a truly creative post can be reused for your brand other marketing channels. It might even get viral, though that is the exception rather than the rule…
So, once you selected the micro-influencers you want to use in a campaign, you need to clearly define your campaign goal. These will dictate the instructions you will give to your micro-influencers.
But how can you give instructions without strangling your influencers’ creativity? By looking at the root of the problem…
Now, let’s imagine that your latest market research indicates that the average sock buyers main concerns are the following:
- 25% : keeping their feet warm
- 25% : the socks elasticity
- 25% : socks looks
- 25% : made with eco-friendly material
That is not very helpful but it becomes much more interesting when looked at seasonally.
In winter, the results are
- 60% : keeping their feet warm
- 20% : the socks elasticity
- 10% : socks looks
- 10% : made with eco-friendly material
So, the kind of instructions you would give to your influencers for your October campaign is, of course, to focus on the warmth provided by your socks, with a marginal mention of the elasticity, but they can completely ignore both the look and eco-friendly side.
This leaves their creativity entirely free, whilst ensuring that
There is a myriad of other potentially relevant elements, but you get the gist of it.
In addition, of course, you still are in charge of setting up a time table to maximize your ROI on the campaign.
Now, thanks to the successful campaigns you ran with your few select influencers, your brand has moved from its initial local retail shop status to an internationally acclaimed brand and you want to keep it that way. J
Time to move to the community stage…
Maximizing Organic Micro-Influencer Engagement Step 3: Community
An influencer community is a relatively large number of micro-influencers who are aware – and proud – of being part of your brand community. Depending on what your product or service is, they might even volunteer to be part of your brand community.
Your influencer community will be individually required to produce both short and long form content at regular intervals. They might be relied upon to increase the overall impact of some of your brand’s outreach initiative for example. Let say your brand is setting up a charity event, for example. Provided you made sure that each member of your influencer community beliefs and values align with those of your brand, participating in your campaign will add value for them as well.
A famous example is the Adidas Tango Squad. Adidas created “squads” of 100-250 youth ages 16-19 in 15 cities worldwide who were looped into exclusive content and new product releases before it went live elsewhere.
Each group is managed by an Adidas in-house team, who share exclusive content and new products with the group before they are even unveiled on Adidas’ Twitter or Facebook channels.
All content is mobile optimized and shot in portrait selfie-style to add to the authenticity. The squad members are also invited to take part in experiences like meeting players, which they then share on social media.
Adidas is delighted by their investment, convinced that content is far more authentic if you rely on 500 kids with 2,000 followers than the effect you would have from a global influencer with a million followers.
These myriads of micro-influencers give your content longevity and authenticity because they are talking in a private messaging environment. If it comes as a referral from your mate, you’re much more likely to pick it up than if it comes from a brand.
That is why it is called organic micro-influencer engagement. A non-negligible part of the traffic they will bring to your brand will not be registered by your Analytic system as micro-influencer engagement is often in large part stemming from “dark social” sources, meaning a spattering of message apps and other sources that your analytic tools are unable to track for various technical reasons.
So, now you are expert in the various aspects of organic micro-influencer engagement.
Register with Bartr Brand to let micro-influencers who like your products contact you directly.