One of the main challenges with influencer marketing is choosing the right influencers for your campaign. With so many different types of influencers and factors to take into account, you may not know where to start!
To help, we’ve broken influencers up into 4 main types: Mega-, macro-, micro-, and nano- influencers. Each type comes with their own set of benefits and drawbacks. In this article, you’ll learn more about what separates these types of influencers and how they can affect your campaigns.
So, let’s get into it.
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Celebrity & Mega-influencers: 1M+ followers
Mega-influencers are the titans of the influencer world, and they usually have at least 1 million followers across various social media platforms. The majority of mega-influencers are celebrities outside of the social media realm. They can be famous actors, musicians, or athletes who command a huge audience both off and online.
Many companies choose to work with mega-influencers, but they’re typically large companies with massive marketing budgets. The main reason for this is because working with mega-influencers doesn’t come cheap.
As you’d expect, mega-influencers demand mega fees, but this doesn’t mean that they’re necessarily the best type of influencers to work with. Due to the sheer scale of their audience, they tend to have a much lower engagement rate than smaller influencers.
In addition to this, mega-influencers may not necessarily be considered experts in any particular niche. Since many of them have celebrity status, their accounts usually focus on their daily lives rather than a specific topic or niche. This means that the influencer themselves may know nothing about your industry and a percentage of their audience may not be interested in your niche.
Despite all this, sponsored posts from mega-influencers are often a big hit. They’re great for marketers who may lack the time and resources to manage a large group of smaller influencers, which they’d need to work with to achieve similar results.
If improving brand awareness and reaching a large, diverse audience are your main marketing objectives, then mega-influencers may be the right choice for you.
Macro-influencers: 500k – 1M followers
Macro-influencers are well established influencers with a large following. They’re similar to mega-influencers in a lot of ways, but the main difference is that they tend to have fewer followers. Usually, macro-influencers will have anywhere from 500k to 1 million followers. They can be social media stars, vloggers, and reality TV stars who have a broad following online, but haven’t really achieved the all-star celebrity status of mega-influencers.
Like mega-influencers, macro-influencers tend to have a diverse global audience with varied interests. Their large following makes them great at raising awareness for brands. They’re also more accessible than mega-influencers, because there are more macro- profiles on social media, and they’re usually more affordable.
But because of their large follower numbers, macro-influencers tend to have a relatively low engagement rate compared to their nano- and micro-influencer counterparts.
Working with a macro-influencer is a fairly expensive option, but if you’re looking to target a broad demographic and get a lot of eyes on your brand through sponsored posts, then macro-influencers may be the right investment for you.
Micro-influencers: 10k – 100k followers
Micro-influencers are one of the best options for small and medium-sized businesses looking to leverage the power of influencer marketing. They’ve built a digital community that’s solely online, and they usually have between 10k and 100k followers. Either they’ve gained followers from having a niche-specific Youtube channel, or they’ve built an active Instagram following by uploading regular, high-quality, and niche-specific content.
Their smaller audience size means that their followers are much more engaged and their reach is usually extremely targeted. Micro-influencers have a good reputation and are often a key opinion leader (KOL) because of their expertise in their chosen niche. This expertise allows them to build a loyal and engaged following based on trust.
Because micro-influencers usually center all of their content around a specific niche, it makes it easier for brands to select the right influencer with an industry relevant audience. For example, micro-influencers that focus solely on women’s fashion would be a perfect fit for a small to medium-sized fashion or accessories brand.
These influencers also enable easy access to highly sought after segments such as 18 to 24-year-olds, which would otherwise be expensive to reach through other channels.
Micro-influencers cost less than mega- and macro-influencers, which allows brands with smaller budgets to get a little more “bang for their buck.” By working with a micro-influencer, you can enjoy all the benefits of reaching out to a targeted audience with quality content, without having to pay to reach people that may be less interested in what your brand has to offer.
Nano-influencers: Less than 10k followers
Nano-influencers are the most affordable type of influencers to work with. They tend to have a follower count that’s less than 10k followers. Despite their small follower count, they’re a popular choice among niche brands because they offer good value for money and a lot of other perks too. Some companies even choose to niche down further and work with emerging influencers with less than 2k followers.
The reason for this is that the smaller an influencer’s reach is, the more targeted the people they reach becomes. Not only does working with nano-influencers give you access to a small and extremely niche-specific audience, but brands can also benefit from the type of community that these influencers harbor.
Because of the close-knit nature of smaller communities, influencer campaigns have a much more personal touch, and their return on investment is often quite high. Followers feel as though they’re getting a recommendation from a friend, and they’re more likely to take action based on the ads and sponsorships that they see from these types of influencers.
However, nano-influencers often don’t identify as an influencer because social media is often just a hobby. This means that they may not be professional in how they work, but more importantly, it also means they’re difficult to find. To help, you can use our guide on how to find Instagram influencers, which will speed up the process!
Overall, the cost-effectiveness of nano-influencers makes them a great option, especially for small or medium-sized businesses that have a limited budget. However, if you want your campaign to be far-reaching, you would either need to work with a large group of them or invest in a handful of micro- or macro-influencers.
What type of influencer should I work with?
When it comes to choosing influencers to work with, it isn’t as simple as just checking their follower count and choosing the one with the highest number. As you can see from the information above, there are benefits to working with all types of influencers, and the influencer you choose will depend on your brand and marketing goals.
The main factor that will influence your decision is your marketing goals. Are you looking to reach a large audience? Or are you looking to increase customer consideration? Or drive conversions? Since each type of influencer contributes to your goals in different ways, you’ll need to weigh the benefits and select the type that will offer you the best return on investment.
For instance, consider the type of audience you want to reach out to. Although you can afford to work with macro-influencers, you may decide that the targeted reach of a micro-influencer is more valuable to your brand than reaching out to a less targeted, but larger audience.
Another factor that will affect who you work with is budget. Influencers will charge different fees for their work, so you should determine what kind of influencer you can afford to work with.
In addition to this, when choosing an influencer, be sure to check them out and see if the type of content they usually produce will fit the campaign you’re planning. In some cases, influencers may have the follower size you want, but the content they create might not align with your brand values or goals.
Choosing the right influencer can take some time, so be sure to review your options before making your final decision.
How do you identify influencers?
The easiest way to recognize an influencer is by how many followers they have on various social media platforms and how engaged their followers are. If they have more than 2k followers and their posts perform well in likes and comments, they’d probably be classed as an influencer.
Who are the biggest influencers?
The biggest influencers are mega-influencers. Usually, these are all-star celebrities such as famous actors, actresses, athletes, and TV personalities.
How do I get influencers to represent my brand?
If you want to start with influencer marketing, you’ll need to first define your influencer marketing strategy. You can then start contacting influencers by finding their contact details online. You may be able to get in touch with them directly via social media. But some influencers are a part of agencies that help manage their sponsorships, so you may have to contact the influencers’ agency first.
Once you have your strategy and the influencers’ contact details, be sure to prepare a convincing first email and influencer brief to get them excited about the potential collaboration!
So there you have it, everything you need to know about the different types of influencers to consider when you’re planning your influencer marketing campaigns. If you’re looking for more guides or information about influencer marketing, be sure to explore the blog and check out some more posts!
Still not sure which influencers to work with?, Get in touch with our influencer marketing agency. We’ve worked with thousands of influencers for hundreds of leading brands.