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How to find micro-influencers for your startup

, 9 October 2018

A startup, by definition, will still have a very limited budget, and must focus on investments with a fast and, if possible, high return. An influencer marketing campaign then becomes a logical expense, as long as it’s well managed

Collaborate with micro-influencers to develop the notoriety of your startup at a lower cost

Behind a handful of mega-influencers in the industry in which you operate is an army of micro-influencers, that is, profiles with an audience of between 3,000 and 10,000 followers or visitors. And these people naturally charge a lot less.

As we like to be very precise on, let’s look at the numbers. For social media, 84% of micro-influencers charge less than €220 for a sponsored publication. The overwhelming majority (97%) charge less than €430. Thus, a pool of 5 micro-influencers should not set you back more than a thousand or so euros. That can be compared with revenue potentially five times higher (an ROI of over 500% being quite accessible in micro-influencer marketing).

On the blogger side, 87% of micro-influencers charge less than €430. You have to count a little more for an influencer campaign on blogs, for two main reasons:

  • A complete article, especially when it exceeds 1000 words, normally requires more time and effort than a “simple” publication on Instagram.
  • Micro-influencers bloggers often have better reach than their counterparts on social networks.

Find micro-influencers among your followers

If you exceed 1000 subscribers on Twitter or Instagram, and even more so if you go over the fateful mark of 10,000, there are necessarily – among that “crowd” – some very interesting profiles. Do you need to check out the profiles of each of your thousands of followers? Put like that, it seems impractical. However, a smart practice would be to set up a daily ritual during which you (or your community manager) take a look at the profiles of the day’s new followers. Unless your audience grows by hundreds of followers a day, it’s perfectly feasible. On Twitter, you can then breakdown the new interesting followers by listing them as “micro-influencers”, “macro-influencers”, so as not to lose track. It will be easier to interact with them afterwards.

Twitter has a comprehensive Analytics platform to not only launch campaigns, but also to get to know your audience better. (Photo credit: Twitter Business)

Don’t panic if you already have thousands of followers and don’t really have the capacity to scan each one of them. Twitter has an “Analytics” section, accessible from the desktop version. You can find for each month:

  • Your “top tweet”, that is to say the one having received the most engagement. Take a look at users who have retweeted or liked it.
  • Your most influential followers among new recruits of the week or past months,
  • The tweet mentioning you that received the most engagement, which is most often the sign that the author of the tweet in question is influential.

Follow the popular hashtags in your niche

Look for the popular hashtags of your niche on social networks. Automatically, search results will give priority to content that has received more engagement, and thus likely to be posted by influential figures.

Hashtagify allows you to find new hashtags and even influencers related to it. Here, a cloud of tags related to the French football team. (Photo credit: Hashtagify screenshot)

If you’re afraid of missing out on a major hashtag, use the free Hashtagify service. For each hashtag, it gives you the other hashtags linked to it. It also indicates the biggest influencers who have tweeted with that hashtag, but they’re mostly mega-influencers, so probably outside your budget. It’s still worth trying!

Identify micro-influencers in macro-influencers’ networks

Micro-influencers often gravitate around macros. They understood that they had to appear on the radar of the big guys to find a place. In addition social networks tend to highlight the comments of their other influential members. In short, if you’ve found an influencer but they’re too big for your budget, observe the profiles that interact with him. From experience, there are other interesting influencers among them.

Influencers are networking professionals. Behind a big influencer there always hide other influencers. (Photo credit: Darrel Und, Pexels)

It is of course a tedious and exclusively manual job. Influencer marketing in general is a time-consuming branch if you want to have a complete end-to-end understanding from influencer identification to approach, negotiation, content creation and tracking. Fortunately, it’s also possible to speed things up considerably by using dedicated services, which is what our next point is about.

Use an influencer platform to save time

Influencer platforms have long focused on mega or macro-influencer type profiles. The fashion and beauty sectors were generally happy with it. Then other sectors and especially other businesses, of smaller size, were interested in the enormous profitability allowed by influencer marketing. So the platforms had to adapt and diversify their offer.

For social media, a platform like Reech claims 16,000 influencers “in all themes”. For blogs, the platform has built its success on a broad catalog of 3000 influential bloggers. Here too, most domains are covered, be it sport, fashion, beauty, cryptocurrency, or even in B2B domains.

For a startup with limited resources, some marketing channels are more recommendable than others. Among them, influencer marketing ranks first. It’s an easy channel to test, especially if you use a dedicated platform, and almost always profitable.

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