How to Grow Your Startup with Micro-Influencers on Instagram
Influencer marketing has emerged as one of this era's most important and influential marketing techniques.
From eCommerce retailers to B2B companies, all types of businesses use influencer marketing.
What makes influencer marketing so popular?
Well, there are many benefits that it offers. First, influencer marketing can help you cost-effectively achieve numerous marketing goals.
Second, influencers can market your brand on social media and create a positive brand image.
That’s not all. People trust influencer recommendations more than they trust brand promotions. So, influencer marketing is also more effective than traditional marketing methods.
As a startup, you can’t choose to ignore influencer marketing anymore. It is one of the quickest and cheapest ways to achieve your marketing goals and grow your startup.
In this post, we will discuss the term “micro-influencers” and why they are the preferred choice for brands.
You will also learn some of the most effective strategies to work with micro-influencers on Instagram, the most popular influencer marketing platform.
Are you excited to learn more? Keep reading.
What are Micro-Influencers?
Influencer marketing is continuously evolving, and you must keep up with the latest trends.
Traditionally, influencer marketing referred to collaborating with celebrities and viral internet personalities, now known as “mega-influencers.”
However, marketers have now realised that working with several smaller influencers is more cost-effective than one popular and expensive one.
That is where micro-influencers come into the picture.
Micro-influencers on Instagram have engaged and loyal followers between 10 and 100 thousand.
These are not celebrities or popular influencers with an insane follower base, but they substantially influence the people who follow them.
Brands now realise micro-influencers' potential and prefer working with them instead of paying much money to celebrities or mega-influencers.
Want to find out what makes micro-influencers so practical and helpful?
Find that out in the next section.
Why Should You Work with Micro-Influencers?
This section will discuss the reasons behind the growing popularity of micro-influencers and what they bring to the table.
Micro-influencers offer advantages over traditional mega-influencers, making them the preferred choice for marketers.
Here are the numerous benefits of collaborating with micro-influencers and why you should consider leveraging them to grow your startup.
Micro-influencers appear more authentic than popular ones as they are regular people to whom their followers relate.
How does this help?
This means that their audiences trust their recommendations and have enough influence to sway their audiences’ opinions.
As a startup, your priority is building brand awareness and trust; micro-influencers can help you accomplish that.
So, micro-influencers need to be a core part of your business’s branding strategy.
Micro-influencers have a small but engaged audience interested in their favourite influencers' content.
According to a recent study, influencers’ engagement rates decrease with increased followers.
This means influencers with a small but targeted follower base get more engagement than mega-influencers.
While this suggests that nano-influencers get the highest engagement rates, they can only help you reach a few thousand people.
Micro-influencers, therefore, are the best alternative to maintain a good balance between reach and engagement.
Unlike mega-influencers, who may have many irrelevant followers, micro-influencers tend to have more genuine followers.
This means that people who follow them are genuinely interested in the content they share or the topic they discuss.
Micro-influencers, therefore, can help you reach your exact target audience on Instagram.
For example, consider a famous travel influencer with millions of followers. Many people may be following their accounts to see beautiful travel pictures.
Consider a micro-influencer that talks only about backpacking, a niche in the travel industry.
Though this influencer may have fewer followers, they will be genuinely interested in backpacking as a mode of travel and would likely be backpackers themselves.
The second influencer is much more effective for a business with backpackers as its audience.
Lastly, micro-influencers are cost-effective and much less expensive than mega-influencers, who sometimes charge exorbitant fees.
Micro-influencers often agree to be paid in kind if you offer a mutually beneficial value proposition.
Overall, micro-influencers can help you reach the right people and have the power to influence their purchase decisions in your favour.
Include micro-influencers in your social media marketing strategy; you will see the results first-hand.
But where can you find the right micro-influencers?
Find out in the next section.
How to Find the Right Micro-Influencers
It is not difficult to find influencers nowadays, as there are tons of free and paid influencer-finding platforms.
These platforms can use filters like industry, number of followers, engagement rate, etc., to find a list of influencers for your business.
However, you need to dig deeper to find micro-influencers who perfectly fit your brand personality. Here are some excellent ways to find the perfect micro-influencers for your brand:
- Search your followers on Instagram, find those with a decent following, and interact with your brand frequently.
- Look into your customers to find the loyal ones you can turn into brand ambassadors.
- Search for micro-influencers on Instagram using niche hashtags to look for posts that use those hashtags and have significant likes and comments.
You can, of course, also use platforms to find influencers in addition to these tactics. Also, don’t forget to vet your influencers and check their authenticity before you start working with them.
Pro Tip: Find the perfect influencers manually and then use the tools to vet those influencers on key performance metrics.
4 Strategies to Leverage Micro-Influencers on Instagram
Now that we understand why micro-influencers are essential to growing your startup let’s focus on the how.
How can you leverage micro-influencers in the best way?
Here are four practical ways to collaborate with micro-influencers on Instagram to grow your startup.
1 – Ask Them to Review Your Products
One of the best ways to use micro-influencers on Instagram is to ask them to review your products.
Many micro-influencers will agree to post a review if you send them free product samples.
This makes it a cost-effective way to leverage micro-influencers on Instagram to grow your business.
Ask influencers to write positive product reviews and post them on their Instagram accounts.
This way, you can reach their audiences, build brand awareness, and instil trust in your brand, all in one fell swoop.
You can promote these review posts on your Instagram and other social media channels.
To get the most out of every product review, you can ask micro-influencers to create a post for Instagram and a detailed review for your website.
You can publish the detailed review post on your website and ask the influencer to add the link to their Instagram post.
Ensure the influencers add high-quality product pictures in their reviews and show the products in use. Don’t forget to compress your images on your website to maintain good site speed.
Want an example?
Here’s a quick review post where the influencer shared a product image and mentioned its critical features in the post caption.
The influencer also tagged the brand and disclosed the paid partnership, further adding to the influencer’s credibility and recommendation.
Pro Tip: If you are confident about your products, ask influencers to try them and write honest reviews, as those look more authentic.
2 – Collaborate on Joint Giveaways
One of the simplest ways to work with micro-influencers on Instagram is to host a joint giveaway or contest.
How does it work?
You co-host a giveaway and promote it on your respective Instagram accounts. The participants need to follow both your and the influencer’s accounts.
You can also add participation criteria like sharing the post in Stories, tagging friends, etc.
It will be a mutually beneficial tactic where both parties get more followers and engagement.
Also, make sure you give your products as the giveaway’s prize, as this will help get your target customers to try your products and buy again if they like them.
Here’s an example of a joint giveaway Instagram post for your reference.
3 – Get Them to Promote Your Offers
Nothing works like a good discount or offer if your goal is to generate some quick sales.
In today's digital age, leveraging the power of fashion influencers on Instagram can be a game-changer.
You can work with micro-influencers on Instagram to promote your offers and discounts. They can inform their audiences about your brand and promote your latest offers.
You can even give each influencer a unique discount code to share with their followers.
A unique discount code makes people feel special as they are rewarded for following an influencer, and no one else gets that particular discount.
Moreover, unique discount codes will also help you track each influencer’s performance and assess who brought in the maximum number of new customers.
Here’s an example of an influencer promoting a brand’s offer on Instagram using a unique discount code.
This is one of the fastest ways to reach more people on Instagram and generate more sales.
Want to know the best part?
There are many ways to use and implement this strategy, regardless of your business type.
You can constantly offer some incentive to get more customers and influencers to help amplify your campaign’s reach. So, try this tactic and see the results for yourself.
4 – Run a Hashtag Campaign
This strategy is simple:
Create a unique branded, campaign-specific hashtag and work with a network of micro-influencers on Instagram to promote your campaign using that hashtag.
Some of the most successful Instagram influencer campaigns use this strategy.
Working with multiple influencers is a great way to create some buzz. Using a campaign-specific hashtag allows you to track all Instagram posts related to your campaign.
But, explaining it via an example is better than in theory. So, here is one brilliant example.
Daniel Wellington is a watch brand that has mastered the art of influencer marketing.
They promote all new products using a specific hashtag. They ask their customers and influencers to use it when posting a picture with that product or range of products.
Here’s an example of a post where an influencer uses the hashtag #DWQuadro to promote their latest product range.
You should also use popular hashtags on Instagram for all of your content and ask influencers to do the same to get more reach for each post.
Pro Tip: Create a hashtag for every new product using simply the product name and run a hashtag influencer campaign to promote it.
Ready to Work with Micro-Influencers on Instagram?
Influencer marketing is the next frontier of digital marketing, and micro-influencer are leading the way forward.
Almost anyone with a decent following, a well-defined niche, and engaging content is a micro-influence.
What’s more, they actively seek collaboration opportunities and work for fair compensation instead of charging exorbitant fees.
Micro-influencers can put your startup on the map by introducing your brand and products to their audiences.
They can get people to try your products and give your startup that initial push before establishing a known brand.
So, if you are not yet collaborating with micro-influencers on Instagram, you are missing out on a huge opportunity.
Start collaborating with micro-influencers on Instagram to grow your startup right now. All the best!
Author Bio: Gaurav Sharma is the founder and CEO of Attrock, a results-driven digital marketing company. Grew an agency from 5-figure to 7-figure revenue in just two years | 10X leads | 2.8X conversions | 300K organic monthly traffic. He also contributes to top publications like HuffPost, Adweek, Business 2 Community, TechCrunch, and more.