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January,28th 2021

Micro vs. Macro influencers – How To Tell Which One is Right for You?

Did you know Estee Lauder spent more than $900 million on influencer marketing in 2017? It worked so well. They allocated 75% of their marketing budget to influencer marketing in 2020 across their umbrella of brands!

There’s no question that influencer marketing can help your business grow to new heights. Still, the question is, what kind of influencer marketing works for you? Is it micro-influencers or macro-influencers? It’s a question we often hear at Sylo, so we wanted to take a moment and break it down for you:

What is a Micro-Influencer? 

Micro-influencers are defined as influencers that have between 10k – 50k followers. Typically, their followers are very niche, which helps your brand get in front of the right people (instead of just many people).

What is a Macro-Influencer? 

Macro-influencers typically have between 250,000 to millions of followers, making them the celebrities of the social media world. Some of them actually are celebrities! Kim Kardashian is one of the most famous examples of a celebrity who’s also an influencer. With such a large following, your brand can get in front of many eyes! But always remember to use reach over follower count (find out why here).  

Micro Influencer Pros

As we mentioned above, the follower count is not the only metric that matters. When it comes to Micro vs. Macro influencers, they have both been known to purchase fake followers to inflate their audience. Of course, fake followers won’t buy your products or services, so it’s essential to measure reach and engagement. That means how many people are actually seeing the influencer’s post and how many are engaging with it.

Although there are still ways to buy fake likes and comments, using all of these metrics paints a more accurate picture. Micro-influencers can sometimes see engagement rates that are 7x higher than macro-influencers – a massive pro to working with them. So it’s no surprise that brands like Red Bull have partnered with hundreds of micro-influencers with small but devoted fanbases.

Smaller audiences that tend to have higher engagement rates combined with more affordable pricing make micro-influencers so attractive to brands.

Micro Influencer Cons

Many brands say the biggest downfall to working with micro-influencers is that, even though they can work well, it’s challenging to do it at the scale a big brand needs. Many brands just don’t have the bandwidth to work with enough micro influencers at the scale needed. Plus, smaller audiences mean that micro-influencers are usually more involved in the campaign process, so they’re more selective of their content.

If something is off-brand, they could lose followers. If your business is aligned with their audience, it’s a pro! But if your brand is not fully aligned, they might not work with you.

Macro Influencer Pros

The main pro to working with a macro-influencer is that their visibility is massive. Another pro to working with macro-influencers is that you get to work with a team of professionals! Since the influencer is well-established and has worked with many brands, they have a team around them to assist in the creative development and campaign execution.

Macro Influencer Cons

The biggest downside to working with macro-influencers is the price to risk ratio. You have to make a big investment with no guaranteed outcome. It’s kind of like purchasing a SuperBowl commercial. You don’t really hear about the cons. Ryan Aynes, co-founder and Managing Director of EDGE Collective puts it well when he says that “The Super Bowl is either a necessary investment or a risk investment, it just matters on the size of your company and the expected return that your business is in need of based on the media dollars you’re willing to spend.”

The same is true when it comes to influencer marketing. You must do a lot of homework to ensure that when you hire a macro-influencer you will see the desired ROI. For example, it’s rumoured that Kim Kardashian charges up to $1 million per Instagram post! Of course, most macro-influencers don’t charge nearly that much, but they will charge more than a micro-influencer, so make sure you have the budget!

Lastly, macro-influencers can sometimes be seen as celebrity endorsements, which don’t carry the same weight or trust that micro-influencers do. Think of it as the difference between your best friend telling you about a great new product vs a celebrity telling you about it in a TV commercial. Whom would you trust more?

Micro vs. Macro influencers: How to Decide Which One is Right for You?

Now that we’ve highlighted the pros and cons of Micro vs. Macro influencers, you can decide what works best for your business! The right choice comes down to your budget, campaign goals, and target audience. If brand awareness is your primary goal, then you might want to work with macro-influencers. They can get your business in front of hundreds of thousands of people. If you have a limited budget or engagement is a more vital KPI for your brand, then a micro-influencer is most likely the way to go! 

Micro vs. Macro influencers: Sylo Can Help

If you’re still undecided or have further questions about Micro vs. Macro influencers, we’re always here to help! At Sylo, we measure business impact using real-time data that helps us predict campaign performance. It’s how we get the most ROI possible for our clients! Plus, all of our influencer partners come with a certificate of influencer authenticity, helping weed out bots and fake followers. So don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today!  


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