One of the primary reasons influencer marketing is so effective is that it requires brands to actively engage with their audience. A large portion of influencer marketing is about developing content and building relationships.

As you know, followers are an important part of the influencer marketing process. Without them, there is no influencer marketing. But brands shouldn’t be concerned with the number of followers an influencer has but, rather, the quality of followers they’ve accumulated. Hiring an influencer with 100,000 active followers in a target market can be more effective than an influencer with a million random followers, many of whom may not be interested in your product.

During influencer marketing’s early stages, many brands made the mistake of paying exorbitant amounts of money to social media personalities with millions of followers. In many cases, these influencer campaigns didn’t give them the return on investment they hoped for because they were focusing on insignificant details – known as vanity metrics.

Along with follower counts, other vanity metrics include the number of...

  • Likes
  • Shares or retweets
  • Page views

While these metrics play an important role in your campaign’s big picture, vanity metrics shouldn’t be the sole factor in choosing the right influencer for your brand.

Bigger Doesn’t Mean Better

While it’s true that large follower counts mean more exposure for your brand, working with mega influencers doesn’t guarantee the increase in revenue that you’d hoped for. Rather than focusing on numbers, look at who the followers are and what they’re interested in. If we look strictly at vanity metrics, influencers like Kim Kardashian appear to be the best fit for your brand. But if you’re a company that specializes in SaaS enterprise solutions, it’s likely that many of her followers wouldn’t be interested in your brand.

Companies are starting to realize that vanity metrics aren’t as important as they had thought, which is why there’s a shift toward micro influencers.

Micro influencers don’t have the large following of mega influencers, but they have something even more important: engagement rates. Since they have smaller followings, micro influencers have the ability to build more meaningful relationships with their subscribers. While brands working with micro influencers may get less exposure, they also stand to benefit from a higher quality market that’s more receptive to your product or service.

It’s about Finding a Balance

Building a successful influencer marketing campaign requires getting the best of both worlds: exposure and engagement.

Macro influencers are the perfect balance between mega and micro influencers. They have a large enough following to create brand awareness, but they’re not so large that they’re disconnected from their followers.

Matchmaking platforms like Influential help brands connect with macro influencers. Instead of looking at vanity metrics, these platforms look at the brand as well as the influencer. Companies are then matched with a number of different social media personalities who match their brand image and have high-quality followers. This allows brands to partner with influencers who best suit them, making it easier for companies to get the ROI they’re seeking.