Complete Guide to Micro-influencer Marketing in 2024 (Agency's Insider Info)

Alexandra Kazakova
May 30, 2024
May 29, 2024

I don’t just smell what the rock is cooking – I buy it too!

That’s right, Dwayne Johnson, AKA pro-wrestler “The Rock, ” has convinced me to make a few purchases.

His magnetic personality draws me in like a moth to the flame.

Plus, he’s hawking some pretty cool stuff on Instagram, too.

The fact is that celebrities affect our decisions.

Before the age of social influencer marketing, celebrities were already influencing people by setting trends in art & culture.

Now, they are overtly advertising things. I, for one, appreciate the honesty.

A celebrity’s social status turns them into a valuable voice.

Still, a celebrity’s fame might not reach your audience.

It’ll take someone who speaks with a lot more conviction & passion about the product, with a very intimate following.

Enter micro-influencers.

Brands partner with smaller accounts, between 10k-to-100k followers, to promote products in a much more authentic manner on social channels.

While celebrities can reach millions of followers at once, their sponsored ads can be sterile, like they’re reading off cue cards.

Some people get completely turned off.

Micro-influencers speak from the heart, which resonates with many folks.

Their followers hang on to their every word in some cases.

So, a micro-influencer might be a better option to promote your product.

Follow along with this blog to learn everything you need to know about micro-influencers!

We’ll cover the ins and outs of who they are, how to negotiate with them, and which ones will be the right influencers for your brand. 

TL;DR

  • Micro-influencers have engaged audiences, authenticity, and cost-effectiveness.
  • Identifying the right influencers: define audience and goals; analyze influencer content and demographics.
  • Personalize outreach, propose collaboration ideas, and offer value.
  • Define goals, align content, encourage creativity.
  • Use Google searches and tools for qualified options.
  • Adapt approach based on platform, commission-based pay, leverage existing users.
  • Consider effective onboarding, constant communication, and the use of tracking tools.

What is a Micro-influencer?

A micro-influencer is an influencer with a smaller, more engaged audience.

It’s a person with a decent social media presence who usually focuses on a specific field of interest.

And they create genuine connections to their audience.

Micro-influencer campaigns have become very popular in today’s digital marketing industry.

Whether you are looking at promoting your cat collar brand, to a revolutionary jumping rope, to an unusual camera accessory, you can consider an influencer marketing campaign for a CPG or any other brand to promote your product, service, and brand to everyday people.

  • But what is exactly a micro-influencer?
  • How can you find one?
  • How can they help you?

We will answer all these questions and a bit more in this article.

A micro-influencer follower count can vary, depending on whether they are on Instagram or TikTok.

They can also be on YouTube, Twitter, and other social media channels, but we will focus on Instagram and TikTok in this piece.

An Instagram micro-influencer typically has between 5, 000 and 50, 000 followers, whereas a TikTok micro-influencer has between 10, 000 all the way up to half a million followers.

There are no rigid definitions for this term, and the classification of influencers by type can vary from marketer to marketer.

With 11.700 followers on Instagram at the time of this writing, Alyssa Klinzing qualifies as a micro-influencer.

And here she is below in a TikTok ad for one of our clients, Bumble:

But why is there such a massive difference in the number of followers between these two platforms?

It all boils down to engagement.

Keep that word in mind because we will reference it further down the article.

  • TikTok’s algorithm works to show the platform’s visitors videos based on how long those videos have been watched. So videos that get watched till the end will be pushed more.

Instagram, instead, has a different user experience or interaction.

  • Instagram will show people the content of those they follow, and users will scroll through their feed where they will find not just videos but tons of photos. Instagram was created primarily as a photo-sharing platform, after all. The video feature came a bit later.

TikTok is a platform to share short videos that emerged as an alternative to Vine and offered a longer video length than Vine’s six-second limit.

Ready to build your next campaign? Get in touch with our influencer marketing agency in NYC

Will a Micro-Influencer Be Suitable for My Brand?

Most likely, yes.

This marketing channel suits most businesses.

But it all depends on what industry or niche your brand belongs to.

The most popular micro-influencers on Instagram tend to specialize in specific niches.

The top niches for Instagram micro-influencers are:

  • Lifestyle
  • Fitness
  • Makeup
  • Travel
  • Fashion
  • Food
  • Family
  • Pets

On the other hand, TikTok’s most popular influencers usually belong to an entirely different set of niches than Instagram.

These niches are typically

  • Dancers
  • Singers
  • Pranksters
  • Vine comedy skits

Micro-influencers vs. Celebrity Influencers

A micro-influencer, unlike a macro or a mega influencer (a.k.a. celebrity), is usually more in touch with his or her audience, considerably cheaper to work with, and more committed to your brand.

A celebrity influencer like Kim Kardashian or LeBron James will result in a lot more cash to fork out if you want to work with them, and the engagement will most likely be much less:

More importantly, micro-influencers have:

  • 60% increased trust
  • 20% increased conversion rate

compared to macro-influencers.

It’s no wonder that 77% of brands want to work with micro-influencers:

Linqia 2021

The reason behind these numbers is that human, personal connection with their followers.

The micro-influencers are more down-to-earth and connect with their niche audience in a much more flat or horizontal way.

The way they interact with their followers is very different from macro-influencers, who usually are at the top of this popularity pyramid.

It is improbable that celebrity influencers will personally respond to comments, DMs, or connect with their audience authentically.

It’s just a lot of people to handle.

Now that we’ve touched on the “humanity” and overall engagement of the micro-influencer vs. macro-influencer, let’s look at some figures to illustrate this in more detail.

Numerous studies carried out by the Statista Research Department found out that, and it’s probably no surprise, the engagement rates drop as the audience size increases.

  • Creators with an audience of just about 1000 followers, or less, have an average engagement rate of 9.7%.
  • As an Instagrammer or TikToker surpassed the 1K and up to about 4K followers, the average engagement rate drops more than halves, going down to about 4.5%.
  • Influencers with more than 100K followers have an engagement rate of a meager 1.7%.

Engagement also varies per niche.

The Social media benchmark report from Rival IQ indicates brands belonging to these niches have better chances for success on Instagram:

  • Higher education: 3.96% engagement
  • Nonprofits: 2.40% engagement
  • Sports teams at: 2.40% engagement

No wonder that micro-influencers love participating in campaigns where brands stand for a good cause.

Charity campaigns receive some of the highest engagement rates.

Meanwhile, Shopify states that “50.7% of brands working with influencers run ecommerce stores.”

Benefits of Working with Micro-Influencers

Micro-influencer marketing is one of the most effective ways to promote your brand regardless of whether it is an online podcast or a skin care product.

It’s also very affordable and easy to implement, which makes it an ideal choice for small businesses that want to get their message out there but don’t have much budget or time to spare.

Pro tip: Before you start working with these people, make sure they are actually interested in what you’re selling.

If not, then this could be a waste of money!

Can you trust ALL micro-influencers?

You must be aware of those micro-influencers who have “fake” followers, “fake” likes, and “fake” comments.

That’s right, there is an overwhelming number of influencers, whether they are nano, micro, or macro (celebrity type) influencers, who have resorted to some shady tactics to make people think they have a significant following.

Although there are no exact numbers for TikTok, the latter channel is even more vulnerable to fake accounts.

The reason for this is that TikTok applies a lower threshold for spambot creation and management than Instagram due to a lack of a strong level of email or SMS confirmation.

Bumble in-feed ad
Ready to build your next campaign? Get in touch with our influencer marketing agency in LA

Tracking down who has fake and who has real followers is a bit of a daunting task.

But you must do it to protect your marketing budget.

Imagine you hire an influencer, pay them a chunk of cash, and find out at the end of the marketing campaign that the engagement rate was close to zero, or worse: zero.

So you dig in a bit deeper and discover that more than half of their followers are bots or fakes.

That can be utterly frustrating.

Our free fake follower checkers can help you vet your influencers’ profiles.

You simply have to fill in the influencer’s nickname on the social media you need.

Take this example:

Our Instagram fake follower checker shows that Rihanna has 40.4 million inactive followers.

That, along with factors like her engagement rate, brings her audience score to 7.1 out of 10:

Fake Follower Checker Score

Airbnb cleaning specialist and Instagram influencer Whitney White has a higher audience score thanks to a lower proportion of potential bot accounts:

Whitney White Fake Follower Checker Score

Pro tip: Some tools, like the Instagram engagement rate calculator, can help you identify influences with fake following.

As long as you know engagement rate benchmarks (described earlier in this post), you can use them as an indicator to analyze your influencers.

Once you’ve spotted the untrustworthy influencers, you’ll develop an eye for picking them out.

The bottom line is, finding a trustworthy micro-influencer can require some trial and error, access to proper analytical tools, and some sharp scouting skills.

There are, however, a plethora of serious micro-influencers who have put in the time and effort to build their audience and keep them relatively engaged organically.

These are the ones you should keep an eye out for.

Once you find them, keep them.

Real-life Examples of Micro-influencers

Let’s look at some micro-influencers campaign examples that inBeat has worked with.

  1. Estefania

Estefania is an Instagram micro-influencer, with 17, 400 followers at the time of this writing and an engagement rate of 0.88%.

Micro-influencer Estefania

She fits in the lifestyle and fashion niche, attending numerous events and expressing a unique style.

And she was also one of our top-performing influencers for the Native campaign:

Estefania Native Campaign
  1. You can find great micro-influencers on TikTok as well. Like this creator, M3hr ( tiktok.com/@.m3hr), with a following at the time of this writing of more than 300K people.
Bumble in-feed ad

M3rh did a video campaign advertising a Canadian fintech app Mogo.

As a young TikTok micro-influencer, she could bring this fintech product to the intended audience and make it relevant to them.

With that number of followers, she qualifies as a micro-influencer on TikTok.

Remember, TikTok’s engagement rates are lower than Instagram’s, but it is still an excellent platform to find suitable micro-influencers.

Bumble in-feed ad

M3rh did a video campaign advertising a Canadian fintech app Mogo.

As a young TikTok micro-influencer, she could bring this fintech product to the intended audience and make it relevant to them.

With that number of followers, she qualifies as a micro-influencer on TikTok.

Remember, TikTok’s engagement rates are lower than Instagram’s, but it is still an excellent platform to find suitable micro-influencers.

How Can We Measure the Impact of Micro-Influencers?

The key performance indicators commonly used to measure impact are still evolving in the micro-influencer market.

However, you can apply the following metrics to gauge the impact of your micro - influencer marketing campaign.

Your entire content strategy and the way you work with the micro-influencers will depend on your set goals.

  • Look at the likes given, comments posted, and shares of the followers. Remember to be aware of fake followers.
  • Website visitor tracking. If your micro-influencer is supposed to link to your product’s website, check the metrics on your website’s analytics. Google Analytics offers a pretty detailed view of who has clicked on your site and where they came from. It is also a great idea to provide a unique link, so it’s easier to track the campaign. If your Instagram micro-influencer has over 10, 000 followers, you can ask them to include a swipe-up link in their IG stories.
  • Sales or downloads. If your goal is to drive sales of a product or app downloads, share with influencers a unique promo code or a link to track those. Also, communicate this goal to the influencers to align the expectations. Some will decline the collab if they know that their audience won’t be buying the product or downloading the app. Honest micro-influencers are as much interested in the success of the campaign as you are. Don’t forget to offer them royalties for each sale or download.
  • Brand following. Suppose your goal is to grow your brand presence on social platforms, you want to increase the number of genuine followers of your brand’s accounts, and boost the number of people to recognize your brand from the logo design. In that case, you will probably want to try some contests or giveaways to reward new followers that come through the micro-influencers efforts.
  • UGC. Micro-influencers are an excellent way to crowdsource your content. So if you aim to create great content pieces, like Hopper, a mobile travelling app we worked with, you have to set your goal in the number of content pieces. For example, Hopper received 150+ pieces of original content in many formats (videos, stories, and images), which they can add to their marketing mix.
Hopper Case Study
  • Producing all this content for the brand would be costly, and replicating the authenticity of the influencers’ content would be impossible. Some tools, SaaS or a UGC agency can help you get high-quality user-generated content. Micro-influencers are, in a way, professional content creators.
  • Analyze and optimize. This one is not just about measuring your micro-influencer’s impact, but as a strategic move after using the metrics I’ve suggested. Besides optimizing your campaign, you should also compare your investment in influencer marketing against Instagram ads cost per click and choose the one that gives you the most ROI.

Well, now you are quite well prepared to discover micro-influencers to promote your products or services.

Look for serious, trustworthy micro-influencers in your niche or industry.

Watch out for shady profiles, always check engagement rates, and measure your campaign’s progress and outcome using the metrics we suggested in this post.

By now, knowing what a micro-influencer is should be clear as day.

You should have a good idea of whether you’d like to engage with one to promote your brand.

Let’s get down to brass tacks if you are ready to start working with a micro-influencer.

Finding a micro-influencer for your influencer campaign might be the easy part.

Negotiating a fair rate and setting proper expectations with them can be a complete headache.

Having a proper negotiating procedure in place is paramount to ensure a successful, profitable marketing campaign.

For whatever platform it may be, check out these tips to conquer your micro-influencer negotiating process!

How to find Micro-influencers?

Now more than ever, brands are turning to social media influencers to market their products.

Micro-influencers are becoming a crucial part of the process! A verifiable cash cow for many companies.

Micro-influencer marketing is highly effective at promoting your brand compared to traditional marketing tactics.

Generic advertisements may miss a considerable chunk of your target audience.

You’re going to see a massive gap between you and your competitors unless you start engaging with micro-influencers!

Brands are getting wise about the influencer marketplace, but there’s a lot of fumbling about still.

Searching for the best micro-influencers can seem like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Luckily, we’re here to help!

There are tactics and tools every brand can use to streamline the process.

Check out these reliable methods to finding micro-influencers in 2024!

Finding Suitable Influencers by Keywords & Hashtags

  • Keywords & hashtags hone the hunt for your influencers. They sort through the sea of profiles to find influencers specific to your niche. They’ll even find micro-influencers that already engage with your brand.
  • Keywords & hashtags are also the best manual way to find influencers, perfect for companies that aren’t looking to spend the extra budget on an influencer agency or subscription services.
  • Rather than defining your marketing strategy by yourself, hashtags give you a window into social narratives surrounding your product. They’ll help you understand current trends to pattern your marketing campaign to perfection.

Instagram & Twitter use hashtags heavily, but you’ll have to put in extra work on Facebook, which utilizes them less. YouTube uses keywords very much like a Google search.

A quick Google search will quickly reveal common hashtags relative to your industry. Here are some types of hashtags Google might miss:

1. Branded Hashtags

The most self-explanatory hashtags, they directly reference your brand.

To utilize them to their full potential, use branded hashtags with the product label—for example, #Bumble to keep track of who is posting about your brand.

Bumble Case Study

P.S. Bumble is one of our success stories and one of the most inspiring case studies on TikTok.

2. Niche Specialized Hashtags

Every niche community has a unique vernacular used exclusively by its followers.

Niche specialized hashtags are terms organically created by your target audience.

For example, search by #mobility and #stretch for stretching routines.

Niche Specialized Hashtags Example

Investigate what hashtags people in your niche are using for social posts, then use them for your search.

3. Seasonal/Promotional Hashtags

Hashtags related to holidays & special occasions won’t show up on a Google hashtag search, but they could be the most relevant keywords for your brand.

Many companies count on seasonal events & promotions to market their products—for example, #mothersdaygifts.

Bumble in-feed ad

4. Location Hashtags

For mom & pop shops, travel brands, & community businesses, location hashtags work like a charm! Don’t discredit location hashtags before you try it out.

Finding Influencers Through Tagged Content

Searching the tagged section is one of the best ways to find influencers on Instagram.

Unfortunately, this feature isn’t available on other social media sites, but that should make you want to utilize the platform! Instagram now captures a considerable chunk of the market. You can prove this to yourself when using social media analytics software.

Influencers that tag themselves in the content of your brand or your competitors will appear in the “tagged” section.

Tagging gives you access to different types of influencers that may fit your niche from the start.

Instagram Tagged Section

Go to the brand’s Instagram page and click on the tagged tab right above the pictures (Posts-Reels-Guides-Tagged).

All the people who tagged the brand in their post will appear, and you can investigate influencers from there.

Using the tagged section can be a little tricky unless you know exactly what to look for.

There’ll be tons of promotional posts created by the brand to avoid. Look for influencers with over 200 likes on average per post.

Finding Recommended Influencers

Why do any heavy lifting? Some social media sites practically gift-wrap your next influencer.

YouTube and Instagram both have features that recommend parallel accounts of influencers you already know, influencers you collaborate with.

This is an excellent option if you find a content creator you like but who doesn’t quite meet your brand needs.

Here’s how to find them on Instagram:

  • Locate an Influencer’s profile in your niche.
  • Click the “arrow” next to the “Following” or “Follow” icon.
  • A row of suggested accounts will appear to scroll through.
  • Select “see all” to view every suggested profile.
Instagram Influencer Profile

Here’s how to find them on YouTube:

  • Locate an influencer’s channel in your niche.
  • Click the “Channels” tab on the main page.
  • Relevant other channels will appear.
  • From there, you can determine if the other channels fit your needs.

Finding Influencers Through Google

Let’s be honest – this is probably the first way that many brands will look for an influencer.

“Googling” is now a conditioned response in us, but using it to find your influencers may not yield the best results. Google allows you to narrow the search with advanced options, but, from our experience, they filter too many influencers out.

Elite, expensive influencer accounts are going to show up at the top.

You can leverage the Google search to start finding influencers in your niche and work your way from there.

Google search “your Niche” + Top Influencers + (preferred Social Media Platform):

Lists of the top influencers in your niche will appear first.

You can check out the top profiles and then work your way down through suggested accounts, tagged content, or relevant hashtags in their posts.

You can then reach out to them through zoom meetings or your chosen webinar software and discuss the collaboration.

Finding Influencers Using Tools

Many different software tools on the market will make your life easier while finding a micro-influencer.

Manually searching for influencers is time-consuming and can get frustrating.

Influencer search tools give you a streamlined process with detailed analytics like engagement rate & fake followers.

You’ll run across tools based on databases or proprietary platforms.

Databases tend to include massive amounts of influencers that aren’t verified. Platforms include fewer influencers qualified by the platform.

Some Influencer platforms transition your search and automate the entire influencer marketing process, from contacting & contracting influencers to setting up full-blown marketing campaigns.

Influencer search tools have advanced filtering options based on location, hashtags, follower count, niche, and more.

Tools come in both paid and free options.

Most tools have a free trial if you want to test them out. Here are some of the top tools out, so you know which one is the best option for your brand!

1. Inbeat.co

Our Influencer search tool is the #1 way to find a micro-influencer for your brand on Instagram or TikTok!

Our proprietary influencer marketing platform features robust features to pinpoint influencers that match exactly what you are after.

All the influencers featured by our tool have been verified and approved!

That means you can create solid influencer partnerships with micro-influencers with an engaged follower base that fits your audience demographics.

As such, this is a great option for brands to reach a wide range of marketing goals and even build long-term relationships with authentic influencers.

  • Search micro-influencers in real time by hashtag, mention, username, & bio keyword. If you don’t have any hashtags in mind, our system will recommend your niche’s best ones.
  • Set your search parameters to match the influencer’s username, bio, and posts to refine the results.
  • Once you’ve established search criteria, a list of matching influencers will appear.
  • You can export the influencer list into an excel spreadsheet that contains contact details to get the ball rolling with your top picks.

Insider tip: Take a minute to use our engagement rate calculator and see if the influencer produces authentic content that engages their loyal community.

After all, you'll get the same type of influencer-generated content.

Finding Influencers by Leveraging Your Community

The best tool any company has is its people.

Leverage everyone in your organization and see who they follow on social media.

Chances are, they have someone on their feed that might make a good micro-influencer for your brand.

You don’t have to search the internet high and low.

All you have to do is reach out asking for referrals!

This solution is great if you want to create deeper connections with influencers you trust.

Besides, trusted people from your community likely have more valuable insights about your brand, even if they don't reach a broader audience like mega - influencers.

Want more examples of successful influencer marketing strategies? Check out our case studies.

How to Negotiate with Micro-influencers?

Bumble in-feed ad

Negotiating with influencers is quite a must-have skill to hone in today’s digital marketing realm.

Goal-driven negotiations are critical to a profitable and successful campaign with the micro-influencers of your choice.

At inBeat, we have great examples of successful negotiations with micro-influencers that will help you plan out and lay the foundations of your digital marketing campaign.

The level of negotiation skills you have will set the stage and your influencer marketing campaign’s fate.

Sharpening your negotiation saw is vital to gauge the success or failure of your campaign.

We’ve put together the following guide on negotiating with micro-influencers, with useful tips that will help you smoothen the path to a satisfying digital marketing campaign and build successful professional relationships with them.

How much do Micro-influencers charge?

For many marketers, micro-influencers are their preferred choice when it comes to picking a medium to raise awareness about their brand on social media, so let’s look at some figures and rates you can expect when negotiating with micro-influencers.

There are no set rules to follow when negotiating with micro-influencers.

There are so many variables that will determine the final price, such as:

The number of followers (an Instagram creator with 5k followers will probably be much easier to deal with than one with 40k)

  • The platform they’re on
  • The niche
  • The engagement rate
  • And so on
Cost Per Post by Platform
  • Some micro-influencers are willing to join your brand’s campaign in exchange for free products if they feel that these products will suit their lifestyle and niche.
  • Many micro-influencers will charge for a deal. The good news is that their fees are generally relatively modest compared to macro-influencers, and their engagement rates (those of micro-influencers) are considerably higher.

For a micro-influencer, an average sum to keep in mind is 150 USD.

However, a one-off video or post can set you back more than 500 dollars in particular cases.

So it will not break the bank, but it could be steep depending on your budget and your marketing campaign. We have scored win-win deals with some micro-influencers for just a few hundred USD (plus some perks, which we’ll delve into in a bit).

Remember: It is crucial to note that micro influencers’ rates will vary considerably according to what platform they are on, as we mentioned before. YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok micro-influencers have very different rates due to how these platforms operate.

Negotiating With YouTube Micro-Influencers

Video by Tobi Adekeye for Mogo.ca campaign by inBeat.agency

YouTube micro-influencers are generally the most expensive because the time and effort required to create a quality 15-20 minutes YouTube video are not equal to a 15-second TikTok video or an Instagram shot.

However, if you make the job as easy as possible for YouTube creators, become their content consultant, start with a set price, and provide as much detailed information upfront to them, you will, in most cases, seal yourself a good deal.

Let me give you an example.

We were negotiating with YouTube creators to promote a SaaS platform that enables small businesses to process payments to their suppliers.

We had initially defined a price and prepared a detailed content brief.

Here’s the problem: Some creators assume that they would need to produce a fully dedicated video to this product, perhaps lasting over 10 minutes.

However, they misunderstood:

That is not how it should be done, simply because nobody will sit through 10+ minutes of a boring financial software presentation.

Instead, we needed a 1.5 – 2 min feature in a longer video talking about small business tips.

Solution: After a few emails clarifying what we wanted, we managed to agree.

We:

  • Made sure that they had everything done upfront for them, so they only needed to hit Mac screen recording and speak to the camera.
  • Proposed a fixed budget
  • Suggested the best video title and talking points
  • Showed them how to engage their followers best when discussing this topic

Remember: It is essential to work together with YouTube influencers and add value to their content and care about their viewers and engagement.

As a result, they will be much more flexible when it comes to negotiations.

Apart from fixed pay, you can also consider commission-based pay:

Like our SaaS client we just spoke about, many companies offer a commission to the creator after their viewers sign up for the app or purchase the product and become paying customers.

Usually, the creators get paid by getting their followers to:

  • Download the app
  • Buy a product via an affiliate link or a promo code posted in the video description

Insider tip: If the client has the option of offering the micro-influencer some passive income with affiliate commissions, you can have more bargaining power and bring down the final price you’ll pay them.

Commissions can drastically reduce the cost of hiring a micro-influencer.

We also recently worked with a Canadian fintech app:

  • We managed to bring the costs down for individual YouTube creators by around 50%.
  • We found a couple of great YouTube micro-influencers who had already been using the service. They knew the value this app adds to their life and how it could help others achieve financial stability and become debt-free.

An essential tip you should keep in mind when you are scouting around for your micro-influencer is to see if they are already using your product.

Remember, your brand fans won’t be charging you as much as the creators who never experienced your service or product.

So when searching for collabs, first go through your existing customer base and check if you find any social media creators among them.

Negotiating With TikTok Micro-Influencers

Bumble in-feed ad
TikTok ad featuring LaSha for Hopper campaign by inBeat.agency

TikTok creators may be harder to negotiate with because they are the most creative of the bunch.

Although TikTok is perceived as a platform to brainwash teenagers, it takes a lot of creativity and wit to create TikTok videos that become viral.

Creators must catch people’s attention from the first few seconds and deliver an entire story from exposition to ending in just 15 seconds.

Negotiating with TikTok micro-influencers depends on what you are looking for.

For example, one ad with three hooks that the creator doesn’t post on their timeline costs up to $500.

Of course, you must negotiate depending on the creator’s reach, know-how, and previous results.

Negotiating With Instagram Micro-Influencers

Leticia Esparza Native Campaign

Leticia Esparza, Sparring Taekwondo World Champion, and among our top-performing creators for Native campaign by inBeat.agency

When it comes to negotiating with Instagram micro-influencers, the approach is similar to that of YouTube.

  • Work together with Instagrammers to create awesome content and treat them as an extension of your team.
  • Give priority to those who are already using your brand.

Insider tip: On Instagram, it also helps to “buy in bulk.”

We have managed to reduce costs by up to 30% when negotiating a bulk price with Instagram micro-influencers.

Instagram micro-influencers in the niches of beauty, travel, lifestyle, food recipes, DIY, or even pets, have significantly high engagement rates.

Remember: If your product or service is in one of these niches, you may expect some tug-o-war with your chosen micro-influencer.

But making it as easy as possible for the micro-influencer and doing most of the job beforehand can significantly reduce your bill.

That includes:

  • Creating an in-depth content brief
  • Helping the influencer write captions and produce great content

It is always a good idea when you do a bulk negotiation with an Instagram micro-influencer to create a campaign with a combination of featured videos, carousels, posts, and stories.

For example, your campaign can include:

  • 1 in-feed video
  • 2 carousels
  • 4 posts
  • 2 stories

These numbers are just examples.

It will be different for each case depending on your niche, the influencer, and your product or service nature.

Insider tip: Instagram micro-influencers are generally attracted to brands who have already worked with larger, more prominent influencers, celebrities, or anyone they might look up to.

If your brand has already worked with some social media stars or well-known bloggers, you can leverage this in your negotiations.

It is not unheard of that this fact can shrink the final price by 30%.

To conclude, negotiating with micro-influencers is a job in itself.

It requires brands and marketers to keep polishing their skills, researching the influencer market, picking the ones who will proudly represent your brand and will form long-lasting partnerships with you.

The niche and platform will almost always dictate the price range, so be ready to layout your proposal, budget, perks, and plan as detailed and straight-to-the-point as possible as to minimize the guessing work by the micro-influencer.

Let’s summarize what we’ve talked about:

  • Offering bulk (or “buying in bulk”) will very likely bring your costs down by a significant margin.
  • YouTube micro-influencers are generally more expensive than TikTok or Instagram micro-influencers due to the platform’s nature.
  • TikTok micro-influencers usually have fixed rates that are more troublesome to negotiate.
  • Micro-influencers will generally be more likely to work with you for a lower rate if larger influencers and celebrities have endorsed your brand.
  • Offering micro-influencers some attractive perks like free products, commissions on referrals through affiliate links, and long-term professional relationships will play in your budget’s favor.

Pro tip: How an influencer handles the negotiating process is a good indicator of whether you’ve made the right choice in selecting them for the campaign.

Some influencers can be wholly unreasonable or egomaniacal while negotiating a rate.

Negotiating isn’t the only way an influencer might throw a wrench into the works.

There are other influencer qualities you should watch out for, so you know you’ve selected the perfect person for the job.

Don’t get caught blindsided. Keep your eyes peeled for these traits of a good micro-influencer for a smooth sailing campaign.

What Makes a Good Micro-Influencer?

Gabriela Hopper Campaign
TikTok video by Gabriela for client Hopper by inBeat.agency

Influencer marketing can skyrocket your brand awareness, but identifying the right influencer may be quite daunting. Companies choose to use influencers to reach demographics that are usually beyond their grasp.

From mega-to-nano, influencers come in all kinds of styles & sizes.

Many marketing companies find out that choosing an influencer with one million or more followers isn’t the best choice.

A micro-influencer can tap into a more authentic voice & loyal following.

Although they only have 10-to-100k followers, micro-influencers consistently achieve higher ROI and drive better engagement – and at a fraction of the cost.

Selecting the right micro-influencer for your campaign isn’t as easy as you’d think.

You may choose someone who seems like a great fit, only to realize it was a terrible choice. Here are some essential characteristics to look for in a micro-influencer so your campaign goes off without a hitch.

1. Reach Your Target Audience Naturally

Don’t waste your time and money on an influencer that doesn’t naturally reach your target audience:

  • If the creators don’t align with your brand beforehand, they won’t speak genuinely to their following about it: You can’t mold the right micro-influencer. It’s just got to fit.
  • You’ve got to hunt out the influencer that fits from the first moment: Ensure the influencer speaks your industry lingo, is actively posting content in your niche, and is considered an authority in the community.

Our client Linktr.ee understands these considerations, which is why the brand posts authentic, engaging content:

Linktr.ee Influencer Content

Remember: Don’t be deceived because the influencer posts content on the same subject.

You’ve got to whittle down precisely whom they are targeting, ensuring that it aligns with your needs. Their audience has to be your audience without any effort on your part.

2. Share Your Type of Content

Bumble in-feed ad
TikTok video by Will for Linktr.ee campaign by inBeat.agency

The products, tools, links, apps, and so on that an influencer consistently posts should match your campaign goals.

For example, if your goal is to drive traffic to your website, your ideal influencer should be proficient at sharing links and hyping website content.

The more types of content they share that meet your brand needs, the quicker you’ll see an ROI.

3. Unique & Creative

Your influencers have to post original content and leverage trends without being one in a crowd.

They must stand apart to their audience, and thus, help your brand get noticed in the process.

Here’s a neat example for our Bumble campaign:

The main goal was to create an original UGC targeting Gen-Z (18-24 years olds).

Five creators of diverse backgrounds were chosen and we came up with an idea “come with me to my first date” which played out nicely.

Every creator chose a date idea and invited a date out.

Alyssa, one of the creators, actually met her girlfriend on Bumble and was super excited to take her out and film this experience.

Bumble in-feed ad
Alyssa Klynzing for TikTok UGC Bumble campaign by inBeat.agency

4. Have Tangible Engagement

There’s a difference between high-quality engagement & the sheer number of followers.

Don’t be impressed by the latter; they could be fraudulent.

Although it violates Instagram’s terms of use, influencers frequently use Bots.

  • Bots mimic organic likes & comments to give the impression of real engagement.
  • Bots are simple to configure and work exceptionally well, generating fake engagement.

Pro tip: It’s easy to spot most bot comments, but some are tricky to distinguish.

  • Do your due diligence and investigate if your potential influencer has tangible engagement.
  • Use your best judgment.
  • Read the comments and go through the followers & likes to figure out if they are legitimate or not.

Insider tip: Most fake profiles won’t have any person in the cover photo and will have similarly worded bios as other accounts.

You can hire an agency to dig for the truth behind your influencer’s engagement if you aren’t sure or want to be thorough.

5. Professionalism is Necessary

Don’t waste your time and money on an influencer that doesn’t naturally reach your target audience.

If the creators don’t align with your brand beforehand, they won’t speak genuinely to their following about it.

Being able to communicate effectively, and essentially, having good presentation skills, may be an important skill that you’ll want to look for in a micro-influencer.

If they need polishing in that area, it may be worth recommending something like this cool presentation skills course from Acuity Training that we came across.

Insider tip: You can’t mold the right micro-influencer.

It’s just got to fit.

Ensure the influencer:

  • Speaks your industry lingo
  • Is actively posting content in your niche
  • Is considered an authority in the community

6. Passion is Key

This kind of goes without saying, but we’ve got to reiterate the point.

A micro-influencer won’t be able to perform well on your campaign unless they exude passion.

Whether it’s a hobby, career, or lifestyle, the influencer needs to live and breathe the campaign’s content to perform well.

  • As micro influencer’s lack huge exposure, they make up for it with the desire to dig deep into the subject matter.
  • Passion solidifies strong bonds between the influencer and their followers.
  • By sharing authentic enthusiasm for the subject matter, influencers live up to their namesake, influencing others into making decisions.

Here’s our micro-influencer Ian Gillen arranging a first date during the Bumble campaign.

Instead of simply asking someone for coffee, Ian goes out of his way to make things more exciting:

Bumble in-feed ad

7. Can Take Criticism & Guidance

You’ll inevitably need to do some coaching and give the influencer creative direction.

To guarantee a successful campaign, you’ll have to tweak small things in the way they present the posts.

Your influencer needs to take constructive feedback well and integrate it.

Insider tip: Make sure to probe about this during the discovery stage.

Maybe engage in a role-play activity and give them some criticism to see how the influencers react.

Managing Micro-influencer

1. Onboarding. How to Approach Micro Influencers?

The way you onboard a new team member will pave the path on which your whole relationship will follow.

Remember that the first impression lays out the foundations of a successful and fruitful campaign and relationship, well into the future of your brand.

Some of the tips or guidelines we will offer here are in line with what we at our influencer marketing agency have implemented with our micro-influencers, which have led to cultivating a great partnership between them, us, and our clients.

  • You can start by asking your content creator directly what they expect or want from this professional relationship: Some micro-influencers are happier with more exposure than monetary compensation, and vice-versa. If you know exactly what they want the onboarding and ongoing management will be a breeze.
  • Don’t try to have full creative control over the campaign: Give your micro-influencer some creative freedom. After all, their faithful followers love them because of their message, flair, charisma, and other unique traits, like their creativity. If they don’t have a say in the creative side of the campaign, their followers will most likely notice that, and engagement rates may drop.
  • Make your micro-influencer feel they are part of the team: Micro-influencers value the sense of community very much, and when you introduce them to the people they’ll be working with, they will feel that they “belong” in this family of professionals. This simple action is the foundational stone on which a solid and highly collaborative partnership will be built upon.

Insider tip: To make your creators feel even more included, mention them in your social media groups, and even feature them in your weekly newsletter, welcoming them to the team.

By doing this small gesture of appreciation, they will be even more motivated and willing to represent and promote the brand.

Remember: Your new brand ambassadors are not your employees, so you should refrain from treating them as such.

The reasons why they joined your team is because they like your brand, they feel identified with it, and are happy to represent it.

Insider tip: A good strategy, as a follow-up to the initial introduction, is to keep reminding them of the benefits, perks, and goodies that come with being part of this team.

This will keep them motivated throughout the entire onboarding process.

You can do this by messaging them early on highlighting all the monetary rewards, events, and exclusive access they are getting.

Of course, do it in a way that is friendly and easy for them to take in positively.

If you already have a successful brand ambassador who has done a tremendously satisfying job, share them with your new brand ambassador.

They will feel thrilled to know they can also become this highly sought-after ambassador.

Problem: Many brands don’t follow through on this very crucial aspect of onboarding.

As a result, the brand ambassador feels a little disoriented and doesn’t take enough action.

It is not their fault, though.

They simply don’t know exactly what is expected of them.

Solution: To counteract this, give them actionable tasks.

  • Let them know what is expected of them every step of the way: Tell them what they need to do this week, this month, and so on. Assign tasks using management software designed specifically for this purpose.
  • Directives are underrated: Use them more to paint a clear picture for your brand ambassador.

Here’s an example of a creative brief that can help you outline your expectations without digging into your creators’ creativity:

Bumble Creative Brief

To summarize the previous information into a single sentence: Give them actionable tasks without overwhelming them while maintaining their enthusiasm levels high.

2. Onboarding Stage Done. Now What?

Now that you followed our advice to a tee (we certainly hope you did), you should pat yourself on the back because you just did way more than the competition.

But, of course, onboarding is just the tip of the iceberg.

There is a lot more to do, as you will soon find out.

1. Use Software to Help You Track the Progress of Your Campaign and Your Micro-Influencer

Here at our influencer marketing agency, we use various tools that help us tremendously with managing our campaigns with our micro-influencers. Y

ou don’t have to use the same tools, but we recommend using some kind of online tools to communicate, track and set goals with your team and micro-influencers.

  • Some of these tools are Google sheets, Facebook groups, and Instagram direct messaging: All of which are free to use, as you may already know.
  • Another useful tool is TypeForm to create engaging and interactive polls and surveys: TypeForm helps in finding out what features and extras to add or remove from our campaign. You can also use other Typeform alternativesfor better results.

To communicate directly with the micro-influencer, we just use Instagram’s direct messaging.

As Instagram is what most of the micro-influencers we work with use, it also provides a very direct way to bounce off ideas.

On occasions, we also just phone them directly.

So you can also try this with your micro-influencer, provided you both are in the same time zone and country. It’s best to reach them by their business number from their landline phone service if they have it on their website. You can also try contacting their cell phone number also if that’s listed.

2. Maintaining Constant Communication Is Paramount

Keeping in contact regularly with your micro-influencer is vital to keeping them engaged and reminding them about their obligations.

Many micro-influencers we’ve worked with express that they take this very seriously.

Insider tip: Experience has shown us that they may get overwhelmed at times, especially if they don’t have a manager to help them keep up with their commitments.

Micro-influencers who don’t have a personal assistant or manager are the majority.

Many times the micro-influencers lack a sense of professionalism when it comes to communicating and delivering the content promptly, so you need to do some hand-holding and checking in with them.

As we said at the beginning, setting expectations and communicating exactly what you expect from them and what they expect and need from you is crucial. It must be set in stone at the start of the onboarding process.

Best Practices To Avoid Disappointments

  • Be very clear about content approval expectations and deadlines, so the influencers try to be as quick as possible to get you their first draft.
  • Let them know that after they submit their first draft, there may be a round of edits. After all, your goal is to get a certain response from your social media users, whether you want to increase your online presence or drive conversions. That's why you'll follow certain key performance indicators.
  • Have a few ways for them to contact you. We always recommend our influencers to send us a direct message on Instagram right when they get their onboarding email to have a quicker way to chat. Almost everyone is on Instagram all day, so we are getting notifications as quickly as a text.
  • Finally, don’t waste your time on a micro-influencer if they have been playing cat and mouse. Implement a “three strikes, and they’re out” system and make them aware of this in your content brief or onboard email. If you send three dm’s, emails, calls, Facebook messages, and whatever else without any response after a week, cut your losses and pick a new influencer.

Non-responsive creators will slow your campaign down because as things are rolling along with 9 of your 10 influencers for your campaign quota, you’ll end up delaying the completion of the campaign because you still need one more.

Finding new relevant influencers can sometimes take two weeks or more, and then you have to begin the onboarding and content creation phase all over again, which adds another potential two weeks.

Remember: If you notice things are going south with the influencer, it’s best to terminate their affiliation early on.

Final Note on Micro-Influencers

Micro-influencers have a relationship with their audience that goes way beyond the surface level.

Their in-depth knowledge and passion speak authentically to their following.

Macro or Mega influencers have a large following, but they may not be able to speak adequately to your target audience. You might have better luck engaging a micro-influencer to promote your brand.

Be cautious when selecting a micro-influencer for your campaign.

It’s a hodgepodge of unprofessionalism, lackluster content, fake engagement, and unreal rate expectations.

You can always hire an agency like ours that will navigate the market to find a top-performing influencer!

If your company decides to go it alone, you’ve got to vet the candidate thoroughly before you sign any contract.

We’ve outlined the essential traits necessary in a good micro-influencer.

They’ll steer you in the right direction to find the perfect Micro influencer for your brand.

Understanding micro-influencers is the first hurdle to figuring out if you want to use one for your campaign. Whether a micro is the right choice will be based on your:

  • Target audience
  • Budget
  • Engagement requirements

Once you’ve decided on it, then the hunt begins on an excellent nano-influencer.

  • You’ve got to be very cautious while selecting an influencer.
  • Without adequately vetting the influencer, you could end up hating working with the individual.
  • If you choose a good micro-influencer, it will make your campaign seamless and interactions pleasant.

After finding a good micro-influencer, negotiations can commence.

Each platform has its respective rate breakdown & costs. Don’t expect the same negotiations for TikTok, Instagram, & Facebook.

As always, we’re here for guidance or help when you need it.

Reach out to us for any of your micro-influencer needs.

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