Build A Brand Social Media Influencer Marketing

Why you should partner with micro-influencers to reach niche audiences


By Hannah Bowler, Senior Reporter

March 27, 2024 | 6 min read

Influencer marketing used to be a numbers game where brands would make deals based on the number of followers on an account. But those days are long gone.

Man in front of a camera recording a video

Micro-influencers have niche and engaged communities / Pexels

Instead of pushing out an ad to over a million potentially uninterested people and paying a premium for it, marketers are seeing the value in partnering with smaller influencers who have niche and engaged communities.

A micro-influencer has between 10,000 and 100,000 followers, compared with macro-influencers, who have between 100,000 and a million, and a mega-influencer has over a million.

Rather than just posting about everyday life, micro-influencers tend to have a specific interest, like food or a sport like cycling or running; they could be nutritionists or interior designers, for example.

Deciding between micro- and macro-influencers hinges on the campaign objective, explains Vik Khagram, head of influence at the agency Ketchum. “Partnering with one macro-influencer yields a single piece of content that can potentially be repurposed on owned channels if negotiated. But, collaborating with 10 micro-influencers for the same budget generates 10 diverse pieces of content, amplifying brand visibility across owned channels.”

Measuring these types of campaigns differs from a traditional influencer campaign, which is often a hard sales metric. “Rather than fixating solely on sales figures, it’s crucial to align your measurement with your goals,” says Khagram. “For instance, if increasing brand awareness was your primary aim and you achieved substantial reach, focusing solely on engagement rate might be missing the bigger picture.”

Why work with micro-influencers?

  1. Target more relevant audiences

  2. Cost-effective

  3. Establishing trust

  4. High engagement

  5. Boosts conversations

Executing a micro-influencer campaign requires a different approach to working with larger influencers. Everything from finding the influencers to writing a brief, the deal types and measuring the campaign has a nuance to it. We ask social media experts how to craft the perfect micro-influencer campaign...

Shea Carter, vice-president of social and influencer, Social Element: “Creating a micro-influencer campaign starts within your brand’s existing social community. Pay close attention to who is mentioning, tagging and talking about you on social. These are ready-made micro influencers and you can use this as the opening opportunity to connect about a bigger partnership.

“Spend time creating a thoughtful, detailed, but not too lengthy brief. The more informed an influencer is about the assignment, the better quality of their work will be with less need for revisions. Clearly state any mandatories and make sure to give examples of what you don’t want and make your brief visual to reduce any confusion or ambiguity.

“Influencers can be asked to fit a lot into a campaign – sharing too many messages or trying to cram too much into a video, post, or story can limit the effectiveness of the partnership and create consumer confusion. Keep the request streamlined so it is clear what action you want consumers to take after being exposed to that content.”

Ali DiEmidio, head of creator relations, The News Movement: “When sourcing micro creators, focus on their creativity, storytelling ability, alignment with your brand ethos, and engagement with their community. Be sure to spend time with the creator’s content, too, as you’d be surprised by how many brands make decisions based on one video alone.

“The more involved the creator is in the ideation and development of the brief, the more excited they’ll be about the project and their overall output. Provide creators with brand goals and guidelines but give them the freedom to bring their creativity to the table. You’ve chosen them for a reason – let them do what they do best.

“Brands should consider what a full value exchange might look like outside of just a product or a paycheck. Genuine relationship building is crucial to success and consistency is key – ‘one and done’ partnerships just don’t do the trick.”

Ellie Hooper, head of client, Goat Agency: “A combination of authenticity, relatability and more specific content themes makes micro-influencers an invaluable resource for brands wanting to target unique and niche groups. Beauty brands have found a lot of success with micro-influencers, for example.”

“Our recent campaign for Nivea Q10 involved partnering with micro-influencers with cult followings within the beauty and skincare space. This allowed for much more of a focus on skincare ingredients and dermatology in the creative that perhaps might have been lost with a larger influencer campaign. It was about amplifying the authenticity of smaller voices to recommend products, as a friend would.”

Jamie Ray, chief executive officer, Buttermilk: “Community-centric strategy: before diving in, you’ll need to work out what you’re trying to achieve and look at your competitors and what’s going on in the culture. This insight will inform your approach to platform selection and content creation, ensuring your campaign resonates with your target audience’s community.

“Focused discovery: look for creators that specialize in specific sub-niches that have a dedicated and engaged following, as they can offer highly targeted reach and engagement, which helps ensure your message is received authentically.

“Execution: during the campaign, dedicate time to check in with your influencers frequently. Start by commenting, liking, and sharing their content, and keep an eye out for top performers that you can champion.

“Optimization and amplification: measure campaign effectiveness, request feedback from influencers for you to improve, invest in paid amplification for top-performing content and reward standout influencers to cultivate loyalty and advocacy.”

Build A Brand Social Media Influencer Marketing

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