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Illustration of a person holding a pink megaphone in front of a phone. Micro influencers help you amplify your message in cost-effective ways. Working with micro-influencers blog post.

Why Micro Influencers Should Be Part of Your Marketing Mix


Jan 16, 2024

Influencer marketing has grown rapidly over the past decade, and marketers are leveraging influencers to increase brand awareness more so than ever. But while big-name influencers like Kim Kardashian were once the only sought-after option, we now live in an age where micro influencers reign supreme.

Marketers now know that when it comes to influencers, the number of followers isn’t the only, or even the best, metric to use for determining "influence." People relate to people, and for audiences today, authenticity, trust, and connection is what they value from brands — and this is something that micro influencers already offer.

Today's influencers are in many ways an extension of the kind of word-of-mouth marketing businesses covet: recommendations from friends, family, and now someone on the internet who just happens to have an audience devoted to their content, style, and interests.

Micro influencers by definition have fewer followers. However, these niche audiences are loyal and highly engaged. 

There’s a difference between a celebrity and an influencer, and there’s also a big difference between a macro influencer and a micro influencer. Today there are 4 broad buckets of influencers: Nano, Micro, Macro, and Mega. In this blog, we’ll be looking at what a micro influencer is, how to find them, the benefits of working with micro influencers, and tips for building a fruitful relationship.


What is a Micro-Influencer?

They aren’t household names. 

They don’t get stopped on the streets for autographs. 

They’re simply content creators who have lots of people watching them and can therefore help brands promote their products in front of new audiences.

There is a common misconception about influencers: The more followers they have, the more influence they have.

In reality, this is far from true. 

Influencers with a large audience have followers of every age, demographic, and interest. So, while a high number of users may see your content, they are not always relevant. 

A micro-influencer audience usually tends to fall under a single umbrella. Even though their content reaches fewer people, it is reaching the people who matter. Essentially, micro-influencers are the very definition of quality over quantity.

A micro-influencer is a content creator who has a "smaller" platform on social media — the general consensus is that micro-influencers have between 10,000 and 100,000 followers. They’re often experts on a specific topic, industry, or skill, and have a highly engaged online community. Sometimes nano-influencers (1000 to 10,000 followers) are roped into the Micro category, and for the purposes of this blog we'll be considering them fairly similar.

How are Micro-Influencers Different From Macro-Influencers?

Macro influencers have larger followings (typically between 100,000 and 1 million) and could be considered more of your standard "public figure" than a micro-influencer. In many cases being an influencer is their full-time job, thus they are more expensive to work with. While micro-influencers do support themselves with brand partnerships, it's likely they also have a 9-5 or other means of income as well.

While micro-influencers have a smaller follower base, this allows them to get to know their audience on a more personal level. As a rule, the more valuable micro-influencers to work with tend to be more connected to their own followers.

Micro-influencers have also been found to have a higher engagement with their followers and a greater influence on them. They tend to be more niche compared to larger-influencer followings, meaning their audience is likely to be relevant to your brand and interested in what the influencer talks about.

Types of Micro-Influencers

Micro-influencers are the most common type of influencer on Instagram. They’re also growing on other platforms too, like TikTok, YouTube, and even LinkedIn. 

Beyond follower count, there are different types of micro-influencer campaigns that will help you to narrow your focus. 

They include:


Influencers with their own blogs have more than one way to connect with their audience. They often share content on the blog and in their social media content. Blogger influence campaigns are helpful for building brand awareness and driving one-off sales.  


The same holds true for vloggers — they offer more than one way to share content with their target audience, and they offer video content rather than text-based content.


Activists help to build awareness around an issue or cause. They excel at creating emotional responses, fostering engagement, making an impact, and nurturing honest, authentic connections with their audience. Higher engagement rates come easier when people care about a cause or issue.

Thought leaders and subject matter experts

Influencers on a particular topic tend to have loyal followings. They might be doctors, lawyers, consultants, spiritual leaders, scientists, or anyone who has hands-on experience not available to the average consumer.

Niche influencers

Instagram and TikTok influencer niches, such as gamers, beauty and fashion mavens, and outdoor enthusiasts provide a great place to start your micro-influencer marketing. Micro-influencer engagement rates tend to be high because they’re focused on niche influencer marketing campaigns rather than mass appeal.

Viral social media sensations

Accidental influencers whose content has somehow gone viral can be great resources to promote your brand or product. They might not be experts, but they’re recognized and beloved by their audience.

Why Do Micro-Influencers Get Better Results?

Celebrity influencers reach more people, while less well-known, micro-influencers reach more people on a personal level. It’s this level of personalization that makes micro-influencers so valuable in influencer marketing.

Micro-influencers encourage more people to join their conversations and be proactive with the content — to like it, share it, and discuss it.

This finding is even more significant with sponsored posts: Macro-influencers reach eyeballs, but micro-influencers prompt actions. 

Using an influencer management platform like Meltwater Influencer Marketing, you can gain insight into an influencer’s audience and engagement rates prior to partnering with them.

Meltwater Influencer Marketing can bring clarity to the following:

Community, not crowd

In the early stages of an influencer’s career, you will often see posts where no comment is left unanswered. You'll find tight-knit communities among micro content creators. They're a go-to source for information, which usually results in high engagement rates.

The influencer feels more obliged to communicate with their audience. As they gain more power and followers, it’s hard, if not impossible, to keep up with everybody, but early on it’s a must.


Think about an influencer with millions of followers. Her audience is wide and her followers’ interests are varied. 

Meanwhile, a fitness influencer with 50,000 followers will be followed by people who are mainly interested in her fitness updates. The latter has a niche, while the celebrity influencer appeals to a wide audience with little to no common ground.


Influencers with larger followings tend to be in greater demand, making it harder to access them. Because so many brands want to work with them, you might find that bigger influencers can’t give you enough of their time to drive meaningful engagement or create impactful content for your brand. 

Micro-influencers, on the other hand, tend to have greater availability. Partnerships are usually less complicated, lead times are shorter, and the influencer may be able to dedicate more time to your campaign.


Authenticity is often called into question when using influencers. Naturally, influencers are getting paid to promote a product, which can create a sense of inauthenticity from the beginning. But micro-influencers have to take their images seriously, and so they carefully choose their brand partnerships.

Recommending a product or company they don’t believe in or one that doesn’t fit their values puts their image — and their following — at risk. What’s more, demand for influencers with a smaller target audience is also small, meaning there are fewer opportunities for them to gain partnerships.

They genuinely care about their audience’s interests and are more likely to work only with brands they really love. This penchant for their brand partners translates to their content, which helps you look good by association.

Know their followers personally

Micro-influencers still have among their fans a good portion of friends, family and people who know them from the offline world. When their fan base expands, it’s inevitable to see that the personal relationship rate drops.

How Can Brands Benefit From Micro-Influencers?

There are many advantages for brands working with micro-influencers. It can be more cost-effective for one thing, and if you find someone you really like working with, you can grow with them as their audience grows, putting you in front of larger audiences from an already established place of brand credibility.

It's also a great way to grow brand awareness and your social followings since you're getting in front of audiences who already like to engage on their social channels.

Key benefits of working with micro-influencers

  • Budget-friendly
  • High engagement rates
  • Improved trust
  • Reach multiple markets


While we'd all love a celebrity endorsement for our business, for most of us it just isn’t feasible. Now, smaller brands on smaller budgets can partner with less famous people who still have a widespread influence. The ‘micro-influencer’ is inexpensive (in relative terms), effective, and just what your brand needs if you’re not in a position to hire Mr. Clooney or Ms. Aniston.

As a benchmark figure, micro-influencers can charge as little as $100 (nano-influencers will charge less — between $2-$10 in some cases) for a post depending on their follower count. By saving on costs you can work with several micro-influencers at once and benefit from multiple engaged communities.

According to Influencer Marketing Hub, here are some rough ranges for how much nano or micro-influencers charge:

  • Instagram: Anywhere from $10 a post to $500 a post
  • YouTube: Between $20 and $1,000 per video
  • TikTok: You could pay as low as $5 for a TikTok micro-influencer post, or as high as $125
  • Twitter: Between $2 and $100
  • Facebook: Nano or micro-influencers on Facebook could charge between $25 and $1,250

Reading Tip: Learn more about micro-influencer pricing, costs, and rates.

High engagement rates

Your brand’s visibility increases when using micro-influencers. These content creators are likely active on the most popular platforms, building audiences on TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram.

Instagram influencers

  • 1K - 5K followers have 4.84% engagement
  • 5K - 20K followers have 1.7% engagement
  • 20K - 100K followers have 1.22% engagement

YouTube influencers

  • 1K - 5K followers have 2.0% engagement
  • 5K - 20K followers have 2.7% engagement 
  • 20K - 100K followers have 3.5% engagement

TikTok influencers

  • 1K - 5K followers have 12.4% engagement
  • 5K - 20K followers have 13.3% engagement
  • 20K - 100K followers have 12.9% engagement

Improved trust

The best marketing shouldn't feel like marketing. Consumers are bombarded daily with different advertisements and marketing campaigns, all intended to get them to buy something. Consequently, consumers have developed a distrust of major corporate brands and advertising in general.

When you promote your products through micro-influencers, you go a long way toward humanizing and personalizing your brand, and inspiring trust in your consumer.

Especially if you work with the same influencer multiple times, it signals to the audience that a) the influencer trusts your brand and b) you trust the influencer in the same way the audience does. You appreciate their communication style, post style, and you understand that their followers are the right niche for you.

You are the company you keep, and this works both ways. When a trusted influencer promotes your brand’s events, products, services, or other programs, you’ll appear credible in the eyes of their audience. This is a great way to connect with new customers who might be on the fence and just need to get to know you a little better.

Reach multiple markets

Because micro-influencers are more affordable, companies and brands can work with more of them at the same time. Many companies choose multiple influencers per campaign to expand their reach. They can tap into multiple niche markets simultaneously, allowing them to get more exposure at a low cost.

Whether your audience is on Instagram, TikTok, or other social media, you can be everywhere your customers are and drive brand awareness for less.

How to Find Micro-Influencers

Finding micro-influencers does require some research, whether you go the manual search route or use an influencer management platform to scale your efforts. Once you filter down your list you then need to dig deeper than the follower count to understand their relationship with their audience. Look at their replies and comments to see how their followers interact with each other, as well as the consistency of the influencers' responses.

Influencer standing in front of a camera in a kitchen holding blueberries. Micro-influencers tips blog post.

Here are a few ways you can start your search:

Want more info? We have a full blog post all about how to find influencers and sustain relationships!

Look among your fans

You might come across a micro-influencer by looking through your current follower list for those who may be a fit. Such influencers are likely already interested in your business and would be more than willing to help promote your brand. It might be a bit more difficult to convince an influencer who doesn’t have the slightest idea about your business.

Start by checking out the fans who engage the most. On Facebook, they may have earned a Top Fan badge. Or you might notice the same people commenting on or liking your posts each week. It’s clear they already enjoy your content, so use that as a way to grow your connection. 

Tip: Keep an eye out for fake influencers

From there, you can scope out their audience. See how many followers they have. Look at the type of content they post. See which other social media channels they’re active on. 

Most importantly, look at how their audience engages with their content. Are they getting lots of likes, shares, and comments? Do the engagement rates match up with their follower count? 

As you discover potential influencers, make a list so you can dig deeper into each one across all their social networks. This is a largely manual process, so plan on spending some time with this method of how to find micro-influencers.

Do your own research

Once you’ve chosen a social media platform, search for profiles using a keyword or hashtag and then use the filters provided to narrow down the results. Influencers make heavy use of hashtags to help them grow their followings and highlight the topics they talk about. You can make use of hashtag research to find micro-influencers who are already interested in the kind of products or services that you offer. 

To do a hashtag search, simply type in a hashtag in the search bar on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. See what posts pop up in the top results and who the top profiles are for those hashtags. 

Click on those profiles and check their audience sizes and engagement metrics. If you think they might be a good fit, check their profile to see if they have a website where you can learn more about them. They might also list an email address so you can connect with them outside of the DMs.

Something to keep in mind when using a hashtag is that the hashtag should be specific, not generic. You can choose brand-related hashtags, product-focused hashtags, or other terms that will help you narrow the results. For example, instead of searching for #foodies, you might search for a specific type of food, such as #falafel or #vegancheese. This will put you in closer contact with micro-influencers who share those interests rather than general food lovers.

Use an agency

Agencies specialize in helping brands find a wide range of influencers. It can be costly, but is a good option if you're wanting to scale your influencer program, and require assistance in the vetting, pitching, and hiring process.

Use an influencer marketing platform 

An end-to-end social influencer management platform, like Meltwater Influencer Marketing, not only helps you find influencers but also helps you manage and measure your campaigns from start to finish. Such tools are useful since manually looking up the profiles of micro-influencers can be time-consuming.

For example, Meltwater Influencer Marketing allows you to search for influencers based on:

  • Audience size
  • Niche
  • Topics
  • Location
  • Other filters

You can find influencers who fit your micro-influencer requirements, but you can also look beyond surface-level metrics to find the best fit. Learn more about the influencer’s values and how they align with your own. Discover more about their audience, such as genders, ages, income levels, and more, to see whether their followers will be interested in what you offer.

Not only do influencer discovery tools target influencers based on your criteria, but they also allow you to connect directly with them. No more wasting time looking up email addresses and websites. You can send messages directly through Meltwater Influencer Marketing and make an introduction. As an added bonus, Meltwater also manages the other phases of influencer marketing, including:

  • Collaborating on content 
  • Tracking conversions 
  • Monitoring KPIs

Request a demo for Meltwater Influencer Marketing to get started with influencer marketing!

In-app tools

Today's top social platforms for influencer marketing often offer their own native services for matching influencers to brands for potential partnerships. This is a great way to connect if you've got some very platform-specific ideas to pitch and want to find an influencer who is an expert in a particular style (such as Instagram Stories or YouTube videos).

How Do You Work With Micro-Influencers?

Every influencer campaign requires a carefully crafted influencer campaign brief, outlining goals, expectations, deliverables, and providing content examples. Sharing a brief with influencers will help your campaign run smoothly by aligning expectations from the beginning. 

Once you’ve set the campaign guidelines, it’s up to your influencer to do the rest. A common misconception people may have is because they are working with a micro-influencer and not an expensive studio, they can’t give content feedback. This is not true. The collaboration phase of your influencer program is the most important phase. Quality content is just as important to them as it is for you, so if you have feedback you should always give it.

Tip: It’s a win-win for everyone! Get started now by downloading our free marketing campaign brief template.

Micro-Influencer Marketing Success Story: Zara, South Africa

Zara was the top trending name globally just one day before their South African online store launch, without celebrity endorsements or macro-influencer voices. How? With to the power of micro-influencers.

Meltwater graph showcasing micro-influencer success for Zara, South Africa

Many social media users on Twitter praised global fashion brand, Zara, for going against the grain when they used micro-influencers for their #DearSouthAfrica campaign. The campaign successfully generated online conversations that reached over 6 million people worldwide — all just one day before the online store launch.

On the actual day of the launch, there were close to 8 million people engaging with the ‘Zara’ and #DearSouthAfrica on social media. By using about 60 micro-influencers during the campaign, they were able to inspire a high level of brand awareness and tap into a wider audience.

Keyword cloud from Zara micro-influencer campaign

In the case of the Zara #DearSouthAfrica campaign, using micro-influencers proved how much these social media content creators have to offer in marketing strategies, even for enormous global companies. With so much traction being generated around the campaign’s hashtag a day before the launch, users around the world engaged with the campaign’s branded hashtag, creating quick online awareness that worked far better than traditional marketing strategies such as print, billboards or broadcast.

Conclusion: Why Work with Micro-Influencers?

Micro-influencers should not be ignored in your marketing strategies. If Zara showed us one thing, it is that micro-influencers have great value and incredible impact. With a smaller but highly engaged following, they provide brand exposure that audiences will trust more. Your brand will truly benefit from the trusted credibility and personal connections that micro-influencers have.

The type of influencer you target will very much depend on your goals. If you want to boost reach, impressions & brand awareness, micro-influencers who have a larger following are a good way to go. If you want to increase engagement and conversions, consider a middle-range influencer.

As a final note, it’s important to remember that any influencer marketing strategy takes time. Fortunately, many tools exist to cut down time while increasing the impact of your micro-influencer marketing strategy.

Fill out the form below to get a 15-minute demo of how Meltwater's social influencer platform helps you search, monitor, and engage with influencers!