Photo by Alexander Shatoy on Unsplash
Macro vs Micro SM Influencers
Addison Rae, Bryce Hall, Charli D’Amilio; all are huge social media influencers that have gained a large following on apps such as TikTok, and in turn, picked up brand deals with large companies. Creators/influencers like these have a major impact on those brands because of their large influence on their followers. But what about smaller influencers like Olivia Shannon, Nayrout Jock, and Lydia Bielfeldt who also have brand deals with large companies such as Vera Bradley and Amazon? Do they have as much influence as the “macro” influencers?
Overall Impact of Social Media Influencers
“Social media influencers’ posts have two purposes: to increase their fans’ purchase intention, and enhance product knowledge or product attractiveness” (Kay et al., 2020). For those that make an income on social media, the more interactions they get with a post, the larger the check they will receive from whatever brand they work with. As with anything, the impact these influencers have on the brand can either benefit both parties in a major way or cause substantial damage to the brand and/or influencer alike based on followers’ reactions to the post(s).
One influencer that has continually done a good job of this is Charli D’Amilio. Most people consider her to be one of the very first “social media influencers”. Her following grew at an exponential rate, and brands started wanting to work with her to reach her audience on TikTok in new ways. She had a very successful campaign with Dunkin Donuts back in 2020. Charli worked out a partnership with the coffee company and even had her own drink “The Charli” at Dunkin Donuts. In return, she posted regularly of herself and her family/friends enjoying coffee and donuts from the chain coffee shop. The combination of “The Charli” and the posts of her eating/drinking Dunkin Donuts helped Charli D’Amilio’s influence for the brand become large and very positive. In fact, “This partnership triggered a 57% increase in people downloading the Dunkin’ app and helped the popular donut franchise sell hundreds of thousands of drinks” (Tsvetkova, 2022).
Photo by: Charli D’Amilio
Influence of Macro Social Media Influencers
Macro social media influencers are those huge names that everyone knows, some of them have even achieved “celebrity” status. Some examples are Charli D’Amilio, Bryce Hall, Cameron Dallas, and LeLe Pons. These people all have obtained a mass following on platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter; so much so that they have partnered with major brands, walked on red carpets, and have become wealthier than they ever imagined they would be. To be considered a “macro-influencer” by most, one needs to have at least 100,000 followers and at least a 3% engagement rate on their posts. Once this status is achieved, that is typically when large brands/celebrities/companies will start to reach out to try and make deals with an influencer for them to post “ads” for them (Trend, 2022).
Unfortunately, social media users may not always agree with, or like certain posts influencers make. There have been many instances where influencers have received an extensive amount of backlash from followers and non-followers alike due to a post they made in partnership with a brand they work for. One of the most recent examples of this is when macro-influencer Addison Rae posted a photo of herself in a bikini by the brand “Praying” called the “Holy Trinity Bikini Set” in which the parts that cover the female private parts are labeled “Father and Son” bikini top, and “Holy Spirit” bikini bottoms. Addison immediately caught negative attention for this, and so did the brand. Most of the backlash in this instance was from Christians because the Trinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is sacred in the Christian religion. Once the image was spread, even those that aren’t religious commented on Addison’s post about how wrong and disrespectful to the religion something like that was. The brand, in partnership with Adidas, has since also deleted the post from its page and was told by Adidas that this was a complete disaster. There aren’t any concrete findings of how much business or money has been lost as of yet, but it is safe to say this was a bad move by all parties involved (Mohammed, 2022).
Influence of Micro Social Media Influencers
“Micro-influencers tend to have higher engagement rates than macro-influencers. Based on data from our network, we see their engagement rates in the 7% – 20% range” (Trend, 2022). Even though these influencers have fewer followers, they receive more engagement on their posts which can lead to stronger influence. Their followers tend to trust them and feel more connected to them since they are on a smaller scale, and typically much more transparent.
A good example of this is Lydia Bielfeldt who only has 8,600 followers on Instagram, and 14,200 on TikTok, but has recently struck a huge deal with Amazon because of her engagement rate and the content she creates. Lydia and Amazon came to an agreement, and she now has an Amazon storefront to promote Amazon fashion products (aiming primarily for women in the 18-24 year age range); these are products that she personally chooses with Amazon to help boost them and get more young women to buy them, thus making great profits for both herself and Amazon. Her influence for Amazon has been extremely more positive than Addison Rae’s situation with Praying/Adidas (Cucci, 2022).
Compare & Conclude
Does a macro-influencer have more reach for the brands they have deals with than a micro-influencer? When less is more: the impact of macro and micro social media influencers’ disclosureand the additional research presented throughout this blog post would say no. Although macro-influencers have more followers, the engagement that micro-influencers get tends to be seemingly more effective for the brands they partner with. Followers are important, but engagement with posts is what opens the doors to people actually buying what the influencer is selling.
8 shining examples of influencer marketing campaigns. Brandwatch. (n.d.). Retrieved September 16, 2022, from https://www.brandwatch.com/blog/examples-of-influencer-marketing-campaigns/
Cucci, D. (n.d.). 4 micro influencers explain how they make thousands of dollars without a lot of followers and share the exact messages they send to get brand deals. Business Insider. Retrieved September 17, 2022, from https://www.businessinsider.com/microinfluencers-brand-deals-instagram-followers-2022-7
Kay , S., Mulcahy, R., & Parkinson, J. (2020). When less is more: the impact of macro and micro social media influencers’ disclosure. When less is more: the impact of macro and micro social media influencers’ disclosure. Retrieved September 17, 2022, from https://content.ebscohost.com/ContentServer.asp?T=P&P=AN&K=143138073&S=R&D=bsu&EbscoContent=dGJyMNHr7ESep7Y40dvuOLCmsEqeqK5Sr6i4SrOWxWXS&ContentCustomer=dGJyMPGrtkqxprBIuePfgeyx44Dt6fIA
Macro vs. micro-influencers: Who’s best for your campaign? Trend. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2022, from https://www.trend.io/blog/macro-influencers-micro-influencers-influencer-campaigns#:~:text=Before%20you%20decide%20what%20Instagram,least%20a%203%25%20engagement%20rate.
Mohammed, L. (2022, August 6). Addison deleted a “blasphemous” and “disrespectful” “Holy trinity” bikini pic after facing backlash. BuzzFeed News. Retrieved September 17, 2022, from https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/leylamohammed/addison-rae-christianity-themed-bikini-backlash