World of micro-influencers in the digital age

Celebrity endorsements and brand ambassadors have been around for ages and worked towards creating a stronger brand image for their respective endorsements. Celebs are often chosen based on their image, which is developed by their contribution in respective fields like sports, cinema, literature, music, and art for that matter along with of course their mass following making it a prime reason for the choice.

A brand’s personality, its connection with the audience, the loyalty and affection it shares with its customers, the faith and trust it evokes among its stakeholders, and the overall commitment and delivery of customer experience it provides is often linked with the kind of influencers it engages.

Personalities having a great synergy between brand values and customer profiles, expectations, preferences, choices, and mindsets end up becoming great brand ambassadors. With their charisma, these personalities support the brand, enhance its image, provide a better recall, create a competitive edge, and give a boost to keep the stickiness of brands intact with their customers and other stakeholders.

Followership has been among the most preferred attributes while choosing an influencer for a brand historically and even now. However, is that the only parameter? I would say NO.

In the digital age, there are a plethora of brand touchpoints, and brands have learned to reach out to all of them in as many possible ways as to not miss out on even a small pocket of the audience that could mean business for the brands. And that’s where micro-influencers make their entry into the marketing world.

So what if one food blogger has just a few thousands of followers as against a big chef having millions of followers? There exists a strong loyalty, trust, and belief in the value of information being shared by this food blogger, despite having a small bunch of followers. There could be more interaction, enhanced dissemination of quality information, better analysis, higher engagement, and all of which lead to higher-value creation for the brand.

A stronger ability to relate, connect and engage with the audience, a personal connection with their audience, and greater trust developed through the delivery of genuine content, gives an edge to micro-influencers in the age of social media and a deeply networked world.

Micro-influencers build their empire of the audience through content based on their knowledge, passion, authenticity about their choice of topics. It has already been proven highly successful in the case of travel, food, and beauty businesses, where a range of brands from smaller ones to well-established global brands have taken this route to explore and achieve extended outreach beyond traditional initiatives.

The strongest difference created by the micro-influencers, when compared with celebrities is the fact that their followers come because of their content, while celebrity followers come from reasons beyond product suggestions or endorsements.

Niche in nature, focussed and customised in their content, approachable and interactive often, these are the experts with their knowledge of specific issues. Their personal and unique experiences, insights, views, critical reviews, and detailing around the various products and services establishes a strong connection with their core audience, for the long-term.

Micro-influencers offer a personal and sincere relationship with their followers because of the originality of the content they deliver to them. It’s a digital word-of-mouth campaign in the world of social media that these micro-influencers create for their brand associations.

Most importantly, from the brand communicators’ perspective, these micro-influencers offer cost-effective, affordable, well-targeted, higher ROI alternatives in their communication campaigns.

Offering engagement at the grassroots level, with the help of several micro-influencers, brands have greater chances to positively capture the mind-space of their audience as against having a single brand ambassador!

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Praveen Nagda
Praveen Nagda is the CEO of Peregrine Public Relations, a full-service corporate communications and public relations consultancy firm delivering a pan-India reach to its clients. He also heads White Coffee, an independent events & celebrity engagement company.

Praveen has been closely associated with many national and international events related to cinema for children, art and culture. He has a well-rounded experience that cuts across all key sectors of PR & Corporate Communications.

He started his career with URJA Communications, an advertising agency specialising in technology brands, where he was instrumental in developing the PR division. Post this, he had a stint with Horizons Porter Novelli, a global public relations consultancy. Thereafter, he was heading the IT & Telecom division at Clea PR, a leading Indian public relations and communications company followed by a fairly long stint with Omnicom Group agencies viz. TBWA\India and Brodeur India.

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