The power of the micro-influencer
Is anyone else in a slump over their social media feeds? I feel I’m endlessly trawling through news updates and only every so often a snapshot of a distant ex-school friend, who lives on the other side of the world and their new car/cat/child pops up. The 'real' news stories and the updates I used to see are no longer showing up.
With the recent changes in algorithms putting more control back in to the hands of the user, rather than the brands and their marketing bucks, the challenge for sports marketing brands increases tenfold to be creating content that stops you scrolling.
What makes stand-out content on social?
Anyone and everyone will give you their opinion (and for the record generally videos and photos perform better), but as you can see from the photo at the top of the page, this letter is a real stand-out in recnt sports marketing.
We love a good juxtaposition and Barnsley FC’s snail mail letter to lifelong supporter Chris Ryder, after he had discussed his depression and anxiety on the club’s social media channels, has spread far and wide. The letter from the CEO demonstrated genuine care, interest and concern and went so far as to direct Chris to MIND, the mental health charity supported by the club. Chris posts a photo of the letter on his Twitter feed to his 2,750 followers, and within 24 hours it had received 120k likes, 1,545 comments and shared nearly 25k times. Statistics most brands would dream of achieving with their social media work.
Lessons for a creative agency
I am sure (and would like to think) that Barnsley FC didn’t for a minute expect the letter to be made public. However what it does teach us is the power of the micro-influencer.
Mega-influencer Kylie Jenner may have 25.4m followers, however the engagement rates for her recent posts on twitter are far outweighed by Chris Ryder’s. Makerly, a social influencer agency in the US published a report that showed micro-influencers with 10,000 to 100,000 followers are four times more likely to get a comment on a post than mega-influencers with 10 million followers. And why is this? Because their reach is small enough for the fans to get messages, feedback and engagement with the influencer themselves. It's a case of dialogue not monologue. Nobody believes Kylie manages her accounts alone - but the micro-influencer has the authenticity and the connection with their fan base precisely because the reach is fewer people.
Another great case study here on the power of the micro-influencer by digital agency We Are Social for their client adidas with the Tango Squad.
And this is why influencer marketing should always be considered as another strand in the social marketing mix: know your audience, speak their language and find support within that community who can help spread the word from the inside. And if you want my top tip on how to build influencer engagement - create a spreadsheet or list of followers as they join your brand who have a subscriber base which you'd like to influence in the future. This keeps it genuine, builds gradually and saves you from having to buy access via talent agencies.
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