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Trending: The Rise of the Micro-Influencer

Influencers, such James Charles, Kayla Itsines and Joanna Gaines, have taken the social media world by storm in recent years, commanding marketing strategies and ad spend through big brands and public relations agencies galore. In fact, Business Insider reports that influencer marketing ad spend is expected to reach between $5 and $10 billion by 2022.

USA Today notes that priorities have recently shifted from reach to engagement when it comes to influencers. Enter: the micro-influencer. Micro-influencers, such as Kim Watson, Em Roberts and Nicholas Pakradooni, typically have anywhere from 1,000 to 50,000 followers and blog under certain niches such as fashion, beauty, food or travel. This shift has helped shed new light on the “average Joes” of the internet, and despite what their name suggests, their impact is anything but small.

While celebrities cast wider nets with their massive followings, micro-influencers can come across as more trustworthy to audiences and are viewed as more knowledgeable and passionate about their purchasing recommendations. One survey found that 82 percent of respondents said they were likely to follow a micro-influencers’ recommendation.

Although their followings don’t reach the same scale as a typical celebrity or high-profile influencer, it’s their specific niche and authenticity that have helped micro-influencers make a huge impact for themselves and the brands they partner with. Reports show that 70 percent of millennials prefer product endorsements by non-celebrity bloggers, indicating that today’s internet-savvy generation is seeking real content from people who have established themselves by merit of their knowledge and experience, not their star value.

Identifying and pitching the right influencers will take careful consideration to create the most effective partnerships and return on investment – it’s not always about the number of followers, but more so the quality of engagement.

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