One can be called an influencer on the basis of the following:
- Someone who has the ability to influencer other people’s opinions and decisions due to their popularity, position and relationship with the people.
- Someone who is an established expert in a particular field and has an authority on the subject matter.
Social Media has evolved into a virtual representation of the real world. While everyone has a voice in the real world, social media is a platform that awards everyone a power to express. There are many people who are willing to use the social media platforms to express themselves but might lack the expertise. In these scenarios, they often follow and borrow content from some other social media users who are experts in their fields or are very popular among the audience. These social media users with high number of followers are known as social media influencers.
When the above definition is translated into social media terms, social media influencers are people having a huge number of followers (usually, the number of followers can be less in case of niche domains) who regularly engage with the influencers’ social media content. These people can be one of the three:
Celebrities like popular actors, politicians, sports personalities, journalists, designers etc who are popular offline and their fans follow them to their social media accounts as well.
Content creators who are popular among social media users on the basis of their engaging content online
Experts in niche fields who are followed by people for opinion, trends, reviews and tips.
How can one classify these social media influencers?
There are a few ways to categorize the social media influencers, like based on the number of followers or type of content, type of influence, based on product categories etc but the most common categorization of the social media influencers is based on the number of followers. Although there is no clear range of number of followers that define each of these influencer types, following are the tiers as defined by Influencer Marketing Hub.
- Mega-Influencers: Mega influencers are people with a huge fan following, usually more than a million on any one of the social media platforms. Most mega influencers are celebrities like actors, politicians, sports personalities, artists etc while there are mega influencers who have gained followers through their engaging content. For influencer marketing, mega influencers can be very effective though the charges for the same would be very high.
- Macro-Influencers: Macro influencers can be classified as influencers having followers between 40,000 and 1 million in number. Most influencers engaged by brands for influencer marketing fall in this category. This category would cover less popular celebrities as well as most top content creators.
- Micro-Influencers: Micro influencers are classified as influencers having followers between 1000 and 40,000. These are mostly ordinary people having expertise in particular fields and have a strong hold on their audience owing to their engaging content.
- Nano-Influencers: Nano influencers are classified as influencers of highly specialized fields or niche fields who might have less than 1000 followers but are highly sought after for expert content.
Another way to define a social media influencer may be that based on content format.
- Influencers posting on social media platforms only
Social Media Influencers can also be defined based on the content platforms as well:
And many more.
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