5 Ways to Find Micro-influencers for Your Small Business

By Amio Chowdhury

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Even for small businesses, social media promotion is an important aspect of online marketing. And one of the most effective ways to do that is to take the help of social media influencers. Small business owners often mistakenly relegate influencer marketing from their core marketing strategy. Mostly because they think it’s costly and also because they don’t know how to find the perfect influencer to promote their business. If you have a small business, you can actually gain a lot from influencer marketing. But you need to find the right kind of influencers. More specifically, micro-influencers.  

Who are micro-influencers?

Micro-influencers are influencers with about 1K to 10K followers. While this number seems very low compared to big social media influencers with millions of followers, micro-influencers are quite effective. Especially for small businesses.

The importance of micro-influencers

Typical influencers are public figures, industry experts or celebrities. They may have a large audience but all of those audiences might not be interested in your business. On the contrary, micro-influencers are more focused and have a more active group of followers. Promoting your business with the right micro-influencer will give it more visibility to a more relevant group of people.

  • With micro-influencers, you get social interactions from more relevant groups of people
  • Influencer campaigns with them cost less and easy to initiate
  • Micro-influencers are more effective than mass influencers for promoting small businesses

Moreover, research data shows that influencers with a large number of followers actually have less engagement rate.

Finding micro-influencers for your small business

Basically, the three questions that you need to ask about a micro-influencer are:

  1. Does the influencer have a relevant audience for your business?
  2. How much engagement does the influencer have with his/her followers?
  3. Does he/she have enough number of followers? (At least 1K to 10K)

Here we’ll discuss some practical ways to find micro-influencers who can help you promote your small business in social media.

  1. Look among your own social media followers

If you already have a social media presence (which you definitely do), then you can easily find some micro-influencers who are already following you. Here’s how to identify them:

Step 1:
Check your own social media follower list and find people who have 1,000 to 10,000 followers. Twitter and Instagram are two platforms that work best for this purpose.

Step 2:
After you identify these micro-influencers, check their profiles to find out the ones who post things related to your business. For example: If you have a local restaurant, find the micro-influencers who are nearby your location and post about foods.

Step 3:
Approach the influencer. For example: You can offer a food blogger free coupons or discounts. In exchange, ask her to post images of your restaurant to her followers.

Pros:

Here are the pros of finding micro-influencers from your own social media followers:

  • The influencer already knows your business. So you won’t need to do much explanation
  • As they are your fans, they can be easily convinced to post about your business
  • If you have a local business, then this is one of the best ways to find local micro-influencers
  • Their posts appear to be more natural and authentic than promotional posts from big influencers

 Cons:

  • Though you’ll definitely find many micro-influencers among your followers, finding people related to your business niche might be difficult
  • By relying entirely on influencers who are in your social connections, you might miss other more influential micro-influencers
  1. Search for influencers using third party tools

 You can use social media management tools to help you in influencer research. Some popular tools are:

Apart from the three we just mentioned, there are many other similar tools available. Some of these are free. But to get the most out of these, you should opt in for a paid version. It’s not possible to describe the how-tos of all these tools here. But as an example, here’s how to find micro-influencers for your small business using BuzzSumo:

Step 1:
Go to https://app.buzzsumo.com/amplification/influencers

Step 2:

In the Search Bios, type a topic name that is related to your business.

Step 3:

To find the micro-influencers, chose Regular people as the filter.

Step 4:

You can sort the search results based on Relevancy, Page Authority, Number of Followers etc. Look for people with a several thousand followers and good page authority. Then reach for them for partnerships. 

Pros:

  • You can easily find and sort relevant micro-influencers for your business using these tools
  • This process is obviously a lot more effective and less time-consuming than manual searches

 Cons: 

  • The free version of these the third party tools are quite limited in scope and ultimately you’ll need to move to the paid versions
  • Approaching someone for a partnership who doesn't already know about your business requires good negotiation skills
  1. Approach bloggers to promote your business

You may find relevant micro-influencers among niche bloggers. Local bloggers can be especially effective if your business area is limited to a certain geographical region. You can easily find relevant local blogs using Google search. For example, if you have a local restaurant in Melbourne, search for food blogs in Melbourne. And you’ll see a list of relevant blogs. Next, you need to approach the blog owners and offer them to visit your restaurant. Don’t forget to provide complementary foods or discount coupons for a nice review! Here is a more general guideline on how to approach bloggers to promote your products:

Step 1:

Use Google search and tools like Alltop to find relevant bloggers.

Step 2:

Create a list of about 25 to 50 of such bloggers along with their contact and social media information. In some cases, you may not be able to find the email address directly. You may communicate with a blogger via social media, but an email is always the most preferable way.

Step 3:

Though you can approach a blogger directly, it’s better to build up a relationship beforehand, especially if he or she has a high reach. Here are some tips regarding this:

  • Post relevant comments on their blog posts
  • Interact with them on social media by liking and sharing their articles
  • Occasionally send them emails complimenting their posts

Step 4:

Approach them for partnership and social media promotion. Note that you should be clear and honest about your purpose. Don’t try to soft sell when contacting bloggers.

 Pros:

  • Bloggers can reach more targeted audience especially for local businesses
  • If your business name becomes part of a good content, you’ll get relevant traffic from it for a long time

 Cons: 

  • You may not find relevant bloggers for your business niche in your locality
  • It’s a time-consuming process 
  1. Perform hashtag researches

One of the most general ways to find social influencers is to do hashtag researches. The two best platforms for this purpose are Twitter and Instagram. You can also search for hashtags using Google. Here’s how to do a hashtag research on Instagram:

Step 1:
Choose a keyword that is relevant to your business. Try to be specific. For example: Instead of searching for #food, search using terms like #veganfood in Google. Generally, the first two results will be from Instagram and Twitter. 

Step 2:

Clicking on the Instagram link will show both the top posts and recent posts for the hashtag.

Step 3:

Click on the images and then visit the user profile. Remember you are looking for micro-influencers. Many of the top posts will be from big influencers who may not be suitable for your small business.

Step 4:

Go through the images and profiles. Check their follower numbers, interaction rate and post type. Make a list of micro-influences that you think will be suitable for promoting your business. Then contact them for partnerships or promotion deals. You can always send freebies or product samples to micro-influencers to encourage them post about your products.

Pros:

  • You’ll find many micro-influencers who will post about your business for sending them complimentary product samples
  • You may get to know some micro-influencers for your relevant keywords who actually have a significant reach despite falling into the micro-influencer spectrum

Cons:

  • Finding suitable micro-influencers in this process will take a lot of time and effort
  • Failing to choose the right hashtag may cause you to overlook many important influencers 
  1. Connect with micro-influencers at real-life events:

Apart from looking for micro-influencers online, you can actually connect with them in off-line events too. For example: In any local event, like - exhibition, seminar, workshops etc, which is related to your business, you can meet with many micro-influencers and talk with them face-to-face. Even you may discover there are micro-influencers in your friend circle or among people that you personally know.

Looking for micro-influencers in other social media

Apart from Twitter and Instagram, you can also look for micro-influencers in Facebook and LinkedIn. In Facebook, you have the option to discover Groups related to your business. Join these groups and notice which members are interacting the most. You can similarly find relevant groups on LinkedIn. Typing your business topic directly in the search bar will also show you relevant people who are professionally engaged in your field. As Facebook and LinkedIn are a bit different than Twitter and Instagram, you need more time to build up relationships with micro-influencers in these platforms.         

Conclusion

Micro-influencers are best for running social media campaigns for small businesses. Relevant micro-influencers can give you a significant social visibility at a very low cost. We hope you’ve found the tips we mentioned above to be useful in this regard. Are you running any micro-influencer fuelled campaign for your small business? Share your experience with us in the comments.

 

Author Bio

Amio Galib Chowdhury is a Content Writer at WebAlive, an Australian web development company. His area of interest includes anything related to internet and technology. He mostly writes on ecommerce, user experience design and SEO.

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