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What Is A Social Media Influencer

17 March 2021
Rhiannon Harradine
What Is A Social Media Influencer

Social media influencers are a major part of social media and social media marketing. In the last 5-10 years, influencers have grown from offering businesses exposure in exchange for free products, to signing multi-million pound deals with the world’s biggest brands. But what is a social media influencer, and what can they do for your business?

What Is A Social Media Influencer?

A social media influencer is someone who promotes businesses, brands, products and services on social media, in exchange for some sort of benefit, (usually free products or services, money or commission). Influencers vary in terms of the types of brands they work with, how much money they earn from influencing and the size of their social media following.

Types Of Social Media Influencer

There are many different types of social media influencer, and the type of influencer you choose to work with will depend on the type of product or service you wish to promote, the audience you wish to target and your budget.

Celebrities And Social Celebrities

Celebrities in the traditional sense are effectively famous people we all know from film, TV, sport and the arts. Social celebrities get their fame from social media. These types of influencer can get your business a huge amount of exposure, but they come with a hefty price tag and contracts tend to be short-lived endorsements rather than long-term partnerships. Furthermore, celebrities and social celebrities tend to have audiences that span across many different sections of society and therefore come from different consumer markets. Therefore, celebrity and social celebrity influencers cannot properly target a specific or niche audience.


Macro-influencers are less well-known than celebrities, but they are very well-known in particular communities. These influencers are nowhere near being classed as niche or even industry-specific, but they are a cheaper and slightly more targeted option than celebrity or social celebrity influencers.


Micro-influencers have a smaller following that macro-influencers, but they are well-known within specific industries and tend to get a very high engagement rate. They are great to work with if you wish to target a specific industry and potentially run Ads using their content to target relevant people outside of that influencer’s organic following.


Nano-influencers have an even smaller following than micro-influencers, but they also have a very engaged audience that fits into a niche. That niche could be a hobby or industry, but it’s more likely to include the less mainstream hobbies and industries with smaller numbers of participants. For this reason, nano-influencers are great for smaller businesses in very niche industries looking to target a very niche market.

Working with influencers can be a really productive option for all kinds of business, with a high ROI when it’s done properly. However, it is vital for businesses to consider whether working with an influencer is a worthwhile way of promoting their business and which type of influencer would work best. Paying a celebrity influencer to promote your product to millions of people may not be the best option for your business if you really want to target a very niche market.

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