Lockdown Micro-Influencers: Digital Marketing's Hot New Trend

Warc has published its Media Strategy Report for 2020 -- based, it would appear, at least partly on what its award winners are getting right.

The number one insight will catch the eye of many a media executive. It's something this column has talked about a few times over the past few months. Influencer marketing is coming of age -- and in particular, the rise of the micro influencer is here.

The theory is that a pop star or world-famous actor will get you a lot of love on Instagram for a day, but will it go anywhere in the long run? A dress worn by a singer to an awards event may sell out the next day after she reveals who it was by, but the next time that designer launched a new look, will they see a repeatable success. 

People have been leaning toward micro influencers because they are more relatable. They are a little more like you and I, only they are superb at something, be that fitness workouts, photography, teaching the guitar or mindfullness tips.

In fact, Warc identifies a new breed of micro influencer emerging from the COVID-19 outbreak. Apparently, the lockdown micro influencer is currently all the rage and they are not the type of people you expect from influencer marketing. It's not about bling, vacations, posh frocks or being kind to charity.

The lockdown micro influencer is a leader in the things that matter to us right now -- fitness, cooking and education. 

This column mentioned a couple of weeks ago how the latest news in the genre was celebrities were coming in down in price and becoming more open to offers, now that they can't leave the house, like the rest of us.

Well, it appears that our shift toward the person in the street -- the micro influencer -- is intensifying.

The trends also suggest that brands need to get more in touch with new passions, mentioning sports are continuing to be a happy hunting ground for brands to connect with consumers. It leaves one wondering whether this also means brands need to figure out ways of tapping into our newfound, or reawakened, passions.

Under lockdown we are tuning in to fitness, cooking and education influencers, and so these two trends of reawakened hobbies and influencers who provide a route to that market surely cannot be ignored. 

Elsewhere, Warc is talking up AI and also thinking outside the proverbial box on reach customers through new touchpoints, such as songs and books.

Again, you can't help but think this leads us back to micro influencers again, doesn't it -- popularising a new book on a hobby, reading poetry, performing a song. 

Sure, the big bucks will continue to go to people who will get thousands of "likes" just for a photo of them with a new watch but for brands that want a more long-term relationship, something that doesn't involve blowing a budget all at once, micro influencers are incredibly well placed to provide better value.

They have the skills and they have smaller followings of highly engaged fans but that means you are likely to be able to afford to work with several throughout the year for the price of one household name saying they went to your hotel on their summer holidays. 

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