You’ve likely become familiar with what influencer marketing is and how it works, given how the industry has evolved in recent years. As influencer campaigns have become a critical part of the overall marketing mix for many of today’s brands, businesses have seen how targeted word-of-mouth recommendations can greatly outperform traditional advertising when it comes to reaching today’s audiences. Micro influencers in particular have been gaining traction among sponsors for their superior engagement rates. While micro influencers can be amazing partners for a great variety of brand goals, we want to bring to light an often-overlooked (but incredibly effective!) category of content creators in the influencer marketing space: the nano influencer.
Untapped Potential: The Nano Influencer
The topic of nano influencers has been on the rise lately, and for good reason: these small-but-mighty creators offer a plethora of benefits for brand partners. Let’s start with the basics:
- What is a nano influencer?
- Why would you want to work with nano influencers?
- Examples of nano influencers
- Downside to working with nano influencers
- How can you find and work with nano influencers?
What is a nano influencer?
Generally speaking, a nano influencer refers to a content creator with a social media platform following that ranges between 1,000 and 10,000. Nano influencers are categorized differently from micro influencers, who have between 10,000 - 100,000 followers on any given platform. For more on micro influencers, download our FREE Micro Influencer 101 eBook here.
Why would brands want to work with nano influencers?
Nano influencers are known for their authenticity and credibility. They tend to have a more personal connection with their audience, with their followers actively looking forward to seeing their day-in-life updates. They have built up trust with their followers, and when focused on niche topics, are often perceived as experts in their fields.With content that’s often less formal and not quite as curated as those with larger followings, nano influencers' brand recommendations feel more genuine — which can likely also be attributed to the fact that their sponsorships are infrequent and carefully chosen .
Despite having a smaller following, they typically have higher engagement rates with more audience interactivity than macro or even micro influencers. Nano influencers often respond to every comment and direct message, which is something that not every influencer with a larger following is able to accomplish. On Instagram, nano influencers’ audience size keeps them from having access to the Swipe Up link feature, which may initially seem like a limitation — however, any links they want to share for the campaign can be shared viar direct messages, which leads to more personal engagement.
The fact that nano influencers interact with so many of heir followers indicates their promotion acts as a word-of-mouth endorsement. Word-of-mouth is a strong motivator for consumers to take action and moves one step closer to conversion for brands.
Nano influencers are great for hyper local campaigns as they tend to have a strong regional influence. Their tight-knit, largely local followings make them the perfect partners for driving local retailer interest or sharing community updates.
Nano influencers may have smaller followings, but that doesn’t mean their content quality isn’t up to par with the bigger accounts. While there are obviously all kinds of nano creators, plenty of them are consistently delivering the kind of relatable, authentic and high-quality content that resonates with audiences.
Most nano influencers aren’t solely focused on monetizing their social media account the way the bigger influencers are, which leads them to be more passionate about the brands they work with.
Nano influencers often prioritize sponsored content that is an organic, natural fit with their own style and values, which leads to a better overall campaign. Identifying and activating the most targeted, most effective influencers for every client is something we pride ourselves on at Sway Group.
When it comes to cost, nano influencers are less expensive than micro influencers and beyond.
It’s important to note that choosing a smaller influencer partner doesn’t mean you can’t scale up your outreach! One option for widespread awareness and engagement is to partner with a large number of nano creators for a high-volume campaign. While working with an agency can make this process easier, it’s definitely possible to manage large-scale influencer campaigns in-house.
Adding paid media efforts to any given campaign allows for greater targeting and exposure, with all the benefits of that high-engagement KPI-driven influencer content. The comprehensive targeting capabilities of the top social platforms’ advertising options make it possible to extend campaign impact far beyond an influencer’s followers to like-minded audiences worldwide — with the kind of authentic content people actually pay attention to.
Nano Influencer Examples
Hopefully by now you see how nano influencers are a key component of the influencer marketing world, and should not be discounted just because they have less followers. Similarly to micro influencers, they specialize in what they post about. Nano influencers are authentic and inspiring and cover a wide range of content buckets and brands would be remiss if they did not consider nano influencers in their next influencer marketing campaign. The following are some great examples of nano influencers who are masters at connecting with their audiences:
Carla Mell might be a nano influencer, but you wouldn't necessarily know that by looking at her profile. With a visually arresting feed, she takes great care in the way she portrays her life, interests and brand sponsorships. She has an eclectic, yet mild pastel color palette that would be a natural fit for most brands, and the types of content she posts about makes her a great fit for many campaigns that might come her way.
Anastasiia, aka @anastasiia_dots has a very fun (and maybe even funky?) aesthetic. As a mom, she shares creative and engaging content that many brands could benefit from. She has a knack for positivity which her audience responds well to with engagement.
Laura of @thismindfulnest has a beautifully family-focused feed. As a mom of two young kiddos, most of her content focuses on parenting and kid-related topics, however she does pull in some of the beauty niche as well. This is something that can be highly desirable to some brands who don't want influencers to fit into "cookie-cutter" niches. Having more than one content focus is a powerful tool as a nano influencer.
As a young mom of two, Fina of @houseofsonshine takes you on a journey of her very real #momlife, while showcasing her approachable take on comfortable fashion. She's not sharing high fashion in one frame and messy kids in another. Her realness comes through, making her a likable and authentic nano influencer who would perform well for household, clothing and parenting brands.
The Downsides to Working with Nano Influencers
With a smaller following, nano influencers have a smaller overall reach. If this is top priority for a brand’s campaign, then they should consider using a large quantity of nanos, and/or plan on implementing a hefty paid media strategy.
Instagram influencers with less than 10,000 followers do not have the swipe up link feature. While clicks is often a key engagement metric, there are ways to get around the absence of the feature for nanos while also increasing their engagement. Influencers can ask for interested followers to direct message them for a link. This also further solidifies their strong relationship with their followers by encouraging more interactions.
How can you find and work with nano influencers?
Do it yourself. Once you’re ready to run a campaign with nano influencers, there are several ways to search social media platforms to find the right people:
- Reach out to influencers you’ve worked with in the past. If you know somebody in or aligned with the vertical you’re looking for, ask them for recommendations. They will likely be able to point you in a good direction to start your search.
- Identify a few hashtags that fit within the particular vertical or location you want to reach. Looking through hashtags gives quick access to a multitude of influencers, and may lead to someone who’s perfect.
- Once you find an account you like, look at who they follow. A quality influencer will follow other quality influencers.
Use an influencer marketing agency like Sway Group. Our diverse influencer network and proprietary dashboard technology means that we can easily identify and activate the best nano influencers for a campaign.
The Sway Network includes a growing catalogue of influencers across all verticals and includes nano-influencers, micro-influencers, macro influencers and more. We love to include multiple levels of content creators in campaigns to provide our clients with diverse, authentic content that delivers.
We hope you’ve learned just how powerful nano influencers can be in an influencer marketing campaign. If you’re curious about how nano influencers can play a role in your marketing strategy, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team.