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Micro-Influencers vs. Macro-Influencers vs. Celebrities – What’s the Difference?

Influencer Marketing | January 9, 2023 | 5 min

Influencers vs. Celebrities: they may look the same, but marketers prefer to work with each of them on separate campaigns. These differences become visible to the naked eye at the level of how they activate and engage with their fans and followers.

  1. Influencers vs. celebrities: the contrast stands in the channels that propelled them to fame. TV, radio, and newspapers are what shapes public people into celebrities while influencers build their empire on social media
  2. Micro- and Macro-influencers differ in community sizes but not only
  3. Marketers drive results as long as they assign projects to the right type of creators

Today is the day you start seeing micro-, macro-influencers, and celebrities as 3 unmistakable entities.

1. Micro-influencers and their key traits

  • Community size: 1,000 – 10,000 followers on one social platform.
  • Definition: Everyday people with a constant presence on one social media channel who share their passions, recommendations, and opinions with an audience.
  • Extremely niche: Micro-influencers face fierce competition. For instance, there are already big names covering nature photography, travel, beauty, etc. But not so many exclusively tackle photography on rollerskates, hitchhiking-only travel, organic cosmetics for sensitive skin, and so on. These quirky ideas are windows of opportunities for Jones and Janes to become popular on social media.
  • Trustworthy: Since micro-influencers create content that keeps interest levels up daily, followers notice similarities between them and creators. At this point, trust starts building up. In the end, followers are perceiving them as peers rather than people to look up to. Therefore, micro-influencers’ problems and solutions match their followers’.
  • Authenticity: Micro-influencers are still one of the people. They haven’t reached a point yet where they afford above-average experiences. Therefore, followers identify with them and relate to each chapter of their lives. Such a connection leads to a genuine feeling of authenticity.
  • A tight-knit community: A small yet compact audience comes with its benefits. Above all, it’s about connection. Account owners have time to respond to all questions, comments, and chat messages they receive. This way, they nurture a candid relationship with their public which in turn finds influencers trustworthy and reliable.

2. Micro-Influencers and their unique benefits

  • Highest engagement rates: Content creators followed by less than 10,000 social users generate at least a 4.9% engagement rate, bigger than any of their siblings. As a result, this marks a point for the latter in our influencers vs. celebrities comparison.
  • Access to a niche pool of prospects:  Remember that micro-influencers usually gain visibility by being among the few ones who cover specific topics only. Such a trademark is tremendously valuable to products that solve extremely specific issues.
  • Budget-friendly: These accounts are just starting off. Therefore, their main focus revolves more around community growth than turning their hobbies into a financial source. Consequently, businesses oftentimes shake hands with micro-influencers on small yet creative projects. In the aftermath, brands gain exposure while creators work on their portfolio.
  • Creative energy: Small influencers are usually eager to begin their first collaborations. This is why they are not fast to skip challenges, and amazing campaigns ensue.
numbered list with six micro-influencer features

3. Macro-influencers and their key traits

  • Community size: 10,000-1 million followers on one social platform.
  • Definition: Macro-influencers are specialists in their field who decided to take their expertise on social media. In most cases, people find their accounts thanks to its abundance in informative or quality content.
  • Types: professional photographers, artists, hairstylists, entrepreneurs, makeup artists, etc.
  • Expertise: Given their years of collaborations, these content creators know where creativity ends and business talk begins. Projects unroll so much faster when all partners speak the same language and are well aware of the role they have to play.
  • Diversity: In communities this vast, a vivid mixture of interests and passions hold sway. Such an assortment presents great advertising opportunities to companies that target a wide spectrum of consumers.

4. Macro-influencers and their unique benefits

  • Epic reach: While micro-influencers excel at engagement rate, their macro counterparts are second to none at reach metrics. With a single sponsored post, brands get in front of hundreds of thousands of relevant prospects. Choose them when brand awareness becomes a hot priority.
  • Optimized research time: Macro-influencers are visible to brands. Chances are, marketers already know which content creators on social media are already talking about their area of activity. Bottom line, it’s easy to find them. Plus, brands need fewer macro- than micro-influencers to get the job done thanks to their massive communities.
  • Fewer risks: Influencers’ previous collaborations are open books since they never disappear from social media. Marketing specialists can assess macro-influencers’ work much like going through CVs. This way, brands make much better choices whenever they turn to macro-influencer marketing.
  • Creative visual concepts: Collaborations with influencers work best when their imagination meets almost no limitations. Working far away from a corporative culture, their vision is fresh and can give birth to amazing images and videos that trigger instant buzz. In their turn, brands can repurpose these assets as UGC and even use them on their eCommerce stores as shoppable galleries.
list of macro influencers key takeaways

5. Celebrities and their key traits

  • Community size: over 1 million followers on one social platform.
  • Definition: Celebrity influencers first became famous on TV, radio, and reality shows and only afterward have they gone on on social media. Their followers are fans of their work and hold them in high esteem.
  • Fabulous lifestyles: Celebrities have access to places others can’t reach. Famous fashion magazines, Hollywood movie sets, exclusive resorts, private jets, fashion magazine covers. Naturally, fans are excited to see glimpses into these glamorous realms on social media.

6. Celebrities and their unique benefits

  • Mass exposure: With their million-user communities watching their every move, celebrity influencers generate instant brand awareness. It only needs one post to turn a company into an overnight sensation.
  • Competitive edge: To keep followers’ loyalty up, influencers avoid advertising similar products from two competitors. One can be either a Coca Cola or Pepsi promoter. Unfortunately, anything in between may lead to a backlash. Therefore, brands are associated with their partners and their fame, a bond that creates quite a smashing competitive advantage.
  • A massive boost in sales: It’s no secret that fans copy their idols to the very best they can. Therefore, if celebrities say they are using a certain product and they are happy with their results, many will follow suit. Prepare for a record number of orders and be ready to deliver.
list of celebrity influencers key features

7. Influencers vs. celebrities: who wins?

  • Niche audience vs. diversity: which one can deliver better results for your product?
  • Budgetwise vs. one investment: is your company financially prepared for a celebrity?
  • Long-term campaigns vs. one-time post: celebrity influencers pose too much strain on marketing budgets to sustain a project over a long period of time. On the other hand, micro- and macro-influencers are willing to preserve their authenticity through fruitful partnerships with brands.
  • Engagement rate (micro) vs. reach (macro) vs. brand awareness (stars): each tier outshines the others at one specific marketing goal.
  • Specialists vs. celebrity endorsements: Celebrities have few restrictions regarding product advertising. They can talk about fashion, beauty, tech, food even though they are only sportspeople. Therefore, they generate buzz and word of mouth. For more information, users head to micro- or macro-influencers who are experts and can describe the product benefits better. That’s another decision-making factor that can show you who wins in an influencers vs. celebrities battle.

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