Updated: Feb 9, 2019
Influencer marketing is a powerful approach that targets consumers on social media. Instagram is the primary platform for many influencer campaigns. Influencer marketing can be one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies available in the digital age. However, and especially for smaller brands, finding the “right” Instagram influencer to help you connect with your desired audience can be a daunting task. There are several points to consider.
Does the influencer have the right image and/or content for your brand? Does the influencer have a large-enough following to help you grow your brand? Before you seal the deal with an Instagram influencer, here’s what you need to do:
Check the activity of their community
It is easy to get some idea of the potential effectiveness of an influencer by looking at their community: their follower numbers, likes, and comments. Take a quick scan to make sure that there are real conversations happening between the influencer and their community. This means that most comments made by the influencer’s followers are genuine. If you notice that comments aren’t referring to what’s going on in the post, you can assume that they’re bots.
Assess the engagement rate
It is possible to evaluate if an influencer’s profile is genuine by looking at their follower numbers, likes, and comments.
If you see that the influencer has thousands of followers but not many likes per post, that’s a red flag. Also, if there’s an impressive number of likes on a recent post, and very few on the posts from a month or so, the influencer might have probably paid for the spike in engagement.
Evaluate their follower growth
Take a look at the individual followers. Do you notice spammy names? Do they have minimal activity on their pages, say no pictures, no posts or no followers? If any of those are true, they are likely fake followers.
Sudden and significant drop in followers over one day is another easy way to spot a fake Instagram influencer. It could be as a result if Instagram cleaning out bot and blacklisted accounts.
The rule of thumb is that follower growth of a real influencer should be steady and consistent. Though it takes hard work, it is possible to gain a lot of followers organically.