When TrendHERO sponsored my podcast last month, I was excited to see a powerful, yet cost-accessible influencer marketing software hit the marketplace. While singularly focused on Instagram, TrendHERO is a robust platform to help discover, prioritize, analyze and track Instagram influencers.

When they told me they were doing a deep analysis of U.S.-based Instagram accounts to identify insights and trends about influencers on the platform, my ears perked up even more. Well, the report is now out and TrendHERO asked me to read and report to you what I found interesting about it. (That’s my conversational way of telling you this is a sponsored post. But trust me, you’re going to want to read on.

TrendHERO State of Influencer Marketing on Instagram

The biggest takeaway for me in reading through the data is the astonishing difference in engagement rates from nano- and micro-influencers to celebrities. According to the numbers, an “average” engagement rate for celebrity level influencers (1 million or more followers) is 1.5 percent. An “average” engagement rate for a the lower-end of the nano-influencer spectrum (2,000-5,000 followers) is 4.6 percent. The difference in a “good” engagement rate for both is stunning: 7.2 percent for celebrities, 17.7% for the lower follower group, and 11.2% for micro-influencers.

What this means is one celebrity influencer is roughly equal in true reach (follower count X engagement rate) to 84 creators with 5,000 followers. It’s equal to 64 creators with 10,000 followers. So, let’s do some math using Influencer Marketing Hub’s 2020 Influencer Marketing Outlook Report and cross-reference average pay rates with TrendHERO’s engagement numbers.

The Shocking Truth of the Math

That report says the cost of a single Instagram post for someone with over 1 million followers is from $10,000 up. Just to keep the math simple, let’s say that I’m going to engage one content creator with 1 million or more followers for $10,000. That means I’m paying to reach 72,000 of their fans, if they have “good” engagement levels. (1 million fans times a 7.2% engagement rate.) So my cost-per-thousand (CPM) of effective reach is $139. ($10,000 divided by the sum of 72,000 divided by 1,000, or 72.)

Now, let’s look at our creators with 10,000 and below followers. Influencer Marketing Hub says I need to pay them $100 per post. So, for the same cost of the single celebrity post, I can engage 100 creators. If all of those creators have a “good” engagement rate (11.2 percent according to TrendHERO), our effective reach is 1,120 people per creator. That adds up to 112,000 people across 100 creators. So my cost-per-thousand (CPM) of effective reach is $89. ($10,000 divided by the sum of 112,000 divided by 1,000, or 112.)

What TrendHERO’s data tells us, definitively, when cross-referenced with Influencer Marketing Hub’s data, is that Micro-Influencers are $50 more efficient in cost-per-thousand users engaged.

TrendHERO’s data tells us … Micro-Influencers are $50 more efficient in cost-per-thousand that celebrities

That is a significant savings now quantifiable for you to consider in your influence marketing spend. It also gives you a measuring stick to roughly compare influence marketing spend to other marketing channels. While pay-per-click advertising is far more cost efficient, it’s also lacking in content, trusted recommendation, human engagement and other robust benefits an influencer can bring to your efforts. But at least you can see an apples-to-apples comparison of efficiencies.

The TrendHERO data goes into far more depth. I strongly encourage you to download the report. It’s free and all they ask is to validate your request with an email address.

You will see how engagement rates vary by U.S. major metropolitan area, gender and even content topic!

Guess which vertical offers the least engagement rate? Marketing. Which brings to mind the question: Why trust any of us telling you how to do this? Heh.

There are also breakdowns of the level of competition in each vertical, how big each segment is of the overall Instagram picture and more. TrendHERO has put together a treasure trove of data that can be helpful in understanding the context of influencers and creators on Instagram. Download the report and see for yourself.

TrendHERO The Platform

While you’re there, you should give TrendHERO, the platform a look as well. It’s a great Instagram influencer discovery tool that helps you identify, compare, analyze and prioritize Instagram influencers for your outreach.

The best part of TrendHERO is the price. A basic account costs about $16 per month. You can’t really beat that, even if it’s just to try it out.

Winfluence - Reframing Influencer Marketing to Ignite Your Brand

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