Why I Hate the Term "Micro-Influencers"

You've heard the term "Micro-Influencers," right?

This term is used to describe Influencers who have a smaller number of fans and followers (between 1,000 and 25,000) than Mid-Tier Influencers (between 25,000 and 100,00 fans and followers) and Top-Tier Influencers, who have 100,000 or more fans and followers. 

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There are two reasons why I dislike the term "Micro-Inluencers" (OK, "hate" is probably too strong of a word.)

1. There is nothing "micro" at all about the influence of Micro-Influencers.

In fact, these Influencers -- which often includes customers -- have huge influence over purchase decisions and brand perceptions.

There is nothing more influential than a recommendation from a friend or peer who is an actual user or owner of a product or service, study after study has proven.

People trust recommendations from peers or friends 2X to 3X more than recommendations from paid influencers, i.e. Mid-Tier and Top-Tier Influencers.

2. Reach alone is a very limited way to measure influence.

Categorizing Influencers on the basis of reach alone is dumb.

True influence is the ability to get people to take action, like inciting others to buy the recommended product or service.

Recommendations from friends or peers is what really gets people to buy products or services -- not so much what paid influencers say.

Check out this post from social media marketing guru Jay Baer on why confusing reach with true influence is a mistake:

http://bit.ly/1vopaFq

So what should we call Micro-Influencers?

I don't have a better term to describe Micro-Influencers.

More than anything, I hope the next time you hear or use the term Micro-Infuencers, you consider this perspective.