How the Cost of Influencer Marketing Compares to Paid Ads, in 5 Charts

How effective is an influencer strategy from impressions through to conversion? Spoiler: the strategies that seem to drive the most value at the beginning are burning out before achieving measured progress for your business objectives. Check out our breakdown below:

 Cost Per Impression

Untitled design (4)For an influencer strategy, cost per impression is largely related to the size of the influencer’s audience. Well-known influencers can have millions of followers, while promoted ads on Twitter or Facebook can drive similar view counts by nature of the high volume activity on either channel. Micro-influencers have the highest cost per impression by nature of the smaller size of their following (500-5k friends on a social channel).

 Cost Per Engagement

cost per engagementEngagements are a step better than impressions in indicating the value of the your audience. However, not all engagements are created equal, which is why a blanket CPE can lead to inconsistent data. For example, a like is more of a reaction than an engagement, whereas a share or a post is a more relatable indicator of future purchase. As a result, promoted tweets, celebrity tweets and Facebook Newsfeed Ads have a low CPE. Micro-influencers have the highest CPE because they are engaging a small quantity of higher quality potential customers.

 Click Through Rate

click through rateThe average CTR serves as a turning point for several digital ad strategies, as those that drive high impressions and engagements end up failing to carry their soft metric success into measurable action for your brand. In contrast, the higher cost per engagement and impression in a micro-influencer strategy begins to display its value here. The high CTR’s that micro-influencers drive serve as a reflection of the resonance that micro-influencers possess, which relates to the quality of the connection they have with their followers. If the same piece of branded content were to be shared across each of these channels, a post from a micro-influencer would be worth more than ones coming from other digital ad strategies because of this resonance, which (when combined with engaged reach and relevance) leads to more valuable engagements that in turn lend themselves to a higher CTR.

Cost Per Lead

cost per lead The cost benefits of a micro-influencer strategy are apparent when measuring average CPL across all digital ad strategies. This is where the resonance of a micro-influencer begins to pay off: as customers from other strategies lose interest after the initial view or engagement, micro-influencers’ followers continue down your brand’s funnel, because they both trust and value the micro-influencer’s recommendation. The ability to push followers past superficial metrics and into bottom-line objectives like leads and conversions is the defining difference between a micro-influencer strategy and other influencer strategies starring celebrities and bloggers.

Cost Per Acquisitioncost per acquisition

Micro-influencers have the lowest CPA of any of digital ad strategy, primarily because they’re motivated by brand value.. Most micro-influencers are incentivized by VIP treatment by your brand, such as entry into rewards communities, loyalty programs, or gifts of brand swag or discount. In contrast to celebrities and bloggers who demand large sums of money to partner with your brand, VIP treatment of some sort is enough motivation for your micro-influencers to drive and deliver value because of the brand affinity that they share for your brand.

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Author Caroline Burke

Content Marketer at Mavrck. Voted the voice of her generation in a unanimous vote of one.

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About Mavrck

We all know word-of-mouth is the most effective form of marketing, but word-of-mouth automation at scale has always been a challenge. At Mavrck, we harness the power of human-to-human marketing at scale by tapping into your most valuable asset: existing customers with influence.

By focusing on influential customers who engage a high percentage of their friends around a brand's relevant topics or keywords, Mavrck's patented micro-influencer marketing platform powers consumer brands like Hershey's, Sears and Unilever to discover and activate millions of their micro-influencers to distribute content and drive conversions across social networks.

On average, our "always-on" activation engine will get 3 friends to convert for every 1 micro-influencer activated.