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24 April, 2019 - Influencer

The rise of micro and nano influencers

Move aside Amitabh Bachchan, my next-door neighbour just got your social media gig.

While the Big B is still raking in the Big bucks on mainstream media with Big-ticket product endorsements (see what I did there), a new breed of ‘celebrity’ has taken over the digital world by storm – please welcome the nano influencer.

As the name suggests, they are neither famous nor have they got millions of followers. But what they do have is a great group of friends, an active social media feed and lots of interesting things to share on there. The nano influencer could be your cool cousin, the investment banker friend who ditched his wallet in the sea when he took up deep sea diving, the neighbour who is on perpetual downward facing dog mode, or even just your mum on Facebook. But they all have one thing in common, an engaging social media feed that is (for the lack of a better word) ‘Liked’ by their immediate friends and family circle. And liked enough for them to give many of their suggestions, recommendations (and poses), a go themselves.

An article in The Guardian explains the nano phenomenon just right: “It’s a logical progression, if you think about it. Ordinary people are much easier for brands to deal with than your Rihannas or Zoellas. Cheaper too: they don’t usually require cash, just some free product. What they lack in reach (typically, a “nano” will have 1,000 to 5,000 followers) they make up for in intimacy – or “real-time personalisation of the brand” as one influencer puts it. You’re far more likely to book a holiday on the suggestion of a discerning friend than some random celebrity. And these nanos really hustle!"

And hustle they do – spot the difference between a product endorsement from a celebrity versus one from a top tier influencer, to that of a micro or nano influencer. Interestingly, the content gets more creative as it goes down the rung. Nano influencers are genuine, they’re showing rather than telling and that’s what makes them such great advocates to brands. Whether Mamata Banerjee agrees or not, this kind of nano, is here to stay.

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