A brand influencer is an individual who partners with a brand to promote its products or services via the influencer’s social media and online networks. Brand influencers usually gain monetary compensation or may receive complimentary products as compensation. While brand influencers are often celebrities or famous personalities who use their fame to generate awareness for the brand they represent, any individual with an engaged social media following can become a brand influencer. For many companies, engaging a famous influencer is not an affordable option and may not be the right strategy for them. There is a rising trend towards “micro-influencers”, who have a smaller social media following (below 10,000), yet are highly active in their niche. Many brands prefer to work with these types of brand influencers, as they can engage a more focused and high-potential niche audience and get better results at far less cost than a celebrity brand influencer.
Brand advocates vs influencers
A brand advocate can be any individual who loves a particular brand or product and recommends it to their network of family, friends, and acquaintances. They do not have to be a celebrity or even an influencer. Influencers are always brand advocates, but brand advocates may just be regular consumers who do a great job of creating awareness and exposure simply because they are brand fans and they communicate about it to the people in their lives.