Transnational Marketing Journal

ISSN: 2041-4684 | e-ISSN: 2041-4692

The Power of Personal Connections in Micro-Influencer Marketing: A Study on Consumer Behaviour and the Impact of Micro-Influencers

Michael Gerlich
SBS Swiss Business School, Management Department, Flughafenstr. 3, CH-8302 Zurich-Kloten
Keywords: digital marketing; influencer marketing; micro-influencer; marketing; social media marketing; consumer behaviour.

Abstract

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, influencer marketing has snowballed into a big phenomenon when businesses around the world are trying to use influencers to promote their products and services. However, even though influencer marketing is a craze in the market, the engagement rate and conversion rates of micro-influencers with a smaller size of followers are higher than that of celebrities and mega influencers. It is important to understand the reasons why certain influencers are successful and others are not. Past research mainly focuses on micro-influencers as one group but does not differentiate between micro-influencers who are known personally by their followers and those who are not personally known. This is important as consumers are sceptical towards the product promotion not only of mega-influencers because they believe that influencers, in general, are using their base of followers to promote a product or service for money and fame. Therefore, consumers trust the words and opinions of micro-influencers, who provide information based on their own experience and expertise. It is worth investigating the underlying reason for the success of these micro and nano influencers. Is it the personal connection with the follower? Is it the engagement rate and the choice of products and recommendations? These are some of the points that have been investigated in this research. The objective of this research paper was to explore if followers who share a relationship with or know the micro-influencers personally make their purchase decisions based on the recommendations provided by the influencers. The research findings highlighted that when micro-influencers are known to their followers on a personal level, they wield more persuasive power over their followers.

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Keywords

marketingCOVID-19brandingMarketingconsumer behaviourIndiaCovid-19Coronavirusrefugeesconsumersblockchaincustomer-orientationGeneration Yretailsocial mediaEmerging marketsdiasporaidentitySMEbrandUAESMSfoodMexico