How To Build A Micro-Influencer Referral Program? A Guide

Updated: October 8th, 2022


Trust & Credibility
Cost Details
Brands might expect to pay somewhere in the $250 to $750 for 1,000 engagements

What Is A Micro-Influencer Program?

A micro-influencer program involves brands collaborating with well-known individuals, to extend their brand awareness and increase engagements.

Ideally, brands identify individuals with between 1000 to 10,000 followers on social media and enjoy a high engagement from their audiences.

Therefore, by partnering with micro-influencers, the brand wants to leverage the high rate of audience engagement to increase brand awareness

To achieve the objective, the marketer needs to consider micro-influencers who generate tons of content, that appeals to their audiences, and are well established in their area of interest.

According to statistics, over 82% of surveyed consumers said they were willing to buy something a micro-influencer recommended. Therefore, using micro-influencer programs is critical to the success of your business.

In this post, we look at important aspects regarding micro-influencer marketing. Keep reading to find out how to design an effective micro-influencer program.

Micro-Influencer Program Key Takeaways

  • Prospects trust referrals by micro-influencers over brand claims
  • Brands can see up to 11X ROI with influencer marketing compared to traditional marketing methods
  • With micro-influencers, brands can achieve higher engagement rates among a large enough audience
  • Micro-influencers are typically more affordable than celebrities are
  • 97% of micro-influencers on Instagram charge less than $500 for a promotion post.

How Do Micro-influencer Programs Work?

With organic reach shrinking on social channels, brands are looking for alternative ways to amplify their marketing campaigns and build trust.

Research has shown that authenticity and relatability are more important in brand marketing.

One way to base your marketing on authenticity and relatability is by partnering with micro-influencers.

Micro-influencers are individuals known for their particular area of interest and have high rates of engagement from their audiences. Therefore, brands work with micro-influencers to extend their reach and user engagement.

Note that micro-influencers are not typical celebrities and public figures. Instead, they are individuals who specialize in a particular area and share content about their interests only.

Therefore, micro-influencers have highly relevant engagement levels from their audiences.

In that regard, if a brand works with micro-influencers, it can extend its reach and user engagement significantly.

This is because users are more likely to purchase based on a recommendation from a person they know and they can relate with, other than celebrities who are paid to post.

Why Work with Micro-Influencers?

Here are important reasons to consider working with a micro-influencer

  • Micro-influencers have personal contact with the audience, which makes them perceived as “people like me”.
  • Micro-influencers have more conversations than a typical user because they are passionate about their niche and choose controversial stance on topics to engage followers.
  • Their audience is more targeted and dedicated to the influencer's identity, making them more likely to convert whenever the micro-influencer recommends a product or service.
  • Compared to celebrities and traditional marketing methods, micro-influencers are more affordable and provide a higher ROI.

Examples Of Brands Working with Micro-Influencers

Here are brands that embraced micro-influencer programs to their

How Sperry Found Success With Micro-Influencers

Since its launch in 1935, Sperry has been the footwear brand of choice for males interested in boating and waterside activities.

The shoe brand was looking to re-engage its target audience. They identified collaborating with micro-influencers to be the best approach.

Therefore, they engaged micro-influencers who started sharing posts with one of Sperry's campaign hashtags



To expand reach, Sperry decided to repost some of the images and tagged the influencer's account.


The takeaway from Sperry is that sometimes the best micro-influencers are those already talking about your brand.

Therefore, focus on expanding relationships with the people who already love your brand and are talking about it.

2. How La Croix used micro-influencer campaigns to grow its Instagram following from 5,000 to 77,000 followers

Micro-influencer campaigns are not just about selling products to the influencer's audience. These campaigns are also about increasing your number of followers on social media platforms.

La Croix Water is one of the well-known brands that have seen success with micro-influencer programs.

The brand believed its canned water could stand out on social media, and so they used Instagram micro-influencers to promote their brand.



It is out of such campaigns that La Croix water has grown its following to more than 189K followers on Instagram.

How To Start A Micro-Influencer Program

Here are important steps to guide you when you are ready to venture into a micro-influencer program.

  • Find the ideal micro-influencer
  • Consider the engagement rate
  • Work with a network of micro-influencers
  • Think of different compensation programs
  • Create a personalized outreach campaign that cares about your objectives and your consumers
meet the author
Pat Walls

I'm Pat Walls and I created Starter Story - a website dedicated to helping people start businesses. We interview entrepreneurs from around the world about how they started and grew their businesses.