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Social media’s explosive growth over the past years has created a major shift in the way companies approach marketing. Traditional tactics of pushing out branded content to your audience are no longer as effective as it once was. Consumers today have more power than ever because of social media and they expect to engage with brands in real time. A lot of brands have started adopting non traditional marketing strategies which keep consumers engaged while maintaining focus on driving them to take action.

A relatively new form of one of these marketing strategies is influencer marketing which has become quite a hot topic for many marketers. Influencer marketing opens up new avenues through which you can connect with your consumers directly, foster organic engagement and ultimately get your audience to take action.

There are four types of influencers: celebrities and social media stars; professors, industry leaders and journalists; semi-professional bloggers; and micro-influencers. Influence marketing is an essential part of marketing and sales strategy which helps a brand in building a community, credibility, loyalty and brand awareness.

There are Four Ms of Influence Marketing which creates a defined path for marketing success in social media.

In the current market scenario, micro influencers are growing especially in markets like Dubai, GCC & Pakistan.

Micro influencers are people who don’t have a thousand number of followers but they are highly connected with their audience. At the same time celebrities have a huge list of followers but the engagement is very low with the direct customers. Influencers who post a photo on Instagram and get perhaps 50 or 100 likes, yet have engaging comments other than ‘nice shot’ or ‘wow’. While celebrity endorsement appears as paid promotions to the consumers which could make it ingenuine or reduce credibility.

Micro influencer visits the brand stores and picks up their favorite product, then they wear the brand and try to influence their followers by sharing it on their social media profile. They post a photo of themselves and their followers like it, comment on it and ask where they bought it leading to conversions. The micro influencer replies with the name and has now planted the seed in an engaging follower who appreciates that they received a reply. They have their personal interest in each product they wear which makes a connect for the brand. Whereas for celebrities they wear the brand and promote on social media but the engagement is very low unless they are managed by an agency.

According to a recent survey by Markerly, an influencer marketing platform conducted on 2 million social media influencers to understand their connect with influence marketing concluded that for unpaid posts Instagram influencers with <1,000 followers have a ‘like’ rate of about 8%, while those with 1,000 to 10,000 followers have a like rate of 4%.

The more the follower base increases, the ‘like’ rate decreases, with the following as an example from Instagram: 10,000 – 100,000 followers: 2.4% like rate

1 million – 10 million followers: 1.7% like rate and more. It’s a similar pattern for comment rates.

Looking at the success rate of interaction, micro influencers have become very important for a brand. Their endorsements can increase reach of brand along with a right influence from a trusted source ultimately leading to high conversions. In the Middle east, there has been a rise of 3 kinds of influencers, Celebrity like Huda Kattan who is a makeup artist/celebrity with a following of 13.3 million. Mid-range influencers like Kris fade who is a popular RJ on Virgin radio and has a following of 78k and Peer influencers like Mohammed Ahmed Ahli – Outdoor photographer based in Dubai has a following of 38k and has recently been associated with brands like Columbia.


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