What is an influencer?

What is the difference between a macro-influencer, a micro-influencer and an adviser? Who are they?
Mar 2019


Followed by varying numbers of fans, influencers have become real trend-setters. And you have to recognise that the scale of this phenomenon has not gone unnoticed by brands!

Many of them have decided to significantly increase budget dedicated to influence during the year.

So, who are these famous influencers that marketers are talking about?

There are several types of influencer. To ensure that you contact the right one for your next influencer marketing campaign, here is a short summary of the different categories that you might find.

Pay attention, however, that you don’t confuse these with ambassadors! We will come back to this distinction later in this article.

What are the different types of influencer?

1. Macro-influencers

A major figure on social networks, the macro-influencer is well known on the web. We recognise them because:

  • They have from 500,000 to several million subscribers.
  • Each of their publications is widely shared on social networks.
  • They can be celebrities like Beyoncé or Pierre Niney but also personalities made purely online, like EnjoyPhoenix or Cyprien.

Thanks to their reputation, the macro-influencer is able to reach a very wide audience on digital campaigns.

2. Micro-influencers

Like their name suggests, the micro-influencer is less visible on social networks. Several elements distinguish them from macro-influencers:

  • Their community is much smaller than those of macro-influencers. We estimate that, in general, they have 50,000 subscribers.
  • What’s important about them is not the number of views their publications receive but the engagement and trust that they inspire.
  • Micro-influencers are closer to their subscribers, who consider them as more authentic and more real.

The relationship of trust that micro-influencers build with their fans directly benefits the business wanting to promote a product and/or service by using their image.

3. Advisers

The Adviser category is unique. Seen as influencers, their impact should, however, be put into perspective. Who are advisers?

  • It’s us, you… in brief, 30% of the French population!
  • They comment, share and give their opinions on the products and services that they use.
  • They manage the e-reputation of a brand but only impact this when a high number of them promote an idea.

Contrary to micro and macro-influencers, advisers are not really a means of transmitting a message.

Rather, it’s to these that advertising campaigns are targeted. Their powerful influence relies on the need of consumers to get recommendations from their peers.

What's the difference between an influencer and an ambassador?

To develop visibility, brands collaborate with influencers but also with one or more ambassadors. By combining their strengths, you create a winning combination to boost the image of your company.

In influencer marketing, the role of the ambassador is as follows:

  • The ambassador is the brand representative. Their influence here is greater than that of influencers because they have the status of official ambassador.
    Numerous celebrities (mega-influencers) are chosen to play this role.
  • They join the brand under a contract that isn’t limited purely to digital media. Ambassadors rarely sign contracts with several brands at the same time.
    They’re distinct from macro-influencers due to their affinity with the brand and, therefore, for their more authentic and exclusive side.
  • Ambassadors often have a stronger audience and community than influencers. A brand will only need one or very few ambassadors for their campaign, which is why these ambassadors are chosen carefully.
    Inversely, several influencers are often mobilised in addition to the ambassador.