Social media influencers have become one of the hottest jobs nowadays. People often view them as playing, enjoying life while making tons of money. Lol! It for sure seems like that way on the surface. But just like any types of business or job, it requires a lot of hard work. Compared to most of the traditional careers, being a social media influencer definitely has more freedom and is totally self-made. You don’t have to go to collage to do so. So everyone can be a social media influencer if you have the drive! Are you planning to be one? Then you need to read on and get a better understanding about the engagement rate.
What is a social media influencer?
A Social Media Influencer is a user on social media who has established credibility in a specific industry. A social media influencer has access to a large audience and can persuade others by virtue of their authenticity and reach.
So being a social media influencer has two requirements. The first one, you need a large audience.
In order to build this large audience, it takes time. It will take years (at least three or four years) to grow to more than 100k followers. With such a competitive environment on Instagram, it will take longer to reach that goal nowadays. But if you have some very unique style, skills, and some great publicity opportunity, it is still possible to build a huge following in a year or so.
The second requirement, you need high engagement.
Every day, you or your team if you have one, need to spend hours on your account to engage with your followers. Without those real engagements, you don’t have any influence to persuade your followers. It became very obvious to see who has bought fake followers if some account has a big following but very little engagement.
How do you calculate engagement?
I will use Instagram as an example to explain because almost everyone has an active Instagram account.
Since I have started mentoring others on how to grow their Instagram, I have manually calculated their accounts monthly to see the progress. You can see more details about my Instagram Mentoring Program. Anyway, to calculate someone’s engagement rate, I use (likes + comments) across one month of that person’s posts then divide by the total number of followers and divide that by the number of posts (to get the per post average). It usually takes me at least half an hour to get that data.
But now there are many free resources that you can use to get all the data in seconds. For example, you can use Analisa.io by typing any account to see yourself or others engagement rate. Just in case you are curious, my engagement rate at this very moment is 4.17%, the like rate is 4.06% and the comment rate is 0.11%.
What does the engagement rate mean?
The average Instagram account has an engagement rate of 3%. Any engagement rate above that, combined with a high number of followers, suggests that you are an influencer. For less than 10k followers, I often suggest my mentees to aim to 6-8% of engagement rate. If you are more than 100k account, keeping 3% is pretty good since the base is so big and it takes so much time to engage with that many people. We all still need a real life, right?
Ok, now you have had a better idea about how to define an influencer, what are the requirements and how do you calculate and understand the engagement rate. Next step, is to see where and how you can score some brands campaigns. So come back read more later!
Photo credit: Grace Liang
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