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A Guide to Instagram Influencer Marketing for Businesses

It’s not just big brands that can use Instagram for influencer marketing, although it may seem that way. Companies of all sizes can benefit from using influencers on Instagram as long as the ones you choose to work with are relevant and have influence in your area.

By 2025, the number of global Instagram users is expected to reach over 1.4 billion, according to Statista. That’s a lot of eyes on the social media network and your business could capitalize on that popularity and usability with the help of influencers.

The industries that tend to benefit most from influencer marketing on Instagram are health and beauty, food and drink, travel, fashion and beauty, entertainment and media technology, and health and fitness. But every sector can find a place to engage using an influencer on Instagram.

So, should you use an Instagram influencer for your business? Let’s explore that question and give you some great Instagram influencer examples to discover.

What are the different types of Instagram influencers?

The State of Influencer Marketing Benchmark Report 2022 predicts that the influencer marketing industry is set to grow to $16.4 billion. Influencer marketing has become such a big industry that there are now different types of influencers depending on the needs of your business.

Check out our blog ‘20 Surprising Influencer Marketing Statistics’ to find out just how big influencer marketing has become.

If you’re looking to capitalize on the number of followers an Instagram influencer has then there are five main categories: Mega, Macro, Micro and Nano. As you can see it goes from over 1 million followers down to just 1,000 in terms of following.

There are also influencers based on their content or niche. These include:

  • Gamers

  • Bloggers

  • Health and fitness

  • Travel

  • Photographers

  • Fashion

  • Parenting

  • Beauty

  • Business and career

These are the main areas on Instagram, but you can always find influencers that could fit into your niche if you know what you’re looking for and do your research.

How much do Instagram influencers charge for campaigns?

Before we dive into how to find an influencer for your business, let’s look at what it may cost.

Obviously, the cost will depend on the type of influencer you use and how in demand they are. For example, the influencers in the ‘Mega’ category - like Kylie Jenner who can charge up to $1 million for a sponsored post according to Fox Business - are probably out of reach for many businesses!

According to social media consultant and bestselling author Andrew Macarthy, the cost varies based on follower count is:

  • Nano (1–10K followers): $10–$100 per post

  • Micro (10–100K followers): $100–$500 per post

  • Mid (100–500K followers): $500–$5K per post

  • Macro (500K–1M followers): $5K–10K per post

  • Mega (1M+ followers): $10K+ per post

There are also a few influencer marketing calculators out there to help you estimate the cost from Influencer Marketing Hub, Klear and inBeat. You can find a review of them all from Neal Schaffer. He also hosted a webinar with DMI entitled ‘The Influencer Marketing Blueprint’ if you’re interested in strategy and tips.

The cost of dealing with your chosen influencer will also depend on the deal or package. If you’re looking for a one-off post that will cost less than a cross-platform campaign with a few content formats across a period of a month.

It’s about looking at your budget and how you can gain the most from your investment in terms of reach and engagement - or in many cases quality leads. Use our influencer marketing brief template if you want some help on how to negotiate and plan.

How to find an influencer for your business

So you’ve decided to use an Instagram influencer, but how do you find one that can help boost your business and keep you within a budget? Here are a few steps to help you find that perfect influencer.

1) Clarify your brand values and ethos

This may seem obvious but if you don’t know what your brand stands for it will be hard to find and engage an influencer to work with you. Above and beyond knowing your product and service, you need to know how they can help people or provide solutions to customers.

For example, Ben and Jerry’s is an ice cream brand, but they stand for much more than that. They use the brand to promote the environmental impact of business, sustainable sourcing, and fair wage pay.

2) Know your audience

To create a targeted and relevant influencer campaign you need to understand who your audience is. First of all, make sure they are active on Instagram by looking at your demographics (here’s a social media demographic guide to help you).

You should also refer to your buyer personas to address pain points and tap into interests and preferences. This will help guide the influencer you choose and devise a campaign that will resonate.

3) Identify your campaign type

As we mentioned, there are lots of different types of influencer partnerships. From the start, you need to decide what you want from an influencer.

If you’re starting out in influencer marketing or on Instagram it may be worth trialing one or two sponsored posts to see what happens. If you are already established on Instagram or have a successful influencer marketing strategy then maybe try out two or three different content formats to see what performs better.

4) Find an influencer

Now that you know the why and what behind your campaign, it’s time to find relevant influencers. Hashtags can be a good way to find someone that has a similar interest to your brand. For example, if your business cares about nutrition, a hashtag like #healthyeating may help you find an influencer.

You can also use social listening and intelligence to monitor keywords, content trends or social mentions that are relevant to your business. Examples of these types of tools are BuzzSumo, Klear or Upfluencer.

Another way is to post a call for an influencer on your website or social media. You can have a list of criteria and see who responds.

5) Do your research

Once you have identified relevant influencers, use an influencer tracker tool to create a list and evaluate them all based on criteria.

You will need to look at their accounts to see the number of followers, content types, reach and engagement. Also, make sure you look at the content they post so you avoid aligning with anyone that puts out content you do not agree with or has caused controversy.

6) Reach out to the influencer

Once you identify your top influencer of choice, it’s time to reach out. The best way to start a conversation is to be professional and friendly with a clear outline of what you’re asking for and who your brand is.

There are also influencer marketing agencies that work specifically with influencers so if you want third-party expertise, then look around to see ones that may suit you.

Use our influencer marketing brief template to craft your message. This will also give you details of budget, content required, deliverables, timelines, etc. if you make a deal and are ready to get started.

Examples of Instagram Influencer Campaigns

To inspire you and so you can learn from businesses of all sizes, we’ve compiled a list of some successful Instagram influencer campaigns.

Magnum - Tapping into emotions

Magnum launched its ‘True To Pleasure’ campaign to promote the new Magnum Rub ice cream in partnership with singer and activist Halsey and other mega influencers. It showcased the stories of the influencers’ ‘truths to pleasure’, alongside a video and a Magnum lens for Snapchat filters.

The hashtag used was #TrueToPleasure and also featured a micro website for the product launch.

Sun Peaks Resort - Showcasing natural beauty

Sun Peaks is a ski resort in British Columbia that wanted to promote its top winter attractions such as ski runs and festivals along with the area’s natural beauty. The brand wanted to create a campaign that engaged adventure-seekers.

To do this Sun Peaks partnered with Callum Snape, Canada’s top adventure photographer and Instagram influencer. To promote the resort Callum shared amazing photographs and Instagram Stories along with Facebook videos of its surroundings. The campaign drove 200,000+ article views of three minutes or more to the resort’s target market.

Levi’s - Promoting a sustainability ethos

Famous for its long-lasting jeans, Levis collaborated with influencers to launch its ‘Buy Better, Wear Longer’ campaign. In partnership with Jaden Smith and Emma Chamberlain, the goal of the campaign was to encourage consumers to shop second-hand and commit to quality sustainably sourced materials.

With over 33 million Instagram followers between them, the campaign promoted Levi’s message of sustainability and aligned with its ethos rather than focusing on selling a product. The campaign was also promoted across YouTube with impactful videos from both influencers.

Daniel Wellington - An unlikely pairing to reach a new audience

As a watchmaker, Daniel Wellington has collaborated with photographers and adventurers to promote its products. But the brand wanted to do something different in its influencer marketing.

In partnership with an Instagram account for two dogs, Jasper and Louie of CanadianBros, Wellington tapped into a new audience of dog lovers that featured a watch in its Instagram posts. This playful approach got the attention of a new audience and expanded its reach.


As part of the entertainment mega brand Sony, Playstation is no stranger to using influencers on social media. Its partnership with five gamers with a range of followers - macro, micro, and nano - focused on influencer engagement rates.

The gamers uploaded posts using hashtags #PlayStationVR, #ITriedPSVR, and #PSVR and tagged the Playstation Canada account. This collaboration brought Playstation to the attention of a very targeted audience using the influence of gamers with a varied following.

Wrap-up: Instagram Influencer Marketing

You can see that using influencers can boost your marketing on Instagram. It’s about doing your research, fixing a budget and choosing the right one or ones for your business.

Think about what you want to achieve and don’t be afraid to think outside the box to align with an influencer that may seem unlikely, but is the perfect fit to promote your business.

Supercharge your Instagram Marketing with Influencers

Instagram is an effective social media channel to promote your brand, drive traffic and generate leads. To bolster your social media campaigns, DMI has developed an industry-recognized Professional Diploma in Social Media Marketing. You’ll not only gain an understanding of the biggest social media channels - including Instagram - but also learn about social research, social commerce, strategy, and much more.

Source: Digital Marketing Institute

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