Macro-influencer or Celebrity? Your guide to working with the stars

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Macro-influencers and celebrities are hugely influential thanks to their vast social reach and notoriety. It is easy to see why they are in high demand for brand collaborations. Their credibility and global online audience elevate brand awareness to a whole new level. Macro-influencers and celebrities are in the uppermost influencer tier, defined by their astronomical follower numbers, aspirational lifestyles, and mass-market appeal. But what does it take to work with these social media stars? Let’s explore the characteristics of macro and celebrity influencers, and how to effectively activate them for your influencer marketing campaigns. 

Macro-influencer definition

Upfluence defines macro-influencers as those with over 500K followers. They are typically most active on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. Macro influencers have a large social media following, helping brands to reach a wide, mainstream audience.  They are also likely to be professional social media creators, dedicating almost 100% of their time to cultivating brand partnerships and creating engaging content. 

Macro influencers with between 500K – 1M followers have a higher engagement rate across Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok than influencers with over 1 million followers, as reported in Influencer Marketing Hub’s State of Influencer Marketing Benchmark Report based on data from Upfluence. 

macro-influencer engagement
Image credit: Influencer Marketing Hub, data from Upfluence.

Celebrity influencer definition

Celebrity influencers are well-known individuals, who live in the public eye. They are famous beyond their social media presence. That said, most celebrity influencers will have over 1 million followers. They are most active on Instagram and Twitter. Celebrity influencers have a global reach and a mass-market appeal. Their public image is very important to them, so they will choose brand partnerships carefully. Most celebrities are not full-time influencers. They may have a career as a singer, musician, model, actor, TV personality, or athlete, so they will often have many other commitments. 

While there are a few distinct differences between these two influencer categories, there are some important similarities in how they can benefit brands. 

Why work with a macro-influencer or celebrity?

  • Reach a broad, mainstream audience. Macro and celebrity influencers appeal to a wide range of people. Their social media content doesn’t target one specific industry niche or demographic. They can help promote products that have a very broad appeal. 
  • Boost global brand awareness. Many celebrities will be well-known around the world. If you’re a global brand, working with the right celebrity will help you target new customers across international markets. 
  • Build your brand’s social presence. Working with macro-influencers and celebrities will elevate your brand’s visibility on social media and grow your brand’s social media audience. 
  • Celebrity endorsement = more sales! Celebrities have coveted lifestyles that their fans are eager to copy. Brands can harness celebrity endorsements to boost social proof and drive even more sales. 

How to find them? 

If you already have a celebrity influencer in mind, it’s easy to analyze their social media performance using Upfluence’s Chrome Plugin. Simply install the plugin, visit their social media page, then click on the plugin icon to see an in-depth performance dashboard. This will help you decide if their online performance is strong enough for you to partner with them on a campaign. 

selena gomez

You can also search macro influencers using Upfluence’s influencer search tool. You can use filters to select only creators with 500K+ followers, as well as keywords to help you find influencers that align with your brand. 

What type of campaign best suits macro-influencers and celebrities? 

Product launch

Influencers with a large social media audience can help you generate interest and anticipation for your new product by sharing posts in the build-up to the launch. An early endorsement from a macro influencer or celebrity will help to boost the number of pre-orders and sales for your new product line!

Top tip: Once you have a strong relationship with your celebrity influencer, invite them to get involved in the product development phase. They can design a limited edition product or seasonal product line for your brand. Their fans will be even more excited to buy products created by their favorite celebrities! 

Brand ambassador 

Some brands may choose to recruit an official brand ambassador to be the ‘face’ of their campaigns. Think of Serena Williams as a brand ambassador for Nike, or Kendall Jenner who was a brand ambassador for Adidas. Brands can work with well-known public figures to leverage their platform to promote their products. They will typically feature in ad campaigns, post sponsored content on social media, and attend galas and events. 

Brand awareness 

Their huge online (and offline) reach makes celebrity and macro influencers the perfect fit for brand awareness campaigns. They can use their visibility and connections to generate interest in your brand and products. There are several different channels brands can use when trying to increase brand awareness. Influencers can post sponsored content on Instagram of them wearing your brand’s watch to their latest red carpet event, or a photo of them drinking your brand’s tea at the weekend. People are interested in the products that celebrities and influencers use in their daily life, so this type of post will introduce their audience to your brand in an authentic way. 

brand awareness
Image credit: Vectorjuice via

Choosing compensation

Due to their notoriety and valuable social media audience, macro influencers and celebrities are likely to charge a high price for brand collaborations. They are likely to be highly solicited for influencer campaigns and will therefore choose the brands that align with their values. 

For macro influencers, brands can negotiate compensation in the form of monetary payment and free products. Receiving complimentary luxury products including jewelry, furniture or a car is likely to be a big incentive for macro influencers. 

When it comes to celebrities, a long-term brand sponsorship will help you nurture a strong partnership. Brands should be aware that some celebrities will have a set flat fee for certain engagements, such as appearing at events. Remember to offer suitable compensation in line with the level of effort expected and the longevity of the campaign. A long-term brand ambassador program will cost more than a one-off campaign, but will ultimately offer more value for your brand the influencer. 

Choose the right influencer for your campaign!

Upfluence has dedicated resources to help you evaluate your brand’s campaign goals and choose the best type of influencer to work with for your campaign. With so many different categories of influencers to choose from, it can be difficult to know where to start. We recommend using How to Find Influencers – A Complete Guide, to learn more about selecting the best influencers for your campaigns. 

Upfluence_Guide_How to find influencers


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