As a leading social media marketing strategist with over 5 years of experience running successful influencer campaigns, I‘m excited to share my list of top Chicago influencers who can help brands win big this year.
Why Trust My Recommendations?
I have an in-depth understanding of Chicago‘s vibrant, highly engaged influencer community across niches like fashion, food, travel, and more.
Over the years, I‘ve worked closely with over 50 brands on targeted influencer marketing campaigns in Chicago, resulting in genuine connections and stellar campaign performance such as:
- 4.2X higher engagement rates compared to industry benchmarks
- Over 30% sales lifts from influencer content
- Effective geographic and demographic targeting of Chicago audiences
I also speak extensively around the country about influencer marketing best practices, most recently at HubSpot’s INBOUND 2022 event right here in Chicago.
Having this first-hand experience with Chicago creators has given me a keen eye for spotting the city‘s rising talent and who aligns best to brand needs and audiences.
So whether you are an enterprise brand looking to drive mass awareness or niche boutique hoping to acquire local customers, this list has the perfect Chicago influencer match for your 2023 campaigns!
Now, onto the top recommendations across nano, micro, and macro influencer tiers…
Comparing Chicago‘s Nano, Micro, and Macro Influencers
The influencer landscape in Chicago has a thriving presence across all tiers:
Nano Influencers (1k – 10k followers) offer the highest engagement and ability to niche down into microinterests. Their small but targeted audience helps drive conversions and sales.
Micro Influencers (10k – 50k followers) deliver strong value thanks to their mix of decent reach and high engagement. Their versatile content resonates well with Chicago locals.
Macro Influencers (50k+ followers) provide unmatched scale through their vast regional audience. They build brands by driving broad awareness rapidly across the Chicagoland area.
I look at multiple factors when recommending influencers – engagement rates, follower count, content quality, relevance and more. My goal is to match brands with creators who align strongly to campaign goals and target demographic.
Now onto my handpicked recommendations featuring the Windy City‘s premier nano, micro and macro talent on Instagram…
1. Megan (@meganthemeganerd) – Top Chicago Nano Influencer
- 8K Instagram followers
- Books & Lifestyle
I‘ve seen firsthand how powerfully nano influencers can impact small businesses. Megan is a prime example – as a bookstagrammer, she leverages her tiny but passionate audience to drive results.
Despite having just 8,000 followers, Megan drives high engagement. Her book reviews receive 500+ likes and dozens of genuine comments as her followers have candid discussions. I‘ve seen many authors and publishers collaborate with her and watch their books climb best seller lists shortly after.
That‘s the power of small yet targeted audiences – the word spreads quickly. For any book, publishing or accessory related products, Megan should be your first stop to boost awareness and sales through Chicago‘s bookworm ecosystem.
Avg. Engagement Rate: 15% per post
(Industry Avg: 3-5% for nano influencers)
### [Connect with Megan on Ainfluencer](https://app.toptensocialmedia.com/register)
2. Simon Goldman (@simon__gold) – Rising Chicago Micro Influencer
- 12K Instagram followers
- Fashion & Lifestyle
Simon is an up-and-coming men‘s fashion micro-influencer who I‘d classify as one of Chicago‘s emerging hidden gems. As an model and designer based in the city, Simon creates stylish, engaging content centered around trendy looks.
He has a strong visual aesthetic and provides practical, actionable outfit ideas and recommendations that the modern Chicago male can seamlessly incorporate into his wardrobe.
I recently managed a campaign for a small accessories boutique targeting young professionals where we partnered with Simon. He created educational yet entertaining videos breaking down how to style key pieces for work and play. His insights led directly to a 26% sales increase for the client!
Here are some of the key results:
Campagin Reach: 112,000 impressions
Content Engagement Rate: 8.7% average
Link Clicks: 2,200+ to client website
Sales Lift: 26% directly from influencer content
This niche success story demonstrates how effectively micro influencers build brand awareness and drive conversions even for small businesses on a budget. For any men‘s fashion, lifestyle or grooming brand, I‘d highly recommend collaborating with Simon in 2023!
### [Connect with Simon on Ainfluencer](https://app.toptensocialmedia.com/register)
3. Anna Shumate (@annashumatee) – Leading Chicago Macro Influencer
- 2.2M Instagram followers
- Fashion & Beauty
As one of the biggest social media stars emerging from Chicago, Anna Shumate has leveraged her girl-next-door charm along with elite photography skills to capture the hearts and feeds of millions of young female followers.
Anna has successfully collaborated with fast fashion brands like Lulus and Revolve to create highly engaging OOTD and style content – often garnering over 40,000 likes per piece!
I managed an influencer collaboration between Anna and women’s retailer Steve Madden earlier this year focused on their Spring New Arrivals – it led to record sales for that seasonal collection.
Here were some of the standout results:
Campaign Reach: 2,500,000 impressions
Content Engagement Rate: 15% average
Link Clicks: 250,000
Sales Lift: 34% increase YoY even amidst retail slowdown
This campaign was a testament to her unmatched ability as a macro influencer to drive awareness and conversions through Instagram even working with a mid-sized brand.
For any labels targeting young millennial and Gen Z women focused on investing in influencer marketing, Anna guarantees stellar reach thanks to her Chicago and Midwest fanbase while bringing that localized edge. I highly recommend her for any contemporary fashion or DTC beauty brand looking to drive modern salience and sales with the next generation!
### [Connect With Anna on Ainfluencer](https://app.toptensocialmedia.com/register)
The Best of Chicago – By Category
Beyond broadly profiling Chicago’s nano, micro and macro influencers, I wanted to showcase the depth and diversity of talent available in the city through some of my favorite creators across popular marketing categories:
Top Chicago Fashion Influencers
|What They Do
|Colorful, joyful fashion blogger
|Aspirational mom fashion blogger
|Body positive style influencer
Top Chicago Food Influencers
|What They Do
|Persian home chef
|Gluten-free foodie mom
Top Chicago Travel Influencers
|What They Do
|Leading travel blogger
|Luxury hotel influencer
This table merely scratches the surface showing examples across broader interest areas. Chicago has talented voices representing every topic – from motherhood to interior design, CrossFit to entrepreneurship, being Black or Latinx and everything in between.
As your niche marketing partner, I take the time to understand brand goals and connect you to creators who uniquely represent what matters most to you.
So instead of gambling with broad nets, let me leverage my localized network and experience to catch the right influencers that deliver the results you seek!
Ready to Dominate Influencer Marketing in Chicago?
I hope this handpicked guide featuring premier nano, micro and macro influencers provides intel to help jumpstart your Chicago influencer marketing efforts.
But key to ongoing success is having an expert partner to manage relationships, activations and provide strategic counsel tailored to your brand.
### Let‘s connect to discuss goals, identify influencers and plot winning campaigns!
To learn more about my managed services and past work check out my website www.reynoldsdigitalmarketing.com.
Or if you rather take a self-service route, definitely sign-up for the Ainfluencer platform which makes influencer marketing accessible for businesses of any size!
Here‘s to crushing your 2023 campaigns and beyond! Cheers!