Instagram Marketing: Choosing an Influencer for the Food Industry based on the Full Consistency Method (FUCOM)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Associate Prof., Department of Business Management, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar, Iran.

2 Assistant Prof., Department of Industrial Management, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar, Iran.

3 MSc., Department of Business Management, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar, Iran.

4 PhD Candidate, Department of Business Management, Faculty of Management and Economics, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran.


In recent years, due to the increase in the use of influencers to introduce and promote products and services for companies, influencer marketing has been widely considered as an important and effective advertising tool. On the other hand, with the significant growth of social media among Internet users across the globe. For an instance, Instagram is used as one of the most popular social media in Iran as an advertising tool to increase access to consumers. But the most important issue is the selection of the most appropriate influencers by companies to send their advertising messages to their audience. As a result, companies need to consider some criteria to make the right choice in this regard. The purpose of this study is to identify and prioritize the characteristics of the right influencers active in the food industry to advertise products on Instagram as a social media platform.
The present study is applied in terms of purpose and uses a mixed method approach consisting of two phases. In the first stage, through doing library research, reviewing the available literature and conducting semi-structured interviews with seven experts in the field of food industry, the factors that play a pivotal role in selecting the right influencers were identified. Then, in the second stage, the identified indicators were prioritized and weighted by experts through the Full Consistency Method (FUCOM) questionnaire. Finally, Lingo and Excel software were used to prioritize the solutions identified in the previous step.
The findings of the present study could identify the most appropriate indicators for selecting the right influencers on Instagram, which were classified into two main categories. The first category was related to the content of the influencers’ pages on the platform i.e. number of the followers, comments of the users, reaching followers, previous experiences on the rate of return on investment, topic distribution, and topic engagement rate. The second category included the personal characteristics of the influencers i.e. brand congruence with the influencer, congruence between the audience and the influencer, influencer reputation, honesty and credibility of the influencer and the influencer expertise. Prioritization of these indicators indicated that “the rate of user involvement with the subject” and “reputation of the influencer” are the most important indicators, and “brand congruence with the influencer” and “the number of followers” are the least important indicators identified for choosing an influencer for the food industry.
According to the results of the FUCOM analysis among the identified indicators, ‘’topic engagement rate’’ is the most important indicator in the influencer page features category and ‘’influencer reputation’’ is the most important indicator in the influencer personal characteristics category. In order to achieve maximum efficiency in the field of influencer marketing, companies need to consider these indicators for evaluating influencers to select the appropriate ones.


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