The influencer marketing industry looks like it is here to stay: according to Adweek, the value of Instagram influencer marketing is on track to reach $10 billion this year. Influencers on other platforms, like Snapchat, YouTube, and TikTok, are also finding a foothold with lucrative markets of their own. Meanwhile, the industry seems to reach a new stage of evolution every other day. Less than ten years ago, the arena was open only to celebrities and a few hardcore bloggers. Now, the number of influencers has increased so much so as to have already saturated the market, and increase the risk of fraud via so-called “fake influencers.”
As the influencer market grows from strength to strength, and continues to seek out its sweet spot, here are some top industry trends to keep an eye out for in 2020:
- Nano-influencers and micro-influencers
The growth of the influencer industry has led to the formation of new categories with which to understand the various benefits that different influencers can offer a business. Two such categories are those of nano-influencers (influencers with between 1,000 and 10,000 followers) and micro-influencers (users with between 2,000 and 50,000 followers). Nano- and micro-influencers are often every-day influencers who just so happen to have cultivated a highly-engaged following while simultaneously partnering with brands. They tend to share common, and often niche, interests with their audiences.
Compared to their larger counterparts, nano- and micro-influencers tend to appeal to very specific audiences, but herein lies their power: when a brand works with a nano- or micro-influencer, they can be certain of the type of audience they are reaching. That’s what makes the rise of nano- and micro-influencers a trend to watch in 2020.
- Alternative Platforms
It is vital that brands have a keen awareness of the platforms on which target audiences are interacting. In other words, there is little point in partnering with an Instagram influencer if most of a brand’s target audience is moving over to TikTok for their daily social media kick.
At the moment, the core platforms that marketers are focusing on include Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. TikTok, however, is growing rapidly, with more than 1.65 billion downloads to date.
As social media users diversify into niches and platforms that best suit their needs, marketers will have to stay up to date with where audiences are heading. Instagram may still be king, but alternative platforms are nothing to be sniffed at.
- Video Content
While images have always formed the backbone of posts and sharing on social media, the rise of video content has been meteoric. Videos consistently return maximum engagement rates across all major platforms, and live videos of influencers engaging with products are on the rise.
Meanwhile, motion content like gifs, stop motion and cinemagraphs are all emerging as tools with which influencers can stand out from the flood of online content by competitors. The rise of alternative platforms, like TikTok, is sure to only exacerbate this shift.
As the influencer industry continues to grow and change, brands and marketers cannot afford to stick to old patterns out of habit.