Influencer marketing was a $16.4 billion industry in 2022. However, the global influencer marketing market size is anticipated to reach $84.89 billion by 2028. This means marketers are predicted to spend over $4.5 billion on influencers in the year ahead.
The takeaway from this? Influencer marketing is extremely popular, and it’s only growing.
This means your brand should certainly consider tapping into influencers if you want to capture the attention of your target audience and stand out from the competition.
To do this effectively though, you’ll need to follow the right influencer marketing trends.
Before you go ahead and create the kind of boring influencer content everyone has already seen, be sure to understand these top influencer marketing trends right now.
What is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing is a type of marketing where brands collaborate with social media influencers to promote their products or services. Influencer marketing has become a popular strategy for businesses to reach their target audience and increase brand awareness.
Influencers are individuals who have a large following on social media and are considered experts or leaders in their respective niches. The goal of influencer marketing is to leverage the influencer’s authority and credibility to promote a brand or product to their followers.
The Growing Importance of Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing has become increasingly important in recent years as social media has become an integral part of our daily lives.
Brands are recognizing the power of influencers to reach their target audience and generate sales. According to a study conducted by Influencer Marketing Hub, 68% of marketers increased their influencer marketing budgets in 2022, and 92% of marketers believe that influencer marketing is effective.
Top Influencer Marketing Trends of 2023
Influencer marketing is an increasingly valuable tactic in the digital marketing landscape. Influencer spending, demand, and popularity are increasing at a pretty rapid rate. This means it’s important to stay on top of the influencer marketing trends that matter.
To help you understand the influencer landscape better and make more informed decisions, here are some of the biggest influencer marketing trends you need to know right now.
1. UGC is Being Redefined by “Influencers”
User-generated content (UGC) is typically defined as content that regular social media users create and brands share. However, Gen Z has a different idea of UGC, seeing it as a form of content created by freelance marketers or micro-influencers.
In this case, the UGC creator is paid to create content by the brand, which the brand then posts.
Sounds like influencer marketing, right?
Well, it basically is. It’s just a slightly different take on it. It’s also one of the biggest trends happening in the influencer marketing space right now.
UGC creators aren’t influencers in the sense that they have large social followings. Instead, they’re just people who are really good at social media and can create great content. You can find creators like this on places like Fiverr.
So, if your brand is considering working with an influencer, but can’t find the right match, then consider working with a UGC creator. It could be more affordable, and it can help you add a different spin to regular influencer content.
Most importantly, though, this content will help you generate some valuable social proof. Sure, user-generated content may not be as important as it once was, but it’s still a big deal in helping people trust your brand. With the right kind of UGC, you can boost your credibility in a pretty big way.
Of course, if you’re trying to target Gen Z, then this is the approach you want to take.
2. Micro-Influencers Are More Important Than Ever
Micro-influencers are influencers with smaller followings, usually between 1,000 to 100,000 followers. They may have a smaller reach than macro-influencers, but they often have a more engaged audience and a more specific niche.
Brands are increasingly working with micro-influencers to reach a more targeted audience. This is especially true for small businesses.
Why are micro-influencers so effective? Well, three reasons:
- They’re more affordable, so smaller brands can work with them
- They’re more niche, so it’s easier to find a micro-influencer who makes more sense for your very specific product and target audience
- They come across as more authentic
Consumers are becoming more skeptical of traditional advertising and are looking for authentic and transparent content. Influencers who are honest and transparent about their partnerships with brands are more likely to build trust with their followers.
These influencers are also referred to as “niche influencers” when they focus on a very specific topic or industry.
Working with these influencers makes it a lot easier to reach people who are genuinely interested in your product or service. Because why else would they be following and engaging with a niche influencer?
So, forget about working with influencers to reach as many people as possible. Instead, the best influencer partnerships help brands reach a very specific, targeted audience. This will translate into sales more easily instead of just generating brand awareness with no results.
3. Greater Emphasis on Working With Influencers Across Multiple Platforms
Many influencers these days are no longer just focused on Instagram or YouTube. Instead, they have built up engaged audiences across multiple channels. This means these creators have super fans who interact with them all over the internet.
Working with an influencer like this can be incredibly compelling to your audience, as these influencers’ followers are super engaged with them.
So, instead of only focusing on influencers for different channels, consider focusing more effort on multi-channel influencer campaigns. This will give your brand more touchpoints with the influencer’s audience, which will help you make a greater impact (and generate more sales) from this audience.
Of course, only run multi-channel influencer campaigns if the channels and audience make sense for your brand.
4. Brands and Influencers are Focusing More on Video Content
Video content is becoming increasingly popular on social media, and influencers are taking advantage of this trend. Brands are working with influencers to create all kinds of video content, such as product reviews, tutorials, and unboxing videos.
Why is this influencer marketing trend so effective?
Well, because video is by far the most engaging form of content on social media. You can communicate so much more through video, which is important if you’re promoting products.
Of course, video is also massively popular on social media right now. With the ever-increasing popularity of TikTok and Reels, focusing on video is more important than ever before.
5. The Rise of the TikTok Influencer
TikTok has become one of the most popular social media platforms, and brands are taking notice. Influencers on TikTok are known for their creative and entertaining content, and brands are collaborating with them to create sponsored content.
While TikTok’s popularity is nothing new, the social media platform has become an increasingly popular place for influencers. And unlike other social media platforms, influencers have a unique take when it comes to TikTok content creation.
And according to data, marketing teams will nearly double what they spend on TikTok influencer marketing in just two years. In 2022, they estimated that TikTok influencer marketing spending added up to almost $800 million. TheB2BHouse predicts that by 2024 TikTok influencer spending will exceed $1.3 billion.
With Facebook and Instagram removing live shopping features, TikTok has also become the only place you can focus on if you want to run live shopping influencer campaigns. This has made it an increasingly popular place for eCommerce brands to focus their marketing efforts.
6. Interactive Influencer Content is Getting More Love
Interactive content, such as polls, quizzes, and games, is becoming increasingly popular on social media. Brands are working with influencers to create interactive content that engages their followers.
This is a great way to work with influencers because it gets their audience actively engaged with their content. And as you should know, higher engagement levels are extremely important for successful influencer marketing campaigns.
So, if you’re considering working with an influencer, think about ways you can make the promotion fun for the audience. Instead of simply posting about a brand, creating some sort of interactive content or giveaway can be an awesome way to generate more engagement from your influencer campaigns.
7. Influencers Are Becoming Key for Affiliate Marketing
Influencer marketing and affiliate marketing have traditionally been two separate things. These days though, more and more influencers are working with brands as affiliates.
We’re seeing more influencers actively promoting brands through affiliate partnerships – something that small businesses should look into.
Why is this helpful? Well, two reasons:
- Affiliate programs are lower-risk and generally offer a better ROI for brands
- Affiliates tend to promote products harder in order to generate sales
So if you’re new to working with influencers, you might want to consider adding an affiliate program into the mix. This could be an amazing way to harness the power of influencers without having to pay for them upfront.
8. Influencer Marketing Meets Paid Ads
Consumers have become tired of the same old marketing tactics brands use. They respond better to strategies that are fresh – which is why many influencer campaigns are utilizing paid advertising for a broader reach.
The purpose of working with an influencer may be to access their specific audience. However, you can maximize this by turning influencer campaigns into paid ads. This will help your campaign generate more awareness and, hopefully, more sales.
The key here is to keep it authentic. Consumers don’t want to feel like they’re being targeted with ads. Instead, try to create influencer content that adds value and stands out from the regular ads the user is hit with.
9. Long-Term Partnerships Become More Valuable
Brands are recognizing the importance of building long-term partnerships with influencers. Long-term partnerships allow influencers to create more authentic content based on the brand’s values and target audience.
Audiences will trust the influencers and brand partnerships more in the long term, which can help to generate more sales.
While influencer marketing grows in popularity, brands should try to do whatever they can to stay memorable and stand out from the rest.
One of the most effective ways to do this is to work with influencers on a long-term basis. The constant recommendations will be a lot more effective than once-off promotions.
Clearly, there’s a lot of value in the right influencer marketing strategies. If you’re looking for an effective way to reach more customers and make an impact, then you’ll want to try to tap into some of these influencer marketing trends. They could make a major difference in the success of your social media marketing strategy.