Insights and Trends - Using Influencer Content for Advertising and Marketing
Key trends surrounding influencer content for advertising and marketing include tracking ROI, use of videos, and gaming influencers. Below is a detailed overview of trends surrounding influencer content for advertising and marketing.
Influencers and Brands are Cracking Down on Fake Followers
- Fake bots and fake followers are a major deterrent to influencer marketing efforts. In a recent study,50% of marketers said identifying fake followers and inauthentic engagements is the main challenge faced when using influencer marketing.
- A recent study by CHEQ noted that $1.3 billion spent on adverting in 2018 went towards fake followers. Major advertising platforms are stepping up efforts to crack down on fake followers. Instagram has conducted several follower purges.
- According to a report by Points North Group, around "14% of US and Canadian marketers’ Instagram influencer budgets were wasted on fake followers in 2018." In addition, a report by Influencer Marketing Hub noted that 63% of marketers and brands say they have had personal experiences with influencer fraud.
- In 2018, Unilever announced that it would demand greater transparency from influencers in a bid to combat fraud. In a statement, the company's CMO Keith Weed said, “the company is pushing for greater transparency in the influencer marketing space to combat fraud in the digital ecosystem; create better experiences for customers; and improve brands’ ability to measure impact."
Brands are Measuring ROI on Their Influencer Marketing Campaigns
- A recent study found that up to 70% of brands measure the ROI on their influencer marketing campaigns.
- One of the initial challenges marketers encounted while using influencers was how to measure ROI. In fact, in a 2018 study, 76% of marketers identified the inability to measure ROI as the main challenge when using influencer marketing.
- Brands have started optimizing their marketing strategies thanks to improved ways of measuring ROI. This has led to a significant drop in vanity marketing.
- Examples of platforms used to track ROI from an influencer marketing campaign include NeoReach and TapInfluence.
The Growing use of Video
- The growing need to create authentic and useful content has led to high demand for videos. The use of videos has also been fueled by that fact that there is an increase in heavily edited images and over polished productions.
- Major platforms are responding by introducing video features. These include Instagram Stories, snapchat and Facebook Live.
- Video influencer marketing can include Q&As, real-time product unboxing, behind-the-scenes footage at events, and activity and destination promotions among others.
- Examples of companies using videos in their influencer marketing campaigns include Sprint and Kaikatsu Club.
Gaming Influencers are on the Rise, Especially Female Gamers
- The number of mobile video gamers is raising so is the number of gaming influencers. Research by Newzoo research indicated that the global games market would be valued at $134.9 billion in 2018. The mobile gaming sub-sector would account for the largest portion at $63.2 billion or 47%.
- Mobile gaming is growing and is expected to be worth $91.2 billion in 2021.
- According to a report by Betting on Billions, 51% of mobile gamers are women while men account for 49%.
- In 2018, women aged 18 and above accounted for 33% of gamers in the US compared to 17% for boys under 18. Another report shows that women make up 48% of the total gaming population compared to 40% in 2010.
- Although the YouTube gaming community is dominated by males, female gamers are increasingly gaining ground on YouTube.
- Despite being dominated by males for long, the gaming industry is moving towards gender equality, and marketers keen on growing their female audience are starting to consider female influencers.
- Examples of female gaming influencers include SSSniperWolf, Fangs, and LDShadowLady among others. Leading online sport influencer marketing agencies include Upfluence and Viral Nation among others.
Growing use of TikTok and Twitch
- TikTok and Twitch are emerging as major players in influencer marketing. TikTok, a short-form video platform has become a global sensation in the recent years especially among Gen Ziers. Up to 66% of its users are under the age of 30,making a top channel for brands to tap into the younger market.
- In 2018, TikTok was downloaded over 660 million times. This figure rose by 188 million in Q1 2019 alone. Monthly downloads have also increased passed Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat.
- Twitch is a popular platform and currently has many top gamers and streamers globally. The company's partner program has shown significant growth in recent years and events like TwitchCon are registering huge interest and support.
- Examples of TikTok marketing agencies include Fanbytes and Obviously. Examples of successful TikTok challenges include Chipotle's #GuacDance hashtag challenge and Sony's AJR Brothers’ 100 Bad Days.
We managed to get key trends surrounding influencer content for advertising and marketing. For the trends, we selected those that featured in multiple sources. In addition, we selected those that are said to be happening on a wide scale and causing the largest impact as evidenced by available research studies. Finally, we mainly considered trends that are backed by market research.