If you’re new to using influencer marketing, you might find some influencer marketing statistics pretty bizarre.
Perhaps you’re as puzzled as I was to find out not only that PewDiePie (who??) makes millions of dollars giving commentaries about himself playing video games, but that you might consider partnering with him?
Yep – because he has over 100 million followers who might buy what you are offering because he says he likes it.
Or what about Ryan of Ryan’s World? This is a children’s YouTube channel and it has had over 23 billion views. And Ryan? He’s been at it since 2015; in 2018, he earned $22 million for his promotion of toys at Walmart; in 2019 he turned 8. Yes, he’s 8 years old.
If you were asking, “What are influencers?” – hopefully, this explained it.
The thing is:
Consumers have the choice to switch on or off what they want to see. Millennial consumers actively resist paid advertising. They are much more likely to watch a testimonial from someone they are willingly following than a staged advertisement from a marketer.
This has all become big business. Brands want to know that their decisions about where to put their marketing spend are based on data rather than assumptions.So, let’s look at some of the influencer marketing stats that might drive some of these business decisions in 2020.
Here’s a sneak peek:
Fascinating Influencer Stats (Editor’s Choice)
- In 2020, 3 billion people will visit a social network at least monthly.
- 79% of brands predominantly tap Instagram for influencer campaigns.
- A single post from fashion influencer Chiara Ferragni generates $84,000 in earned media.
- The bigger the influencer, the lower the ROI.
- 89% of marketers say return on investment from influencer marketing is comparable to or better than other marketing channels.
- Brands partner with influencer marketing companies because successfully executing influencer marketing campaigns is incredibly complex.
- Two-thirds of agencies and marketing professionals have been affected by influencer fraud.
- You are 434% more likely to rank highly on search engines when you have a blog on your website.
- 51% of marketers reveal they were able to secure superior quality customers via influencer marketing campaigns.
General Influencer Marketing Industry Stats and Facts
1. The influencer marketing industry will be worth $15 billion by 2022, up from $8 billion in 2019
(Business Insider; Influencer Marketing Hub)
A whopping growth from $8 billion to $15 billion means nearly doubling the value of the industry in three years. Clearly, the trend is up – so marketers from companies of all sizes will be taking note.
Unsurprisingly, along with the growth in marketing spend has come a growth in specialized influencer marketing companies.
2. 320 platforms and influencer marketing agencies were created last year.
(Influencer Marketing Hub; MediaKix; Clutch; Cheq)
In 2015 there were just 190 social media influencer platforms and agencies. 320 new ones were added during 2018, taking the number to 740.
And this is definitely still growing:
Cheq research shows that there was $118 million in funding for influencer platforms between July 2018 and July 2019
Which made me wonder:
How many influencers are there?
Let’s find out, shall we?
3. There are more than 500,000 active influencers on Instagram alone.
That’s half a million influencers on Instagram! 81% of them are so-called micro-influencers with follower numbers of between 15,000 and 100,000.
The balance of the numbers look like this:
- 100K to 500K followers: 15%
- 500K to 1 million followers: 2%
- 1M to 5M: 1%
- Mega-influencers, with more than 5 million followers, make up the remaining 1%.
Perhaps it’s no wonder, then, that marketers are turning to professional agencies to look for influencers on their behalf.
4. Brands partner with influencer marketing companies because successfully executing influencer marketing campaigns is incredibly complex.
The human element of influencer marketing adds risks and complexity not present in other digital channels like display advertising, PPC, or paid social media advertising.
Many marketers are increasingly nervous about whether they can identify the right influencers for their products and their specific audience demographics. They are also nervous about possible risks to their brand if influencers become controversial.
It’s no wonder that they turn to companies to handle the Instagram demographics responsibility.
Before we move on, let’s have a quick look at the legal regulations.
5. FTC issued warnings to 45 celebrities over unclear Instagram posts.
(FTC; Mobile Marketer)
In 2017, the Federal Trade Commission in the US issued “education letters” to 45 celebrity influencers (including Naomi Campbell, Heidi Klum, Victoria Beckham, Jennifer Lopez, and Kourtney Kardashian) who had not clearly identified their relationship with the brands they were promoting.
In essence, the FTC regulations say that consumers have the right to know whether influencer recommendations are genuine personal opinions about a product or whether they have some “material connection” with the marketer. Otherwise, it is an act of deception.
So the connection must be “conspicuous.” This means that the commercial connection must be indicated in the first three lines in an Instagram post – not below the fold, at the end, or in a #tag somewhere.
Social Influencer Marketing Stats
What is a social influencer?
This is someone who has built a loyal following through their online content creation.
A look at the following stat will make you realize why brands take social media influencing very seriously indeed:
6. By 2020, three billion people will visit a social network at least monthly.
If you want to reach potential consumers, three billion people visiting social media platforms can’t be ignored. Facebook is still the leading social network, but Instagram and Snapchat have higher annual growth rates. In China, WeChat and Weibo have significant and growing numbers of users.
What’s interesting (especially to brands that are marketing to teens) is that teens and young adults are increasingly leaving Facebook to their parents and moving to Instagram and Snapchat.
7. Instagram has over one billion users, and 71% are younger than 35.
(Influencer Marketing Hub; Instagram Press; Statista)
Instagram users grew from 100 million in 2013 to a billion active monthly users in June of 2018. Over two-thirds of them are aged 34 and younger.
Some other stats to show how powerful Instagram is:
- Users post 95 million photos and videos per day.
- They post 500 million Instagram stories per day.
- Users “like” 4,2 billion posts every day.
So, if your target market is the under-35s, it might be a good idea to get a share of these likes!
8. 79% of brands predominantly tap Instagram for influencer campaigns.
(Influencer Marketing Hub; Big Commerce; LinkedIn)
Marketers are putting their money where the numbers are on social media influencer platforms. Instagram has become the most important influencer marketing channel, followed by Facebook (46%), YouTube (36%), Twitter (24%), and LinkedIn (12%).
A hint …
YouTube influencer marketing will remain important as a key customer acquisition method (more on this later). LinkedIn is important for niche expertise for B2B business.
9. One-third of the most-viewed stories on Instagram are from businesses.
The good news for brand marketers is that people are actually checking out the stories from businesses! Instagram stories statistics suggest that more than 200 million Instagrammers visit at least one business profile daily.
In fact, Instagram is using its own muscle to drive its own ecommerce site with the help of high profile celebrity influencers:
10. Celine Dion and Instagram celebrated iconic fashion in December 2019.
(Instagram Press; Instagram Press (video); Instagram)
In December 2019, Instagram teamed up with Celine Dion to feature 18 fashion brands that could be bought on their site. All the retro glitz so popular with the younger set in 2019, plus the backing of her iconic tune “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now” – who could resist buying?
But that’s not all:
The second purpose of the video was to highlight the shopping features on Instagram’s ecommerce platform – so you have Celine Dion herself demonstrating how to use the app! And she has 3,8 million followers, so the app will be getting a lot of exposure.
It’s astounding how much marketing can so slickly be put into just 60 seconds of video! It’s definitely worth a watch.
But there’s more to this than meets the eye. Fashion itself is a major drawcard.
11. A single post from fashion influencer Chiara Ferragni generates $84,000 in earned media.
We’ll talk a bit more about earned media later, but what this stat says is that a single endorsement from Chiara Ferragni, the top fashion influencer for 2019 with 17 million followers, will give you publicity worth $84,000.
Fashion is huge on social media. 25% of all sponsored Instagram posts are for fashion. Food is second at 12%. Technology attracts a mere 1%.
Now, let’s look at this from the point of view of brands.
Brand Influencer Marketing Stats
Because of social media, companies today can interact with their customers on a level that was impossible to do before. Direct brand involvement or audience engagement mediated by influencers is now the norm.
This has both benefits and risks. Let’s explore some of them …
12. Building trust through transparency and brand authenticity should be one of your top priorities in 2020.
(Vivial; Business Insider; Hasshoff)
Authenticity is one of the key challenges for brands. This has a number of implications for both businesses and influencers.
The first is to ensure brand fit – your brand influencer should be aligned to your brand and the product.
The second is to decide who creates the content. Research shows that influencers prefer to create their own content to match their own brand and voice and retain authenticity.
The benefit of getting this right:
Followers will feel more in tune with the content and will trust it more.
The risk of getting it wrong:
Companies will be held liable for false advertising if the influencer message is wrong. And they will waste their money if the influencer does not fit their brand.
13. Influencer marketing stats show 79% of brands are concerned about brand safety when running an influencer marketing campaign.
(Influencer Marketing Hub; Wiki; Forbes)
A brand’s reputation is top-of-mind for marketers – and indeed for most company executives and owners. Nearly half (49%) of research respondents believed brand safety could occasionally be a concern when running an influencer marketing campaign. 30% believe brand safety is always a concern.
There is a bit of a balancing act between the benefit of the reach offered by the brand influencer and the extent of the damage that can be done.
A good example of this is PewDiePie. He’s the most influential YouTuber, but after some controversy 2017, Disney and Google cut their very lucrative contracts with him in an attempt to protect their own reputations.
Fortunately, there are some happier stories …
14. Kendall Jenner helped Adidas US sales surpass Nike Air Jordan.
(New York Post)
Kendall Jenner (of Kardashian fame) is one of the top Instagram influencers with 120 million followers. In 2017, she became a brand influencer for Adidas.
Here’s what happened next:
Within four months, the Adidas sneaker she was promoting had outsold the US number one sneaker, the Nike Air Jordan.
So much for celebrity influencers.
There are some unexpected influencer marketing statistics about non-celebrities, which we’ll look at in the next section
Influencer Marketing Demographics
The demographics within the influencer marketing industry are important for marketers looking for the best place for their marketing spend.
There are different ways of segmenting the industry:
- By follower numbers (mega, macro, micro and nano influencer)
- By content type (YouTubers, Bloggers, Podcasters, Instagrammers, etc)
- By industry (fashion and beauty, food, gaming, etc)
Some of the stats about follower numbers might surprise you:
15. Marketing influencers may be characterized as mega, macro, micro, or nano.
Mega influencers are the celebrities. They have millions of followers with different interests and from different backgrounds. An endorsement or a celebrity blog from them on any product has an immediate impact.
Macro influencers have between 100,000 and 1 million followers. Many of them have gained fame simply from being on the internet – what some would describe as being famous for being famous. They have reach but can sometimes be part of influencer fraud.
Micro influencers have between 1,000 and 100,000 followers. Most have specific niches and may be experts in their areas. Additionally, many produce high quality, authentic material. They have strong relationships with their followers. This is where most of the marketing spend is going.
Nano influencers have 1,000 followers or fewer. These are “regular everyday people,” and their strength lies in their ability to influence their family and friends. They have the highest level of audience engagement because they have personal interactions with their followers.
That’s interesting, but what does it mean for your decision making?
16. Targeted reach, cost-effectiveness, engagement, authenticity, and accessibility all go up as follower count goes down.
That’s astonishing, as we tend to give so much attention to big follower numbers and celebrity appeal. But it makes sense. The higher the number of followers, the more likely it is that you are reaching a mass market of very diverse backgrounds and interests. They may or may not be interested in what you have to say or to sell. And you might miss exactly what you want – targeted reach, cost-effectiveness, engagement, authenticity, and accessibility!
On the other hand…
17. Niche influencers are better for target audiences.
(Business Insider; Trust Barometer)
Smaller numbers of followers coupled with high authenticity and niche expertise plus high audience engagement with your target market may be what you need for your influencer marketing campaign. You may spread your bets by also making sure that your influencer comes with a high-quality influencer network.
Relatability is the key factor:
61% of people find “people like me” to be credible.
Given the last couple of stats, the next one probably won’t come as much of a surprise:
18. The bigger the influencer, the lower the ROI.
(Influencer Marketing Hub)
An influencer with 50,000-250,000 followers will give you 30% better ROI than one with 250k-1M followers and 20% better ROI than influencers with 1m+ followers.
Here’s an unfortunate influencer marketing fact:
Some of those “larger influencers” are fakes!
19. Two-thirds of agencies and marketing professionals have been affected by influencer fraud.
(Cheq; Influencer Marketing Hub)
Fakes are influencers who buy followers or use bots to like or comment on their posts. Some of them even claim to represent brands they don’t. Cheq estimates that about 15% of all influencer marketing spend is involved – that’s a mind-blowing $1.3 billion for this year alone. So, if you don’t want to join the two-thirds of marketing professionals who’ve been duped, it pays to be on your guard.
Which brings us to the big question:
Influencer Marketing ROI
Measuring ROI is critical if you want to make decisions based on facts rather than wishful thinking. The difficulty very often is knowing what metrics to use.
So let’s start by looking at some of these.
20. It is important to match your ROI to the goals of your campaign.
(Influencer Marketing Hub)
Firms use a variety of metrics to measure the success of their campaigns. Some of these include:
- Awareness: You measure the number of views, reach, and impressions (your message reached the follower’s screen)
- Engagement: The follower must do something, so clicks, likes, comments, and shares would be counted
- Sales: The follower bought something
But here’s another metric:
21. 78% of marketers consider Earned Media Value a good measure of ROI.
(Influencer Marketing Hub; Statista)
Earned media value (EMV) is a monetary representation of the publicity gained from a promotion other than paid advertising or from your own media channels.
These Statista findings for 2018 showed a return of $8.12 for every dollar spent on campaigns. Influencer Marketing Hub 2019 research showed more impressive returns, with up to $18 in earned media value for every dollar spent. Even average firms had EMV of $5.20 per dollar spent.
So, these campaigns clearly work!
22. 89% of marketers say the return on investment from influencer marketing is comparable to or better than from other marketing channels.
(MediaKix; Influencer Marketing Hub)
Marketers generally are giving influencer marketing the thumbs-up. 80% say it is effective, and 89% say it provides ROI that is as good as or better than from other marketing channels.
But here’s the big question for marketers:
What must the budget be? How much do Instagram influencers make? Who are the top YouTube influencers? And what must you pay them?
Read on to find out the answers to these important questions.
23. Jeffreestar – a makeup artist with his own cosmetics line – earns $10,077.99 per minute for his videos on YouTube
(Petey Vid; Statista; Klear; Business Insider)
What? Over 10K per minute for a video by a male make-up artist?
But wait, as they say, there’s more:
Many don’t earn anything at all – 70% of those polled by Statista said that they were given a free product in exchange for their work.
For the rest, it really depends on content form and follower size. These are the average rates that Klear worked out from a survey of 2,500 influencers using its own definitions of follower size:
YouTube is the most expensive social network for an influencer campaign – and longer videos of about 20 minutes will cost twice as much as the prices given in the table.
The Klear survey also found that male YouTube influencers were paid 38% more on average than female YouTube influencers. On Instagram, the difference was 32%.
Of course, your “true” celebrities or superstars with tens of millions of followers are in a league of their own. Let’s not forget Jeffreestar – not to mention Kim Kardashian at a mind-boggling $500,000 per Instagram post!
Marketing Industry Trends for 2020
It’s not easy to stay on top of the emerging trends in marketing. The trouble is that if you don’t, you can find yourself with stale campaigns and dwindling returns.
Here are a few general trends in online, mobile, and social marketing in 2020. They will probably also affect your influencer marketing strategy:
24. You are 434% more likely to rank highly on search engines when you have a blog on your website.
That’s an astounding statistic! Your website is a mind-blowing 434% more likely to rank high on search engines if you have a blog, influencer marketing statistics reveal. Static website pages are not good enough anymore.
A reminder, though:
Consumers want content that is purposeful and useful, not a sales push. This is where influencers can deliver for you.
And it seems that it is worth paying for good content in the blogs –
25. When you prioritize blogging, you are 13x more likely to see positive ROI.
When you give attention to blogging on your site, you are 13 times more likely to have returns on what you have invested. And, interestingly, you can drive website traffic by 100% just by updating and republishing old blogs.
Here’s another hot trend to keep in mind:
26. There are 12x more shares of video than images and text combined.
It’s probably no wonder then that the most expensive form of influencer content is video. But if it will be shared 12 times more than other content, it’s probably worth adding to your strategy.
And it seems to work, as the following stat points out:
27. 93% of businesses gain a new customer when they post a video on social media.
If a video has such a huge success rate as a customer acquisition method, then it seems worthwhile. And video is of course what influencers can do so well.
However, let’s not get too excited – here’s a little warning signal:
28. Social detox may affect your marketing strategy in 2020.
Many people are taking a break from the overload of social media, and this “social detox” may affect your marketing. Those who remain want content that is short and engaging. Again, influencers may be the people to do this for you.
If you still have some questions, read on.
Here are some questions that people often ask:
Q: What is a marketing influencer?
A: A marketing influencer is someone who is able to influence potential buyers of a product or service by promoting and recommending it on social media.
So, influencer marketing is a particular approach taken by companies to partner with influencers to increase awareness of their brand, increase engagement with the market or increase sales within a specific target audience.
Q: What are digital influencers?
A: A digital influencer is another name for a social media influencer. Digital influence is the ability to influence the opinions, actions, and buying decisions of online followers.
Q: How to reach more people on Instagram?
A: One way to reach more people is to pay for one of your posts to be promoted or sponsored as an ad. Instagram will then send this post out to an audience of users similar to your followers, or to whatever grouping you select.
Or, of course, you could try one of these ways to bring leads.
Q: What are millennial influencers?
A: Millennial influencers are those born between 1980 and 2000. Some of the better known include Logan Paul, born in 1995, Cameron Dallas, born in 1994 and Hudda Kattan, born in 1983. She’s one of the top female influencers – her focus is on make-up and beauty, and she has nearly 24 million followers.
Q: What are Twitter follower statistics?
A: Twitter analytics can give you the statistics about the interests, locations, and demographics of your followers as well as how they engaged with your tweets.
Social influences on consumer buying decisions seem to be the new norm.
Hopefully, our collection of the most important new influencer marketing statistics helped you understand the reach and power of this medium, and you can use them to help you craft your marketing strategies.
This is a quickly-changing marketing channel that can absorb your marketing spend with very little result. However, reliable statistics are a powerful tool to ensure relevance, authenticity, and healthy ROI.
- Business Insider
- Influencer Marketing Hub
- Mobile Marketer
- Instagram Press
- Big Commerce
- Business Instagram
- Instagram Press
- Instagram Press (video)
- New York Post
- Viral Access
- Trust Barometer
- Petey Vid
- Business Insider