Influencer Marketing

Influencer Marketing Predictions for 2020

By Editorial Staff

Everyone is running the numbers and it’s no secret that influencer marketing predictions for 2020 exceed $10 billion. Growing $2 billion this past year alone, influencer marketing is a force to be reckoned with. The industry is expected to be worth $15 billion by 2022. To what can we attribute this 25% increase from influencer marketing in 2019?

Trends

1. Integrated Marketing Portfolio

First and foremost, marketing as a whole is experiencing a greater merge of strategies including content marketing, influencer marketing, and social media marketing. With less and less differentiation among campaign initiatives, it is imperative for brands to consider all aspects together. 

Customers interact with brands through multiple channels in one interaction– social media, influencers, websites– you name it. Establishing and maintaining a consistent customer experience(CX) is critical to cultivating success moving forward. In 2020, brands will solidify their reliance on multiple channels for maximum impact. 

2. AI – An Investment in the Future

  • Importance of Data

Artificial intelligence is innovating the marketing space. From ad image rating systems to efficient customer support, AI-powered influencer marketing technology is predicted to go big in 2020. It is aiding brands in key areas of identifying creator matches, suggesting impactful workflows and creating more relevant content. 

With the expanding digital universe, data science enhances influencer marketing by providing advantages in the ability to consider vast amounts of data for each recommendation. 

  • CGI influencers

Still a fairly skeptical realm, virtual influencers are predicted to be on the rise. Allowing greater control for brands over their influencer marketing campaigns, these artificial influencers are taking the best qualities of your favorites and making a formidable competitor for the human influencers we follow and adore. 

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  • AR and Emerging Technologies Shape Ecommerce

Research by Gartner shows nearly 100 million consumers shop online and in-store with the assistance of AR. Augmented reality is bringing a new “touch” to our influencer marketing predictions. An impressive trend, but also a major challenge, AR is piquing CIO interest. New developments in 360° product viewing and integrating products into the home provide customers the ability to “touch” products. 

Brands give viewers an imperative advantage that only brick and mortar shops can currently provide. Consumers gain a digital sense of the product by being able to interact with the virtual experience, building trust with a brand and solidifying an ongoing relationship.

3. Personalized Experiences

Generic ads just aren’t cutting it anymore. With personalized experiences, 80% of consumers indicate they are more likely to make a purchase. Personalization is an essential criterion of influencer marketing campaigns in 2020.

Specific to influencer activations, this is predicted to come to life in the form of more creative content. Storytellers, with the power to capture an audience’s attention and emotion, will surpass all others. Lacking tangible performance measurements, content creators will focus on elevating the quality of their content. As opposed to validating their impact with numbers, they now have to certify their execution to quality standards by overdelivering in quality of creativity, storyline, professionalism and so on.

4. Interactive Content

Building on personalized experiences and the rapid decline of traditional marketing, interactive content tops our trending influencer marketing predictions. The oversaturation of content circulating social media and new pieces introduced hourly requires something unique to cut through the noise. 

91% of consumers are searching for brand interaction in their content. Let’s give the people what they want! The options are expanding on ways brands can generate engaging relationships with their audience. We are anticipating new innovations to be introduced in the coming year.

5. External Data Measuring Resources

Influencer marketing platforms increase in importance since the announcement of Instagram removing likes. The lack of tangible performance metrics opens an opportunity in the industry for influencer marketing companies that offer software solutions beyond campaign services. CIO’s are confirming this and do not want to hire additional staff for new software integrations. This leadership sector is reinforcing the influencer marketing prediction of focusing on easily integrated solutions.

Brands and influencers alike are looking outside of social media platforms for easily trackable metrics and richer insights to prove returns. More companies are considering moving influencer marketing in-house to monitor influencer campaigns which now support the dominant portion of their marketing efforts and budgets.

6. TikTok Rises

Even more strategic campaigns are expected to take shape in 2020. Following Instagram’s shielded like count and the dependence on outside data for campaign metrics, new social networks are able to gain popularity– enter TikTok. Quickly closing the gap in leading influencer marketing platforms behind Instagram and YouTube, the No. 3 spot has been solidified by this new short-form video platform

TikTok is the exciting new social networking site gaining momentum and pushing the threshold further than its predecessors. We expect to see future influencer marketing predictions contain more insight on its rising success and a potential threat to other platforms.

7. Fewer Celebrities, More Nano/Micro-Influencers

Instead of spending the entire marketing budget on celebrities, and almost as expensive macro-influencers, influencer marketing in 2020 is predicted to favor micro and nano-influencers. Multiplying price points, the saturation of influencers and skepticism of authentic brand partnerships has driven micro-influencer growth. 

We witnessed a substantial rise in campaign popularity during 2019 and this is expected to continue to grow moving forward. One major component of micro-influencer growth is their ability to convey authenticity better to their audience. Viewers find them more convincing, having not been jaded by the limelight yet.

8. Transparency and Authenticity

Brands are more determined to find advocates– influencers with similar values as themselves– to continue the push for transparent campaigns and authentic content. Consumers have come to expect it from brands and influencers. And, amidst the growing concerns over increasing regulations on sponsored content, establishing long-term relationships is becoming the norm.

There is a lot to consider moving forward in the ever-changing influencer marketing space. Besides the trends we’ve seen build throughout the year, there are also some key developments in the general social media sphere to keep an eye on.

Social Media: What to Look Out For

  • Growing User Demographics

Influencer marketing predictions for 2020 are dependent on the future of social media. Research conducted by Hootsuite confirms social media usage will continue to grow, especially among “older” demographics. 

As the leading platform for influencer marketing, Instagram is experiencing a paradigm shift in popularity with 45 to 54-year-olds. With brands using social networks as a home base for their customer interactions, this growth in available demographics means more brands can capitalize on influencer marketing efforts. And, brands with an existing strong social presence can reach more of their customers through this medium.

This highlights the need for segmented targeting. Now that more customer segments are joining social media platforms, a key influencer marketing prediction is that entering 2020, brands will need to start creating multiple activations for the same campaign. Before, it may have been sufficient to activate influencer(s) within a desired customer segment. But, with the increasing success of the influencer marketing industry, this is no longer enough to keep your brand on top. In 2020, influencer marketing is predicted to expand beyond Millenials and Gen Z as social media platforms engage a wider demographic.

  • Emerging Markets Connect Through Mobile

Believe it or not, there is still a large portion of the world’s population that is just discovering social media. Which translates to a large available consumer base prime for the marketing.

Our influencer marketing predictions revolve around the evolution of the digital space. As developing nations join global connectivity, the future of social media takes on a new form. Facebook predicts more people to own mobile phones than running water or electricity in 2020. For these consumers, their only digital access is through mobile devices. On top of that, most people already prioritize their phones for searching the web, shopping and interacting on social media sites.

The mobile-centric landscape at our fingertips defines influencer marketing predictions moving forward. Successful campaigns will revolve around mobile-first consumers’ financial dependence on social networks for knowledge of where to spend their dollars and how quickly they can do so.

Influencer marketing prediction of emerging mobile markets in Africa
Credit: Huffington Post
  • Visual Product Discovery

In old news, but nonetheless pertinent to successful influencer marketing in 2020, social media is the eyes and ears of a brand. Today’s consumer and, more importantly, tomorrow’s consumers are using brands’ social channels to research products and inform their purchase decision. A growing 28% of the world’s internet users rely on social platforms for online product research. In Latin American, Middle Eastern and African markets, that’s more than traditional search engines.

Visual and voice searches are becoming vital to capturing an audience. Being able to connect eCommerce and branded platforms to Google and Amazon at-home devices can make or break future campaigns.

No surprise, video is still the surest way to market. Mobile-first consumers especially are focusing their attention on the moving screen. Low literacy rates in some areas and short attention spans with the amass of social sharing in others make video a lucrative medium to communicate about products. 

It is also leading to passive networking, where viewers are watching videos and spending less time interacting. Influencer marketing predictions moving forward encompass adapting to the changing consumer preferences. Video can have a great impact on this type of audience in order to monetize and engage them.

  • Interactive Campaign Potential

Technological developments, in addition to AI discussed before, are giving social interaction a whole new meaning. Beyond Snapchat filters, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are truly bringing a futuristic touch to marketing. Literally.

The data available allows for creating location-specific videos. We predict influencer marketing strategies will incorporate greater adoption of these features to influence nearby customers – from events to local stores looking to draw in a few extra passersby.

If brands focus on the current power of the Gen Z market, they will help push these technologies from novelty to mainstream. Turning this influencer marketing prediction into reality– augmented or virtual. Take your pick.

This article was written by Gabrielle Sinacola

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