Influencer marketing uses social media users with an engaged and loyal audience to drive authentic conversation and engagement around a brand’s products and message.
Influencers help brands drive conversation and engagement around a particular topic, discussion, or niche area.
As millennial consumers move away from traditional media and become more invested in social media and the influencers therein, influencer marketing has seen a huge boost in popularity.
“Influencer marketing is growing because it’s a great way to get your products in front of an audience with an authentic voice. Many brands are seeing top-of-the-funnel value by getting more eyeballs on their brand’s offering. There’s power in putting the right products in front of the right audience — with an authentic voice.”
-Nii Ahene, COO of CPC Strategy
Social Media Influencer Marketing Statistics 2018
Here are 11 social media influencer marketing statistics to keep in mind as you craft your 2019 marketing strategy.
1. Influencer marketing on Instagram continues to grow, with over 1.5 million posts in 2017.
According to data from Klear, over 1.5 million Instagram posts were tagged with the FTC-mandated #ad or #sponsored hashtags in 2017.
As Instagram use grew in 2018 — the platform hit 1 billion active users in June 2018, up from 800 million in September 2017 — it’s safe to assume that the reach (and sheer volume) of influencer marketing grew along with it.
2. Sponsored Instagram posts generated about 1 billion total likes in 2017 alone.
Those #ad and #sponsored posts tend to generate a lot of engagement — an average of 682 likes per post, to be exact.
While these numbers might seem low compared to the hundreds of thousands of likes that traditional celebrities rake in, keep in mind that the most effective influencer marketing isn’t about reaching as many people as possible, but rather about reaching the right audience.
3. Instagram is the most widely-used and effective influencer marketing platform for reaching millennials.
Over 60% of Instagram users are between the ages of 18 and 24. If you’re targeting millennial consumers, Instagram is likely the best platform for your brand to leverage.
4. Nearly three-quarters of Instagram influencers fell into the 18- to 34-year-old age range.
And 42% of all Instagram influencers are between the ages of 18 and 24. Millennials and Gen Z are generally desensitized to traditional media.
Instead, they look to social media as their space for getting information. Influencers in that space have a lot of power to sway millennial spending decisions, especially because…
5. 70% of millennial consumers value peer endorsement over celebrity endorsement.
More proof that millennials are over traditional marketing techniques. To reach these consumers, brands to embrace more approachable, authentic forms of marketing.
6. Micro influencers have higher engagement than celebrities.
Micro influencers — defined by Digiday as those with between 10k and 100k followers — see higher like and comment rates than accounts with higher follower numbers. This means that micro influencers tend to have the best combination of follower count and engagement.
This is especially valuable when you consider how highly brands value engagement.
7. According to a report from Linqia, brands rank engagement as the most important goal of influencer campaigns.
One of the biggest draws of influencer marketing is the authenticity of the content. When content seems authentic and relatable, audiences are more likely to engage.
It’s hard for brands to generate this under their own name; meanwhile, influencers are already creating regular authentic content with millions of engagements.
$100k isn’t pocket change, but compared to the ad spend for traditional media such as TV or print, influencer marketing can be extremely affordable, especially if you consider how high the returns can be:
9. Some studies show influencer marketing returning as much as $6.50 for every $1 spent.
While not necessarily representative of all influencer campaigns, there is consensus across social media experts that influencer marketing is cost-effective, particularly when you keep in mind the importance (and cost) of audience engagement.
10. 76% of marketers saw determining the ROI of their influencer marketing programs as the biggest influencer marketing challenge in 2018.
It can be tricky to not only choose KPIs for your influencer campaigns but also to measure your chosen KPIs.
Don’t get caught off guard when it comes to measuring ROI for 2019 campaigns — learn more about setting KPIs in our post, How to Measure the ROI of Your Influencer Marketing Campaigns.
11. 44% of influencers say that they accept less than a quarter of the proposals they receive.
And at least 45% of influencers receive about four proposals for influencer marketing campaigns every month.
You may be sold on the merits of influencer marketing, but you need to build a good relationship with the most relevant influencers for your brand. Make sure to provide value (read: compensation) and be intentional about which influencers you reach out to.
To learn more about partnering with the right influencers, check out our step by step guide, How to Find Instagram Influencers.
When done right, it’s clear that influencer marketing can be a powerful tool, especially to reach millennial consumers.
We’re sure to see more ad spend and strategy devoted to leveraging micro influencers on Instagram as the platform continues to dominate the social media space for millennials.
What are your biggest influencer marketing goals and challenges as we enter 2019? Comment below!