In 2017, influencer marketing successfully made the transition from being considered a passing fad to being allotted a well-deserved place in the modern marketing mix.
Interest in the topic increased 90-fold from 2013.
The success of influencer marketing lies in being able to break through the noise and content saturation in today’s digital environments by harnessing the voices of trusted opinion leaders to spread a brand’s message to the intended audience in the most authentic and natural way possible.
As we enter 2018, influencer marketing will continue to rapidly evolve both as the brands already using it look for ways to maximize the impact of their collaborations and as other brands give in to “peer pressure” and try it for the first time.
Here are five influencer marketing trends to look for in the new year.
1. A Sizable Shift to Influencer Marketing
In 2018, ad spending for brands will continue to shift from print and broadcast to digital and social media, and a considerable portion of marketing budgets will be allocated to influencers.
Influencer marketing will no longer revolve around one-off campaigns; it will instead become an always-on strategy. Those brands that tried it for the first time in 2017 and confirmed its value will be coming back with bigger budgets and more ambitious projects during 2018.
This year, the focus will be on building mutually beneficial long-term relationships with influencers. Collaborative partnerships with take center stage as brands move from a proofing stage to a perfecting stage; they will implement tactics that have previously proven successful, but they will take it up a notch and allow trusted influencers to lead the creative side.
2. All Eyes on Micro-Influencers
If 2017 demonstrated that marketers cannot ignore the importance of influencers, then 2018 will demonstrate the importance of micro-influencers—active users of social networks who have fewer than 10,000 followers and have an immense influence among their communities.
Micro-influencers typically have a particular interest and expertise that revolves around a specific niche, such as beauty, business, fitness, travel, and so on. Their enthusiasm for a specific subject allows them to dig deep and establish themselves as authorities, imprinting their own style and personal touch on the content that they publish on social media.
Brands are now more aware than ever of the advantages of amplifying messages among smaller, hyper-targeted audiences; accordingly, as more budget is progressively allocated to influencer marketing, many are looking beyond follower counts and focusing on actual engagement.
Micro-influencers deliver 60% higher campaign engagement rates; moreover, those campaigns are 6.7 times more efficient per engagement than those with influencers with larger followings. They also drive 22 times more conversations result each week regarding recommendations on what to buy by micro-influencers than by…