The only constant in the influencer marketing landscape is that it’s constantly changing! With companies slashing traditional marketing methods in 2020 as a result of the pandemic, 2021 was a year that solidified digital marketing as a dominant method; bringing with it changes that have altered the landscape permanently.
In this blog we focus on the influencer marketing predictions and trends for 2022 and how the post-pandemic digital era has influenced this year’s forecast.
Gone but not forgotten
Before diving into our influencer marketing predictions, understanding trends from previous years is helpful in understanding where this year’s influencer marketing predictions stem from.
2020 saw an influx in prolonged periods of staying at home, and therefore an increase in video consumption, as many people turned to DIY content to fill their time by becoming home chefs and self-care gurus. This paved the way for brands to capitalise on digital marketing as the whole world and their dogs were glued to their screens looking for some form of escape from the horrors outside.
The digital marketing boom gave birth to a new wave of influencer marketing and in 2021 we saw the rise of the micro influencer; a wildcard that many brands utilised for quick turnaround times and personalisation. As well as this, micro influencers offered brands access to such niche audiences that they otherwise would not have found alone. As a result, the influencer marketing industry has been through a significant transformation in recent years, solidifying itself as a mainstream marketing tool and proving its adaptability as it moves with the changes on social media.
New year, new industry
As proven by influencer marketing trends in previous years, this industry has had many faces. From popular YouTubers promoting topshop joni jeans in 2009, to the burning desire to collaborate with a celebrity to feel like you’ve “made it”, we step into 2022: the age of the micro influencer.
Bringing us to the first of our influencer marketing predictions…
Influencer Marketing Predictions #1: The rise of the nano & micro influencer
Given their groundbreaking entrance to the industry last year, it’s no surprise that micro influencers will be a leading trend in 2022. Their authenticity and niche communities are what attracts brands to them.
The industry is set to shift to a more data-driven approach and the high engagement rates and affordability makes micro influencers the perfect partner. These favourable insights mean more and more brands are not only willing to work with them, but also hand over creative control with regards to branded content as they are affirmed of its success rate in advance due to countless success stories from other collaborations over the past year.
Being a micro influencer does not require the huge followings that being a macro influencer entails. Therefore, it really is a job open to anyone; should they put the hard work in, of course. Predictions show that within the next 5 years, one billion people will self-identify as a creator and with the development of social media apps making it easier to become one, many people will begin to consider swapping traditionally big life events, such as going to university, for monetising the content they create online.
Perhaps you could be tomorrow’s viral sensation.
Influencer Marketing Predictions #2: Social commerce
The very end of 2021 saw the UK’s first shopping livestream via TikTok and in 2022, this number is expected to soar. Social media platforms are looking to occupy a larger space in the online shopping realm and are making it easier for brands to sell their products through them.
Live e-Commerce, originating from China, is the perfect way for brands to connect with the right target audiences and turn them into customers. Those who offer accessible and affordable products are more likely to make use of this new concept and, with the help of influencers, it will become a new influencer marketing strategy; solidifying the connection between creator, brand and consumer.
Influencer Marketing Predictions #3: The Metaverse
A concept that remains at arms length with many brands, and rightfully so, big brands are starting to jump head first into the metaverse due to its inevitable coming. If you can’t beat them, join them, right?
As seen in 2021, big-name brands in fashion and tech began dipping their toes in the waters of the metaverse with the creation of collections available exclusively to users in the virtual world. In 2022, it is expected that an increase in investments from brands looking to mainstream the metaverse will occur. Alongside this, we will witness a surge in the number of brands deploying technologies such as AI influencers to promote their products and services. Yes, this does mean AI influencers like Lil Miquela and Shudu are here to stay.
Influencer Marketing Predictions #4: Short form video
The influencer marketing forecast for 2022 is, without a doubt, set to be the most successful and transformative yet.
At the end of 2018, the net worth of the industry was $4.6 billion. This figure increased to $13.8 billion in 2021 and is predicted to sit at $15 billion by the end of 2022. Just because the industry needs even more hyping up, it is important to note that as of today influencer marketing is the main marketing strategy of approximately 90% of brands – making it very clear that influencer marketing is here to stay.
How do you measure the effectiveness of influencer marketing?
Keeping track of your influencer marketing campaign’s engagement through metrics such as likes and reactions, shares, comments and brand mentions is an effective way of measuring its success.
What are some predictions for influencer marketing in 2022?
The rise of the micro influencer
The rise of social e-commerce and livestream shopping
A continuation in short form video content
The livestreaming of the metaverse
Authenticity over perfection with regards to uploaded content