It is fair to say that Influencer Marketing is ready for a big year in 2019. We saw massive strides in the industry throughout 2018 and we will continue to see more in 2019. We made Influencer Marketing predictions this time last year, and we thought we would do the same this time around.

Brands are repeatedly discovering Influencer Marketing is one of the most effective ways to spread awareness and increase customer acquisitions in the social age. From brand awareness to downloads and sales, Influencer Marketing covers all bases.

PMYB's Influencer Marketing predictions for 2019

As mentioned, in early 2018 we made a series of predictions for the 2018 Influencer Marketing landscape.  Notable predictions that came true are:

More Companies will Increase their Influencer Budget

  • Despite issues surrounding influencer fraud and ad disclosure, 65% of companies, including Adidas increased their spending on Influencer Marketing. And that’s because these issues can be easily avoided with your approach.

Popularisation of New Influencer Niches

  • ASMR was a big talking point online in 2018, with searches more than tripling since this time last year
  • The cleaning product industry has also seen a massive increase in 2018 and looks to grow even more in 2019

More Celebrities will Become YouTubers

  • Will Smith boasts over 4 million subscribers and even featured in 2018’s YouTube Rewind.
  • Jack Black launched his new gaming channel, Jablinski, with a 28-second video at the end of December 2018. He now has over 2 million subscribers in less than a week.
  • More recently, Manchester United and England midfielder, Jesse Lingard launched his own YouTube channel. He joins the likes of Raheem Sterling who are attempting to build their own personal brands.
  • In addition, world heavyweight fighter Dillian Whyte created his own YouTube channel.

More Influencers will Appear on TV

  • Joe Sugg, known for his popular YouTube channel ThatcherJoe appeared on 2018’s series of Strictly Come Dancing. He also co-presented BBC1’s New Years Eve broadcasting.
  • The People’s Choice Award’s increased their number of influencer-related awards, with winners such as Shane Dawson, James Charles and Crusoe the Celebrity Dachshund.
  • Although she didn’t appear on TV, Baby Ariel, popular for her TikTok videos, was the star of a free update to The Sims 4. The update included Baby Ariel as a Sims character, as well as clothes and other in-game items featuring her branding.

More brands are now utilising Influencer Marketing after having increased their allocated budget. The name ‘Influencer’ is becoming more of a household name in mainstream media.

PMYB’s Influencer Marketing Predictions for 2019

1. An Increase in Influencer Events

Starting off our Influencer Marketing predictions for 2019 is the increasing of influencer events in 2019. 2018 saw the boxing match between British YouTuber KSI and controversial American YouTuber Logan Paul. YouTube’s pay-to-view broadcast of the match had over 800,000 viewers. 5,000 tickets were also sold to fans who watched the fight at the Manchester Arena. There is already a rematch planned to be held in the USA, which will most likely attract an even bigger audience.

The popularity of YouTube charity football matches also increased. Sidemen FC (again, with KSI as a big name) faced off against the YouTube All-Stars, which raised over £65,000 for the charity Young Minds Trust.

The EE Wembley Cup featured a mix of football YouTubers and league players. The original stream of the match now has 1.5 million views. The game raised money for Sports Relief, with £2 from each ticket going towards the charity.

Thanks to the success of these charity events, we expect to see more of them in 2019.

The KSI Vs Logan Paul fight was a huge event in 2018

2. An Increase in Influencer/Celebrity Podcasts

There has been a recent influx of Influencer-presented podcasts this year, and it doesn’t look to slow down in 2019. These influencers have found an extended audience in the podcasting world, and with a variety of topics, and experience under their belts, these influencers have created a new form of expression, and income for themselves. Our prediction for Influencer Marketing is that brands are going to utilise the advertising potential of podcasts more, as combined with the influencer’s social standing these endorsements can be very effective.

Notable influencers with podcasts are…

  • Giovanna Fletcher – Happy Mum: Happy Baby – Instagram and YouTube
  • Estee Lalonde – The Heart of It – YouTube
  • Lilly Pebbles and Anna Newton – At Home With… – Instagram
  • Anna Whitehouse and Ellie Taylor – Ellie and Anna Have Issues – Instagram
  • Jenna Marbles & Julien Solomita – The Jenna & Julien Podcast – YouTube
  • Jason Nash & David Dobrik – VIEWS – YouTube
  • Ethan and Hila Klein – H3 Podcast  – YouTube

Influencer-lead podcasts are becoming more popular

3. More Measurable Influencer Campaigns

One of the Influencer Marketing predictions we are most excited about is finding more ways to determine the effectiveness of influencer campaigns.

At PMYB, we recently improved the way we measure our campaigns. We now offer a targeted Chromo Remarketing solution that enables our clients to directly target people who have interacted with their influencer content.

It consists of targeting influencer ads directly at people who have already visited your website after seeing content endorsements from our influencers on social channels. In doing so, we can measure the true impact of their Influencer activity throughout our campaigns.

By combining Chromo-Influencer endorsements with remarketing, we can ensure that those who are interested in the brand because of previous exposure from influencers are then retargeted to build their relationship with the brand.

In 2019, this will lead to higher conversion rates, and more effective, measurable campaigns.

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4. A Decline of Interest in Nano-Influencers

Although nano-influencers fit the bill of being relatable and down to earth, they don’t necessarily have the influence needed for effective Influencer Marketing.

They can be quite cheap in situations, however cheap doesn’t necessarily convert into influence. These influencers have less than 1000 followers, which begs the question, if they are so influential why haven’t they influenced more people to follow them in the first place?

There are other restrictions in place too, such as not being able to include the ever more important ‘swipe-up’ on Instagram Stories. To include the swipe-up feature Influencers require at least 10,000 followers – far beyond what nano-influencers have.

Despite this, we cannot write them off completely. More studies will need to be conducted to understand just how effective/ineffective they are.

Nano-influencers are dropping in popularity

5. Effective Influencers over Influencer Fraud

Influencer Fraud has been a hot topic over the past year. Instagram themselves have attempted to crack down on fake accounts, bots and illegitimate ways of growing popularity on their app. The Drum has reported that this had little effect, however. Because of this, it’s more important than ever to take into account more than just follower count when picking influencers for campaigns.

One of our key Influencer Marketing predictions for 2019 is that brands are going to strive more to work with more effective influencers. Focusing on influencers that don’t part-take is, of course, important but that’s just one part of the story. There are thousands of influencers that don’t part-take in fraudulent activity and still ineffective. This year we expect and are recommending to marketers to use influencers that are actually effective, as well as authentic!

Fraudulent influencers will always be ineffective, but legitimate influencers can fall into this category as well. If they became popular because of a stint on a reality TV show or a viral video, for which they received ’15 minutes of fame’, then they will become less effective as time goes on, despite often retaining a high following.

PMYB take out a lot of the guesswork by putting influencers through our 5 stage Chromo-Analysis process. This ensures we only work with the most effective influencers for your brand’s campaign and decreases risks.

6. More Recognition in the Importance of ‘How’, as well as ‘Who’

2016, 2017 and 2018 saw a lot of focus on what influencers should be used. One of our main Influencer Marketing predictions for 2019 is that creativity will take a bigger role in influencer marketing.

Often simple, repetitive influencer promotions can come across as flat and boring. Fans of the influencers sometimes think that they’re favourite social media personalities have ‘sold-out’, sharing basic ads for companies that barely relate to them. The influencer’s connection to the brand and product is important as well, which can make or break and endorsement.

This has been proven during 2018 due to backlash surrounding non-organic endorsements. The way to combat this is by focusing on who you are working with, as well as how they are promoting the brand.  An influencer can create incredible, exciting content for your brand, but if the brand doesn’t align with the influencer and their following, then the endorsement will not be well received.

The most important thing is finding a balance between who you are working with, and how they will promote your brand. An influencer who loves your brands and connects with it will always create better, more engaging, and organic content for your brand.

In 2019 we expect to see more creative promotion from influencers working with brands they love.

Creativity triumphs over basic brand deals

7. More Influencer-Branded products

Following in the footsteps of Zoella, PMYB predicts a trend in influencers creating own-name branded product lines.

Influencers are beginning to think beyond their ordinary social business ventures and are focusing on their future. It’s likely that in a number of years some of the longest standing influencers will face more competition from upcoming talents. By creating a brand they can ensure that they have money coming in, regardless of their popularity on social media. This is why we included this as one of our Influencer Marketing predictions for 2019.

We will see more influencer brands in 2019

8. An Increase in Ad Disclosure

Ad-disclosure has been a big talking point, not just within the Influencer Marketing industry but among the wider population!

PMYB’s Managing Director spoke on Sky news about the issues surrounding ad disclosure. 54% of the population say they don’t mind seeing influencers post sponsored content, as long as it is relevant to both the influencer and their audience.

And we expect to see a lot more transparency in terms of influencers and the adverts they upload. It’s in the best interest of brands also, as they will be able to avoid the negative publicity associated with non-transparent sponsored posts.

9. More Influencer Campaigns on TikTok

Our Influencer Marketing prediction: We expect more companies to adopt TikTok in their influencer campaigns.

After merging with Musical.ly, TikTok has gone from strength to strength in the latter half of 2018. It now features as Number 3 in the Photo & Video category on the UK App store. TikTok has beaten Snapchat and Twitch to gain 3rd place, with only Instagram and YouTube above it.

It became the world’s most downloaded app on Apple’s App Store in the first half of 2018 with an estimated 104 million downloads. This surpassed the downloads recorded by PUBG Mobile, YouTube, WhatsApp and Instagram in the same period.

TikTok is the ideal way to target Gen Z, as it has a younger fan base than the likes of Instagram and Facebook. However, more of the older demographic are joining TikTok which is good news for brands looking to advertise on the platform.

TikTok is one of the UK's fastest growing social media platforms

10. Brands will Allocate even more Budget to Influencer Marketing

Accoriding to reports, 84% of brands plan to increase their Influencer Marketing spend in 2019. 42% of all the UK display ads were not seen in Q2. This has led to brands moving from OOH advertising to Influencer Marketing. More customers are more likely to see ads on their phone, than on a billboard.

In 2018 Facebook ad spend only increased by 44%, whereas Instagram had an increase of a whopping 177%. The Influencer Marketing industry looks to nearly double in size in 2019, with predictions of an increase from £1.4 billion to £2.1 billion

11. Stories to Become even More Dominant

We saw the introduction of IGTV and YouTube Stories in 2018. PMYB expects other platforms to follow this and up their temporary content game. Stories, on any platform, allow a more intimate way for influencers to connect with their followers. Because of the value, these stories add, ads come across more naturally. The swipe-up feature also offers brands a shorter user journey than Instagram posts.

More platforms are adopting stories

12. Influencers Cleaning up their Act

Many influencers have got to the position they’re in from being unapologetically uncensored. This has allowed some creators to grow their followings organically because of their relatability. However, it’s also important for brands to utilise influencers that have similar values and audiences to themselves.

This also applies to the type of sponsorships they are willing to take on. Jake Paul and Rice Gum both promoted a gambling website to their young fans. This received a huge amount of backlash, as many people saw this as them taking advantage of their young audience for money.

At PMYB we predict that more influencers are going to clean up their act, being more careful with what they’re saying to the public.

Influencer Marketing Predictions for 2019

If 2018 has taught us anything, it’s that people are more aware of Influencer Marketing than ever. 2019 is definitely looking to be a very important year in influencer marketing. We can’t wait to see what it brings!

 

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