From an undeniable rise in the popularity of TikTok to ethics in marketing being more important than ever, here’s our take on influencer trends coming down the line in 2020.
1. Social e-commerce will continue to grow.
Social media is where consumers are and they no longer need or want to leave the platform to make a purchase. Currently, we’re seeing many large companies taking advantage of this, but with the onset of easy-to-use shops integrating with Instagram, this opens the playing field to anyone with products to sell online — even influencers.
You may have seen the recent Instagram ad, featuring Celine Dion, which has us all humming “it’s all coming back to me now,” but this catchy commercial should have us all seriously preparing to leverage these features, to target our ideal consumers in 2020. Better yet, you can repurpose the content influencers are creating for your brand to make the most of this new AR feature.
2. Don’t forget the value of influencers & SEO.
Leveraging influencers with a strong blog or Pinterest presence can increase the amount of inbound traffic you’ll receive, far after a campaign wraps. With the increase in voice search, leveraging the natural tone of an influencer can help your brand appear in more ways to consumers. The trend of SEO is word-of-mouth — influencers are word of mouth on steroids.
3. Ready or not: here comes TikTok.
With over 1.5 billion downloads and counting, 60% of its users under the age of 30, an increasing influencer base, and e-commerce capabilities, marketers cannot deny that it’s time to take a serious look at TikTok. Remember when we said you’ve got to meet the consumer where they are? Well, with users spending around 52 minutes per day and a tremendous availability of organic visibility on the platform, TikTok is prime real estate to reach Millennial and Gen Z audiences.
4. “Privacy is the greatest commodity of the future.”
Now that the dust has (mostly) settled from 2018’s Cambridge Analytica scandal, we saw an increasing focus in 2019 on data privacy around the world, from GDPR enforcement to the upcoming California Privacy Act. These changes mean marketers will need to remain agile to privacy restrictions. As ethical marketers, we have to remember that consumers are not targets — they’re people. We have a responsibility to make sure we’re catering to their needs and desires, so as to not overwhelm or exploit them, but guide them into finding what they need.
5. Building brand loyalty through personalization.
The term “personalization” was the chosen word for 2019. There’s been recent debate on whether or not the ROI is there for personalization and whether or not it makes a major impact on consumer behavior. Whichever side of the argument you’re on, here’s something to noodle over: there is a direct correlation of influencer content and style which is reflected in their audience’s interests and demographics. If you’re questioning the investment in personalization, how about leveraging influencers to reach a new audience in a more personal way?
6. Paid media isn’t going anywhere.
2019 marks the first year that budgets used for digital advertising will surpass that of traditional ads. We’ll say it again, you have to meet consumers where they are and with millions of active users daily, Facebook and Instagram are hot spots for ready-to-act consumers.
Using influencer content to leverage your paid media strategy is a shoo-in . Considering 92% of consumers trust UGC vs traditional ads evidenced by brands seeing over 690% higher engagement when reposting UGC. Think about the production that goes behind one photoshoot for your brand and how cost-effective it would be to leverage influencer-generated content.
Additionally, influencers can send droves of traffic to your website, but what happens once the user gets there? If you’re not integrating influencer-driven traffic into your remarketing strategy, you’re missing out! Think about it: a user needs to see a brand message at least three times before they take action to make a purchase. Influencers are perfect for getting your brand message out there to an audience you may not be able to reach otherwise, but once the user lands on your site, you have the ability to start nurturing them and building brand loyalty.
7. A world without ‘likes’ will have us feeling existential.
For so long, ‘likes’ have been a key identifier of influence. But with purchased followers and the ability to now attribute influencers to sales and major website actions, ‘likes’ have become the vanity metric we let control our perception of success. Letting go of ‘likes’ is hard, but it’s a move in the right direction. The next phase we’ll begin to see in 2020 is a shift to more brand and influencer partnerships rather than one-off campaigns. Additionally, greater transparency from influencers disclosing paid endorsements and measurement of deeper metrics will be essential in maintaining the credibility of influencers. And who knows, taking away ‘likes’ may only be the beginning — GASP — follower counts may be the next metric to disappear.