As we tumble headlong through the second month of 2017, it can seem as though the world of influencer marketing is changing at such a rapid pace, those on the outside of the action can be left bewildered, bemused and behind. To make things a bit clearer, we’ve laid out four of the biggest trends and changes in the influencer marketing sphere to look out for this year.
1. Micro Over Macro
As the influencer marketing industry becomes more and more lively, influencers are having to work even harder to get noticed. This has resulted in bloggers, vloggers, social stars and an abundance of other kinds of influencer having to spread into a larger number of niches, and so begins the rise of the ‘Micro Influencer’.
‘Micro’ and ‘macro’ are terms you’ll be hearing A LOT over the next twelve months. On a base level, they simply serve to differentiate between smaller, niche influencers with more focused and engaged audiences, and larger, well-known personalities that are influential through online media. 2017 is set to be a bumper year for micro influencers, as brands discover more and more that working with them has untapped benefits over employing the services of a bigger star.
2. It’s All About the Blog
By now, most contemporary brands with an interest in digital marketing will have a relevant, active blog. However, following in the footsteps of blogging influencers, this year those brands are set to discover exactly what a blog, or to be more specific, brilliant blog content, can do. In a recent survey, more than 80% of businesses said they will increase their content marketing budget this year. Attention-grabbing posts and graphics not only position your brand as a finger-on-the-pulse, vibrant organisation, they can also do wonders for searchability. Hint: influencers can help with this hugely!
3. Time to Go Native
Following the steady rise in the popularity of native advertising in the last few years, the trend is not going anywhere in 2017. Consisting mainly of subtle endorsements and mentions of brands that are woven into content so as to mimic the editorial style, this method of advertising blends easily with influencer marketing – sponsored and collaborative posts are both examples of native placements. This also ties in with the rise of micro influencers, as there’s no better way to test out influencer marketing than to work with a micro influencer on a native-style project. It’s a straightforward, authentic and highly effective way to promote good content and increase exposure in the modern age.
4. Blurred Lines Between Celebrities and Influencers
In a time when everyone has multiple social media channels, every other person is a part-time blogger, and news spreads faster than wildfire, you would be forgiven for failing to distinguish between influencer and celebrity. Largely speaking, a celebrity is valued for what they have done/what they do, whilst influencers are valued for who they are. Although this is a very generalistic way of differentiating the two, it does help when posing the question of where the power of the influencer/celebrity is coming from. As we head further into 2017, the lines between the two are set to become even more blurred.