The influencer marketing industry changed. Did anyone notice? Did you feel it? On the heels of the events of 2020, influencer marketing as a whole has experienced significant shifts. Let’s talk briefly about the state of the influencer marketing industry. Then you can check out our infographic below.
Social Media Became the New Face-to-Face
In 2020, people flocked to social media to keep in touch, stay informed, and feel connected. Instagram essentially replaced Twitter as the go-to source for up-to-date news. TikTok made history by being downloaded 315 million times in a single quarter, taking it from a music platform used by teens and tweens to a mainstream social hub for the 50 and under crowd.
Influencers Became the Managers of the World’s Online Communities
When the world went online, social media influencers became our 24/7 entertainment streams. They gave people something to watch. They built online hubs where people could get information, find solutions, socialize, and even try new things. The hustle and grind our culture swears by sort of ground to a halt, and in that stillness, people turned to their social networks for reassurance.
Well, when that happened, a lot of other stuff happened, triggering shifts in influencer marketing as a whole. Black Lives Matter movements and protests were organized on social media and executed in real life, everywhere from Brooklyn to Zurich.
Instagram Influencers began taking a long look at how brands choose influencers and how they decide what to pay influencers as discrepancies between the fees paid out to Black influencers and White influencers were revealed.
The general public started demanding greater accountability from brands in everything from their CSR initiatives to changing hiring practices to include underrepresented groups.
All during a global pandemic and a weirdly volatile presidential election in the US.
The Takeaway (and the Infographic)
The shifts in influencer participation in the areas that shape the quality and fabric of daily life points to a fundamental shift in the dynamic between influencers and brands. The influencer marketing industry matured in 2020. And for the first time in the history of social media influencer marketing, influencers unequivocally proved their intrinsic value, beyond just posting the #outfitoftheday for brands. Well done, influential ones.
Hey, if you’re interested in reading more on the changes that fundamentally changed the influencer marketing industry, you can read our report.