Influencer marketing continues to be incredibly popular among brands.
From 2016-2020, the market grew from $1.7 billion to $9.7 billion, and it is expected to see explosive growth to at least $16.4 billion by the end of 2022.Influencer Marketing Benchmark Report 2023
In addition to this steady and impressive market growth, the number of influencer marketing service providers is also growing in an effort to stay on pace with the industry.
In 2021, influencer marketing-related businesses totaled 18,900 around the world, a 26% jump from 2019.Key Influencer Marketing Statistics to Drive Your Strategy in 2023
Many of these are agencies and platforms like ConvertSocial, which connect influencers to appropriate brands and help them earn money via their social network of choice. Brands are making a drastic shift in their marketing tactics, turning towards the new age of nano-influencers with minuscule followings as small as 500! The reason? To penetrate highly targeted audience segments, foster brand loyalty, and most importantly, establish trust with their target market.
For influencers, this spells a massive opportunity to skyrocket their growth and expand their revenue streams through strategic brand partnerships. But, how do you uncover these hidden gems of monetization opportunities? It’s not always a straightforward task, but don’t worry! Here are some powerful tactics that will help you uncover new and potentially lucrative influencer marketing opportunities in 2023.
1. Set up news alerts on your phone or desktop
It is common to think that news outlets like Forbes, Business Insider, and Entrepreneur may not really have anything to do with a social media influencer’s life. However, this is actually not the case. It may be surprising to learn that many of these outlets cover stories that are not only relevant to social media influencers but can actually help them gain more traction.
For example, Business Insider recently published an article called 15 Power Players at Instagram Leading Its Creator Economy Efforts. This article contains plenty of interesting and valuable information about the people who are responsible for some of the most popular creators on platforms like YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram.
Gathering this information gives influencers direct information about who they can reach out to regarding partnerships and brand cooperation, and it helps increase the likelihood of gaining new collaborations by directly connecting with the right people.
It is a simple task to set up news alerts via programs like Google Alerts for keywords and phrases related to the creator economy, which will give you a heads-up on potential leads for marketing opportunities.
2. Look for updates from social networks, influencer marketing agencies, and startups.
As stated above, the influencer marketing industry is booming, which means it’s a hot space for startups and agencies to develop. This means there is a lot of competition among marketing agencies, which is good for creators.
Startups and marketing agencies want to attract promising creators, so they know they need to offer the most attractive terms possible. Because of this, many businesses in the influencer marketing sphere have allocated a significant amount of money to invest in the development of influencer talent.
For example, creator-centric fintech startup Creative Juice has a $50 million fund set aside expressly to support creator businesses. Because it’s often hard for influencers to get the capital needed to attract attention and brand deals, the company offers easy alternative financing to help influencers grow and find more lucrative marketing opportunities.
Big brands like Pinterest and Snapchat are also investing in their influencer marketing arms as well, particularly for influencers who are part of underrepresented communities. Earlier this year, Pinterest more than doubled the size of its creator fund while also improving its creator tools in the hopes of attracting more talent. Pinterest also has a separate $20 million Creator Rewards fund to help influencers monetize their content.
3. Stay on top of the new features and marketplaces from prominent social media platforms.
Big names like Snapchat, TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, and Meta are constantly working on new features for their apps, particularly as they relate to influencers and content creators.
One of the best, most recent examples of this is Instagram’s Creator Marketplace. The company is testing out a space that allows brands to connect more easily with the creators who are most relevant to their target audience. This will enable creators and companies to more easily build partnerships by streamlining the connection process and offering features like a dedicated partnership messaging tab, direct details and requirements of potential projects, and dashboard tools to help keep track of payments.
Other platforms like Snapchat have a creator marketplace, but it is geared more toward businesses seeking out creators rather than facilitating a two-way connection between influencers and brands. Users can share their metrics with the marketplace and put their accounts into the potential pool, but for now, it is ultimately up to the companies to decide which creators to partner with. However, as influencer marketing continues to gain momentum, it is likely that new, creator-focused features on this and other platforms will make an appearance.
4. Don’t be afraid to branch out and look for new solutions to create marketing opportunities
Despite how much the influencer marketing industry is growing and evolving, it can still be difficult for some content creators to find the perfect branded partnerships they need to really get their careers going in the right direction.
Social media platform tools are helpful, and conventional tools like cold pitching and organic growth over time can also be part of a comprehensive strategy for creating additional revenue streams. However, it’s understandable to want to speed up the process of turning a profit as much as possible, and this is where it often benefits creators to step off the beaten path a bit.
Affiliate marketing is one easy alternative for influencers looking to monetize their following. With 81% of brands offering some form of affiliate link programs for their products, the opportunities for influencers are endless. In the US alone, nearly 40% of these programs are available, making it an attractive option for influencers looking to dive into the world of monetizing their influence. Moreover, with 94% of people who make money from affiliate links utilizing more than one program, the potential earnings are significant. In fact, affiliate links are responsible for around 15% of product or service sales globally. With these statistics in mind, it’s no surprise that affiliate marketing is becoming an increasingly popular strategy for influencers, especially those who are just starting out
Other solutions include content monetization platforms that allow users to earn revenues across any platform. This kind of flexibility means that there are more revenue streams available at any given time, boosting the creator’s chances of making as much money as possible. This is especially important during peak shopping times like Single’s Day, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday.
Platforms like ConvertSocial allow users to monetize traffic across major social media networks as well as apps like Telegram and Whatsapp. Other platforms like Patreon, Twitch, and Ko-fi give creators the ability to share a single link with their viewers that allows them to subscribe or tip creators for their content, which is a convenient and low-effort way to supplement any other income they may be receiving.
The Opportunities for Influencer Marketing Are There; You Just Need to Find Them
Micro- and nano-influencers are expected to have increasingly more critical roles in the influencer marketing industry from 2022 onward. Many brands are moving away from exclusively partnering with mega influencers in favor of those with smaller audiences because research shows that, despite having fewer followers, their audiences tend to be more loyal, trusting, and engaged. Higher levels of trust and engagement mean more significant profits for businesses, so this is something for content creators to keep in mind.
Another noteworthy trend that will open up more potential opportunities for influencer marketing is the fact that companies are looking for ways to bring their influencer campaigns in-house rather than relying on agencies to broker introductions to content creators. This means that brands are going to be more receptive to compelling pitches from authentic content creators, and it also creates the possibility of a lucrative, long-term relationship with a brand.
Ultimately, the landscape for influencer marketing is looking brighter than ever before. Brands are learning the value of finding smaller creators with engaging content and loyal audiences, and this is translating into unprecedented growth and exciting new opportunities for social media creators across all platforms.
Brands will be investing in tools to find the right micro- and nano-influencers, so these creators will only have to be willing to seek out the platforms and tools to make the initial connection between themselves and their dream partner brand. Now is the perfect time for influencers to get in on the influencer marketing boom, and these four strategies will help make the process smoother than ever.