TECHNOLOGY

Study: How much influence do online influencers have?

BY Dan Berthiaume

A new study reveals the actual impact of online influencers on consumer spend.

According to the 2019 Influencer Marketing Survey from Rakuten Marketing, online influencers have real effect on U.S. consumer purchase decisions, with men as an unlikely target audience. However, U.S. consumers value authenticity and true brand advocacy when it comes to influencers.

Here are some interesting data points regarding how online influencers affect U.S. consumer behavior:

• Four in five surveyed U.S. consumers (81%) have made a purchase through clicking a link or image an influencer shared.
• 66% trust a product recommendation so long as the influencer discloses their relationship with a brand.
• 38% would stop following an influencer if they post content that does not align with their core values, personal opinions and ethics.
• 83% of men are inspired to make a purchase based on an influencer recommendation, compared to 89% of women.
• Men are more likely to recommend an influencer overall, and will spend more money on products recommended by women with a higher price point per item (starting at over $100).

The survey also collected data from U.S. marketers, who said they are willing to spend up to $32,000 on a campaign with a micro-influencer (less than 30,000 followers) compared to $39,000 with a celebrity influencer (more than 500,000 followers). However, celebrity influencers make up just 28% of annual influencer spend compared to 40% for micro-influencers.

Nearly three out of four U.S. marketers agree that they believe influencers are concerned whether their posts drive sales for brands, and 67% say they are able to tell when influencer campaigns drive sales.

Globally, Instagram is the most commonly used platform in use among consumers when viewing influencer content. Facebook, YouTube and Snapchat are not far behind with their numbers continuing to grow.

Rakuten Marketing conducted research with Viga in December 2018 and January 2019. The survey includes the responses of 719 global marketers and 3,596 global consumers interviewed across the U.S. (200 and 1,030, respectively), Australia, United Kingdom, France and Germany.

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