Influencer marketing spend is predicted to jump 33.6% in the U.S. this year, reaching $3.7 billion, according to analytics firm eMarketer‘s inaugural forecast in the sector.
The projected 33.6% uptick in 2021 is more than double the 14.4% growth that occurred in 2020, per eMarketer, when brands spent $2.76 billion on influencer marketing. The firm largely attributes this year’s growth to the pandemic.
“In the early part of the pandemic, many marketers temporarily paused their influencer marketing campaigns,” eMarketer senior analyst Jasmine Enberg said in a statement. “But, as the pandemic also accelerated many new creator-driven social trends, including short video and social commerce, marketers quickly resumed and are now increasing their spending on influencer marketing, as they realize that influencers are their ticket to reach those audiences.”
eMarketer notes that the easing of travel restrictions also attributed to growth in the sector, given that influencer marketing spend is popular within the travel industry. The firm projects that influencer marketing will see 12.2% growth in 2022, reaching $4.14 billion.
Per eMarketer’s calculations, Instagram comprises roughly one-half of the influencer marketing market, followed by YouTube and Facebook, and then TikTok (which it notes is small but growing quickly). And while influencer spend is expected to exceed $4 billion next year, eMarketer notes that it’s still pennies compared to the $58.7 billion that companies spend on social network advertising in the U.S.
“Continued improvements in branded content tools from the social platforms, combined with influencers’ increasing role in lower-funnel marketing goals, will help drive more money into the influencer marketing space over the next few years,” Enberg concluded.