The Ultimate Influencer Survey: 1,140 Influencers Discuss the Business of Influence


The Ultimate Influencer Survey

The world of influencer marketing is expanding fast. Anecdotally, agencies are telling us that an average of 10-20% of traditional consumer marketing budgets are being moved over to influencer marketing spend; most people know someone who makes money from being an influencer and typically you can get influencers with less than 5,000 followers to work for product only, but above that you almost always need to pay. At influence.co we wanted to know more so we surveyed over 1,100 of our influencer members to find out how they work in the industry.

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The details, rules and norms of influencer marketing are tough to accurately define and analyze for a number of reasons:

  1. Instagram, blogs, YouTube, Snapchat and Pinterest all operate on completely different reporting and analytics platforms, with varying levels of information.
  1. There are no broadly agreed industry standards around core elements of campaigns.
  1. Influencers themselves, whether working directly, with a traditional agent or through an influencer marketplace are still learning their worth, and the brands are in the same boat.

To create a broader understanding across the industry influence.co ran, what to our knowledge is, the largest survey of influencers ever conducted, and we are making the results freely available online.

We were greatly interested in understanding more about the individuals who are building the new marketing alternative to newspaper, television and magazines. We asked questions like how do they choose who to work with, manage brands, formalize relationships and do they invest in their businesses?

We collected over 40,000 data points from 1,200 influencers ranging from a few thousand followers to millions. Below are a few of the key statistics that stood out to us. Or click here for a composite infographic. Whether you represent a brand, or are interested in a specific part of the industry, such as the legal side and the role of contracts, there will be surprising data that will help you work more effectively as part of the influencer industry.

Here are some of our key findings broken out with charts:

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In addition, we culled through the data and found an array of interesting facts:

66% of influencers consider the central theme of their Instagram channel to be Fashion, Beauty or Lifestyle.

31% of influencers post more than once a day.

54% of influencers post 4-7 photographs a week.

29% of influencers post 1-2 sponsored photos a month.

23% of influencers post promoted content more than once each week.

78% of influencers post for their friends brands unpaid.

24% of influencers get 4-6 promotional campaign requests a month

6% of influencers get more than 15 promotional campaign requests each month.

89% of influencers prefer email as the primary way to be contacted about sponsor opportunities; just 3 out of 1140 influencers want brands to approach them through Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

32% of promotional campaigns offer cash.

67% of influencers accept less than half of the brand approaches they receive.

Only 9% of influencers said that more than half the campaigns they worked on were instigated by their agent/manager.

49% of influencers charge a flat fee per picture while only 11% of influencers typically work on a performance related basis for their campaign work.

Only 39% of influencers are managing more than one Instagram account, 1% manage 4+ Instagram accounts.

67% of influencers post more than one pic for a campaign.

Only 2% of influencers ALWAYS delete posts after a campaign.

72% of influencers wait at least 5 days to delete a post; 6% of influencers who delete posts will delete posts in less than 24 hours.

12% of influencers say they typically have no control over copy.

56% of influencers want to know who else is working on campaign.

74% of influencers do not have an agent or manager.

Only 14% of influencers get external help creating content or interacting with fans.

63% of campaigns do not use a contract.

53% of influencers work with at least one influencer marketplace.

69% of campaigns come directly through Instagram.

13% of influencers say that their followers are more responsive to sponsored campaigns than no promotional posts.

Facebook is the third most requested channel for promoted content behind Instagram and blogs.

Just 18% of influencers have undertaken specific professional training to better themselves in being a social media influencer.

Peter Davis, influence.co

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If you’d like access to the complete dataset for our survey, please email us at info@influence.co

Click here for a full Infographic for media use in unedited form.

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Peter Davis