With brands becoming increasingly dependent on content creators to spread the word about products and services, one question that often comes to mind is what are the best social media platforms for influencer marketing?
One thing to understand about influencer marketing is that there is no “best” platform, because if there was, then nobody would work with influencers on any other platform other than the so-called best platform. That being said, there is a “best” platform when it comes to your individual needs as a business, and that’s what we’ll go over in this article.
We’ve processed thousands of transactions between brands and influencers through our influencer marketplace. This gives us unique insight into the top platforms for influencer marketing, and why brands are specifically choosing to work on these platforms in the first place.
Let’s go over platforms in order of popularity.
Instagram is still king when it comes to influencer marketing. The concept of working with influencers was popularized on Instagram by direct-to-consumer giants like Gymshark, Fashion Nova, and HiSmile Teeth in the early days of the platform. Since then, influencer marketing has evolved to become the center of marketing strategies for many businesses.
We found that 48% of influencer marketing budgets still end up being spent on Instagram, that’s nearly one out of every two brands that participate in influencer marketing spending their budget on Instagram. This is higher than any other platform right now, even with competition heating up as TikTok takes the world by storm. So what makes Instagram so appealing when it comes to influencer marketing in 2022?
Reels are by far the most ground-breaking addition to Instagram in recent history. This was a feature originally intended to fight back against TikTok, and it’s doing great amongst users.
Reels offer users more organic exposure than other forms of media on the platform, like static photos or IGTV posts. For this reason, it has become very popular amongst advertisers working with influencers, since there is much more upside with reels as opposed to static photo content.
The collab feature has also become something that is becoming popular amongst advertisers and creators that work together on Instagram. The Instagram collab feature allows for users to add a collaborator to their post. This will not only post the content to the user's feed, but it will also post it to the feed of the person they have added as a collaborator. This is great because it provides more engagement for both of the users, and more visibility for the advertiser.
Now that you understand what’s driving influencer marketing growth on Instagram, let’s dive into the second most popular platform for influencer marketing.
Based on our influencer marketing report where we collected data from 5,000 advertisers, TikTok has quickly climbed to the second most popular platform for influencer marketing. We found that 46% of all influencer marketing budgets are currently being spent on TikTok. Don’t be surprised if we see TikTok influencer marketing budgets outpace Instagram influencer marketing budgets in the near future.
This is a huge deal considering that TikTok was virtually non-existent in the mainstream two years ago. There’s a couple of reasons why TikTok influencers are gaining popularity amongst advertisers at such a quick rate.
TikTok may be the only platform around where you can build a following of a few hundred thousand people overnight. The organic reach on TikTok is absurd, and this is one of the key reasons why advertisers are so attracted to influencer marketing on TikTok.
Working with influencers on TikTok in some ways provides a better bang for your buck. Since the platform is relatively new, influencer rates may not be as high as more mature platforms, but the upside potential in terms of impressions is huge.
Brands are flocking to TikTok to take advantage of this undervalued opportunity while it lasts.
Another reason we see TikTok as a popular choice for influencer marketing is that the whole platform revolves around short-video content. Video content does a much better job at hooking user attention than static photo content that we’re used to on platforms like Instagram.
YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world, only behind Google. For this reason, YouTube influencers remain in high demand, even as platforms like Instagram and TikTok battle for market share.
YouTube is an extremely mature platform, and its partner program pays creators well, this incentivizes more people to create quality content on YouTube which ultimately attracts more viewers. There is one reason, in particular, that attracts advertisers to YouTube influencers.
Content on YouTube is long-lived. The whole platform revolves around the search bar. For this reason, content on YouTube has a much longer lifespan than content on platforms like TikTok and Instagram, which are largely distributed by the algorithm, and hard to discover via search. A YouTube video posted a decade ago about a topic could still be ranking number one under specific keywords, if you were to sponsor that video, you would still be reaping the rewards.
The longevity means that influencer campaigns on YouTube have good returns long term. YouTube audiences also seem to be much more loyal than Instagram or TikTok audience members, which means YouTube influencers can have a large impact on their audience.
Twitter is a great place for networking and getting the latest news, but it’s often forgotten about when it comes to influencer marketing. We don’t see a significant amount of collaborations on Twitter, but there are still cases of brands using influencers on Twitter for specific reasons.
For example, one common method of influencer marketing on Twitter is having an influencer retweet or endorse your product to their followers. One benefit of Twitter is that feeds are chronological, unlike most platforms today. This means that active followers of that specific influencer will see the sponsored post.
Another interesting use case is brands that leverage Twitter endorsements from influencers and run them as ads on other platforms, such as Instagram. Amazon has been running a lot of ads like this lately.
Twitch is one of the largest live streaming platforms in the world. While the platform is best known for gaming content, there are also tons of other niches where you’ll find creators streaming.
Livestreaming is really heating up as the next frontier for influencer marketing, and we see the early signs of this with increased interest in Twitch from advertisers.
One of the main reasons advertisers choose to use influencers on Twitch is because of the nature of live streaming. Since the influencer has viewers actively watching their content, they can sell to them in real-time. Influencers can endorse a product by talking about it while playing a game, or they can even show off the product in real-time and answer questions about the product as they come in.
Another strategy brands use when working with Twitch influencers is product placements. Instead of the influencer blatantly shouting out the brand, they will just use one of their products and ensure that everyone watching the stream sees this. For example, a brand that sells hoodies might gift a hoodie and pay an influencer to wear it for an eight-hour stream.
All in all, every major social platform has its benefits when it comes to influencer marketing. As an advertiser, it is your responsibility to assess the options available to you and make a decision according to your goals.
Influencer marketing is something that requires conviction, so be sure to commit fully to your campaign on whatever platform you decide. Have systems in place that allow you to measure effectiveness (whatever that means to you) and then tweak your campaigns accordingly.
If you’re looking to get into influencer marketing, but you’re not sure where to start, consider beginning your journey by finding influencers on Collabstr.