About 66% of marketers intend to increase their influencer marketing expenditure in the future, according to The State of Influencer Marketing 2020.
For every dollar spent on influencers, businesses make anywhere between US$5.78 up to US$18 in earned media value.
The entire influencer marketing industry is estimated to be worth US$13.8 billion this year.
With numbers like these, it's not surprising that this form of digital marketing is well on its way to becoming the fastest growing marketing channel for companies, even surpassing organic search, paid search, and email marketing in terms of growth in recent years.
It seems that it's is now a part of every mainstream marketing campaign. With the rise in social media and the ability to target audiences more effectively, it's becoming even more apparent that influencer marketing campaigns are as successful as they sound.
To help you plan for your next influencer marketing campaign, we've put together a simple guide on influencer marketing engagement rates and how to maximize your ROI through maintaining meaningful relationships with people who can really help your business.
We'll also explore some of the most common mistakes made by marketers when using influencer campaigns as well as some tips on how to avoid them in order to find success - so let's get right into it!
What is an engagement rate?
In the digital age, it's more important than ever to understand how your marketing strategy is working.
First, let's define what an "influencer" actually means. Put simply, an influencer is someone who has a large following on social media networks like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, etc. These individuals have the potential to swing opinions on products and services, so it's crucial to engage a person who has a loyal following (i.e bigger isn't always better).
Once you've found an influencer who resonates with your brand, you'll need to know how to measure their effectiveness and analyse the results this partnership has brought to your business by calculating your influencer ROI.
Engagement rates (ER) in influencer marketing are used to measure the level of interaction a social media influencer typically receives on their content. Simply put, it is the percentage of the influencer’s audience that responds to their content or influencer posts.
It is a common misconception that the higher number of followers the person has on social media platforms, the better the reach and ROI. While this is an important metric, it is not a good indicator of ROI. In reality, an influencer could have a high number of followers but have a very low engagement rate. You could book an Instagram influencer with 15K followers but with a higher engagement rate, and see a better result on a single Instagram post than getting featured on daily Instagram stories from an influencer with 500K followers for an entire week.
Why does engagement rate matter in an influencer marketing campaign?
Along with brand alignment, engagement rate is one of the most important metrics you can refer to when booking an influencer campaign. High engagement is a sign of trust and loyalty and hence a good indicator of success for many influencers.
Analysing engagement rates can help in determining how an influencer’s content performs across different platforms. This is important when calculating your ROI (return on investment) as you will be able to get an idea of realistic expectations based on how responsive their audience is to their content.
An influencer’s engagement rate can also be used to set a benchmark to determine success or failure for your influencer marketing campaigns. For instance, if the influencer shares content about your brand that has a significantly higher level of engagement than usual, this could indicate that the campaign was very successful.
Whereas, if you're seeing a significantly lower engagement rate than usual, it could indicate that there is a problem with the content (or even a large number of fake followers). It’s a worthy exercise!
Why do some influencer marketing campaigns fail?
Marketers are often left scratching their heads when an influencer campaign fails. Sometimes it's hard to see into the future, but you don't need to go out and buy a crystal ball when it comes to influencer content partnerships.
Photo about influencer marketing
The success (or failure) of a campaign usually lies in how well you plan your campaign.
Some of the most common reasons why brands fail in their influencer marketing engagements include:
- Being too sales-focused without incorporating enough valuable content
- Not using proper tracking tools
- Not understanding how to make your content stand out from other posts on their channels
- Spending too much time pitching ideas rather than engaging in relationships
- Not including any follow-up steps to ensure campaigns are optimised
It's important for marketers to plan how their influencer program will play out on each social media platform they use before engaging with influencers to ensure maximum results.
What is a good engagement rate for influencers?
Most experts agree that successful campaigns have an engagement rate of between 1% to 5%. This means that your audience will interact with your message at least one to five times for every one hundred impressions that are made.
This formula is typically used to calculate engagement rate by post:
ER (%) = (Total engagements on a post / Total followers) * 100%
Average ER (%) = ER (%) / Total Posts
To help you plan your next influencer campaign, we've compiled benchmarks on average engagement rates for you to compare against your own influencer marketing campaign results.
As you can see, we've grouped them into two, by platform and by the number of followers. Each has a different average ER. Some industries have higher benchmarks than others, which may be due to the business model or industry, the audience, or just because that specific industry typically engages more with content on a specific social channel.
It’s important to remember that an influencer’s engagement rate will often differ from platform to platform. For example, a fashion blogger might receive high engagement on Instagram, medium engagement on Facebook, and a very high engagement rate on their blog.
PlatformAverage Engagement RateInstagram1.97% to 5.60%Twitterbetween 0.02% and 0.09%YouTubevaries by metricTikTok15.86%LinkedIn0.4% to 0.54%Telegram20%
Studies show the average engagement rate on Instagram posts starts from 1.97% (for influencers with 1M+ followers) to 5.60% (for those with 1K to 5K followers). To provide more context, Kylie Jenner currently has an engagement rate of 2.67% for her 280M+ followers on Instagram, while MasterChef Australia's Reynold Poernomo who has 624.7K followers enjoys a 4.30% engagement rate.
Note that recent figures from Instagram indicated that average organic engagement has fallen from 1.60% in 2020 to 1.22% in 2021. Stories and carousel posts had the highest engagement rates on the platform, followed by images, and lastly videos.
Engagement rates on Twitter may range between 0.02% and 0.09%. These are already considered to be good benchmarks. An influencer post on the platform can expect between 0.2 to 0.9 reactions for every thousand of the influencer's follower count.
Case in point, Australian comedian and actor Rebel Wilson's twenty latest tweets garnered an engagement rate of 0.04% on average. Russell Crowe on the other hand received just 0.03% engagement from his 3M followers.
For YouTube, the metrics for engagement are slightly different from other platforms so a good rate will depend on what you measure. Metrics such as like to dislike rate, view to subscriber rate, comment to view ratio, and like to view ratios can be calculated to come up with a good benchmark. Scores at the 60th percentile or higher are considered good.
In other words, you're not getting the full story for content creators like MaxMoeFoe and Ozzy Man Reviews who enjoy 7.39% and 0.95% engagement rates respectively without making sense of their niche market and target audience first (despite them being on the same platform).
Influencer social media marketing via sponsored post strategies or partnerships is growing in popularity on other social platforms, too. Take a look below:
- International TikTok influencers had an average engagement rate of 15.86%.
- LinkedIn has an average engagement rate of 0.54% but has set its own conservative benchmark at 0.4%.
- Telegram is a high engagement rate platform, with good rates hitting up to 20%.
If you want to find influencers who can drive traffic and brand awareness to your business, check out how much engagement you should be looking at when using the fast growth platforms above.
By follower count
Although everyone understands that the number of followers has a direct impact on engagement rates, marketers and brands have varying takes on how many followers must be on each tier when making calculations. The general agreement is to divide these into groups based on the size of the influencer's followers.
One can be a nano influencer, micro-influencer, macro influencer, mega influencer, or super influencer. Terminologies may vary but that's how it's usually arranged -- from smallest to largest audience size.
Those with an average of 1k followers or less. Being the smallest of these subgroups, they can work great for brands because of their smaller, more targeted niche. Average engagement rate: 3%
This influencer's followers fall in the 1k to 50k range. An affordable choice for brands or marketers with a tight budget. Average engagement rate: 1.5-2%
Those with 50k to 500k followers. This midway tier is known for having a hyper-engaged audience. This is where the average cost of any given campaign can climb to tens of thousands of dollars. Average engagement rate: 1.25%
The follower count is between 500k – 3M. Great for big brands with a large marketing budget and are looking for someone who can make a huge impact on their business quickly. Average engagement rate: 1.15%
Those with a high number of followers exceeding 3M. A single post roughly commands an average price ranging between $500M to $1M. Average engagement rate: 1%
Looking for a high-performing influencer marketing campaign?
Armed with the information above, it will be much easier to decide which influencers to collaborate with and on what platforms you’d like them to share content about your brand.
At theright.fit, we ensure all our influencers and bloggers have been vetted and you can see their engagement rate on their profiles so you can select the best person for your campaign. This valuable metric seems small but is very reasonable within the industry and has the potential to deliver significant results for your brand across exposure, follower growth, and real-world purchases.