Transparency in Influencer Marketing has always been an important theme for us, and we have thoroughly examined it in our white paper. Today we decided to focus on the use of ‘transparency hashtags’’ – #ad, #sponsored and #sp – on Instagram during the first half of 2019. The results are immediate: compared with the same period last year, the number of posts created recorded a double digit growth of 90% YoY.
Our key findings
The number of sponsored influencer posts surpassed 1.7 million at the start of this year, growing by 800K compared to H1 2018 (1,733,424 vs 910,185). The engagement grew accordingly with 1.7 billion engagements. In 2017, the overall engagement across the 1.5M #ad posts shared was one billion interactions.
Our analysis also revealed that the second quarter of 2019 was the semester that showed the highest increase in the number of posts: 318,000 in April 2019 alone, compared with 114,000 in April 2018. Recent reports have shown that brands invest most of their online marketing budget in H2, and if this trend continues, Influencer Marketing is predicted to witness a record year for #ad in 2019 and surpass three million posts for the first time.
The most transparent industries
The research also provides insights into the verticals and brands that have invested the most in this space. It found that Fashion (33%) and Beauty (15%) accounted for almost half (48%) of #ad posts and 52% of the engagement created by the global sponsored content on Instagram. It is also interesting to notice that globally, more than three quarters (76%) of the Creators in H1 2019 were women.
The most engaging Influencers and Brands
Our analysis then focused on the actual performance of content with #ad: sisters Kylie Jenner e Kendal Jenner partnering with Calvin Klein, and actors Cole Sprouse with Neiman Marcus and Tom Holland with Audi, were among the most engaging personalities.
A positive trend
Despite some continued industry concerns over fraud and transparency, Influencer Marketing is skyrocketing and the growth of #ad posts may also highlight an increased attention to make sure an ad looks like an ad.
Here in Buzzoole, we will continue to follow the evolution of the market to understand if the action of multiple roles – agencies, brands, creators and associations – will have a significant impact.
To discover all the results of our analysis, you can download our free report.
This post is also available in: Italian