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Influencer marketing in Europe - statistics & facts

Influencer marketing has become one of the most indispensable forms of online marketing worldwide. With millions of internet users browsing social media feeds for entertainment, inspiration, and product recommendations each day, it comes as no surprise that brands are increasingly leveraging the power of the web’s most recognizable faces for promotion. Partnering with content creators can improve brand awareness and exposure, unlock new or niche audiences, and ultimately drive conversions, which explains why the influencer marketing market size has more than doubled since 2019, now standing at almost 14 billion U.S. dollars. In Europe, home to some of the world’s largest digital ad markets, businesses are also carving out larger slices of their marketing budgets for influencer collaborations than ever.

Influencer marketing trends in Europe

The European marketing landscape is as multifaceted as the people that brands are trying to reach. But while digital marketing tactics can differ significantly based on a region’s internet penetration rate and online consumer behavior, there has been an unmistakable trend towards influencer endorsement in recent years. Creator marketing spending in Europe has more than quadrupled since 2016, and when asked about the changes in influencer marketing budgets in a recent survey, around 44 percent of European business-to-consumer (B2C) brands reported plans to increase their budgets in 2021. An investment boost of over 10 percent was also forecast for Italy that year. According to data presented at Milan’s latest influencer marketing conference, influencer marketing spending in Italy was expected to jump from 242 million to 272 million euros in 2021, highlighting the ever-expanding value that this new form of marketing is expected to bring to the industry in the near future.

Top platforms and creators

Instagram is the most popular platform for influencer marketing worldwide. In Europe, where an estimated 295 million users were browsing the photo and video sharing app in 2021, marketers also placed their bets on the service. Survey findings showed that around 55 percent of respondents from the UK, Germany, and the U.S. planned to use Instagram for influencer marketing campaigns in 2021. This preference is not surprising, considering that the app offers various formats that creators can use to promote a brand’s product or service. So who are the most sought-after influencers from and across Europe? In 2021, Khaby Lame was the most famous Italian influencer on Instagram and one of the most-followed TikTokers worldwide, while Chiara Ferragni remained the highest-paid Italian fashion influencer on Instagram that year. As for YouTube, another powerful tool in European marketers’ toolboxes, PewDiePie (real name Felix Kjellberg) continues to top the charts. The Swedish online gamer and streamer boasted nearly 110 million subscribers on YouTube in late 2021 and has partnered with well-known brands such as LG Electronics and PlayStation in the past.

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