Influencers: the future of online advertising?

According to, marketers spent 266 billion dollars on online advertising in 2018. This will increase to 375 billion dollars in 2021. Influencer marketing makes up a big part of online advertising, and we will only see this part growing in the next few years.

5 Predictions on the future of influencer advertising

According to GlobalWebIndex, almost half of all internet users follow their favorite brands on social media. This also applies to brands whose products people want to have and do not yet own.

Their study of 178,421 internet users around the world (aged 16 to 64) showed that 28% use social media to search for online products. This number increases every year.

So it’s not surprising that influencer advertising seems to have a bright future. At least, for the next few years.

1. Instagram dominates online advertising in 2020

According to Hootsuite’s CEO, Ryan Holmes, Instagram will increasingly dominate the world of online advertising. Brands already have a strong presence on the medium and this will only get stronger.

2. Social shopping is on the rise

The role of social media in e-commerce is growing. Last year, Instagram introduced the Shopping feature. This feature allows a company to tag products in photos or videos that people can buy. Instagram will increasingly be used as a visual storefront.

3. Fastest growth comes from emerging economies

The next innovation in social e-commerce will come from emerging economies. A large group of consumers in emerging markets have smartphones but no laptops. They are way ahead in mobile e-commerce because they skipped online shopping via desktop and normal search engines.

4. More focus on extreme followers

In almost every industry, 20% of customers account for 80% of the profit. The best way to grow as a company is to make extreme followers on social media buy more or to make this group bigger.

5. Baby boomer-friendly social media advertising

Baby boomers use social media more and more and shop as much online as millennials do. They also spend more money. Companies will, therefore, have to make ads baby boomer-friendly.

The best strategy for influencer advertising

In 2019, according to marketing guru Neil Patel, marketers will spend $2.38 billion on influencer marketing on Instagram alone.

The power of influencers lies in their (alleged) authenticity and credibility. Not so much in the number of followers they have. Consumers trust influencers more than television and traditional advertising channels. Micro influencers often have a higher engagement rate than celebrities.

That is why we recommend working with micro influencers as well. Sponsored posts from small influencers look more like friendly suggestions than ads, even if the post contains a hashtag like #ad. The best influencer advertising doesn’t look like advertising.


The role of influencers in online advertising will only grow in the next few years. Micro influencers, appropriate ads and a good match between influencers and brands are crucial for any successful influencer marketing campaign.