Influencers and influencer trends to watch in 2022

The age of the creator is upon us.

After years of growth, the creator economy has gone mainstream. Payment processing platform
Bandaged estimates that the number of individuals who now consider themselves full-time “creators” – those who use online tools to sell digital content – increased by 48% in 2021, while industry revenues are expected soon exceed 10 billion dollars.

Big brands have taken notice, as influencers can build social media loyalty that surpasses that of many Hollywood celebrities. In turn, some top influencers are now making more than S&P 500 CEOs. As more Gen Z creators enter the workforce, seeking opportunities beyond traditional models , the industry is poised to continue growing at a breakneck pace. We spoke with Famous Birthdays founder Evan Britton, whose platform tracks and measures the industry, and several emerging influencers about what to watch in the year ahead.

1. Gaming influencers are growing

There is more game content now than ever. According to TwitchTracker, which tracks streamers, 2021 was the most popular year ever for Twitch, which averaged more than 3.1 million daily viewers at its peak in May 2021. The January 2022 numbers (2.9 million) are not far behind.

“Twitch streamers have very engaged fans,” Britton said. He cited Twitter as an example of a platform where many brands and personalities “struggle to get engagement”, but where many streamers regularly manage to attract “thousands of likes and comments”.

“Their fans are so engaged with them because they watch them for hours,” he added. “They just want more content.”

Even though the demand for gaming content is on the rise, expect game creators to become more strategic when it comes to repurposing content in 2022.

“As a streamer, one of the most important things right now is finding ways to keep growing while still being effective,” the gamer and Twitch streamer said.
Nick Bartel. In the past, gaming influencers spent many hours streaming their adventures live, but when the game was over, traditionally, so was the stream, and few did anything with the resulting content. .

Expect to see creators looking for ways to funnel growth to platforms even when they’re not streaming. Bartel said he’s looking to work with a publisher that can reuse a lot of the live content he creates.

“One of the biggest concerns is burnout on airtime,” Bartel said. “It’s part of the grind initially, but the last thing you want to do after streaming is edit. You want to have some life balance.

TinaKitten / Famous Birthdays

Famous birthday gaming influencers to watch

2. Blockchain provides a new source of income and experimentation

In years past, influencers largely relied on advertising dollars to monetize their massive audience and provide them with income. More recently, however, blockchain – including cryptocurrency and NFTs – has stepped in, providing a new way to build community while increasing revenue.

“The growth of cryptocurrency followed by the explosion of NFTs was a big trend in 2021 that will continue into 2022,” Britton said. “Last year, creators sold digital art and communities sold limited-edition collectibles that offered unique access and influence. This year, the offerings will get even more creative.

Britton said one of the drivers of this trend is entertainment and engagement. NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, offer influencers a way to reward their most engaged users, as well as a way for audiences to literally invest in the creators they love. “I think it’s a fun way for people to get involved and be part of a community,” he noted. As creators create their own engaged communities, NFTs could provide them with additional methods of monetization.

But there has been a dark side to influencer interest in crypto. Earlier this month, Kim Kardashian and Floyd Mayweather were among a number of influencers accused of participating in an online crypto pump-and-dump scam. TikTok has since banned promotional content related to financial services, including cryptocurrency, adding them to its list of “globally banned industries”.

While it remains to be seen how effective NFTs will be as an investment tool, expect interest in the space to continue to grow.

Spencers / Famous Birthdays

Famous birthday influencers with NFT projects to watch

3. More fun with food

Food has become a growing subset of the influencer economy, and several new platforms launching in 2021 seek to capture this growing interest. Restaurants big and small have taken notice.

“A huge tailwind on TikTok has been creators coming up with their unique recipes and fun food takes,” said Britton, who expects this trend to grow throughout 2022. is fun and short videos. Everybody loves food and a lot of people love making food. It just has a lot of natural product market compatibility with TikTok.

Videos showing food can help convince consumers to try new restaurants or menu items. In one survey by restaurant marketing firm MGH, 36% of TikTok users said they visited or ordered food from a restaurant after seeing a TikTok video featuring that establishment.

Influencer Cassie Sharp found success in 2021 creating small-scale content around food challenges, like its popular “five random ingredients” challenge.

“I try to find new challenges that spark similar engagement, and take short videos and turn them into long-form content so that I can take some of those views on my shorts and apply them to my long-form videos,” , she said, pointing to a common trend among creators across all verticals: content redirection.

“The best thing about shorthand content is you can fire it up and see what catches,” Sharp added. “If I get an audience for a specific short video, when I start making long videos, people are already comfortable with it.”

His biggest takeaway to date: See-through bowls are key to creating engaging food videos. “It’s just more interesting to see the butter and the brown sugar melting together,” she said.

Lisa Nguyen / Famous Birthdays

Famous birthday food influencers to watch

4. Social shopping is disrupting e-commerce

The pandemic has helped solidify the growing advantage of e-commerce over physical shopping. As more influencers turn to live streaming platforms, expect the nature of online shopping to change.

“Facebook, Instagram and TikTok are each making live shopping easier and YouTube has launched live streams to promote shopping ahead of the 2021 holiday season,” noted Britton, who added that he expects shopping live will become increasingly popular in 2022. “It took a while to get here, but it’s growing.

Generation Z certainly wants to buy in real time. The results of the investigation of the Instagram Trends Report 2022 show that 27% of users aged 13 to 24 buy directly on social networks.

Instagram’s native affiliate tool is just one example of this trend in action. The platform began testing the tool in 2021, encouraging creators to include shoppable content not only in their feeds, but also in their Instagram stories and live streams.

Nathaly Cuevas / Famous Birthdays

Famous birthday e-commerce influencers to watch

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