“I trust influencers on TikTok more than my friends”

A study asked participants about trust and authenticity on the influencer channels TikTok, Instagram and YouTube – with astonishing results.

A recent study by influencer marketing platform Takumi found surprising results. Marketers, influencers as well as consumers in Great Britain, the USA and Germany were surveyed. The goal of the study was to find out more about the perception of YouTube, TikTok and Instagram as influencer marketing channels. The focus was particularly on the aspects of trust, authenticity and creativity.

TikToker affect 16- to 24-year-olds

The results of the study show that the perception of the different channels varies by age group and country. For example, 40 percent of 16- to 24-year-olds from Germany stated that their purchase decisions were most likely to be influenced by TikTokers. In the UK it was about 30 percent. In the United States, on the other hand, the age group that, according to its own statement, was most influenced by TikTokers was that of 35 to 44 year olds (37 percent).

Older platforms are considered more trustworthy and user-friendly

TikTok was the youngest platform that was examined in the study. YouTube and Instagram thus enjoyed a certain advantage in terms of building trust among users. In the overall comparison of all surveyed consumers, YouTube and Instagram also come out on top. 27 percent of respondents said they had been influenced by an influencer on YouTube in their purchase decision in the past six months. It was 24 percent on Instagram and 15 percent on TikTok.

© Takumi

Marketers and consumers see YouTube as the most user-friendly channel. This reflects again which platforms have been tried and tested for years. Instagram is the most informative channel among respondents, while TikTok is the most creative.

Influencers enjoy significantly more trust than in previous years

Basically, influencers, regardless of the platform, do better than celebrities, for example. 37 percent of 16- to 24-year-olds trust a YouTube influencer more than one person in public or a celebrity. But the trust goes even further: In the same age group, 23 percent of the respondents stated that they trust the recommendation of a TikTok influencer even more than that of a friend.

© Takumi

Cross-platform confidence in influencers is increasing. Last year, 20 percent had “no concerns” about YouTube influencers. This year it was 48 percent. The situation is similar on TikTok. Here 44 percent stated that they had no reservations about the influencers. So also describes Mary Keane-Dawson, Group CEO of Takumi, the current situation:

Influencer marketing has matured considerably since 2019. Consumer concerns are less than ever, which may be accelerated by increasing industry legislation and professionalism. However, there is still a lot to do if influencers and marketers really want to exploit the potential of influencer marketing.

The results show that the attitude of users towards influencer marketing is almost entirely positive. This means that the market is not yet saturated. However, trust and authenticity must always be in the foreground. If an influencer loses this status among its own followers, it may be difficult to become successful again. It is important to combine the best of the three platforms (the user-friendliness of YouTube, the information content of Instagram and the creativity of TikTok) for campaigns and thus create an optimal experience for marketers, influencers and followers alike.

The full study can be downloaded here.



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