The YouTube influencer market reached $5.67 billion in 2019 and that’s all thanks to affiliate marketing [CHART]

Nick Baklanov

Marketing specialist at HypeAuditor. Connect on Linkedin.

YouTube is undeniably important for Influencer Marketing. 

According to InfluencerMarketingHub research – 36% percent of brands utilize YouTube for influencer marketing. 

YouTube has 2 billion logged-in monthly users, each visitor spends 11m 24s per day on YouTube on average, every minute people upload over 500 hours of video, almost 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every single day.

Unlike on Instagram or TikTok, YouTube videos are significantly longer. YouTube influencers have more time to genuinely and authentically relay to their audience why their fans should buy/use the sponsor’s product/brand. 

Another big benefit of YouTube is that creators can tell their fans to click the link in description which allows for immediate action to be taken. Also, YouTube videos have evergreen value as they continue to accumulate views over time.

It’s common for YouTube influencers to charge more than Instagram influencers as creating a YouTube video can require much more effort than creating an Instagram post. 

Key Findings:

  • The YouTube influencer market reached $5.67 billion in 2019
  • COVID-19 made its adjustments and slowed down the growth of the industry but Influencer Marketing didn’t suffer as much as other industries.
  • 1.6% of videos have sponsored link in description
  • Among sponsored links there are many links to affiliate programs in which bloggers participate

The YouTube influencer market reached $5.67 billion in 2019

During the 2019 influencer marketing spending on YouTube influencers increased by 14% and reached $498M in December.

Total spent on Youtube influencer marketing in 2019

To estimate the market size in 2019 we’ve analyzed over 149M videos among which 2.5M videos with sponsored links in the description area.

Two unique technologies of HypeAuditor helped us to get accurate figures on the market size:

  • Estimated average integration price for a channel,
  • Brand mentions detector.

For our research, we filtered videos that have over 1000 views and brand mentions in the description area. Then we multiplied the number of brand mentions by the estimated average integration price for a channel.

Thus, we got the total estimate spent on YouTube Influencer Marketing if it all were an advertisement.

Affiliate marketing

In addition to branded integration for a fixed price, channels also post links to affiliate programs and online shops with their own merchandise. 

Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting other people’s (or company’s) products. You find a product you like, promote it to others and earn a piece of the profit for each sale that you make.

Bloggers place a link with a partner’s marker and receive a commission or other bonuses for each purchase at their link.

In the table below you can see the top 50 Brands by Estimated Spent mentioned by influencers in the Description area in April 2020.

If we will group these brands by type of promotion we will see that 25 brands used influencer marketing, 13 brands used affiliate marketing, 6 brands help influencers to earn money by selling their merchandise and 6 brands received links mostly organically.

Affiliate marketing is very popular among YouTube creators.

The content created on Youtube promotes the affiliate marketing offers through tutorials, reviews, or just sponsorship and will earn creator a commission for each sale generated.

Thus, when we consider total spending, we must remember that in these figures up to 30% is affiliate marketing.

The impact of COVID-19 on influencer marketing

Influencer Marketing has been strongly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and, like many other industries facing a period of unprecedented uncertainty. 

Many businesses experienced a significant reduction in the demand, thus they started to cut their marketing spendings. According to the survey made by Influencer Marketing Hub, 69% of brands expect they will decrease AD spend in 2020.

We compared the money spent on YouTube Influencer Marketing in the first quarter of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020 and we can see that Influencer Marketing didn’t suffer as much as other industries. Rather, one can even say not about a fall, but about a reduction in growth

YouTube Influencer Marketing global spent in 2019 vs 2020

The Market size in the first quarter of 2019 was approximately $1327M and in 2020 this figure rose by 7% to $1420M

Our research of Instagram Influencer Market size showed the similar reaction to COVID-19 

COVID-19 made its adjustments and slowed down the growth of the industry but Influencer Marketing didn’t suffer as much as other industries. 

The use of social networks is growing, and therefore grows the amount of advertising money that is being redirected from offline to online.

Based on the comparison of the money spent on sponsored posts and stories in the first quarter of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020 we estimate that the YouTube Influencer Marketing market size would be from $5.5 billion to $6.6 billion in 2020.

About HypeAuditor

This report was made by HypeAuditor

HypeAuditor is an AI-powered Instagram, Youtube and TikTok analytics tool that helps to get insights about the creator’s audience, increase advertisers’ ROI and safeguard authenticity in influencer marketing. It sets a standard for influencer analytics by providing the most accurate data.

HypeAuditor applies machine learning to determine behavioral patterns and identify fake followers and engagement on influencer accounts. It presents users with a breakdown of demographic data for an influencer’s audience and brings benchmarks for each metric for influencers with a similar number of followers.