What bubble? The size of the influencer market on Instagram alone is set to grow $2.38 billion next year. Accordingly, our Forrester Analytics data shows that 75% of marketers have already implemented or are planning to implement a solution to manage this market in 2018, and seventeen percent of B2C marketers consider influencers one of their top three sources of content.

The time is past when brands did the occasional celebrity engagement; marketers are now faced with managing tens or even hundreds of influencers at a time and the challenges and risks that go along with each of these individual partnerships. Marketing leaders cannot handle these relationships on their own anymore, nor should they aim to try (influencers can be divas!). Influencer marketing solutions (IMSes) are here to help.

Earlier this year, we gave an initial overview of this emerging market in our New Tech. We found this turbulent market ready for a Forrester New Wave™ — a lighter, condensed version of our classic Forrester Wave™ evaluations, tailored to emerging markets such as this one. With “The Forrester New Wave™: Influencer Marketing Solutions, Q4 2018” evaluation, we provide a guide for marketers considering their purchasing options in this space.

We identified and examined the 11 influencer marketing solutions that matter most: Ahalogy, AspireIQ, Collective Bias, Influential, IZEA, Klear, Launchmetrics, Linqia, Mavrck, Octoly, and Traackr.

Amongst other aspects, we looked at the answers to the following questions:

  • What role does the focus on verticals play in the vendor landscape?

We previously found that influencer marketing lays a heavy focus on verticals — 70% of the vendors surveyed by Forrester said CPG was one of their top three verticals, and 60% listed fashion and apparel. This New Wave tells buyers how this focus leads to differentiation.

  • What capabilities do IMS vendors offer to measure the true impact of campaigns?

Counting likes and followers to measure the success of an influencer campaign is pointless, especially in the age of bot and click farms that can fraudulently generate thousands of them in a second. This New Wave answers how and which vendors help marketers measure the true impact of their influencer campaigns.

  • How can vendors keep their clients’ campaigns clean and safe?

Speaking of bot farms, the influencer space is ridden with all kinds of fraudulent behavior and agents, to put it mildly. What measures do IMSes put in place to protect their users from this and other issues around brand safety, such as alignment with brand values or working with competitors? This New Wave answers which vendors stand out and how they keep marketers’ campaigns safe.

To find out how the 11 most important players compare when it comes to these and other criteria, read “The Forrester New Wave™: Influencer Marketing Solutions, Q4 2018.” To chat with me directly, set up an inquiry.