New Research Finds Influencer Marketing Considered Key in PR Offerings

NEW YORK - The changing scope of the public relations industry means PR pros have new tactics and tools at their disposal on an ongoing basis. 


Influencer marketing is a fast- growing industry worth up to $10 billion in 2020, and is considered a PR offering around the world, particularly in North America, with 87 percent of marcomms professionals in the U.S. and Canada considering influencer marketing a PR offering - the highest globally, according to a Talkwalker global market research study among marketing and communications professionals based in the United States, Europe, Africa, Asia-Pacific, Latin America and the Middle East.  


Based on the report’s global findings, influencer marketing is used in both B2C and B2B campaigns. However, respondents are more likely to use influencer marketing for B2C campaigns. While the platforms used to engage with influencers vary across regions, in North America, Facebook is the most popular platform used by PR pros to identify and engage with influencers in B2B and B2C campaigns. Instagram came in a close second.


“The right influencer can make or break a campaign and the time spent will pay off,” says Todd Grossman, CEO Americas of international social media analytics firm Talkwalker, which joined forces with global market research and data analytics firm, YouGov, to gather data from 3,700 marketing and communications professionals to produce Talkwalker’s Global State of PR report.  “PR professionals shouldn’t rely on only one platform to select influencers and they should expect to spend time doing manual research on multiple platforms and tools.” 


Another key finding in the report is that competitions or discounts are popular ways to engage influencers in PR campaigns, with 49 percent of respondents reporting they engaged influencers in discounts, competitions and giveaways. In addition, 41 percent of survey respondents reported having influencers attend events, while 30 percent reported affiliate marketing programs, 29 percent social media takeovers and 20 percent stunts/viral videos. 


Talkwalker’s Global State of PR report reveals how different regions define “PR” and how communication departments cannot afford to be siloed anymore. It highlights the different ways in which PR professionals use social listening tools in their day to day work, and which metrics they currently measure. This revealed that they are creating significant value in their role by increasingly embracing social listening for media management, influencer marketing, and real-time online crisis and reputation management.


Among the key findings: 

  • 80% of PR corporate positioning for senior executives globally is not driven by social media analytics 
  • 87% of Marcomms pros in North America consider influencer marketing a PR offering, the highest globally, compared to the global average of 67% 
  • Less than 10% of C-level executives use social listening tools for reputation management 
  • Only 15% of global PR professionals use social listening tools for newsjacking 
  • The survey also revealed regional differences between PR offerings, ROI metrics, and influencer marketing - benchmarked against a global average


For more data from Talkwalker’s 2020 State of PR survey, with detailed regional analysis, download the complete report here.


About Talkwalker 

Talkwalker is a social listening and analytics company that empowers over 2,000 brands and agencies to optimize the impact of their communication efforts. We provide companies with an easy-to-use platform to protect, measure, and promote their brands worldwide, across all communication channels. 


Talkwalker's state-of-the-art social media analytics platform uses AI-powered technology to monitor and analyze online conversations in real-time across social networks, news websites, blogs and forums in 187 languages. Talkwalker has offices in New York, Luxembourg, San Francisco, Frankfurt, and Singapore. It is also the home of Talkwalker Alerts, a free alerting service used by over 500,000 communications and marketing professionals worldwide