The beauty industry is projected to reach $716.3 billion by 2025, up from $420 billion in 2018. With a surge in new digitally-native beauty brands, ecommerce sales and beauty subscription services, influencers that specialize in makeup, skincare and haircare content are becoming critically important for spreading awareness and converting consumers. In fact, a Vettese survey found 62 percent of women said they follow beauty influencers on social media and 67 percent turn to these influencers for information before purchasing beauty products.
For its latest report, Traackr analyzed 75,560 influencers in the US, UK and France who created branded content mentioning 1,413 beauty and personal care brands from January to November 2021. The result is a benchmark of beauty influencers’ average engagement rate (ER) across TikTok, Instagram and YouTube as well as four major categories: cosmetics, skincare, fragrance and hair care.
Traackr studied influencers of all tiers (nano, micro, mid, top, and VIP) in the report. The company defines nano-influencers as having 1,000 or more followers; micro as having 10,000 or more followers; mid as having 50,000 or more followers; macro as having 500,000 or more followers; top as having 1 million or more followers; and VIP as having 5 million or more influencers.
Given nano-influencers’ highly engaged audiences, it’s not surprising that on Instagram they had the highest average ER of all the influencer tiers and regions, according to Traackr.
As for major US findings, makeup is the most engaging category, with a total average ER of 1.95 percent across all platforms. In the US, haircare is the second most engaging category with an ER of 1.74 percent, followed by skincare at 1.67 percent and fragrance at 1.57 percent.
TikTok earned the highest average ER for makeup and haircare while Instagram showed the highest ER for fragrance and skincare.
Multi-step skincare routines dominated feeds in 2020 while a shift to hair and scalp care emerged in 2021. On TikTok, micro-influencers won the highest ER for this type of haircare content. Some of the highest earners included Kelsey Martin (@rosalierouge), Sommer Jean (@sommerjean) and Joyclyn Ragira (@joyclynragira). As well as salon artists like Kristen O’Donnell (@kristen_o_beauty) and Lindsey Marie Olson (@lindsey.marie.olson).
Though fragrance has been historically difficult to market online, the category had the highest ER on Instagram in the US.
With an average ER of 3.4 percent, Morphe won at makeup influencer marketing in 2021. Forty-two VIP influencers actively mentioned it across all platforms, likely due to product collabs with big names like Charli and Dixie D’Amelio and Jaclyn Hill, as well as its diverse group of influencers.
Makeup brand Milani is much smaller than Morphe, yet according to Traackr’s data, it’s only a tenth of a percent behind in average ER, at 3.3 percent. The report attributes Milani’s success to its inclusive influencer strategy, which includes working with influencers like Naima (@naimaakhter_), Niara J. (@niaraj_) and Jessica Lorena (@themexicanbeauty). As Traackr notes, Milani’s price points are another major selling point as it has become the choice brand for high-quality drugstore makeup.
In haircare, Framar received a 2.14 percent ER, a result of the bold and colorful styles it tasked nano-, micro- and mid-tier influencers with promoting during the pandemic. For example, Shannon Brookes (@fairygodmothair) created a series of videos of her using Framar’s products to create Harry Potter-themed hair hues.
Moving on to the report’s international findings. On TikTok, micro-influencers received the highest average ER in France. In the UK, Instagram is where most categories earned the highest average ER, with the exception of TikTok earning the highest for haircare. And in France, Instagram earned the highest average ER for all categories except fragrance.
Read the full Traackr 2022 Engagement Rate Benchmark report here.