Although small in size, Singapore has one of the highest GDP per capita in the world (according to data from The World Bank), and sports a total population of 5.7 million people (including residents and non-residents, based on data from the Department of Statistics Singapore).
We go back to our handy guide for digital statistics from We Are Social and Hootsuite, and the data looks pretty encouraging still. Boasting a 100% urbanization rate and a 147% penetration rate for mobile phone connections, high GDP per capita, and English as the predominant language, it comes as no surprise that marketers targeting Asia have Singapore in their plans.
Coupled with consumer behaviour changes driven by the coronavirus pandemic, ease of last-mile delivery and a thriving e-commerce ecosystem, businesses who are online have a much better competitive advantage on this island in Southeast Asia.
With social media penetration rates being one of the highest in the region at 79% of the total population, and still seeing a year-on-year user growth of 1.6%, or 72,000 new users, there is still much opportunity for marketers to leverage on social media platforms to reach various audience segments.
YouTube usage reigns supreme based on ranking from the abovementioned report, with 4.42 million people (approximately 76% of total population) reported to have used the platform in the month preceding the report. This is followed by Facebook and Instagram to round up the top three most-used social media platforms in Singapore.
How do social influencers stack up in Singapore? Due to its unique market size, social influencers in Singapore are categorized slightly differently compared to other markets in Asia, as shown by the chart below.
The various tiers of social influencers are as follows:
Top stars: Top star-influencers have more than 500,000 followers, and this tier is reserved for the crème de la crème of social media influencers, and might not necessarily be celebrities in the “traditional” sense. These top stars have the ability to drive social conversations and popular culture through their colossal follower base. Engaging a top star in Singapore gives marketers access to a wide audience, effectively generating general awareness and brand lift.
Macro-influencers: Macro-influencers in Singapore typically have 100,000 to 500,000 followers, and this group also includes celebrities in Singapore including actors, musicians, athletes and more. Macro-influencers can bring significant brand uplift, but also drive brand engagement and interest.
Micro-influencers: Micro-influencers in Singapore tend to be higher profile social media personalities compared to other markets in Asia in this category. These influencers have follower sizes anywhere in the range from 10,000 to 100,000, and have cultivated niche communities and audience segments around specific areas of interests or content types. Micro-influencers provide marketers with a unique opportunity to create highly-tailored micro-influencer campaigns to reach specific target audiences.
Nano-influencers: The utilization of Nano-influencers in a marketer’s influencer marketing mix has grown in popularity over recent years, and is one of the most common tiers of influencers found in Singapore. Nano-influencer campaigns are typically executed at scale, with tens (and sometimes even hundreds) of nano-influencers being activated for a single campaign. The coordination of these influencers would then become time-consuming, but there are influencer marketing platforms like CastingAsia that can take out the pains of running campaigns that have more than a handful of influencers.
End-users: End-user influencers are deemed to be the everyday person - likely a consumer, but do not consider themselves to be social influencers - and this category, together with nano-influencers, more than often use their personal clout to convince their social circles and drive brand connections, credibility and loyalty.
In general, influencers across the board want to endorse products that they really believe in or can vouch for, rather than just a “soulless” product placement in their content. This is why it’s important for marketers to have deeper data into influencers, including post history, preferences and interests, and follower demographics, to drive effective influencer marketing.
Fastest-growing influencer categories in Singapore Based on data gleaned from the CastingAsia platform, several trends for influencer verticals have emerged for social influencers in Singapore, including micro-influencers and nano-influencers. Apart from the usual strong categories like arts & entertainment influencers, and fashion & lifestyle influencers, the verticals seeing high growth rates include food & drink, beauty, and fitness & health.
Food & drink influencers Singaporeans love to eat - it’s almost like a subculture. When there’s demand, there’s supply - there is also a high amount of food establishments in Singapore, and it can sometimes be difficult to stand out or break into the establishments that people in Singapore frequent.
There are a range of food and drink micro-influencers and nano-influencers in Singapore, including those that promote healthy eating, homemade recipes, or restaurant reviews. Each influencer has their own niche audience or followers, and those who have built a following based on their food and drink content have established a certain level of authority towards recommendations that suit their followers’ tastes.
Beauty influencers Beauty influencers are one of the most dynamic influencer categories as we detail in this section. The beauty and fashion categories are rather complementary when it comes to influencer marketing, with influencers sometimes aligning their content with both verticals. Beauty influencers have a much stronger focus on content around product reviews, tutorials and tips, and are not just limited to makeup but also fashion accessories.
A growing trend has been in the advocacy of greater self-esteem, leading to some beauty influencers creating content around lifestyle as well. At the same time, beauty influencers can work with a range of other brands that have a good match (in terms of brand fit and audience), including content around travel, gadgets, and even food & drinks.
Fitness & health Rounding up our fastest-growing social influencer verticals in Singapore is fitness & health influencers. Partly driven by the COVID-19 pandemic, but also a consumer mindset shift over the past few years in Singapore, fitness & health influencers are starting to sprout their own wings.
Fitness influencers do not just produce content around workout tutorials, but also content around motivational advice, lifestyle choices, and general wellness tips, and have been known to endorse products such as exercise wear and gadgets. Their followers are attuned to the fitness & health influencer’s lifestyle (including their endorsed items and causes), and see these influencers as more than just a personality or content stream to follow, but also as advisors to general wellness and well-being.
Social influencer engagement sweet spots in Singapore Diving into data points of Singapore-based social influencers through the CastingAsia platform, the follower-to-engagement rate sweet spots for YouTube, Instagram and Facebook are as follows:
YouTube 10,000 to 20,000 followers, with a secondary segment being 150,000 to 300,000 followers.
Instagram 1,000 to 10,000 followers, with a secondary segment being 15,000 to 30,000 followers.
Facebook 500 to 5,000 followers.
How does influencer marketing stack up for marketers in Singapore? With data from campaigns run on the CastingAsia platform across the past six months, the most popular business verticals that have utilized influencer marketing effectively are FMCG, e-commerce, gadgets, and food & drinks, with Instagram the main platform of choice.
Going slightly deeper into the data, content that drove the most conversations were around endorsed content and products that are aligned with what an influencer has been regularly posting about. Another insight is that content with the influencer within the visual (for example, an influencer posing with the product) drove more conversations and engagement, compared to a visual that consisted entirely of the product they are endorsing.
Influencer marketing trends in Singapore
The continued rise of video We’re seeing an increased number of influencers creating video content not just on YouTube, but also platforms like Instagram and Facebook - as video drives a larger organic reach on social media than images, text or link-based posts.
At the same time, YouTube is a viable platform for influencers to increase their revenue sources compared to just brand sponsorships, whilst providing their followers with deeper content compared to short-form video. Also, an increasing number of video podcasts are appearing on YouTube from Singapore-based influencers.
Speaking of short-form video, TikTok is another platform that is driving the shift towards video content - albeit being a mobile-dominant platform for video content. This is definitely another area to keep an eye on, as more users (not just in Singapore but across the region) jump on this social media platform.
Cross-border influencer collaborations Not only are brands in Singapore running cross-border influencer marketing campaigns, but influencers are starting to collaborate across different markets. Particularly in a region as diverse as Asia, there is a certain level of customization and localization of messages that needs to be done per market.
Additionally, audience size is small in Singapore (compared to other markets in the region), and collaborating with influencers in other countries opens up new opportunities for influencers to amass more followers. At the same time, influencers from different markets can collaborate to create content and build bridges to introduce new brands into other markets.
Influencers are creating their own brands With direct-to-consumer models increasingly gaining popularity, it is no surprise that influencers are also leveraging on this to build more ways to connect with their followers. In the future, influencer-generated content will include not just brands that they align with, but also their own brands - further cementing their own preferences and interests.
For example, a fashion influencer who creates his or her own merchandise line can showcase to followers the level of quality and style that they can endorse, and that same fashion influencer advocating another fashion brand would seem to hold more clout with their followers than an influencer who doesn’t have his or her own brand.
This will also cause a shift in how influencers build their niche areas - providing marketers with a base of followers who more greatly understand the opinions of the influencers they follow, and drive increased authority in their own niche.
AnyMind Group’s offerings for influencer marketing in Singapore At AnyMind Group, we’ve built out a comprehensive array of offerings to ensure marketers in Singapore can run effective and scalable influencer marketing activities.
The CastingAsia platform is an end-to-end self-serve influencer marketing platform that enables marketers to discover influencers, and activate, manage and track influencer marketing campaigns in Singapore and across the region. Apart from the usual engagement metrics, the platform can also track clicks and user acquisitions from influencer marketing campaigns.
Additionally, brands can also tap on CastingAsia’s brand SNS analytics functions to understand the impact of influencer marketing campaigns on their social media platforms, perform competitor, keyword and follower analysis (and match similar follower demographics of a brand to those of influencers).
Marketers can also utilize the expertise of local influencer marketing experts situated across Asia to develop local and regional influencer marketing strategies.
At the same time, the CastingAsia Creators Network is an Asia-wide influencer network that was launched by AnyMind Group, providing influencers with relevant resources and solutions for further growth. This has been supplemented by acquisitions of influencer networks in Thailand and Japan.
The most recent offering in this space is AnyMind D2C for influencers, where influencers can easily ideate and produce their own brands and products, build up e-commerce and logistics capabilities. Additionally, AnyMind Group will cover costs spanning ideation and planning, the sourcing and procurement of suppliers through AnyFactory, production of samples and the setting up of e-commerce capabilities.
Round-ups from other markets • Social media influencer marketing in Indonesia • Social media influencer marketing in Japan • Social media influencer marketing in Vietnam • Social media influencer marketing in Thailand • Social media influencer marketing in the Philippines • Social media influencer marketing in Hong Kong
If you’re keen to learn more or find out how you can run effective influencer marketing in Singapore or across Asia, please feel free to reach out to us.
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