3/4 min read
Key Takeaways for Brands and Influencers
Consumers do not believe advertising should stop
Pre-COVID strategies won’t work
‘Helpful’ content is most valuable
Brands and Influencers will be remembered for how they acted during lockdown
Why is it important to stand out?
As the dust settles, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to re-phrase how key brand-led communications address consumers. Interestingly, Ace Metrix honed in on the detrimental impact of including “the times” in consumer-facing messaging. Specifically, noticing how adverts that used either “uncertain times” or “challenging times” in their messaging automatically underperformed by 13%. Both in ‘attention’ and ‘likeability’.
The bottom line; be specific and get straight to the point on why the content you’re publishing is either helpful, different, or entertaining.
Consumers have remained vastly open to brand and influencer messaging. Kantar recorded a recent study across 30 countries that revealed only 8% of consumers believe that brands should stop advertising. Crucially for influencers, there has been a 76% increase to engagement on #ad content.
For Creators within the advertising space, there is a clear message. Do not stop, but adapt. Brands have to react dynamically to current events and influencers can offer vital support for their audiences.
Looking at figures related to consumer anxiety, the demand for messages of support within content publishing is evident. Global Web Index reported that 94% of all consumers are anxious about some aspect of Covid-19. Influencers have a unique opportunity for solidarity with their audiences. Particularly for the micro-mid level Creators - who are known for their content not who they are - they already have the relatability that celebrities on social media do not have.
Issues in Isolation
However, the rise of ‘relatable’ content has triggered a content overload. As the majority of homemade content is naturally lower quality, there is likely to be more of it as it’s easier to produce.
From the influencers on the Whalar platform alone, we have seen a staggering 23.3% daily increase of content produced post lockdown. People are at home, either bored or worried, and want to connect. For reference, the Google search for ‘How To Make A TikTok’ has increased by 400% since March 1st.
For Creators in the influencer space, this poses both advantages and disadvantages. Social media usage is up massively, over 50% according to GWI, however, the amount of content being created is not far behind. There is an opportunity to connect, however, also to be lost. Meaning, posting with a purpose - discussing greater issues beyond your personal brand - has never been more crucial to survival and growth.
When creating branded content, 86% of consumers are open to brands discussing Covid-19. In other words, avoiding the subject entirely is not the answer. Additionally, according to Integral Ad Science, for those fearful of creating advertorial content that could sit alongside potentially upsetting news about the pandemic - there is no correlation between the two affect one another. An advert is safe on a feed, regardless of when it’s published.
Publishing Content Moving Forward
There is no single answer - accept now is not the time to lose your voice or wait to see how events pan out. In these [fuck it] uncertain times, brands and influencers will be remembered for how they reacted to the largest shift in consumer behaviour in living memory.
Creativity is shifting closer to home, and the thirst to consume it remains. In fact, it’s stronger than ever - branded or not. Re-imagine the playbook, look to influencers who are giving their audiences invaluable relief and entertainment. Right now, they are best positioned to galvanise branded messaging.
Apple released a recent Ad that undoubtedly hits the current mark; “Creativity Goes On”. Redefine your voice, we’re all in this together.
For more information about influencer marketing during COVID-19, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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