Some of the brand campaigns being put on ice doesn’t exactly have anything to do with creators not being able to deliver excellent results through their social graph. Instead, it was related to the advertiser boycott of Facebook, whereby hundreds of marketers committed to moving their budget from the platform, during July.
The main factor instigating the abrupt content shift, though, was the lack of preparation, from many brands, big and small, to deal with a pandemic that wiped away months of sales while people stayed quarantined at home watching the world goes by. And Maybe Netflix.
Coronavirus was one of many factors that have made life harder for those working with Influencer marketing this year and it wasn’t for lack of online audience, either.
From March to July, usage of social media reached an all-time high, as a result of more people working from home, schools being closed, and large proportions of the workforce being furloughed. But before budgets could be revisited and amended, and Influencer Marketing strategies could be put in place, months after the pandemic spread across Europe, Asia and America, a similar pattern of frozen campaigns surfaced due to the worldwide repercussions of the Black Lives Matter protests – one of the most recent movement rightly prompting more brands to pause their campaigns while they re-evaluate their relationship with creators and their corporate voices on social issues.
Has all of this changed the way content creators approach brands to collaborate with? And, moving forward, what will the world, post Covid-19, look like for influencers, agencies, small businesses, and brands who make use of influencer marketing?
Authentic brand connections will be a plus
“Influencers (and their managers) are having to work harder to secure partnerships in 2020, specifically by showing that they were already advocates of the brand before they pitch. Influencers who can demonstrate an authentic connection to the brand as a consumer, showing that they use the product and have tagged the brand multiple times over the years, or even in recent months, will be better positioned to win that partnership. Those other influencers, who might have similar data insights and reach metrics but haven’t demonstrated their authentic connection, will get left behind.
Influencers can also provide brands with a solution to their growing demand for content. They bring efficiency and economy to content creation, while also providing deep knowledge of the social space and what works there.”
It is a good time to collaborate
“Influencers are homebound and not traveling to exclusive destinations. Right now is the best time to DM someone within your vertical to plan a collaboration project. This is a rare opportunity to get the attention of busy thought-leaders, with widespread followings, that can give your business more exposure.
Focus less on the medium of attracting influencers and more on building relationships with key players on social media that are experts in the topics related to the services your brand offers.
Mike Zima – Chief Growth Officer at ecommerce digital marketing agency Zima Media
A need for flexibility to adapt to new platforms
“To stay active, as an influencer, I adapt to the new social media platforms. Previously, I concentrated on YouTube to interact with my clients. Now, I focus on Tiktok. Who would have thought that a law firm would be on TikTok? You see, it is all about getting yourself into what’s ‘in’ and not getting left behind. I make sure that I’m active and visible on every platform that people are using.”
Jacob J. Sapochnick – Immigration Attorney and Social Media Influencer
Exploring the appeal of homemade content
“There is more work for influencers than ever before since normal photoshoots are not currently occurring, but brands still need content! My fiancé is a professional photographer, so we have been creating content at home and outside. I have been speaking with more brands, due to many losing their budget because of a loss of sales (COVID-19). However, other than having to reach out to more brands than usual to be successful, not much has changed for me. It is all about adapting to the change. Working from home and creating your own little studio space. Even if you don’t have a professional camera, iPhone photos still work amazingly!”
Mikayla Rose Becker – Content creator
PRO TIP 👍
Combining reach for lead generation
“As a B2B influencer, I have found that marketing budgets for events, or other inactive areas, are shifting towards influencer marketing for lead generation. For this purpose, lead-generating webinar-based work has actually increased since COVID-19, and although marketers are more conservative in their decision-making they still have budget. This is especially true for B2B influencers who are active on LinkedIn and Twitter like I am. Blogging, podcasting, and having a robust email list also help.”
Neal Schaffer – Author, Digital Social Media Marketing Consultant & Coach
Creating relatable content
“As a result of some substantial cuts to marketing budgets across the board, and production studio closures due to Covid-19, the industry saw – and will continue to see – a need for brands to continue to find ways to create content for social media and e-comm remotely. That need created an opportunity for influencers and creators to get their foot in the door. The most successful content creators have been the ones who provide high-quality, relatable content. Influencers who are professional, follow creative briefs, and provide content in a timely manner have been the ones who are in high demand and continue to grow and work with reputable brands.”
Pam Zapata – talent and Influencer Manager at SLAY Media
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