Brands that may have previously done well on their own are now seeing the need to put a human face on social media in their messaging. With budget constraints, unpredictable lockdowns, and travel restrictions, it has proven difficult to create a steady stream of brand content and visuals. Collaborating with influencers who match your brand’s demographics and values, can help address this issue and further amplify the importance of influencer marketing for your business.
1. Growing importance of micro or nano influencers
Micro-influencers are those with often comparatively small but committed following, often in niche areas. Usually, the word ‘influencers’ brings to mind celebrities with a massive following. But brands, both big and small, are increasingly looking to work with micro-influencers who have captured that niche audience. Micro-influencers have demonstrated better ROIs and engagement. They are committed brand advocates, authentic, innovative and enjoy high trust and relatability as they engage with, and respond to their followers frequently. They are also ideal partners for small businesses who may not have huge marketing budgets but can benefit from a ‘word-of-mouth’ approach. For bigger brands, micro-influencers can provide content that is seen as more authentic and relatable to everyday life.
Brands like HelloFresh, have worked closely with a network of big and micro-influencers to show how they can help busy families during the lockdowns.
2. Rise and rise of video content
Think of TikTok, Instagram reels, IGTV, and live streams. How much more of this content did you consume during the lockdowns? During the first lockdown, video replaced human connection and added a variety of content on social media like nothing else. According to Facebook, live viewings shot up by 50% during the lockdowns and generated six times more engagement than a regular video. Similarly, viewings on Instagram jumped up 70%. Influencer engagements in 2021 will look beyond the humble photo post with a caption. On Instagram, IGTV content is reportedly 4x larger than photos in the ‘explore tab’ hence why this will improve the chances of the content been seen. Both long-form and short-form video content will be important in 2021 for storytelling and showcasing creativity and authenticity.
3. Not just a single post or giveaway, longer-term and innovative collaborations
Influencer marketing engagement is poised to be more than a ‘one-off’ strategy in 2021. As brands spend more time carefully selecting influencers with common goals and values, more and more of them will see value in working with influencers on an ongoing basis to increase their reach and brand loyalty. Having a streamlined network of high-quality partnerships with a variety of influencers can provide a safety net and maximise reach.
Additionally, influencer campaigns are increasingly more innovative and spin across different formats such a live streams, IGTV, Instagram reels, hash tag challenges on TikTok, simple product shots, or a flat lay (we love a flat lay). These varied formats provide a more dynamic and engaging way to create content with effective storytelling. In order to drive more bottom of funnel conversions, use customised special offers or exclusive sale/launch previews for influencers’ audiences.
A trend we have seen last year, which we believe will roll over to this year, is the creation of curated product lists or co-created products with influencers. Makeup brands have a history of doing this well, but we now see different businesses like interior décor, skincare and clothing rope in influencers to either create co-branded product lines or curated lists of products.
4. Shifting ROI focus
In the past, influencer marketing was usually focused on the top of the funnel goals: awareness, reach, and engagement. But with social commerce predicted to grow sharply in 2021, as time spent online and mobile shopping has increased, influencer marketing campaigns will be designed to also drive sales. Greater use of paid social campaigns in influencer strategies is also predicted for the year ahead. Smaller brands may even measure return on investment in terms of content created by the influencer that can be used (with mutual agreement) across other marketing activities and channels
5. Social responsibility
We are seeing an increasing amount of sponsored posts on Instagram and because of this consumers have become more discerning. The pandemic has also put increasing focus on reducing consumption habits that harm the environment or feed into social inequalities.
We have seen that consumers’ purchase decisions are being increasingly driven in favour of brands whose practices align with their principles, and away from those who have failed to authentically act and acknowledge workplace safety, inclusivity, and environmental impact.
This makes it even more vital in 2021 for brands and influencers to ensure they are a good fit with each other.
Influencer marketing is here to stay. In a recent survey, 44% of marketers said that they saw better results from influencer marketing campaigns during the pandemic and 46% said the results were the same as in normal situations. Just 10% said they saw worse results from influencer marketing than during pre-pandemic times. A well-designed influencer campaign, with the right set of Influencers using diverse content formats, can be really useful for growing business.
By aligning with the trends mentioned above, businesses can better position themselves to run successful digital marketing campaigns and get the most benefit out of running an influencer campaign.
Here are the links of a couple of case studies of our clients:
Are you looking for promotion of your brand and acquire more customers with the power of Influencer Marketing? Get in touch with our experts today! Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 022 6698 8952 Mobile: +91 932 690 6669.