How Influencers reshaped Marketing during Covid-19
Expected to become a US$ 10 billion industry by end of 2020, influencer marketing is adopted by an increasing number of brands and marketers due to the way it impacts people. Creating and executing a campaign could be challenging at times, but data-driven influencer marketing platforms can help brands simplify the process.
Image credit: Single Grain
The Coronavirus pandemic has brought the world to a standstill. Individuals and businesses are impacted severely as people are forced to stay in and the outside world became a distant luxury. Due to a lack of studio or office space, brands were forced to rethink business strategy entirely. Where traditional methods of marketing and advertising products were no more feasible, we noticed a shift towards digital and Influencer Marketing, which offered a more sustainable and cost-friendly way to market a product to a wider audience with great efficiency.
According to Wobb, 97% of marketers have noticed lower in-person marketing arrangement with 84.8% increment in openness towards digital offerings. Influencer Marketing offered brands a relatively cost-friendly way to reach out to their target audience through a network of Influencers.
Brands were able to get an exponentially higher reach among their target groups as they reach out to people on a platform where they are the most active, social media.
So, who is a Social Media Influencer?
There is a notion floating around that a large social media following is all it takes to be an influencer, which is untrue. There are factors like credibility or knowledge of a particular industry, engaged audience and quality of content, which play a much more important role. The ability to leverage all these factors and create content, which keeps your audience engaged, while at the same time results in growth, is something that sets a quality influencer apart from the rest.
How can brands benefit from Influencer Marketing?
Let us take the case of health and wellness brands during the Coronavirus pandemic. A deadly virus infecting people all over the world was a strong enough incentive for people to focus on health and cleanliness. Due to a spurt in demand, there was a void on the supply end, as existing brands could not produce goods fast enough. This led to a sizeable influx in the number of health and wellness focused brands flooding the market to fill the void. This was an opportunity for new brands to shine, but on the flip side, it was followed by intense competition.
Staying ahead of the competition
Multiple brands like Tatva Health, Dr Vaidyas and Sirona, among others, stood out and turned this crisis into an opportunity. So how did they do it? A closer look at their approach brings out one common strategy that helped them immensely – Influencer Marketing. They were able to reach a wide set of audiences and raise brand awareness as well as promote their products and services through a network a nano and micro-influencer across all forms of social media.
Due to the pandemic, there was a huge uptick in the engagement of health and wellness influencers on social media platforms, which these brands were able to leverage. With the help of Influencer Marketing Platforms, these brands were able to run multiple campaigns with hundreds of nano and micro-influencers, thus resulting in higher reach and brand awareness, eventually converting to better Return on Investment (ROI).
Post-Covid – a new dawn for marketing
Thinking out loud, things will never be been the same again, at least for marketing. The bar has already been set; the transition to digital is in motion and more efficient ways to market are already being adopted. The time for brands has come, to either go digital or lose out on a huge chunk of the market that is growing at a rapid pace.
Digital spaces are getting crowded and it’s all about standing out. Brands need to adapt and experiment with every strategy possible to discover what works for them. Influencer marketing has stood the test of time and is as impactful as it was, if not more. It can be a great way for brands to reach out and make a mark for themselves on social media platforms.
Leveraging brand value for higher social impact
Legacy brands are adapting to the digital revolution by leveraging their brand value to make a larger social impact. Their name carries a lot of value and any campaign with their name association catches the attention of people much faster. Multiple legacy brands are using this leverage in conjunction with influencer marketing to reach the widest audience possible. Pepsico India can take credit for being the flag bearer of the phenomenal rise of influencer marketing in India. Over the past couple of years, they have run campaigns, which turned into social media movements or a cultural phenomena in their own right.
In 2019, Pepsi pushed its #SwagStepChallenge through a huge network of influencers, primarily on TikTok and Instagram, which became the next cool challenge to partake from general public and celebrities alike. It generated an unbelievable 5.4 billion impressions and over 100,000 user-generated videos being created across social media platforms with #swagstepchallenge.
Another subsidiary of PepsiCo, Lays India has repeatedly launched social media campaigns with a wide network of influencers to grab eyeballs and get people engaged. Campaigns like #Smiledekedekho became a gigantic success along with #Heartwork campaign earlier in June this year, generating hundreds of millions of impressions.
Once, a brand gets recognized for its campaigns, people look forward to more campaigns from them in future. Simply put, going viral is what brands aim for and influencer marketing is an expressway to achieving this goal – as influencers possess something that’s difficult to generate quickly – an engaged audience!
Challenges with running an influencer marketing campaign
Expected to become a US$ 10 billion-dollar industry by the end of 2020, influencer marketing is being adopted by an increasing number of brands and marketers, due to the way it impacts people. However, creating and executing a campaign could be challenging at times. To achieve a higher ROI, choosing the right set of influencers is of importance. That could be a challenging ordeal, as finding influencers who fit in perfectly with the product and brand is a resource-intensive task. Apart from that, ensuring the quality of the influencer could be challenging.
Parameters like content quality, engagement rate and vetting are concerns that need to be worked out, as the industry grows larger by the day. Data-driven influencer marketing platforms like Wobb are helping brands simplify the process, allowing them to run campaigns with hundreds of quality influencers in one go. Such services are helping brands cut resources and costs while ensuring a successful campaign.
An alumnus of IIT-Delhi, Ishan Jindal is an ex-Investment Manager and serial entrepreneur. With a total experience of over 5 years in Consumer Tech and Investment, Ishan has founded critically acclaimed products like Safely Homes, which was India’s first crash detection app and helped multiple people who met with accidents get help. He also founded other tech-based startups like Pizzabox and Total Visible, which aimed at solving problems in respective industries. He is currently focusing on solving the marketing crisis and helping brands run Influencer Marketing campaigns through his AI-driven Influencer Marketing Platform called Wobb, which utilizes big data to automate influencer marketing campaigns.