The challenge across socials is ensuring content is consistently engaging and attention-grabbing. This is where TikTok has a key advantage as an entertainment platform: people follow a community of creators rather than their friends and family. 66% of TikTok users follow social media personalities (versus 19% on Facebook), demonstrating that a constant stream of entertaining content is far more engaging than your auntie’s post about a missing cat.
We are seeing the growth strategy of social platforms beginning to resemble that of streaming giants like Netflix & Amazon, with content at the core. The main difference being that on socials, content is user-generated. While each platform can replicate and adapt another’s products as a defence strategy (we’ve seen increased focus on Reels from Meta), they have a lot less control over the quality of the content onsite and where the top creators are spending their time. Hence Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat and TikTok have all invested in their own versions of a creator fund to financially incentivise creators to use and remain on their platform. There is also an indication that platforms may begin trying to obtain exclusivity with popular creators: YouTube Gaming have signed an exclusivity deal with top Twitch streamers, offering higher financial rewards.
Influencer partnerships pose a great opportunity for all stages of the marketing funnel and can help to give brands a competitive edge. Brands should stay abreast of emerging creators and developments in creator-led formats e.g., live shopping ads. Although the widest known social media personalities can reach a wide audience, there is a key opportunity in lesser-known influencers: two thirds of users enjoy their content and trust recommendations more. As a result, micro-influencers (<15k followers) have higher engagement rates on YouTube, Instagram & TikTok. Authenticity should be at the core of partnership decision making, and more targeted influencers with a unique point of view and values that align with your brand, help promotion feel genuine.
Regardless of budget or KPI, authenticity should be at the core of decision making, choosing partners and influencers with a unique point of view and values that align with your brand.
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