Influence Marketing has been a key word when it comes to promoting brands and products. The category, which uses a lot of the name and image of those who distribute the brands, has grown a lot in recent years, especially with digital influencers.
Still, times keep changing. To better understand the phenomenon of this type of marketing, how the pandemic times we live in have affected it and its future changes for the year 2022, we at AdNews called Rafa Lotto, YOUPIX Head of Planning and Partner, to speak a little on the topic.
Check out R’s answers below.afa Lotto:
AdNews: How has the pandemic affected this environment these past two years?
Rafa Lotto: The Pandemic has brought a boom to the influence market as people become more connected and turn to online content to be entertained, informed, learn and shop. At a time fraught with fear, uncertainty and misinformation, people strengthened the trust they had with influencers, and brands realized that this discipline could help them engage communities and consumers, things that banners didn’t do. In 2019, a Rakuten survey found that 80% of consumers had already made a purchase recommended by an influencer. In the midst of a pandemic, investments in influential marketing grew and it was one of the main alternatives for brands to be able to connect with consumers. The survey “ROI & Influence” carried out by YOUPIX in 2021 brought data that showed that the importance of Influence Marketing has grown within companies and no brand today believes that this discipline should not be part of the communication strategy. The data also reveal that 83% believe that, with the pandemic, Influence Marketing has become more strategic for their business. This was also reflected in the brands’ budget: the number of companies investing more than BRL 5 million per year doubled compared to 2019.
AD: Which Now with the end of this troubled period, people are expected to go out more. Is it likely that people use digital media less and influence marketing will have to reinvent itself? Or has the market been reinforced by the pandemic so that its end will not diminish the effect of influence marketing?
Rafa Lotto: The Pandemic generated three effects in the influence market: the boom of nano influencers (from the yoga teacher to the small businesses that started using content to promote themselves), the role of responsibility and curation of influencers (who will be increasingly charged to spread the true for its followers amid an ecosystem broken by misinformation and helping its followers navigate the abundance of information, consumption and digital relationships today) and the need for new business models for the so-called Creator Economy (brands as the first and only option influencer income doesn’t make much sense anymore, we’re seeing a boom in companies that offer services and tools for content creators and influencers to prosper in business).
For influential marketing, this scenario enhances its effect, having on the one hand more creators available to brands, on the other hand, consumers who are more attentive and connected with speeches and attitudes that make sense to them. This salad makes this discipline gain strategic power and special attention from brands when choosing influencers for their campaigns, but the result of this is a multiplier effect.
AD: THE metaverso, announced recently, does it change a lot the scenario for those who produce this type of content?
Rafa Lotto: I think first it is worth remembering that the “metaverse” is not a disruptive technology that was born yesterday, but a concept that gained this importance after Mark Zuckerberg decided to appropriate this term to talk about his company’s future plans. If we think about the games universe, this is a very solid reality, see the example of the “League of legends” (LoL) which despite being free, sales within it were responsible for a turnover of US$ 1.7 billion in 2020, sales include skins with “clothing” brands for the characters, items that only exist in the virtual world and a plethora of transactions that already represent virtual “properties”. This is the metaverse, happening a long time ago. In this context, content creators are exploring possibilities and I believe that yes, they should turn more attention to these possibilities, after the spotlight placed by Mark on this concept, but for 2022 I don’t see anything radically changing.
AD: Media focused on shorter content has grown more and more, as videos on TikTok have been seen more and more, how do you see the potential of these media and intend to use them?
Rafa Lotto: Focused on entertainment, TikTok emerged as an important alternative to other social networks in the Pandemic. At that point, we were tired of Instagram’s egocentric lifestyle content format, tired of Facebook’s polarization. We needed something that brought more authentic content, less filtered, lighter. TikTok offered that alternative, with an app that invites users to create and be part of trends and the community. many places were able to reopen for events that were not possible in 2020. In this way, many brands were able to carry out activations this year with influencers.
In the beginning, many people were still prejudiced, because they thought the teenager app and the content were too silly, which has proven to be a short-sighted view. Today the network has users of all ages and has greatly expanded the range of themes and formats they engage. For example, Fayda Belo is a criminal lawyer with nearly 1 million followers on the network, passing on a lot of important information on the topic and reaching people that maybe in other networks it would not reach.
AD: What can we expect from influence marketing in 2022?
Rafa Lotto: I believe that in 2022 we will continue with the consolidation of the thought that content creation is a business model and that influence marketing is just one of the ways of monetizing the creator. In this sense, creators who monetize themselves through influence marketing are increasingly aware of the delivery they make to brands, investing time and creativity for more distant #publis from that formula “take a picture and copy and paste the text that the brand sent”. On the brand side, an understanding that the “one feed post and three stories” combo does not necessarily bring results and that influential marketing campaigns need integrated thinking and strategic planning. To sum up, I would say that 2022 will be a year for us to get out of tactical and consolidate this discipline as a strategic tool for brand building and sales results.
AD: What are the names that could garner media attention within influence marketing next year?
I think it is important to emphasize here our thinking that media attention (and brands) does not represent the nature of content on the internet, which is rich precisely because it is diverse, fragmented and involves communities created around common interests.
It is therefore quite easy to predict what will catch attention:
-The next BBB instant celebrities,
-The mood profiles (which have a great capacity to break the bubbles), such as the case of @essemenino that happened in 2020
Nothing new in this thought, other than taking advantage of what has already become mainstream. In my view, success for a brand lies in identifying and nurturing relationships with those creators that make sense for its segment, and from that relationship building genuine conversations with their communities. Paying millions for exclusivity with the next BBB hit is a relationship of power, not influence.
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