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The buzz about working with influencers for brand campaigns seems to be everywhere—but how can your brand make the most of it? Check out these five hot trends on how to make the most of a brand collaboration with digital influencers.
1. Visuals rule
The world of text-based content has rapidly given way to visuals. Content like videos, emojis, GIFs, infographics, digital stickers, and images is more universally understandable across the globe—and the data prove it.
Tweets that contain images receive 18% more clicks, 89% more favorites and 150% more retweets. And brands that post videos and photos as part of their Facebook status updates conjure up to 180% stronger engagement. Audiences can consume visual content more easily via mobile, in small, snackable bites that drive higher engagement and sharing rates.
2. Right now is even more right now
Live streaming video apps like Periscope, Meerkat, and YouNow are quickly gaining both audiences and influencers across the globe. According to eMarketer, 72% of young millennials used digital streaming services—more than any other age group. These apps offer real-time viewing and engagement, and the digital creators playing on these platforms are reinventing the concept of “appointment viewing.” If their audiences don’t tune in at a designated time, they’ll miss the show!
3. Nothing is as good as it is IRL
Millennials’ affinity for experiences over material possessions gives brands a unique opportunity to involve influencers in IRL (in real life) events, creating immersive experiences for fans and attendees. A recent Forbes article reported that 78% of millennials would choose to spend money on a desirable experience over a desirable item. For digital creators, this desire for experiences is also resulting in opportunities around different types of festivals and live, concert-type events.
VidCon, one of the largest digital video festivals of the year, is coming up on July 23–25 in Anaheim, California, and Fullscreen will be there in full force. Last year, VidCon saw more than 18,000 attendees—most of them young fans of today’s top digital video content creators. Live events like VidCon not only show attendees a great time but also give rise to authentic, sharable experiences that both influencers and fans distribute widely across social media.
4. The best campaigns align with TV sponsorships
Although live TV viewership continues to drop, the connection between TV and social media remains undeniable. In 2013, a quarter of TV viewers said they were more aware of TV programs due to their social media interactions. Many brands are enlisting influencers to create content around specific TV properties, deepening brand association with these properties by launching digital campaigns or building on top of an existing brand sponsorships.
5. Great influencer campaigns let the influencer lead the way
Since influencers have such a deep understanding of their audiences, your brand can collaborate with these creators to develop content and products that genuinely resonate with audiences. Starting relationships with influencers can give your brand a great sounding board for product ideas, and you can even partner with influencers to co-develop new product lines to create positive buzz around a brand.
Just look at Michelle Phan‘s partnership with L’Oréal to create EM Cosmetics, a makeup line co-created by a community of beauty lovers and Phan herself. Or Bethany Mota‘s line of accessories and apparel with Aéropostale, which lets her retain creative control.
All these trends build upon the authentic connection that each digital influencer has with their audience, offering up unique opportunities to stay ahead of the curve. Happy collaborating!