Navigating influencer marketing during COVID-19

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First and foremost, we hope you and your team are staying safe amidst the global effect of COVID-19. We at Upfluence are committed to working with our clients through this time, and we understand that many of us are still running effective influencer campaigns.

We’re at the beginning of a major global shift, and while such measures are absolutely necessary to protect customers and staff, it’s important to think about the opportunities you can offer from a positive, helpful and even cheerful perspective.

Now, with the challenges of lockdown and social-distancing setting in, your customers are looking for little ways to hold onto normalcy. Offering opportunities to shop for fun, improve their health, occupy their little ones or simply browse without intent will truly connect with your audience. Online experiences, such as influencer live shows, social media takeovers and engaging content that lifts the spirits will be a tonic for your cooped-up audience.

With that said, it is still a difficult time for most businesses and organizations. In this blog post, we want to share with you some helpful resources for running an influencer marketing campaign during this time.

Image credits: Violeta Noy

Have appropriate expectations

Just like us, influencers are also facing the current global challenges. You may find that some influencers aren’t able to work at this time for one reason or another. At the same time, because of the fast-changing nature of current events, some influencers might opt out halfway through. As a business ourselves, we’re familiar with facing unpredictable changes head-on and accept that it’s a part of the process.

However, a lot of content creators want to continue during this period. It is, after all, their livelihood. In addition to that, unsurprisingly, a lot more time is being spent on social media for a lot of consumers. This might mean that you can have a higher response rate for collaboration, and a higher engagement rate on publications.

We see eCommerce becoming a stronger channel for our brands. Measures such as social distancing will encourage brands to find new and improved ways to serve their customers. An area that influencer marketing lends its expertise to seamlessly through shoppable Instagram posts.

At the same time, we can see brands being more adventurous with their chosen channels: More online fitness, educational, or communications programs in lieu of physical interactions can inspire new delivery opportunities. Traditionally, Instagram and Facebook have been some of the top leading influencer platforms, but now we can see YouTube, Twitch, and TikTok taking the lead.

Image credits: Dribbble

Have a solid campaign angle

With social distancing impacting interactions, a lot of people are looking to social media as a new, safe space to share love, hope, and motivation. It is encouraging to see messages of support from organizations to SMBs; influencers sharing at-home fitness routines and recipes, and companies giving out free remote-work resources, at a time where authenticity is much needed.

At Upfluence, we have always favored authentic messaging and delivery. Especially during this time, authenticity and sensibility can go a long way. Think of influencer marketing as a way to connect your brand with the audience. How can your product or service benefit the audience at this time?

There’s a real and important opportunity for brands to connect with their audience through solidarity and compassion. As the world is coming together, not only can you continue your relationship with your customers, but also value and elevate them.

Good thing is, influencers can be the bridge between you and your audience through engaging content creation, social media thought-leading, community space creating, and many more. It’s important for brands (digital or not), to make social media connections a new normalcy in lieu of physical connections.

Image credits: Baer Performance Marketing

Be sensitive to the situation

It is impossible to predict how your campaign will be perceived, however, it’s essential to carefully consider your approach. Ensure you remain sensitive to your audience and the situation during times of unsettlement and change.

Some brands successfully incorporate humor, while others refrain. Implement what works for you or risk being insensitive and losing a lot of prospective customers.

Nothing is typical during times like these! If you’re confident that your brand can offer real change and support to your audience, don’t hold back! Don’t underestimate the power of showing your audience a way forward.

Image credits: BrainCode

React to your audiences and their new habits

During this time of self-isolation and enforced quarantine, we will continue to rely upon the ‘can’t-quarantine-without’ list of services and software. Unsurprisingly, streaming and video platforms are on the rise. YouTube, TikTok, and Twitch are becoming even stronger entertainment sources.

On the flip side, people are also looking to connect with their friends and family virtually. This means shared articles on Facebook timelines, tagged usernames in Instagram’s comment sections, and generally more digitally-friendly content being shared as a form of communication, entertainment, and education. Depending on your product or service, the right message on the right platform can promise a confident result.

Image credits: Search Engine Journal

You don’t have to run a campaign right now

As an influencer marketing company, we’ll be the first to say that you don’t have to run an influencer campaign right now. Maybe you are not in a position to run a campaign, perhaps you feel like your product or service is not fitting at the moment, there are, understandably, other priorities at this time. 

Whatever the reason, it’s OK to wait until you (and the world) are ready again. In the meantime, you can still do your research, prepare your influencer list, create the best come-back campaign, or reshape your current campaigns to address our new situation. And we are here to help.

 

We hope these tips are helpful for your team during this time. You can still learn more about how to run an effective campaign by contacting us. Our teams, spread across 4 offices, are working from home, however, we remain available to you via all of our previous communication channels. We hope everyone is staying safe and healthy during this time. 

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