All across the world, COVID-19 has affected industries which in turn has also affected the influencer market. Regarding brands that are trying to make ends meet, around 69% of them have already chosen to cut down on their advertising budgets to save capital. Influencers will usually make profits from collaborations and promotions with brands directly, however, this situation has created obstacles and hardships within the market due to the recent outbreak.
With the decrease in the company’s marketing expenditure, influencers have had to scramble together new ideas and methods to gain attention and keep themselves afloat during the pandemic. In all, the influencer market is evolving and these professionals will need to continue learning different approaches to handle the ups and downs of the crisis.
Influencers Adapting to Coronavirus
Since the start of lockdown, influencers have had to deal with the obstacles of COVID-restrictions and how it has completely affected what type of content they produce. Topics and ideas once created from restaurants, stores, collab houses, traveling, have all abruptly come to a halt, meaning they now face new obstacles while having to abide by quarantine and safety precautions.
Along with people stuck at home globally, buying behavior has fluctuated with most businesses witnessing a decline in overall revenue. Companies quickly realized this and shrunk their advertising budgets, resulting in the influencer market going down by 41% compared to the previous year. Despite the decrease in industry ROI, what influencers have taken into account is the high increase in social media activity since the start of COVID. Social media growth year over year has already increased by 61%, meaning that despite losses in revenue, influencers have been working on ways to maintain or heighten their activity and engagement for higher engagement levels and online visibility.
Do’s and Don’ts for Influencers During Covid-19
The Coronavirus has brought with it huge amounts of chaos. During this time, it’s been hard for influencers to always predict or execute methods that’ll help them during these times. Thankfully, this list below will go through tips on the knowledgeable approaches or even scroll through the top social media influencers and see how they market themselves for success in times of crisis.
Engage – As of 2020, there are approximately 3.6 million people currently active on social media. It’ll be important for influencers to keep engaging with their audience and keep traffic flowing, even if everyone is staying at home. Influencers engaging with their followers will keep their online presence up, at a time where it could diminish in comparison to competitors.
Create Loyalty & Positivity – The pandemic is unpredictable, Influencers creating a bond of loyalty and positive energy with their audiences will create long-term connections with their followers. By using their platform, influencers can bring people together during a time where people may feel alone and scared by creating an uplifting, positive space for others to enjoy.
Create Connections – Influencers creating relationships with brands in an organic manner will help them once the pandemic disruptions start to dissolve. By creating bonds between relevant brands, it’ll help influencers expand their network for possible collaborations in the future. Canadian influencer Nitsan Raiter has utilized this strategy by promoting Dior in her content, though the brand is not currently collaborating with Raiter, this approach can potentially create a networking bond once the virus subsides.
Research – Influencers adapting to Coronavirus have also consisted of researching trending topics to produce content on. By researching keywords or topics that an influencer’s specific audience would be interested in, will help them stay relevant and potentially bring in traffic to their platforms. One of the easiest ways an influencer can produce relevant content is by enforcing safety precautions with their followers. For example, influencer Taylor Hage posted a photo of her wearing a mask while out on a walk; the image is relevant to the current precautions people all need to take during the pandemic.
Ignorance – Influencers should not be ignorant to the current situation at hand. Avoiding the pandemic will only deter the trust of followers and be a crude response to the pandemic. Influencers will need to continuously show empathy towards people about the virus to create a bond with followers, as well as a safe empathetic platform. LA-based influencer Jake Paul has recently been getting an uproar online for hosting mansion parties as well as posting content of the gatherings amidst infection cases in the area.
Stay Quiet – With so many people utilizing social media to feel connected with others, the last thing an influencer should be doing is taking a break from their platforms. If an influencer isn’t using this time to connect with their followers, the result may be lost trust or a slower recovery once the pandemic restrictions ease.
Negativity – Around one-third of the American population has shown signs of depression, stress, and anxiety since the start of the Coronavirus. Influencers in response to this need to keep in consideration about posting anything with a negative connotation. Social media should be utilized as an uplifting platform for audiences to escape away from the stress of the pandemic and lockdowns.
In conclusion to these pointers, influencers generally need to be thinking about the future of their own brand. They’ll need to work on their online presence and growing their traffic to ensure security when all pandemic restrictions start to lift and life goes back to normal. As the virus lingers, influencers need to realize they will need to constantly work on their visibility and connect with their audience and brands for a smooth recovery.
People need to remember that COVID-19 will be impacting all businesses for a long time to come before anything starts to get better. Influencer marketing during Coronavirus had significantly been hit during this crisis and should have influencers actively working towards a COVID-marketing strategy. The market needs to continuously engage with their audience, create connections with brands even without any business success, and keep up with research on relevant topics to discuss while avoiding any bit of negativity at all costs.
Although, this may not be a time of growth for influencers and their brands but it’s a great time to create stronger bonds with their audience and make a stable platform to work with once the virus dissipates completely.