- As consumers spend more time online during the coronavirus pandemic, engagement and views on social-media platforms have jumped.
- Influencers are seeing dramatic increases in engagement across platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok, according to a new survey of 389 digital creators run by the influencer-marketing firm Influence Central.
- 26% of respondents reported seeing an increase in views and engagement on Instagram, 9% saw an increase on TikTok, and 37% reported a jump on Pinterest. 33% of influencers surveyed said they’ve had a boost in views and engagement on their personal blogs.
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As more people spend time at home in an effort to curb the coronavirus outbreak, engagement and views on social-media platforms are spiking.
In a new survey of 389 digital creators conducted by the marketing firm Influence Central, creators reported seeing increases in audience engagement across social media platforms like Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, Pinterest, and their personal blogs. Influence Central’s survey focused on the period of time from mid-February to mid-March when states and local governments first began implementing stay-at-home orders in response to the pandemic.
26% of respondents reported seeing an increase in views and engagement on Instagram, 9% saw an increase on TikTok, and 37% reported a jump in engagement on Pinterest. 33% of those surveyed said they’ve had a boost in views and engagement on their personal blogs.
Other influencer marketers have also seen engagement bumps in recent weeks, especially on sponsored posts.
The influencer marketing agency Obviously told Business Insider that it saw a 76% increase in daily accumulated “likes” on sponsored posts for its influencer campaigns on Instagram in the first half of March. The company also observed a 27% increase in engagement on sponsored posts on TikTok between February and March. Engagement on TikTok is calculated by combining likes, comments, and shares and dividing by total views.
“On the influencer side, on social content, what we’ve seen is they’re hitting upwards of 25% more views than they normally would,” said Vickie Segar, the founder of the influencer-marketing firm Village. “We’re seeing an extreme increase on the consumption of social content.”
The recent spike in social-media views and engagement hasn’t necessarily translated into more earnings for influencers, however. Many digital creators have lost revenue this month as travel and events-based opportunities are shut down and brands cancel sponsorship deals as they attempt to cut costs during a slumping economy.
Influencers are interested in posting ‘feel good’ and ‘philanthropic’ content on social media
For influencers who are able to continue to earn money from sponsored content, many are looking to work on campaigns that are positive in tone and tied to charity and relief efforts related to the pandemic.
89% of respondents to Influence Central’s survey said they wanted to work on “feel good” brand campaigns and “philanthropic efforts,” a desire that falls in line with how brands themselves are approaching influencer marketing during the coronavirus crisis.
Last week, the backpack company JanSport ran an influencer-marketing campaign focused on its charitable giving to the nonprofit World Central Kitchen. In other categories of advertising like traditional TV commercials, brands like Toyota have been leaning into “feel good” messages of unity in place of more transactional messaging.
“Influencers are really talking about the relationship they have with a brand,” said Daniel Schotland, the chief operating officer of the influencer firm Linqia. “It’s more than a sponsored post. [There’s] some sense of common value or bond and pride in working together at this time.”
Most digital creators are talking about coronavirus and the ‘stay-home’ economy
Creators who responded to Influence Central’s survey also said that they aren’t shying away from speaking about the current public health crisis in their social-media posts.
73% of respondents said they have “addressed COVID-19 and the new ‘stay-home’ economy” instead of just focusing on their regular content. The United Nations recently encouraged creators to post about the public health crisis in an open brief, asking influencers to “use any creative medium” to educate followers on topics like the importance of physical distancing and hand washing.
“We’re watching influencers live their daily lives like we always do and that includes now working out from home and eating at home,” Segar said. “They’re not pretending like this isn’t happening.”
Here is the full breakdown of what influencers are seeing in terms of increased engagement and views across digital platforms, according to Influence Central’s survey:
- Pinterest: 37% of respondents saw an increase in views and engagement in the month leading up to March 18th when the survey was conducted. 18% of all 389 respondents said that increase was “dramatic” (15% or higher).
- Instagram: 36% of respondents reported an increase in views and engagement. 12% of all respondents said that increase was dramatic.
- Facebook: 35% of respondents reported an increase in views and engagement. 11% of all respondents reported a dramatic increase.
- Personal blog: 33% of respondents reported an increase in views and engagement. 11% of all respondents said the increase was dramatic.
- Twitter: 22% of respondents reported an increase in views and engagement. 6% of all respondents said the increase was dramatic.
- YouTube: 12% of respondents reported an increase in views and engagement. 4% of all respondents said the increase was dramatic.
- TikTok: 9% of respondents reported an increase in views and engagement. 3% of all respondents said the increase was dramatic.
For more information on how brands, creators, and marketers are adjusting to new consumer behavior during the coronavirus outbreak, read these Business Insider Prime posts:
- 7 key lessons for brands that want to run sponsored social-media posts during a crisis without appearing tone deaf, according to an influencer-marketing exec: Business Insider spoke with the influencer agency Linqia about how the firm was guiding brands and digital creators during the coronavirus pandemic.
- JanSport hired a Gen-Z ‘think tank’ to help launch a TikTok influencer campaign during the coronavirus pandemic without appearing tone deaf: The backpack brand JanSport hired 10 TikTok creators to generate buzz around its donations to the nonprofit World Central Kitchen.
- A top social-video data firm made a 22-page report on how the coronavirus has changed viewer habits on YouTube and other platforms. Here are the 5 takeaways: Tubular Labs put together a 22-page report on YouTube and Facebook video consumption during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Influencer marketers say sponsored Instagram posts have had views, likes, and comments sharply increase the past 2 weeks: As the coronavirus outbreak increases social isolation, influencer marketers are seeing greater user engagement on apps like TikTok and Instagram.
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