By Kitch Catterall, Social Content Manager
Being an influencer in 2020 has changed dramatically in the past month. Nobody is immune to the drastic lifestyle and employment changes that have occurred due to the pandemic, and whether social media is your side hustle or your full-time gig – it’s safe to assume it’s impacted your social presence.
Not all change is bad and some influencers and brands have reported positive changes in engagement and reach. It’s safe to assume this is simply due to more time and more eyeballs on the platform. Most people are now working from home or job seeking; as such, many are occupying their free time on social media. While anecdotal, there is some evidence that engagement has increased for creators on Instagram by up to 78%. So if you’ve been feeling like your content is performing better than usual lately, that’s probably why.
Aside from the potential increase in post performance, a lot of influencers and creators are wondering how they should create content during a time like this. If you’re a travel blogger, it doesn’t look like you’ll be travelling anywhere anytime soon, so how can you continue to engage with and create for your audience?
Here are a few tips and tricks we think all influencers and creators could benefit from bearing in mind during these uncertain times.
1. Be authentic
It should be a no brainer, but at a time like this a bit of transparency and authenticity can go a long way. Your audience follows you because they connect with you, they like what you post and what you say – so keep being you. If your content has to change a bit right now, talk about it! A lot of Instagram users might be unaware of the time and effort that goes into content creation, so maybe you can show them a bit of behind the scenes.
Share your ups and downs if you feel comfortable; it doesn’t always have to be positive but be conscious of not bringing down your audience emotionally either.
What you were posting before, might not be possible anymore.
So now is the time to think outside the box, and maybe consider posting in a way you previously had avoided. Afraid of #BTS shots or unfiltered photos? Now might be the time to connect with your audience in a way you haven’t before and see how it goes.
If you’re a travel blogger, consider reposting some old photos that you never got around to posting, and talk about your favourite things on the trip. Start integrating some imagery of your normal day to day life so you can maintain your Instagram aesthetic whilst also posting some current, up to date content.
Food bloggers, you might be one of the only niches who can be immune to changes in content! Embrace it and consider creating some quarantine friendly recipes using basic household items, easy recipes for people who perhaps previously relied heavily on dining out.
For all the parents out there, particularly mum bloggers who have such a strong and important presence on Instagram, many of your audience are probably experiencing the same stresses as you right now. Share your tips and tricks to entertaining your kids and simple activities that have worked for you.
3.Experiment with new platforms
One word, TikTok. Or is it two? The platform that has surged into Australian culture quicker than any other. Whilst I certainly won’t be recommending you try out the ‘The Corona Challenge’ anytime soon, why not give creating on TikTok a go and see how the platform could work for you.
If TikTok isn’t your bag, Pinterest is a great and super positive place to feel creative and share some arts and crafts, interior design or décor hacks and even recipes.
A big hurdle for a lot of creators who have social media as a side hustle, as opposed to a full-time job is of course – the time. Youtubers need a lot of time, patience and skill to film videos and edit them, but if time is on your side it could be a good time to give it a crack. Whilst nobody is expecting a fun adventurous vlog right now, your audience might really enjoy an honest sit down video and house tour? We all love to see what others get up to in their day to day lives.
4.Communicate and engage with your audience
It’s called social media for a reason and sometimes it seems like a lot of creators lack the time to really communicate and engage with their audience on a one-on-one level. If you want to maintain a strong relationship and presence amongst a saturated platform right now, connection is key.
Instagram Live is a great way to tune in with your audience and engage with a lot of people at once. Consider posting about a set time to sit down, have something to eat and catch up via a Live stream. Make sure you reply to comments and DMs where you can and encourage audience engagement.
5.Think about what you post
Its more important than ever to be sensitive to the current climate. It’s okay if you don’t want to talk about Coronavirus on every single post, and frankly your audience are probably well aware of the situation and might welcome a break in conversation. However, being mindful and ensuring you don’t mock or make light of the situation is crucial.
Fashion and lifestyle bloggers, your content might have to change and where you previously may have posted a brunch or lifestyle pic, it might have to be a homemade meal and clothing flatlay. It’s going to be hard being agile and adapting to the world around you but it’s definitely possible to still maintain an aesthetic and consistent feed right now. Plus, for now the mail is still flowin’ so you can still cop some comfy new fits for your iso mirror selfies
6.What about branded content?
Whilst we may definitely observe a decrease across the board in collaboration and campaigns right now, it’s not the case for all industries. Many chain restaurants and delivery services might be open to collaborations at this time to help spread the word that they are open for business.
Business Insider explored how some influencers are looking into alternative revenue streams. It’s especially hard for bloggers who create content full time and rely on social media as their main income stream. Don’t feel like collaborations are completely off the cards right now, but do be diligent and choosy with when and what you promote right now. There has been some media attention on a number of celebrities and influencers who have posted tone-deaf or insensitive content right now, and nobody wants to see others make the same mistakes.
We hope some of these tips are useful and give you that encouraging push to keep going, keep creating and try out new things. Keep in touch with your audience and pivot to this new way of life for us all.
You might finally have time to go through the dreaded camera roll and delete all those old photos taking up 80% of your phone storage…
Let us know how you’ve been finding Instagram these past few weeks and slide into our DM’s to share your tips and thoughts!