Online fashion retailer Boohoo have posted an impressive 48% increase in sales. The brand founded by Mahmud Kamani & Carol Kane are putting this down to influencer marketing.
Missguided is one of the top online fashion stores in the UK. With a developed and prominent brand voice, Missguided has millions of fans now expanding all over the world. But one hashtag in particular made an impact and went viral: #BabesOfMissguided.
Missguided have never had an issue with creating viral content, as its campaign #KEEPONBEINGYOU went viral, and aimed to inspire women to love and embrace their flaws. From this campaign, #BabesOfMissguided was born. The idea behind the hashtag was to reinvent the term ‘babe’. The word was classically used in the 90s and 00’s to refer to a girl with a hot body. Those women were simply described by men as: a babe.
“Dude, she’s such a babe,” was a phrase commonly heard in teenage movies, sitcoms and probably from the mouth’s of those American surfer type guys’, when referring to a ‘hot girl’. The term babe was only used to refer to how hot a girl was, not by her personality or her achievements. If she looked good to a guy, she was deemed a babe. Missguided wanted to change that.
During their #KEEPONBEINGYOU campaign, Missguided noticed a new wave of feminism taking place online. Not only were women encouraging other women to be whoever they wanted to be, but they were beginning to own phrases that originally may have been used to degrade them. So, they gave the word babe a makeover too.
#BabesOfMissguided was created to combat the history of the term babe. Missguided wanted to use it to describe a group of unstoppable females - which is a concept that is at the heart of its brand.
Missguided are encouraging women to express their style and creativity in the name of fashion, which is one of the reasons #BabesOfMissguided started to go viral. The hashtag allows women to share their creativity online within a community of people who support that same message as Missguided, and each week, the #BabesOfMissguided tag is scowered, looking for the most inspiring women to feature on the Missguided blog.
Babes of Missguided also has subsections to reach all of its target audience. “Student Edit”, “Coachella Edit” and collaborations between the brand and influencers all reach different ‘Babes’ with different styles. Could this be one of the reasons that #BabesOfMissguided went viral? Or is it the empowerment that comes with it? The answer is: both.
The combination of targeting different types of women and encouraging them all to get involved in the #BabesOfMissguided hashtag is a new concept, as every woman, no matter their style, interests or body type can be a babe (a woman who is killing it, not just a hot girl.)
The new wave of feminism that can be found online, generally on social media, empowers women to be whoever they want to be, which is the key to this viral hashtag. Giving women, young or old, the option to dress however they want, and still be classed as bad ass is amazing! Women are now owning the slurs that are often thrown their way. Fashion is a massive part of that, so for Missguided to be leaders in this movement, is integral, and leads to viral content!
As well as there being a story behind #BabesOfMissguided, it’s also just very engaging and easy to get involved in. Social media users want to share their outfits, their styles, their stories, and they want to be heard. This hashtag does exactly that, allowing people to express themselves naturally, and own a style all whilst supporting other people who are doing the same thing. And, with a big brand being the creators of the hashtag, there are already a foundation of fans and supporters who saw the hashtag and got involved, which led to sharing and expanding!
Going viral doesn’t always involve an algorithm, or a detailed plan. This viral hashtag all started with a movement and with empowerment, and other women just wanted to support that, which led to a viral campaign, and some great new looks.
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Pretty Little Thing has been named one of the top three fastest growing fashion companies ever. But how did the young company manage to reach millions of people in such a short period of time?
Pretty Little Thing was founded in 2012, and in the grand scheme of things, to go from small beginnings to one of the biggest online stores in 7 years, is an incredible achievement by anyone’s standards. Was it down to the social media strategy? With the brand having over 10 million followers on Instagram alone, a lot of people seem to think so.
Let’s take it back to basics for a second. How does social media marketing work on Instagram? Instagram, for anyone who doesn’t know, is a photo sharing app used by 1 billion people. Generally, Instagram is used by people to reflect their lives. Your Instagram tells people who you are, what your interests are, what you spend your time doing, and who you do it with (not actually who you do ‘it’ with, unless you want to share that lol). With Instagram reflecting your life, why would you not want it to be showcasing the best parts of it? Or at least, what appears to be the best parts of it.
That is where social media marketing comes into it. Instagram themes are VITAL in the game of LIFE (or, social media marketing), as they create an image of a brand. Brands are on top of this, and all of the biggest brands use social media marketing to create a brand voice. As an example, technology brands tend to choose Instagram themes that portray ‘real life and real people’ to market its products as accessible (yet with gorgeously crisp and beautiful photography). Pretty Little Thing chose to go for ‘real life and real people’ to market its products as accessible (but only using models in sunny locations shot by photographers). Are you seeing the pattern? It’s all part of social media marketing that says to people - ‘Hey, look at our stunning Instagram that tells a story, and looks amazing. Yours could look like this too if you buy our products’ (usually forgetting to mention that they use professional photographers, models and editors to create these images, not just the product advertised).
But this is why it works so well. Pretty Little Thing as a brand has an amazing relationship with social media, understanding how social media marketing works, and the importance of having an online presence. Pretty Little Thing’s Instagram has a theme, uses stories and it has matching cover photos for its highlights. They use influencer marketing to engage consumers and post on average 6 times a day, which increases each post’s chance of getting seen by more people. Pretty Little Thing are experts in social media marketing, as they know who they’re targeting and how to target them.
Building a brand takes time, especially in the current social media market, however, Pretty Little Thing have been able to grow quickly thanks to the professional nature of its photography. They create content that people want to engage with, rather than to just showcase a product. Pretty Little Thing’s followers want to see the content on their feed because it looks appealing, which is accomplished by making every element of the content professional.
Once the content is perfected, to reach people, the idea is to use hashtags! Pretty Little Thing still use hashtags to reach as many people as they can, however, much less than they used to. The use of hashtags now, are generally to promote its content on trending events. On #NationalPuppyDay, Pretty Little Thing posted a photo with the hashtag and got over 75,000 likes, which did well, getting around 15,000 more likes than the previous photo! Surely, this proves that hashtagging your photos really does #wurk.
So really, there’s no secret. Pretty Little Thing really have just grafted from the start like the rest of us, they just use the assets available to them to create the best content possible and post LOADS of it! So, what’s your excuse? I’ve broken it down for you, time to get going!
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The 1 Billion Download Mark
TikTok has been making headlines again this week after it hit the 1 billion download mark! But what is TikTok, and how did this short form video app become known as an ‘unavoidable part of internet culture’? - Where did it all go right?
Where Did TikTok Come From?
TikTok, first know as Douyin, is a Chinese short form video app that was launched by ByteDance in 2016. Within a year, the app had 100 million monthly active users, and became internationally known as TikTok. At the time of TikTok’s launch, Musical.ly was one of the biggest short form video apps in the world, only being beaten by the well loved, and internationally known: Vine. Unfortunately, Twitter shut Vine down in late 2017, and with that, Musical.ly took over. After ByteDance purchased Musical.ly a month after the shutdown of Vine, Musical.ly was merged with TikTok in August 2018 and history was made (sort of.)
Sounds like a lot? That’s because it is! Let’s take a moment to talk about Musical.ly and Vine before I confuse you further with all of the details of TikTok.
Vine was the first short form video app that really went viral. The app was founded in 2012, and within a few months, it became the most used video sharing application in the world, and less than a year after the launch, became the most downloaded free app in the app store. From 2014 onwards until its closure, Vine experimented and released new updates to the app including loop counts, and ‘Snap to the Beat’, which not only kept up to date with user habits, but also saw the movement towards music-based short form videos.
Musical.ly was the second short form video app that became an internet sensation. Teens made videos set to music, then posted them on the app in the hope of becoming viral. After the format of Musical.ly took off, by May 2017 it had 200 million downloads, and so, we saw the fall of Vine, which was shut down just a few months later.
Merging Musical.ly and TikTok
The merging of TikTok and Music.ly occurred just a year after Vine’s closure, and meant that the two newest, and biggest, platforms could combine audiences as well as formats, making the new version of ‘TikTok’ an immediate hit. Since the merging of sites, TikTok has grown in downloads and popularity worldwide, and is currently in the top 40 free apps on the App Store, just above UberEats and just behind Amazon.
Why Is TikTok So Popular?
Now that you know the history behind the app, you might want to know why TikTok is so popular. Short form video apps have become more and more popular over the years, and the rise of ‘Stories’ on social networking sites such as Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook has had a direct impact on this, thanks to the development of AI and filters. AI and filters became so popular for photo and video taking apps, that short form video apps, such as TikTok, began incorporating them into its own platform, so the first reason as to why TikTok is so popular is that it’s on top of trends, incorporating some of the best parts of other photo sharing apps - the filters.
Another reason as to why TikTok is so popular is because of the link to Musical.ly. Who wouldn’t want an easy way to make music videos to share with friends? Lip syncing and amateur ‘music video’ creation became popular with Musical.ly, and has continued to be a popular form of video creation today, as it became an easier way for users to become creators.
TikTok is an app dedicated to more than just video creation, it’s also a social media site, which is another attractive quality that the app has. As the number of users increases at the same rate as creators, it is much easier for users to share and discuss their videos on this app, compared to any other short form video app before. Although Vine may have been the first social media app dedicated to short form video, TikTok is the first short form video app with a large pool of creators who interact with viewers and other creators on the app.
So overall, why is TikTok so popular? It’s really just because it has taken the best part of each social media site: the interaction, the videos, the creation, and put it all together into one big, and very successful, app!
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Influencer Marketing in 2019
We’re now well into the 2019 and Influencer Marketing doesn’t look like slowing down any time soon. With a huge amount of growth for the industry in the last couple of years, there comes the obvious criticisms from old media, but in 2019, the world of influencer marketing and social will continue to grow, extensively.
So, what will 2019 have in store?
Deeper than engagement. Who has real influence?
First and foremost, brands will become more demanding and rightly so. The days of vanity metrics will disappear, it’ll no longer be about a popularity contest for the most views or most amount of followers. These won’t be accepted as hard metrics for the performance of influencer marketing. There needs to be context and we as an agency go deeper than engagement to understand what’s really being delivered by influencers.
Brilliant, we got millions of views on a piece of content….but who saw it? Are they our potential customers? Are they the right demographic? Did they click through to the website? Did they download the App? How is this activity going to impact our bottom line as a business? Did we sell anything?
These and so many more questions, clients will want answered and this will force innovation, forcing agencies to be more inventive and creative with messaging, call-to-actions to deliver the results. Most importantly, we’ll find the influencers that really perform and have real influence, we’ll look to build long-lasting brand relationships with these influencers and brands.
The influencer industry will continue to grow. Nearly two-thirds (65%) of advertisers plan to increase their influencer marketing spend this year, according to a recent survey by the World Federation of Advertisers. Reading the figures, these budgets are being pulled from somewhere, as marketing spend as a whole is being cut! Six years of marketing budget growth has come to end as Brexit and economic uncertainty causes business to cool marketing spend in the final quarter of 2018, according to the IPA's Bellwether Report.
There’s only one place these budgets can be coming from and that’s the marketing budget of traditional media, TV, paid and so on being cut…..to be redeployed across social and influencer marketing, signalling brands feel they are a more effective route for brands to reach and market to their audience.
With marketing cuts, this will force brands and agencies to be looking for new and innovative methods to reach their consumers. Never has marketing spend been so important to utilise than in 2019.
Not just a box ticking exercise.
For many brands, influencer marketing had become a box ticking exercise, whereas now in 2019 it’ll become the integral part of how brands share their message. What the most effective and memorable influencer campaigns have in common is that they’re not just using influencers as an audience rental opportunity or another media spend avenue, that’s been bolted onto a campaign with a bit of leftover budget to tick the influencer marketing box.
The best campaigns have actually been allowed to be shaped, in part, by the influencers, with the messaging and insights they help develop being integrated across all the marketing mix. Influencer Marketing will no longer be just a bolt on, it’s a part of the mix that can no longer be ignored.
If you’d like to see how influencers can fit into your 2019 marketing strategy, get in touch at email@example.com
2018 was a great year for tech, and 2019 is looking to continue that trend and get even better. We wanted to look back at the best technology influencers of 2018 in order to see what might be coming up for technology influencers in 2019!
Lewis Hilsenteger describes his Youtube channel as ‘where products get naked’, and shares content with 13.5 million subscribers, and 1.8 million followers on Instagram. Lewis went viral in 2016 after a video emerged of him bending a brand new iPhone 6 with his bare hands, and his channel grew, where he reviews the newest and coolest tech products.
In 2013, Vic Gundotra expressed that Marques Brownlee was "the best technology reviewer on the planet right now", and since then, he has gone from strength to strength, building up his channel and his brand. His Youtube channel, which has over 7 million subscribers, is best known for its smartphone reviews, and explanation of new products. Marques also has 1.7 million followers on his Instagram page, where he interacts with his followers, asking them what they want to see.
Austin Evans is known for his channel that features a little bit of everything and all things tech. Whether you are looking for gaming or PC reviews, or you want to know more about the latest smartphone, then his channel is great. Over the 12 years that he’s been on the platform, Austin has amassed 3.5 million subscribers, and more recently, 419k followers followers on Instagram.
We’re looking forward to seeing what technology is released and reviewed in 2019, and we’ll be watching out to see if our top 3 tech influencers changes throughout 2019!
The cultural relevance of modern fashion and its key players has never been greater. Todays influencers have been afforded unique abilities to steer perceptions in ways that those before them never were.
Social media has given the opportunity for the large scale characterisation of your everyday man and woman on the street, often transforming mere fashion appreciators into globally recognised opinion shapers.
Here is a list of 5 fashion influencers that did it best in 2018:
A Manchester based fashion influencer who combines modesty with fashion to create some beautiful styles. Her very real captions inspire and create discussion around different social issues making her one of the leading personalities in fashion influencing.
Ellie is based in Paris and has an intriguing style that perfectly recreates the idea of smart casual outfits. Ellie also has some very bold outfit choices, which we absolutely love and want to try in 2019!
Katherine is a journalist, blogger, mum - and fashionista! Her blog, Work, Work, Work is an inspiration to all career driven women and her outfits are perfect for standing out in the workplace.
Margaret is a Chinese-Australian photographer, writer, stylist, director and fashion influencer. Her bold styles stand out among New Yorkers, where she is based, and are perfect for any city lover!
Lesego is a South African, plus sized fashion influencer. As well as being involved in various campaigns, Lesego also promotes her own body positivity posts, sharing inspiring stories and photographs of her pulling off some amazing styles.
Were there any fashion influencers that you would have liked to see on our list? Let us know who your favourite’s were from 2018, and who you’d like to see more of next year!
Marketing is difficult. As a professional, the extent to which a customer engages with your content relies heavily upon whether or not they sense sincerity in your message. Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of traditional advertising and skeptical as a result.
This skepticism has caused consumers to rely more heavily on guidance from immediate sources that they inherently trust and that are more directly aligned with their own style and taste. This is often friends, professionals, but more recently and prominently social media influencers.
The fashion world is undoubtedly one of the more influential sectors. Largely due to it’s ability to act in conjunction with many other areas. Technology influencers, gaming influencers, sport influencers are all able to drive interest and engagement for fashion brands in cohesion with their respective industries.
Despite all of this, investing in fashion influencer marketing is a waste of resource should the selection process not be considered, measured and eventually refined to a candidate that has an audience specific to the one you’re striving towards.
All a bit overwhelming? Don’t worry. Here are 4 factors to consider before choosing your influencer:
Before you do anything, you should asses the relevance of the influencer to your brand. How aligned is their offering with yours? What tone do they convey and how is yours similar? For example, if you have a product made from organic recycled cotton, you’re going to want an influencer that endorses sustainable fashion as opposed to someone that regularly wears plastics and expresses no interest in environmentally conscious products.
This step is crucial as it’s the starting block to which the selection process is built upon.
How engaged are their followers? How many are sharing? Commenting? Liking? Returning? A huge following is great but it means very little to brands if those numbers aren’t interacting with content. A good indication of a meaningful relationship is how often the consumer returns to the page after first viewing.
An important factor but often an over emphasised one. The size of an influencer’s following and its relevance to your brand is only relative to the extent that it’s representative of your target market. For example, a fashion blogger endorsing boutique sunglasses is going to drive more meaningful engagement than a gaming influencer endorsing the same product.
It’s also important to note that different social platforms attract different demographics. I.e a fashion influencer boasting a large Instagram following is likely to be a more useful resource to brands than a fashion influencer with the same following on Facebook.
Authenticity is a key component to a compelling story. It’s also a critical factor in your selection process. Influencers with a smaller ratio of sponsored content tend to be more trusted by consumers and appear far more authentic.
When reviewing an influencers content, you should assume that the viewer understands the concept of influencer marketing and recognises that product reviews are unlikely to be organic conceptions and are more likely commissioned.
The most effective endorsements are those that are woven into a narrative. For example, a video blog documenting your weekend at London fashion week.
With this list you’re now equipped to tackle the fashion influencing market and begin your journey to increased brand relevance.