The Impacts of TikTok’s Global Presence

As TikTok is driving a new wave of entertainment, is the platform reflecting culture or creating it? Or both? The worldwide ubiquity of TikTok has myriad impacts, including fascinating and unexpected benefits to society.

Here are a few insights into the Swiss audience

  • 1.7M monthly active users
  • 5.2M monthly creations
  • 8.7B monthly video views
  • 70 minutes spent daily
  • 16 daily open times

There’s No Denying the Significance of TikTok

Overall, TikTok has been downloaded more than 3.5 billion times. It is the first non-Meta app (and the fifth app of all time) to surpass 3 billion downloads. In 2021, the platform remained the most-download app globally, with 656 million downloads. The second-place app, Instagram, is rather far behind with 545 million downloads, making TikTok downloads more than 20% higher than Instagram. In the first fourt months of 2022, TikTok was downloaded more than 175 million times. TikTok is available in over 154 countries and has over 1 billion monthly active users, who spend an average of 52 minutes per day in the platform.

TikTok is Conquering the World

TikTok trends proliferate worldwide – and quickly.

Globally, TikTokers are united in their enjoyment of these new trends, driving a sort of global unity. Are people worldwide benefitting from this connection? 

TikTok takes credit for the impact the platform makes globally. “Beyond music, our platform and community impacts culture and generates trends that start on TikTok and permeate everywhere.” On 5 December 2021, The New York Times echoed this sentiment, referring to the platform as, “2021’s central vehicle for youth culture and online culture generally.”

But more recently, on 3 June, 2022, The New York Times published, “a lot of stuff posted on the platform is so goofy and weird that searching for meaning in it can feel downright idiotic.” To declare the platform as both goofy and idiotic, while also serving as a central vehicle for youth culture doesn’t bode well for the future. The scope of opinion on the platform is clearly broad, and there’s also no shortage of controversy surrounding it.

Trends – Conformity + Originality

Trends typically refer to changes towards a prevailing tendency. What’s “trendy,” is popular and becomes widespread. More people adopt the latest trend, from low to high rise jeans, verbal expressions, or types of social media posts.

Many creative influencers put their own unique spins on the latest trends. The trend merely serves as an inspirational jumping-off point. As Hootsuite writes, “Users putting their own spin on trends is the best part — and they often get rewarded (by the algorithm) for breaking conventions.” From moving moments, to experiences up to comedy and recipes, TikTok sets constantly emerging trends in various directions. Currently, the song by Lana Del Ray – young and beautiful is a trend, to which people on TikTok share fulfilling and beautiful moments with their community, whether it’s experiences from trips, vacation days at the beach, or good times with their loved ones. But also yummy recipes have made it into the trends, currently a recipe with pasta, butter, lemon and parmesan in particular is also going viral. But next to TikTok’s originality, it’s the inspirational side we do really like the most about TikTok, don’t we? It’s so much more than a trend machine, but really offers deep, meaningful, touching and emotional (in a good way) content.

TikTok’s All-Knowing Algorithm

It’s important for social media platforms to have an appealing interface and deliver an excellent user experience. A critical mass of users and content creators are also vital to keep users coming back.

But the algorithm is a massive source of differentiation.

For good or bad [or both] algorithms are powerful tools that drive the impact of a platform and shape users’ experiences. TikTok is no exception. Arguably, TikTok does a better job of this than all other platforms, as evidenced by its popularity.This all-knowing algorithm has also led to some interesting outcomes, including one social media manager who wrote, The TikTok Algorithm Knew My Sexuality Better Than I Did. Smart brands are able to harness this power and leverage the platform to connect with their audiences.

The Vital Role of Creators

TikTok has been strategic in recruiting and compensating content creators, knowing that they’re key to the success of any platform. In July 2020, TikTok launched a $1 Billion Creator Fund, through which “creators will be able to realize additional earnings that help reward the care and dedication they put into creatively connecting with an audience that’s inspired by their ideas.”

TikTok has grown to be an authority on what’s hot. From songs and artists to fashion and products, the platform serves as a popularity stress test. And rewarding the creator community with creator funds is another way in which other platforms have followed TikTok’s lead, including YouTube Shorts, Meta, Snapchat, Twitter Spaces, and Pinterest.

70% of TikTok users say they feel like they’re part of a community. Beyond posting videos, creators can build and enhance community atmosphere by engaging with their audiences through tools like Stitch, Duet, Reply, and comments. Among our list of “Swiss Influencers & Content Creators to Keep an Eye On” is TikToker Julie Riess, who posts “Get Ready With Me” videos and shares with followers her decision-making process putting together outfits.TikTok promotes a variety of positive, uplifting activities. TikTok offers extensive support to content creators- even those creators who author content that’s consumed outside of the platform. Most recently, TikTok has partnered with Barnes & Noble and their creator community to launch the #BookTokChallenge, which encourages people to read new books and authors and then share their reactions.

How TikTok is Changing Marketing & The Value for Brands 

As we wrote in, “Influencer Marketing vs. Legacy Advertising,” traditional ads are a deviation from the content audiences want to consume, whereas influencer marketing fuses ads into the desired content. Recognizing this, TikTok has long advised, “Don’t make ads, make TikToks.” 

Many brands have been following this sage advice and achieving excellent results. Kantar’s Media Reactions Report ranked TikTok #1 for ad equity. “Ad equity measures the audience’s attitude and preference towards ads across media channels and premium media brands. In other words, TikTok’s branded solutions aren’t perceived as just ‘ads’ by audiences. In fact, TikTok tops the list for delivering branded content that actually resonates with online consumers.”

According to Kantar, “TikTok ad formats have the highest positive sentiment among consumers. This means that users are more receptive to TikTok ads than other media platforms.” “Of the 13 major digital platforms that Kantar compared, TikTok is credited for offering the least intrusive and most innovative ad formats.”

According to a TikTok-commissioned study conducted by Kantar, 72% of those surveyed agree that ads on TikTok are perceived as inspiring. “With innovative ad formats such as the Branded Hashtag Challenge, brands on TikTok now have the tools to become part of culture, enabling their audiences to create trends based on branded sounds, actions, effects or brand-related storylines that can travel freely across the TikTok community and beyond.” 

Kingfluencers TikTok services help brands harness this value with our unique holistic approach combining social media services, influencer marketing, and performance marketing.

Check out our blog and follow Kingfluencers for our upcoming articles.

Author: Megan Bozman, Owner @Boz Content Marketing

How Can We Fix Toxic Beauty Standards on Social Media?

Ogilvy UK will no longer work with influencers who distort or retouch their bodies or faces for brand campaigns in a bid to combat social media’s ‘systemic’ mental health harms.”

While this rule is undeniably well-intentioned, it still permits influencers to alter their appearance through numerous other mechanisms such as contouring makeup, push-up bras, false eyelashes, and hair extensions. Therefore, I wonder how effective it will be in making substantive progressive towards the goal of reducing unrealistic beauty ideals.

Most agree social media promotes unrealistic, toxic beauty ideals which negatively impact people’s mental health. What can be done about this complex issue? Who should do it?

Well, we have some ideas.

Growing Recognition of Social Media’s Mental Health Impacts 

“As a Gen Xer, the beauty ideals of my childhood in the ‘80s came from MTV (look it up, kids) and magazines. I have clear memories of the thin legs of the women in ZZ Top’s “Legs” video. My own legs have never been so thin, but I’ve learned to love them and appreciate their ability to cycle up steep hills in the woods,” says Megan Bozman, Content Creator at Kingluencers.

Body dysmorphia and depression certainly aren’t new developments that arose solely from social media. However, a myriad of research reveals social media use increases the prevalence of such maladies and worsens the conditions. 

The BBC states, “using social media does appear to be correlated with body image concerns.” The impact is especially pernicious with adolescent girls. Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt wrote, “The subset of studies that allow researchers to isolate social media, and Instagram in particular, show a much stronger relationship with poor mental health. The same goes for those that zoom in on girls rather than all teens. Girls who use social media heavily are about two or three times more likely to say that they are depressed than girls who use it lightly or not at all.”

People are increasingly seeking medical interventions to permanently alter their faces, inspired by touched-up or filtered photos of themselves. A 2020 survey of American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) members reveals, “a surge in surgical demand not seen in recent years,” followed in 2021 by, “catapulting demand for facial plastic surgery and aesthetic procedures.” 

Does Low Self-Confidence Drive Increased Beauty Purchases? 

Do beauty brands benefit from these toxic beauty ideals? It’s certainly possible that women who have a negative self-image might spend more money on beauty products. Are brands therefore incentivized to run campaigns that damage self-image?

Of course, top line revenue shouldn’t be marketers’ only objective, and we hope most brands wouldn’t want to deliberately make people feel bad. But the issue is worth addressing since for-profit companies must prioritize shareholder value. 

The good news is that ethical behavior doesn’t harm revenue (at least in this case!) Some studies show that women with lower self-esteem use more makeup, probably to hide imperfections. However, women with higher self-esteem can also use makeup to attract attention.”

In the long run, no one wins from toxic beauty ideals.

Where Does the Responsibility Lie?

If, as a society, we want beauty ideals to shift towards natural depictions and an inclusive appreciation for the diversity of human appearance, how do we get there?

Much like with the battle against misinformation, tackling this challenge requires multiple entities taking more responsibility. Each group should play a role and serve to compensate for the shortcomings of the others. 

Social Media Marketing Specialist at Kingfluencers and Influencer Ha Vy Nguyen said,

“As an Influencer, this topic weighs on my shoulders, as one of our responsibilities is to be inspirational and set examples to our community. And if you heavily edit your photos, you’re contributing to the problem. At the same time, I have the pressure to present the perfect version myself and look a certain way. If I don’t deliver that, my engagement wouldn’t be as strong or my account wouldn’t grow as much. I would welcome a mandatory declaration, in the caption for example, stating that the photo has been edited. But to ban all photo editing I think would make too much of an impact, and not necessarily a positive one.”

Government Efforts to Combat Toxic Beauty Ideals

Conservative MP Dr. Luke Evans introduced a bill in the UK Parliament calling for advisory labels on images where influencers have digitally altered their bodies. Dr. Evans said people were “caught up in the arms race for the perfect selfie,” which was impacting mental health. He hopes “we can foster a society that aims for body positivity without physiques that are literally impossible without digital manipulation.”

A well-intentioned goal, to be sure.

But there’s a common phrase about where a path “paved with good intentions” leads. I’m not sure I agree with Dr. Evans assertion that his Digitally Altered Body Images bill is not an example of the ‘nanny state’ in action. Enforcement will be complex and multiple questions arise, such as if editing for artistic purposes would be permitted.

Brands Promoting Healthy Beauty Ideals

Brands should be trendsetters, taking the lead and setting a positive example. Revisiting the example at the beginning of the article, “Ogilvy UK will no longer work with influencers who distort or retouch their bodies or faces.” Dove only works with influencers that do not distort their appearance on social media, and has created campaigns that celebrate no digital distortion.

Dove has also launched a “#DetoxYourFeed” campaign, which includes a downloadable “Confidence Kit” and “Parents’ Guide” with academically-validated resources and tools. 

Influencers Embodying Natural Beauty

Like brands, influencers can also strive to set a positive example. Influencers can also put our below tips into practice, including partnering with other influencers who vary in appearance.

Anja Lapčević, Co-CEO & Chief Influence Officer, Kingfluencers, said, “This topic should also be addressed by agencies. The issue of ‘false’ beauty ideals is not a new phenomenon, nor is it unique to social media. It is a social problem that has been with us for years. On the one hand, social media intensifies this problem, but at the same time it can also be a solution. Despite all the retouching, you can find unedited, exciting faces, and unfiltered stories on topics such as beauty mania, mental health, and sexuality.

“Banning something usually doesn’t solve the problem. Put more emphasis on transparency. Divulging edits and discussing the issue are the only ways we can develop awareness and move forward together as a society.”

One of Kingfluencers clients said, “I personally welcome these developments. I believe that the prevailing situation, with selfies that are heavily edited, puts many people under pressure to meet unrealistic ideals and can be detrimental to mental health.”

Another Kingfluencers’ client said, “As the Eau Thermale Avène brand, we want to encourage everyone to feel good about their skin. Our slogan, ‘Healthy skin is confidence,’ illustrates this. For over 30 years, our skin care products have been developed by scientists and dermatologists dedicated to the life of skin, especially sensitive skin. Soothed, protected and repaired, people with sensitive skin can trust our dermatological expertise to help them regain self-confidence. Our manifesto includes the fact that imperfections are what make us unique. That’s the beauty of life.”

A Code of Conduct to Guide Responsible Influence

Based in Switzerland, the Conscious Influence Hub (CIH) is a non-profit NGO with a mission of “promoting the core values of respect, empathy, and transparency in the social media influence sphere.”

Working together, Kingfluencers and CIH launched a Code of Conduct that includes best-practice guidelines and examples. Preventing the dissemination of unrealistic beauty ideals aligns with CIH’s guidance to influencers, which includes being transparent with your community. 

France has required retouched advertising images to be marked as such since 2017. A new law in Norway will also require social media influencers to declare if they’ve modified their photos on paid posts. Swiss influencer Nives Arrigoni supports the law, ” In general, I’m for more reality on Instagram.”

Switzerland does not have such a law, although in 2019, the Swiss Compliance Commission (SLK) introduced the following in the regulations for fair and honest advertising, “It is unfair to use computer-processed images of bodies and body shapes in a deceptive manner in commercial communications in order to claim an effect or result that cannot be achieved.” The SLK has not yet received any complaints about it.

Top Tips for Brands to Promote Healthy Beauty Ideals

1. Work with influencers who vary in appearance.

It’s well known that women may use filters and digital editing to make alterations such as plumper lips, thicker hair, larger breasts, and smoother, wrinkle-free skin. Of course, plenty of women naturally have such attributes. It doesn’t help to ban digitally altered images if you then work only with influencers who naturally have the exact appearance everyone’s striving to recreate digitally.

Give the smaller-breasted lady a chance. Partner with the influencer with wrinkles. Let the short-legged woman model your dresses. Everyone likes to see themselves represented as people are so individual and special in their own way and come in all shapes and sizes.

2. Be transparent about your policies.

Make it clear that you either ban or at least discourage significant “face-tuning.” Clarify your position on using models and influencers who vary in appearance.

3. Reveal the power of non-digital visual alterations.

Makeup, lighting, and posture can all have significant impacts on people’s appearance. Show some “before and after” to give people a behind-the-scenes glimpse. Such transparency adds further authenticity to your social media presence.

4. Actively encourage mental health & wellness.

Encourage your community to take steps to improve and maintain their wellbeing, such as spending time in nature, exercising, and socializing in person. Back up words with actions. For example, make monetary contributions to charities such as Girls on The Run, or give staff a paid day off to volunteer building parks. Be part of the solution.

Cultivate Positivity and Brand Love for Longterm Revenue

Consumers aren’t eager to patronize brands that obviously strive to get their money via any means necessary, including deliberately making them feel bad. Fortunately, brands can clearly stand in opposition to this approach, and influencer marketing is a powerful tool for building such positive connections.

At Kingfluencers, we believe effectively matching brands and influencers drives value. Brands benefit from partnering with influencers who focus on positivity and realness, and who build a sense of community among their followers. Done well, influencer marketing can contribute to consumers feeling as though a brand adds value to their lives and understands them. Ultimately, cultivating positivity can drive brand love, resulting in long term revenue growth. 

Take the high road. Not only does it feel good, it benefits the bottom line.

Next Steps for Brands?

If you need influencers to represent your brand while authentically demonstrating uplifting beauty standards, contact Kingfluencers. We can help you select influencers and design campaigns so you can be part of the solution, while simultaneously achieving your business goals such as increased reach.

Author: Megan Bozman, Owner @Boz Content Marketing

Free Ebook – Connecting the Dots: Guide to Omnichannel Digital Storytelling for Brands

Although the term “storytelling” is (over)used non-stop in marketing circles, it sometimes feels like a mythical creature many talk about but few ever really see. One thing we know is that stories work.

In our Ebook about Omnichannel Storytelling, you will find every important aspect to step up your storytelling game to connect even more with your audience.

Downloadable Content

e-book

Omnichannel Digital Storytelling for Brands

Click here to find out more about our influencer marketing and here for our social media services.

Swiss Influencers & Content Creators to Keep an Eye On

Switzerland is filled with innovative, fascinating influencers who create informative and entertaining content every day. Kingfluencers has had the pleasure of working with all of the following, and we’d like to highlight some particularly fantastic examples for you to keep an eye on.

Swiss Influencers Who are Leading Trends

Kingfluencers recently published, “13 Social Media & Influencer Marketing Trends to Look For Now,” and we’re categorizing our top Swiss Influencers according to who’s excelling at a few of selected trends. Download the eBook for an in depth look at all the trends.

More Love For Nano and Micro Influencers

For influencer marketing campaigns, brands focus more and more on engagement rates than other metrics, such as total followers. According to a report from Later and Fohr, nano and micro influencers (<25K followers) have the highest engagement rate, averaging 7%, which is more than double the benchmark of 3.21%.

Professional soccer player for FC Basel Alayah Pilgrim is a micro influencer who posts about fashion, fitness, and soccer, of course. She also shares a TikTok account with her boyfriend.

Picture: Alayah Pilgrim

Video is Dominating

Over the next 18 months, video content will continue to increase in relevance and importance. As video becomes the dominant medium, other formats are even less likely to be noticed and brands will have to produce more video content to share.

Alessandra Spataro is well known for her professional and creative videos on TikTok. She often shows ‘behind the scenes’ how she created her videos, and also shares ‘fails’ when things go wrong. Alessandra’s videos have great variety and stunning visual appeal, such as the popping of water balloons with different color dyes.

The success of TikTok is accelerating the move towards video. TikToker Julie Riess frequently posts a variety of videos and is relatable in exhibiting authenticity. In addition to TikToks about food and thrift store shopping, Julie posts “Get Ready With Me” videos and shares with followers her decision-making process putting together outfits.

Creator Economy Will Boom as Content Becomes Currency

The growth of the value of content is driving numerous trends. In particular, more people will try to capitalize on their content, opinion, and voice, making everything more crowded. Brands as well as social media platforms will be actively seeking and soliciting content creators.

Kingfluencers has frequently worked with Fabio Zerzuben, a creator who puts a lot of emphasis on his content and creativity. Fabio is famous for his creative and captivating reels.

As influencers are pressured to create more content even faster, they’re also staying active on multiple social media platforms, as well as traditional media. One of Switzerland’s biggest influencers, Xenia Tchoumi, posts on Instagram about beauty, fashion, and travel. In addition to social media content creation, Xenia wrote the book, “Empower Yourself,” and has given 4 TEDx talks. Swiss comedian Aditotoro is active on TikTok as well as Twitch and YouTube. This prolific content creator has recently become more well known outside of Switzerland.

Influencers Face Increasing Pressure to Innovate

Leo Monferini created a character with funny glasses which went viral on TikTok. As one of the biggest TikTokers from Romandie, he is very popular and Kingfluencers’ clients like working with him. His humorous content is what people are looking for on TikTok.

Consolidation in Influencer Marketing

The influencer marketing industry will experience increasing consolidation in technologies, agencies, and service providers. More influencers are teaming up to form clans to promote their services to brands. 

Founder of the “SKRR SQUAD,” Dario Scheurmann is known for portraying a wide variety of Gen Z situations in a fun way. His TikToks exhibit a sense of childlike whimsy and humorously portray the different ways women and men do things like answering the phone and getting into the car to drive. 

Jean Carly Réveil posts humorous videos on TikTok, often collaborating with numerous other TikTokers. Frequent themes include interactions between couples and friends. Laura Bante creates comedy TikTok videos, with themes such as beauty and fitness, and often collaborates with her friend Margaux Seydoux.

The Headz Agency represents numerous influencers who put a lot of effort into constant content creation, including Simo Bonito who makes funny videos, some of which feature his Italian “Nonno,” whom he plays himself. Ericwdrae also creates comedy content on his own or with his friend T-Ronimo, where they often present two female characters, Bresha and Selina, in funny situations. T-Ronimo posts about soccer, cars, and work, in addition to humor, and sells merchandise such as t-shirts and hats.

Long-Term Partnerships Between Brands & Influencers

To retain credibility, it’s important for influencers to work only with brands they genuinely love and ideally, engage in long-term collaborations, which benefit both brand and influencer. Many of Kingfluencers’ brands conduct year-long campaigns with influencers. For example, we’ve done many campaigns with Minea Jud, who we view as “our sunshine.” She is always smiling and creates high quality lifestyle, fashion, and beauty content.

Kingfluencers has also worked with the following influencers on an ongoing basis to build successful long-term collaborations for L’Oréal: Dilara Tortumlu & Fatjona Muji, Margaux Seydoux, and Jean Carly Réveil, who has also had a long term collaboration with skincare brand CeraVe, plus Lina Senn, who is known for creating humorous lifestyle content and funny relationship situations with her boyfriend, Leonard Stucki, also an influencer. Additionally, Lina hosts the TV show, “First Dates Switzerland.”

All About Gen Z

The existing focus on Gen Z as a coveted demographic will continue, particularly as they’re entering the workforce. Beyond their status as a significant spending group, Gen Z will set new cultural trends in multiple areas such as music, art, work, and ethics.

Also represented by The Headz Agency, Zimmi is a popular Gen Z TikToker who often posts funny skits involving interactions with teachers. The majority of Gen Z are still students, making the education settings highly relatable.

Gen Z TikToker Emma makes funny posts about relationships, school, beauty, and caring for her horses.

Keeping an Eye On Rising Stars and Important Trends

Brands and influencers alike are benefiting from increased opportunities to connect with audiences and generate revenue. Unfortunately, these opportunities are accompanied by the challenges of increased complexity and competition. Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date on trends and news, and contact Kingfluencers for help building coordinated campaigns.

Author: Megan Bozman, Owner @Boz Content Marketing

Free Guide – 13 Social Media & Influencer Marketing Trends to Look For Now

Looking at the title of this guide, you might be thinking: trends come and go as fast as Instagram Stories. Why should my brand keep up with social media/influencer marketing trends?

As Facebook (now Meta) founder Mark Zuckerberg once said, “If we can figure out what the next big trends are, we’ll know what to focus on.” Predicting upcoming trends can be one of the most important factors in planning your next digital marketing campaigns. Kingfluencers experts and their content creators have selected the top 13 social media trends brands should pay attention to.

Downloadable Content

e-book

Omnichannel Digital Storytelling for Brands

Click here to find out more about our influencer marketing and here for our social media services.

How to Communicate Responsibly as an Influencer About War and Crises.

We all want to be part of a community where we treat each other with consideration and communicate transparently. As an influencer, you have a special role in this. Because with your reach and influence on social media, you are a role model for others and inspire your community with your content every day. In this article, we’ll show you what that means and how you can consciously use your role, your work and your influence in times of crisis.

Responsibility

If you have followers, you have responsibility. You influence others with what you post and share. Your comments and contributions to discussions also have an impact. Social media is used by many to get information and find a community. Be aware of your influence and use it for good.

(Excerpts from the Conscious Influence Hub Code of Conduct)

Check then post

Credibility is your greatest asset. When you post or comment, stay factual and be
critical of your sources. If you are not sure, wait and ask someone whose opinion you
trust or contact the author.

(Excerpts from the Conscious Influence Hub Code of Conduct)

Protect privacy

Before posting pictures and content of other people, make sure you have their consent. Therefore, please do not share images of victims and injured people.

(Excerpts from the Conscious Influence Hub Code of Conduct)

(Advertising) Break

Take time off if you need it. It’s okay to not post anything and take the time to reflect. You can also ask your collaborations to postpone or take a break if you want to use the time for yourself or current topics. Also, consider donating your fee.

Full attention

Our attention span is very short. Therefore, use the attention of your community on your feed consciously. When you report on sensitive and current topics on your feed, do it with 100% conviction and willingness. This means that you dedicate that day completely to the topic and don’t switch back to Daily Business and Life in the next slide. This weakens the message and makes it fall into oblivion faster.

We are human beings

People have feelings and make mistakes. Whether you’re sad, overwhelmed, scared, or feeling powerless, your feelings are okay to show or share. It’s even better if you have someone you can talk to about it in person.

For more valuable tips on how you can promote respect, empathy and transparency in influencer marketing on social media, visit the Conscious Influence Hub.

Finally, we’d like to share this illustration from @krikelakrak.

Author: Anja Lapčević, Co-CEO Kingfluencers

Combating Misinformation on Social Media – Where Should the Burden Lie?

There seems to be a lack of effective guardrails to prevent the spread of negativity and misinformation on social media. But who is – or who should be – keeping tabs on the quality and reliability of social media info? We’ll explore this complex issue. 

The Challenges of Debunking Misinformation at Scale

Preventing dissemination of dangerous misinformation seems a laudable goal, and one that social media platforms are working towards. On September 29, 2021, YouTube announced they will be banning all content that spreads vaccine misinformation. “Our Community Guidelines already prohibit certain types of medical misinformation. We’ve long removed content that promotes harmful remedies, such as saying drinking turpentine can cure diseases.”

However, executing these objectives at scale is problematic. For example, YouTube videos focused on debunking prevalent misinformation have ended up being removed. It’s difficult to debunk misinformation without restating the claims, and algorithms haven’t proven effective at differentiating between criticism and advocacy.

Social media platforms have also struggled to maintain the necessary speed as guidance changes quickly. Twitter warnings have been applied to factual tweets from prominent public health experts that align with WHO guidance. For example, Martin Kulldorff, PhD, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, tweeted that those with prior natural infection and children do not need COVID vaccines. The tweet was labeled as “misleading,” and can’t be replied to, shared, or liked.

On June 21, he followed up by stating, “For not following WHO guidelines, Twitter put a misleading warning on a March 15 tweet when I wrote that children do not need the COVID vaccine. Since WHO now reached the same conclusion, maybe Twitter can remove the warning.” (Spoiler alert: they haven’t removed it.)

The Difficulty of Tackling Hate

Although misinformation has been a big focus lately, other social media challenges include hate speech and increasing polarization, which threatens democracy. As written on SWI swissinfo.ch, different countries are trying to deal with the problems by adopting new laws and regulations. Germany has taken a pioneering role with its Network Enforcement Act (NetzDG). Multiple countries enacted legislation inspired by the NetzDG, but the underlying concept can easily be misused by less democratic governments. 

“In Switzerland, there are as of yet no regulations specifically aimed at social media. Web activist Jolanda Spiess-Hegglin is spearheading efforts [to] change this, and to fight hatred on the internet, mainly with the organization Netzcourage.”

The Conscious Influence Hub Code of Conduct was developed for influencers and people who work on social media. The code supports them in acting with respect, empathy and transparency, and is an important tool to encourage the community to consciously use its influence. Such guidance can be particularly beneficial where rules fall short or are in short supply. 

Rather than Moderating the Content, Regulate the Algorithms?

As written recently in The Washington Post, Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen identified highly personalized, attention-seeking algorithms as the crux of the threat that social media poses to society. “And as lawmakers and advocates cast about for solutions, there’s growing interest in an approach that’s relatively new on the policy scene: regulating algorithms themselves, or at least making companies more responsible for their effects… Forcing tech companies to be more careful about what they amplify might sound straightforward. But it poses a challenge to tech companies because the ranking algorithms themselves, while sophisticated, generally aren’t smart enough yet to fully grasp the message of every post.”

Who Should Moderate?

Who is paying attention and moderating to ensure social media isn’t used for violence and hate? Currently, it seems mostly only the platforms themselves, but there are a few options:

1. Government?

Many are justifiably concerned about elected officials acting to stifle criticism of themselves and their party, or to stifle speech in accordance with the whims of their base. The focus should be on removing false information, not unpopular facts.

At least in the United States, where the majority of social media platforms are headquartered, freedom of speech is enshrined in the Constitution and vigorously protected by law, which inhibits government’s ability to censor. Of course, these businesses could relocate to other nations and make use of the lack of global alignment and various loopholes, changing what users see in different locations.

2. The Social Media Platforms?

In 2019, Facebook created the Oversight Board to help, “answer some of the most difficult questions around freedom of expression online: what to take down, what to leave up, and why”. However, the platforms themselves haven’t proven to be up to this task alone. For one thing, their very business model conflicts with the objective of minimizing hate. Outrage drive clicks and clicks generate revenue.

Additionally, there are numerous difficulties in executing this colossal task. Nuance is ignored too often. In one lawsuit recently filed against Facebook, a journalist claims he was defamed by factcheckers labeling misrepresenting his content and labeling it “misleading.”

The platforms need to take a lot more responsibility in moderating and doing so accurately.

3. The Public?

Like a jury of one’s peers, forums and panels could democratize the moderation of social media. A similar concept is in use on Reddit where both posts and comments are up or downvoted, impacting what users see in their feeds.

Unfortunately, people are inclined to vote against claims they dislike, regardless of the truth of the claims. Again, there are challenges in implementing this effectively with a diverse, unbiased group that won’t lead to echo chambers. Additionally, sometimes the most passionate advocates for an initiative are also the most vocal. When those who are neutral remain silent, this often results in a distorted perception of the actual public sentiment.  

Team Efforts are Needed, Including Influencers

Building structures to safeguard against misinformation and hate speech requires multiple entities taking more responsibility. On their own, each of these various stakeholders are flawed, but combining them can result in checks and balances for a positive impact. Each should play their own role and serve to compensate for the shortcomings of the others.

A myriad of voices, including NGOs, specialists, influencers, and other thought leaders should set the tone for proper social media conduct. Additionally, governments and other organizations can collaborate with influencers to impact how people act on a daily basis. 87% of consumers made purchases based on influencer recommendations. Consumers seem to trust shopping recommendations more from influencers than from family and friends. This makes influencer marketing a lucrative channel for brands, as well as an important pillar in the effort to uphold truth and positivity on social media. In addition to battling hate speech, influencers can combat misinformation by encouraging followers to use reliable sources of information and promoting independent news verification services.

Top 5 Tips for Brands Navigating Contentious Issues

  • Avoid controversial topics not relevant to your brand and / or audience

There’s no reason for a fashion brand to weigh in on election fraud. People don’t need to hear about abortion rights from their favorite bottled drink. While your brand may wish to take a stand on certain issues, it’s best not to fill your feed with frequent statements on numerous controversies.

  • Always stick with respected, official guidance

If you are going to weigh in on a topic, such as vaccinations, refer to the public health authority in your nation and share their updated, official guidance along with direct links to their online resources.

  • Be certain your messages are clear

When addressing a controversial topic, even indirectly, is not the time for sarcasm or ambiguity. Make certain your stance is obvious. Leave no room for misinterpretation.

  • Carefully vet influencers

When conducting due diligence, also be on the lookout for influencers who might have the potential to offend your audience, or who are prone to impulsive or deliberately shocking actions. Working with an influencer marketing agency can also help avoid disasters, since agencies conduct extensive research prior to doing business with any brand or influencer.

  • Avoid disseminating misinformation 

Of course, most brands don’t need to be reminded not to spread conspiracy theories such as that the Earth is flat. Still, misinformation could slip through accidentally, so, when in doubt, fact-check yourself.

Individual Responsibility is Vital

While team efforts are needed, they’re still not the whole solution. The most important element is to be the change you want to see.

Individual responsibility is crucial. Brands should be sure to follow and promote responsible social media use, and work with influencers and leaders to promote constructive and positive messaging. The Conscious Influence Hub Code of Conduct can serve as a template. It’s always beneficial for brands to assert their commitment to truth and wellbeing. Be sure to stand in opposition to hate speech and negativity.

Author: Megan Bozman, Owner @Boz Content Marketing

Here It Is: The First Official Social Media Zodiac — A Story of Community and Mindset

As there are numerous social media platforms, one can notice that each platform attracts certain groups of people, for example TikTok is more popular amongst Gen-Zers, whereas Facebook is more popular with boomers and millennials. But which platform you love and use most – or not – does not have to do only with when you were born. We see more and more mothers on TikTok for example while IG remains popular with most age groups. It has much more to do with preferred communication styles, social preferences, lifestyle and overall mindset than anything else. So next time you want to figure out whether to ask that cute guy or girl from the gym on a date, don’t ask for their zodiac sign to check if you’re compatible, ask for their social media preferences instead. Because the platforms they actively use, the content they publish and who or what they follow says a whole lot more than you might think! And who knows, if you’re part of the same social media clan perhaps it’s a perfect match. So what does your social media activity say about you? Here’s a fun take on it.

TikTok

The most downloaded app since the pandemic in 2020 has attracted numerous personalities around the globe. Also in the year 2021, the downloading figures have once again skyrocket! Here, we will focus on Gen-Z and millennial creators and users of the short-video platform. 

Your Personality

  • You are Gen-Z (or you’d like to be one… Looking at you, millenials in your skinny jeans)
  • If you are a millennial or older, you did not want to join TikTok first but then you got bored during the pandemic and decided to download it for fun. Now, you are the annoying friend who shares funny TikTok videos with your friends everyday.
  • You are a social justice warrior. If you are not “woke” or inclusive yet, you will get attacked by social justice warriors.
  • You see yourself leaving more comments on TikTok than on FB or IG. 
  • You have tried at least one popular dance before, just to see if you can do it.
  • Your main hobby is sheeeeeshing.
  • You have LED strip lights installed in your room. 
  • Average screen time per day: 11 hours 43 minutes
  • There is at least one person in your life with whom you don’t communicate with via phone call or text: You only send each other funny Tik Toks.
  • Your feed consists of content regarding social justice, dancing girls/guys and cute pets.
  • Text and image is dead to you, you speak in videoish and emojis
  • You expect brands to not be boring – otherwise you will either unfollow them or not even press on the plus sign at all. Brands have to be their own influencers and have their own fans on TikTok – basically show their personality.

Your Future

Your dance moves and lipsync skills are already pure show but will continue to get better as you keep fighting the good cause and challenging others to build a better world. You will have friends from all walks of life, and what a fun life it will be, filled with music and walking side by side with your global TikTok community. The blast will never end because one day you will be transformed into a digital avatar of yourself and live on forever in the TikTok universe.

Instagram

Also called the vanity platform, Instagram, seems to be rather popular amongst millennials. Not so much Gen-Zers. Furthermore, posts on Instagram don’t just include “food porn”, holiday pictures and thirst traps anymore: Creators have become more connected with their audiences by providing more information, emotion and story-telling in the picture and video sharing platform.

Your Personality

  • You might have a few narcissistic tendencies 😛 
  • Social status and image matters, a lot. After all, what are we without it?! Right?
  • You thank the universe for the story filters as they are much more “realistic” than the Snapchat filters.
  • Your life is all about aesthetics. You even have icons for your story highlights.
  • If you’re a woman: Your explore page consists of weird makeup hacks, body positivity posts, fashion inspos and cute dogs. Also, your message requests are full of guys who talk to themselves. You know what we mean, girls!
  • And if you’re a gym rat, every selfie is an opportunity to show that sexy body – and yes shirtless is always a plus, even in the elevator of your apartment complex…
  • You post at least one story every day. If it’s not a selfie, it’s a funny meme or subliminal screenshot of a tweet.
  • Under at least half of your feed posts is a song lyric or inspirational quote. You’re so emo.
  • Ashley, don’t go live on Instagram. Nobody cares about your skincare or makeup routine. And we are definitely not getting ready with you. At 5:30 AM. 
  • Besides friends you also follow the sexy fitness instructor because … you like the “diet tips”. Ahem.
  • You don’t use Tinder or Bumble anymore. Instagram DM’s is where the magic happens. Or not. And if your DM’s are not being answered, the comment section is open for emoji-talk!
  • You’re in constant competition for the price of the most amazing life, and although you know all the tricks on the boom you often think ‘damn everyone’s life seems cooler than mine!’ But don’t get fooled!

Your Future

You will have Instagram for the rest of your life, even if it turns out to be the next MySpace. You will still post thirst-traps for the people in your retirement home with the captions “lit” or “mood” as a joke. Instagram will be the one platform for everything: messaging your friends, recipes, makeup tutorials, outfit inspirations, in-app shopping and even dating!

Twitch

Gamers and wannabe-gamers, be aware. We are coming for you too. 

Your Personality

  • If you are not a creator there, you are a noob gamer and secretly want to learn how to play better. Or you are a simp. 
  • If you’re a female content creator, you’re the queen of simps and you most likely have a fake voice you use during your streams. No exceptions.
  • You’re dreaming of making Twitch your career but you would never -actually- do anything to achieve it. 
  • Reddit and Twitter are your main news sources. Whatever “news” is to you.
  • Whether you are a professional gamer or not, you have a top-end computer system. Yes, including the gaming PC and keyboard with the LED lights. 

Your Future

You will get over Twitch as soon as your first child is born. Not before. Unfortunately. Until then you will continue to simp on gamer girls or thirst-trap your fans. 

Snapchat

The seemingly number one communication medium for Gen-Zers is definitely Snapchat. 

Your Personality

  • You are Gen-Z and Snap is your main communication medium. What even is a text?
  • If you are a millennial or older, get out now. This is not the platform for you.
  • You are a commitment-phobe. You can’t even commit to a permanent chat history.
  • You document every little moment in your life. Feeding the dog? Story. Walking to work? Story. Eating your oatmeal? Story.
  • You have reapplied makeup after removing it in the evening because your crush finally replied to your story at least on one occasion. Or, worst case scenario, you use the dog filter.
  • You secretly watch Snap Originals when you are bored.
  • You know every hack out there for recording screens without notifying the person you are talking to.
  • Average screen time per day: 8 hours 27 minutes

Your Future

One day you might get over your commitment issues but not now. And you’ll photograph your kids with the dog filter on. To protect their privacy, of course. And no, even in the future, it will still not be socially acceptable to make the duckface in public, so go deal with your selfie addiction elsewhere. 😛

Pinterest

Aesthetics, mood boards and inspos: That’s Pinterest! You have an eye for design. And another for perfection. 

Your Personality

  • You are a perfectionist and a boss babe (or a “boss babe”).
  • Let’s face it, you’re probably a woman in her 30s. Late 30s. Or you’re 14. 
  • Your bedroom looks almost too much like a Pinterest dream. 
  • You probably bought a label maker and labeled all spice jars in your kitchen. 
  • You’ve searched for “insert random word” aesthetic. 
  • You saved a lot of recipes and you still haven’t tried one until now. 
  • You have at least one tattoo that is inspired by a pin.
  • You own too much jewellery from Etsy.
  • You know how to clean wine stains from a beige carpet very well. 
  • You were once popular on MySpace a long time ago. A long, long time ago.

Your Future

You’ll have kids with unusual “aesthetic” names. Like Antiquity or Lucius Artorius. Or you’ll be 18 in 4 years. Maybe you will also bring your creative ideas to life and be founding your very own start up, then according to Pinterest stats, more than 65% of all users visit Pinterest when they want to get started on a new project anytime soon. If you’re not a future founder, you’ll probably only try to compensate for your boring everyday job (or school days, if you’re 14) by adding some creativity to your life.

Facebook

How can we do a post about users of social media platforms without including the one with the most users: 2.23 billion. It’s safe to assume that everyone of our readers either still has or has had Facebook, as well as their parents, aunts, uncles, their neighbour’s cats and their primary school crush. However, it seems that those who still have and use Facebook, tend to be more outspoken and have “alternative” beliefs.  

Your Personality

  • When you first downloaded Facebook, the first thing you did was stalk your crush. And then your bully.
  • If you still use Facebook religiously (pun intended), we are sorry but you must be a boomer.
  • You have pending requests from old school friends and to your children/grandchildren. They will never get accepted.
  • You have had at least ten online arguments under a Facebook post. In the last month.
  • Your profile picture is a family photo from 10 years ago. Madame/Sir, your children are adults now.
  • You prefer using Facebook through your computer than your phone because the screen is bigger. 

Your Future

You will play Facebook games forever because there will not be any more profiles to stalk. Even your high school crush deleted their account. You will soon realize that Facebook is the new MySpace and move on to newer platforms. 

— Find out more about our Social Media Services and TikTok Services —

Author: Sherriene Redha, Junior Social Media and Community Manager

The Healing Role of Influencers – Especially in Post-Pandemic Times

It’s no secret that the pandemic and lockdowns have had far-reaching, long-term, devastating consequences worldwide. From damaged mental health, delayed cancer treatments, and weight gain, to economic devastation and loss of education. As the world moves toward recovery, influencers and influencer marketing can play a variety of helpful roles.

Influencers as Role Models

Influencers are important community voices in society, and they function as role models whether they want to or not. In particular, influencers are often voices of the young community and an effective means for connecting with young people.

Influencers’ behavior reflects their community. Throughout the pandemic, they’ve been able to set a positive example by being careful to obey the rules and restrictions and taking care of their own health.

Modeling Healthy and Active Lives

Many influencers are focused on healthy living, and exemplifying such behavior is particularly important during and after the pandemic. Exercise, a healthy diet, and adequate sleep all help strengthen people’s immune systems to fight off a variety of infections when needed.

The term “active lifestyle” typically refers to fitness, but influencers can also support post-pandemic recovery by leading active social lives. As communities see them engaging in travel, dining, social happenings, and more, influencers can provide inspiration and reassurance of the safety of such activities – taking into account the official safety guidelines to do so responsibly, of course. 

As people ease back into active social lives and attend increasingly large gatherings, influencers can serve as trail blazers and help ‘new’ normality seem less scary and intimidating. By exhibiting these behaviors, influencers can help socializing to become more relatable and a good path for people to follow.

Supporting Economic Growth

The economic devastation of lockdowns hit some industries much harder than others. The global economy could lose over $4 trillion due to COVID-19’s impact on tourism alone. Travel has always been a popular theme on many social media platforms. Influencers can set a positive example by actively traveling and enjoying hotels, restaurants, and tourist destinations while still respecting the countries’ guidelines and regulations for the pandemic. 

Additionally, while many jobs were eliminated by lockdowns, labor shortages exist in some regions. Influencers could also serve to inform young people of openings in various jobs they might not have considered, further driving recruitment and economic recovery.

People enjoy using social media to stay in touch with activities in their local community. By bringing awareness to local businesses, influencers can direct their support to the businesses most in need that they have personal connections with. For example, the Family of 5 (F05) Travel Blog offered support to the many small businesses impacted by the pandemic.

Encouraging Vaccination While Private Issues Become Increasingly Public

These numbers change rapidly, but currently 52.51% of the population of Switzerland is fully vaccinated. In the US the percentage stands at 53.55%. While more people continue to get vaccinated, the rates in the US and Europe have slowed, and public health organizations are working to encourage continued uptake.

While some influencers are hesitant to engage on an issue that has become political, plenty have made the choice to publicly share their support for vaccination. Health has often been a private matter, but now we must recognize the change as many choose to make certain facets of their health status public. In particular, influencers can serve as effective touch points with young

Influencer Marketing is The Right Tool

Influencer marketing is the right tool because young people take it seriously and see it often more than other media and ads. Many people are more trusting of influencers than traditional marketing. For example, 84% of millennials don’t trust traditional advertising. The Swiss government hired a marketing agency to help educate the public about the pandemic. The agency first invested in traditional ads and, fortunately, they’ve recently started to work with influencers as well.

We’ve seen a variety of effective campaigns with influencers, such as Aditotoro’s TikTok interview with Swiss politician Alain Berset, which was shared on TikTok and YouTube. Berset answered questions and clarified the importance of the existing lockdowns and restrictions. 

The Role of Comedians and Podcasts

When people need information about infectious disease, they don’t usually turn to comedians. However, comedians have played an interesting, helpful role in the pandemic. Zeki made many jokes about both COVID-19 and Swiss politician Alain Berset, and he did so in a good-natured, inoffensive way. Humor is a constructive way of coping with a variety of challenges. Zweiammorge, a comedy and meme channel, also brought much-needed brevity to social media.

In the first wave of the pandemic, podcasts served as one of the main sources of information and have continued to be a useful social media tool for scientists. For example, Stefan Besser spoke with politicians and government epidemiologists. Influencers serve as community voices and, by hosting interviews with experts, provide important info to their audiences.

Influencers Helping with Society’s Challenges

While influencers generally put out messages that others may follow, they can also serve as an outlet for followers to express their views. Influencers can help communities work through difficult issues and provide a voice to younger people. Many Swiss influencers have interviewed and surveyed people on the street, generating interesting insights. For example, TikToker Joung Gustav met with people at Stadelhofen during the lockdown and made videos with them, revealing a closer look at their points of view. Such posts can provide an unfiltered platform for a broader group of people and expand beyond the voices featured on news media. 

Anja Lapčević, Kingfluencers’ Chief Influence Officer and Co-CEO, recognizes that people active on social media have a degree of responsibility. Her vision to encourage conscious behavior in influencer marketing prompted her to co-found Conscious Influence Hub (CIH), a non-profit NGO. 

Many Influencers can Serve as a Source of Inspiration 

Many of the top influencers are big superstars, but those with a smaller following can still serve as sources of inspiration, healing, and support. Often such micro-influencers have closer connections to their communities, leading to a greater impact. Unlike big stars, they are normal people living lives we can relate to, with the power to inspire by showing that we can all achieve great things. Influencers encourage people to not be shy in revealing their own creativity and imagination, whether in a funny way or serious way. We all deserve a platform and the opportunity to share our ideas with the world.

If you’d like to team up with influencers to support post-pandemic recovery, contact Kingfluencers for help making a perfect influencer match and structuring campaigns to meet your goals.

Author: Megan Bozman, Owner @Boz Content Marketing

Should brands participate on OnlyFans and Patreon?

Subscription-based social media sites are becoming increasingly popular. In 2021, for example, Twitter introduced Super Follows, which allows users to pay for access to additional content, and a Tip Jar, which makes it easier for users to send money to posters. Patreon is a platform that offers influencers and creators a way to generate income directly from fans or “patrons” rather than through sponsored posts.

But perhaps the best-known subscription-based platform is OnlyFans. OnlyFans was launched in 2016 with the vision of developing a website where creators could monetize their content free of advertising. Creators can set their own monthly subscription price, and unlike Instagram and YouTube, the platform allows sexually explicit content. OnlyFans grew steadily and then experienced explosive growth when the 2020 pandemic broke out and the number of content creators more than doubled.

Edit 8/26/2021: Subscription service OnlyFans announced last week it would block sexually explicit photos and videos starting in October, but suspended the policy change scheduled for Oct. 1 after receiving backlash from Creators.

“A Home for Sex Workers”

OnlyFans is widely viewed as a portal specifically designed for “sex workers” to share adult content. The San Francisco Chronicle wrote about people working in the hospitality or entertainment industry whose jobs were completely eliminated due to the COVID-19 blocks, and OnlyFans enabled them to “monetize themselves.” One of the content creators interviewed stated, “I think OnlyFans has a lot of appeal because it feels very authentisc

The ability to generate income directly from followers offers influencers flexibility, as they don’t have to change their content to comply with brand or platform guidelines for sponsored posts.

Brands use OF for charitable giving while connecting with consumers

Many brands may be hesitant to publish their content on a shared platform that includes pornography, but others recognize the opportunity and benefits of positioning their brand as a supporter of the OF hype and content creator.

Fly by Jing, the maker of Sichuan chili sauce, for example, has opened an OF account “to have a space to show you everything behind the scenes, answer your questions, and experiment with food and flavors. Less Not Safe For Instagram and More Not Right For Instagram.” In an admirable pun, the brand mentions sharing a “bowl of noodz.”

Das Konto ist kostenlos, und für jeden Abonnenten spendet die Marke monatlich 1 Dollar an eine Basisorganisation, die sich für die Rechte und die Sicherheit von “Sex Workers” einsetzt.

Prominente auf OnlyFans

A recent Page Six article states, “OnlyFans is not just for porn stars.” The list of celebrities includes, in order of frequency:

  • Models
  • Rappers and singers
  • Reality stars
  • Actors, including former Disney actress Bella Thorne, who earned $1 million after just 24 hours on the platform and briefly crashed the site
  • Wife of an NBA star
  • YouTube stars
  • Winner of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”

Celebrities don’t just open OF accounts, they talk about them. In the track “Savage Remix (feat. Beyoncé)” by Megan Thee Stallion, Beyoncé raps, “Hips TikTok when I dance/ On that Demon Time, she might start an OnlyFans.” OnlyFans tweeted a response befitting the enormity of Beyoncé’s name recognition.

Some popular Swiss OF accounts are:

  • Singer Bastian Baker
  • Ex-Bachelor candidate Bellydah Rivera
  • Ex-Germany’s Next Top Model contestant Laura Baumgärtner
  • Bachelor winner Francesca Morgese

With the exception of Bastian Baker, all publish explicit content.

Connect with consumers, not generate revenue

New York-based fast-casual restaurant Sticky’s Finger Joint has released a YouTube video announcing that it is featured on OnlyFans. The video implies that the content is intended for adults and features more people than chicken. That implication is repeated on the OnlyFans page, which says the goal is to “introduce you to a juicier side of the brand!” Subscriptions are free, and tips unlock secret menu items, with all proceeds donated to ROAR, a relief fund that helps restaurant workers affected by COVID-19. 

Jon Sherman, founder of Sticky’s, told Modern Retail that the marketing decision was made to reach “hardcore fans” in an unconventional way. We see ourselves as a fun and quirky food brand,” Sherman said. “So we thought it would be a fun platform to post silly content… He cited millennials and Gen Z, who tend to engage with ‘food porn,’ as a big target audience.”

The risks of brands offering paid subscriptions

Some brands charge subscription fees. American fashion brand Rebecca Minkoff, for example, streamed its A/W 21 show on the platform. Fans of the brand could pay between $5 and $25 to access exclusive content and even chat with Minkoff herself.

There has been criticism that celebrities are taking subscribers away from “sex workers” who rely on the platform as their only reliable source of income. Fly by Jing has also acknowledged this problem, stating, “I want to be respectful to the people who use this platform to make a living. So you don’t have to cut back on your other subscriptions to join us.”

Low reach, high engagement on OnlyFans

OnlyFans boasts “the strongest engagement stats in social media!”. When a:e Creators posts something, over 60% of their fans see and interact with the content. Over 80% of direct messages sent by Creators are seen and opened.” 

The percentage share is indeed impressive, but the total volume is low compared to other platforms. For expensive products and services with high revenue per customer, high customer acquisition costs are sustainable and appropriate. However, for many products, such as Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG), this may not be appropriate.

Influencer Marketing on OnlyFans?

Influencer marketing on OnlyFans is a new territory. However, fans are paying for exclusive, ad-free content, so we should expect them to be rather averse to obvious sales pitches. While this doesn’t mean OF is off limits, it does mean a cautious approach is needed. After all, consumers:inside paid for “cable TV” years ago, which promised to be ad-free, unlike network TV. Commercials eventually caught on and were accepted. Working with an agency like Kingfluencers can help you maximize campaign success while avoiding mistakes.

More earning opportunities for content creators

A Patreon blog describes 6 business models, but the focus is on content creators. For example, the first is “Community model, defined as: Access to a community curated and moderated by the creator.” Other models include educational content and gated content, and the “Fan Relationship Model,” defined as increased interaction with, access to, or recognition by the creator.

Jack Conte, co-founder and CEO of Patreon, said, “This is a great time for creators. Creator:ins now have an incredible impact that they haven’t had in many years because these platforms have been so focused on driving content production rather than paying creator:ins…. We’re fully focused on providing the business infrastructure that allows creators to successfully grow and run their businesses.”

Competition for content creators is still very tough. Patreon offers content creators a way to receive payments directly from their fans. As a result, Patreon is under threat from a number of other technology platforms and services that could start offering competing solutions. According to TechCrunch, “A number of B2B software companies, blockchain projects, or even Hollywood agencies could decide to target Patreon’s core customers, creator:ins.”

Growth for all

The increasing earning opportunities for content creators should in turn contribute to additional growth in the number of influencers and the total amount of content. Brands will also benefit from this, as they will have a wider choice of influencers to effectively reach their target audiences.

Advantages and disadvantages for brands that want to engage on OnlyFans

Unlike Instagram and YouTube, OF allows sexually explicit content.

  • Pro: Brands may benefit from positioning themselves as supportive of sex-workers. Some brands have taken a creative approach, discussing sharing “bowl of noodz” (noodles), and “introducing you to a SAUCIER side of the brand!”
  • Con: Some brands are reluctant to have their content on a platform shared with pornography.

The thorny issue of charging subscription fees.

  • Pros: Brands can charge a fee for access to exclusive content and the chance to connect with influencers.
    • Brands could donate funds generated through OF to charity
    • Finally, brands can create an OF and post content without charging any fees.
  • Con: Audiences might perceive brands charging fees as taking revenue from sex workers who depend on the platform as their only reliable source of income, a backlash faced by Bella Thorne.
    • Audiences will have high expectations for paid-subscriptions, potentially requiring brands to invest more in their content creation initiatives.

Engagement is high and the platform feels authentic.

  • Pro: Both excellent attributes.
  • Con: Overall volume is low, relative to other platforms.
    • Could be damaged by the expansion of brands and paid-promotions.

Few brands are already on OF.

  • Pro: Brand campaigns and influencer marketing on OnlyFans is a green field.
  • Con: Since fans are paying for exclusive content, we should expect them to be more resistant to obvious sales pitches.

Klicken Sie hier, um mehr über unsere Influencer Marketing Services zu erfahren.

Author: Megan Bozman, Owner @Boz Content Marketing