What’s happening in the world of social media in August 2021? We’ll keep you up to date with the latest trends and summarize the industry trends from the upcoming month in this post.
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1. Spark Ads by TikTok
Branded Content Ads are now called Spark Ads. To build a solid content strategy, creative original videos can be amplified with Spark Ads on TikTok. The Duet features intensify distribution even more and a sustainable connection to the community can be built.
TikTok communicates, “Content on TikTok has endless potential to inspire creativity. We are excited to introduce this product to our brands and partners. We look forward to making TikTok a place where communities and brands can connect and discover. And look forward to seeing the limitless possibilities and creativity that await in the TikTok universe.”
TikTok was not taken seriously for a long time. Many are still skeptical of the platform today, but it continues to prove itself time and time again. Users of Android phones in the USA now spend an average of 24.5 hours per month on TikTok, compared to 22 hours per month on YouTube. In England, too, TikTok is ahead of YouTube, with 26h per month, compared to 16h per month.
Two and a half hours may be a small difference, but judging by data collected by the app Annie, that gap is set to widen: In December 2019, the start of the company’s survey period, Americans spent just 16 hours per month on TikTok versus 21.5 hours on YouTube – meaning TikTok’s user engagement has grown significantly while YouTube’s has grown very little.
However, this development is not the same everywhere. In South Korea, for example, consumption of YouTube videos is still twice as high as that of TikTok videos.
Until now, “normal consumers” could not put links in their Instagram stories that could be swiped up directly to visit the website.
Now, however, Instagram is testing the Link Sticker feature, which enables a similar form of linking. This will benefit Instagram accounts that do not yet meet the requirements for the swipe-up feature, such as small businesses and micro-influencers.
4. Thriller develops: longer formats for videos and entry into social commerce
Thriller had long seemed poised to become a competitor to TikTok if politics in the U.S. under Trump had evolved to block TikTok in the United States. Now that that hasn’t come to pass, Triller has expanded its creation of long-form videos that match influencers with brands to differentiate its platform from its main competitor, TikTok.
Triller, through the development of direct-to-consumer (DTC) strategies for marketing products through digital channels, is adding a click-to-purchase feature to livestreams called shoppable video.
The shoppable livestream was another sign of how Triller combines entertainment content with commerce on behalf of brands. Last year, NYX promoted its Spring 2021 collection with a virtual concert by singer Bebe Rexha and an augmented reality (AR) pop-up store on Triller.
Picstars goes journalism. We have teamed up with 20 Minuten and from now on we will publish news from the influencer world on the new influencer channel several times a week. The channel is called Influencer Radar and will appear once every Thursday in the print edition. We shared an article about the shopping madness on TikTok, already talked about the Norwegian law for more authenticity on social media, went into the sudden Tourettes syndrom of Dillan White and about the emerging fitness apps of fitfluencerns.
“We are very excited about the cooperation with 20 Minuten and are convinced that our curated content can transfer the enthusiasm for the world of influencers to the audience.” Antonia Stickdorn, Head of Marketing Picstars
“The parallel worlds on Instagram, TikTok, Twitch and the like are getting bigger and faster. Because it is difficult and above all time-consuming to keep track of all the challenges, chasing trends and ever new business models, I am particularly pleased to have Picstars as a partner in house, who professionally monitors all the important news from this area and shares his knowledge with our users with immediate effect” Gaudenz Looser, Editor-in-Chief of 20 Minuten.
What’s happening in the world of social media in July 2021? We’ll keep you up to date with the latest trends and summarize the industry trends from the upcoming month in this post.
Industry Trends in June Industry Trends in June Industry Trends in June Industry Trends in June Industry Trends in June
1. In norway, the government takes legal action against the spread of fake photos
Advertising images that have been edited by influencers must be marked as such on social media with immediate effect. This is intended to protect children and young people from an unrealistic image of beauty.
In a survey, it was found that 43% would be under stress when it comes to external appearance. Children and young people should be able to accept themselves as they are.
Instagram is pushing forward with the expansion of Reels ads. The new format is said to be available in all regions starting today. Tests were conducted in select regions and due to their success, they are now available worldwide. Reels, according to Instagram, is the best place on Instagram to reach people who are not yet followers and thus the largest audience can be reached.
The effective success of the format is difficult to predict, as it still depends to a large extent on the creativity and target group fit of a campaign.
3. Research shows the influence of TikTok on the entire music industry
Of those surveyed, a full 80% say TikTok is the primary place they discover new music. The influence runs so deep that TikTok tracks not only go through the roof on the app, but also storm the charts.
You discover new music, new artists and find old favorites again. It’s not uncommon for an older song to go viral again and make a comeback. These three parts are the main drivers of the music experience on TikTok.
The songs form a kind of new hashtag. You can click on the sound and find an overview of all the videos that have been created for that song. Since most people use the same track for the same trend or dance, the songs have a similar effect as the hashtags on the app.
Jumps allow users to link from their videos to external programs and services run by TikTok’s beta partners. Examples of TikTok partners that have already created such jumps are Whist, Breathwrk, Wikipedia, Quizlet, StatMuse and Tabelog. You can click on these links to discover things like recipes, quizzes, learning tools, etc. TikTok is a place for entertainment, but also for learning new things, and according to TikTok, Jump is the last mile for the discovery journey of their community.
New Jump partners are being added all the time. TikTok relies on the creativity of the users and we can be curious how they will use the Jump function.
5. Instagram adds group fundraiser to their offering
Instagram has added the ability to run group fundraisers on the platform. This allows users to increase engagement with a good cause by having multiple people participate in a single fundraiser within the app.
This feature was created based on the experience gained during the pandemic. There have already been several new options created on the app over the last while that go in the same direction. In July last year, Instagram added personal fundraisers, followed by Instagram Live fundraisers in August. Last November, Instagram also added the ability for users to create and share charitable fundraisers directly in their IG feed.
Not all social media channels are the same. All platforms have their own character and their own advantages and disadvantages. For a campaign, the channels can be selected very strategically, which allows the optimal target group to be reached precisely. In this article we give an overview of the currently most important social platforms.
Instagram’s global user base is incredibly large. Currently, Instagram has a total of 1.22 billion active users (Statista). You can share posts, stories, reels, IGTV videos, live videos and guides on the platform. Reels is Instagram’s answer to the success of TikTok. In Switzerland, 2.9 million users actively use the app (Statista)) and in Germany, 27.8 million (Agentur Gerhard).
A large part of the creators on Instagram drives the “glossy rail”. The posts are very perfectly designed and attention is paid to every detail and every possible flaw. The fact that influencers advertise on Instagram is now widely accepted and the followers still rely heavily on the opinion of their favorite creators, since they stand behind the products they advertise with their name. The great variety of different creators allows us to find the perfect mix of niche influencers, big creators, personalities, etc. and thus to reach the target group accurately.
The biggest Swiss influencer at the moment is Dean Schneider. He emigrated to South Africa, where he built a private sanctuary called Hakuna Mipaka. With him live lions, monkeys, a hyena and many other animals.
In Germany, the twins Lisa and Lena are the creators with the largest following with almost 16 million followers. The two became known through the platform musical.ly, the predecessor of TikTok.
TikTok is the new star in the social media sky. The video platform is the most downloaded app in the Apple App Store (Oberlo). Originally, the app was known as musical.ly, where you could upload mainly lipsync videos. You can upload up to 3 mi nute videos on TikTok, which you can add sound to, edit and process with filters and effects. The creators have the chance to gain incredible reach and everyone has the same chance to go viral. There are many niches and fringe groups and so you can achieve a very precise target group fit with a TikTok campaign by choosing the right creator.
For companies, products such as Branded Effects, Hashtag Challenge, or Brand Takeovers are available, and TikTok also provides companies with best practices or product instructions to optimize their own channel (Hubspot). TikTok is especially popular with younger users, but the age curve is rising steadily. Surveys by Statista showed that the user frequency is very high: 75.6% use the app daily (Statista). By the 20-year-olds in a survey in 2020, more than half of the respondents have installed TikTok and by the 17-year-olds, it is even more than 88% (Statista). The future buyers are therefore on the platform. And if one observes the steep growth curve of the platform, it can be assumed that these figures will continue to rise. The numbers speak for themselves: 689 million active users worldwide, an average usage time of 52 minutes daily, and 90% of users open the app several times a day (Oberlo).
Oluyomi Scherrer from Bern is currently the biggest Swiss TikToker. The trained chef produces cooking videos on the platform, using an iPad as a cutting board. Under the username @Thispronto he maintains a whole 8 million followers and his videos are extremely well received. (werbewoche)
The classic Youtube: founded in 2005 and part of Google since 2006 (Statista). Everyone seems to know Youtube, and influencer marketing on Youtube is no longer a novelty. Many creators produce advertising videos and have established functioning partnerships and cooperations. The number of monthly active users worldwide is over 2.3 billion people (Statista).
The reaches achieved are incredibly high. It is not uncommon for content creators from Youtube to have a celebrity-like standing and have built their own brand through their Youtube careers.
Twitch is a livestream platform that has been operating independently since 2011. The platform is mainly used by gamers who live stream their games and interact live with their community. Events take place on E-Spot, which can be followed online (Computerbild). Via the Twitchtracker one can follow the numbers live. In May, for example, 2,307,473,592 h were actively watched (Twitchtracker).
Youtubers are also increasingly flocking to the site. For example, Gronkh, who has uploaded Let’s Plays to Youtube, MontanaBlack, the biggest German streamer and Knossi, who also does online gaming live, are all also on Youtube (Streamproject).
Facebook is the largest social network. It is also the parent company of Instagram and WhatsApp. Every day, 2.6 billion people use Facebook daily and 3.3 billion use the network monthly (allfacebook). Facebook has changed a lot since the beginning and during the Corona pandemic it put a focus on live videos and also focuses on thematic communities. Online shopping is also a topic that Facebook is becoming more and more involved with, and the developers seem to be putting a lot of emphasis on expanding these features. (trustedshops)
However, Facebook’s dominance has fallen sharply since 2015 as young people turn away from the network. Facebook is still very popular with the older generations, but is no longer the frontrunner among the young. Among 12-34 year-olds, Facebook is now the most-used social medium for only 1 in 5. Instagram takes the top spot in this age category. For it with the over 55 year olds Facebook is with 70% the most used network. (wiwo)
Compared to the previous year, Twitter showed a 17% growth and 199 million users (futurebiz). Brands with a large reach can use Twitter to set their own trends if the condition is met that their community searches for the brand and listens (hubspot).
But what makes Twitter different from other social media? It is a platform based on real-time communication. You can “tweet” opinions, ideas, etc. and then interact with the Twitter community. You can react to statements and photos from other members of our community and exchange opinions. Primarily individuals are on Twitter to follow their favorite celebrities and brands and stay up to date and as close to them as possible. (diri)
What’s happening in the world of social media in June 2021? We’ll keep you up to date with the latest trends and summarize the industry trends from the upcoming month in this post.
1. instagram introduces new shopping feature for product launches
The new feature allows online shoppers on Instagram to become aware of product drops faster, as the products are found in very limited quantities during this time. (Drops are a new e-commerce trend: boosts buzz around products in the weeks leading up to the official launch).
From now on, the drops will have their own place in the app, where they can be found filtered. To make use of this new feature, companies can use the product launch function on Instagram.
3. TikTok relies on the innovation of new tool to combat bullying on the platform.
The new feature allows the collective deletion or blocking of multiple comments or accounts, on the Creators’ own shared content. This way, Creators can better protect themselves from bullying and hate comments.
It has also been possible for a short time to filter the comments and only make a selection visible to the public. If a user writes an unfriendly or problematic comment, the app prompts this person to reconsider the comment before sending it.
Users between the ages of 13 and 17 are increasingly protected by additional security measures that are intended to ensure age-appropriate use of TikTok (e.g., restrictions on Duet, Stitch, direct messages, and comments).
After an intensive testing phase, Instagram releases the feature that allows users to hide the number of likes on their posts. The goal is to reduce the pressure that the platform maintains and to focus on the posts instead of the likes.
The primary goal is to broaden the use of data for online shopping on Facebook. To ensure the integrity of all products from Facebook companies and improve ads and the product experience on Facebook.
The new terms and conditions are partly met with displeasure among Whats App users. Messengerpeople.com, however, states: “This exchange of metadata is not new and does not affect users within the EU, as the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) applies here on the one hand and the agreement with the EU antitrust authority on the takeover of WhatsApp by Facebook in 2014 prohibits the transfer of data on the other.
Products are rarely sold as quickly as when they are promoted by influencers. Brands have now started to develop individual products together with creators from various fields. These product collaborations have become an integral part of influencer marketing. There are already many best practice examples in the German market, and we can expect Switzerland to follow suit.
A shift can be observed over the last few years. In the past, it was mainly celebrities who advertised a brand as ambassadors. Nowadays, it’s no longer just celebrities, but increasingly also influencers. In the same way, celebrities and influencers shine above all because of their reach and loyal communities.
Roger Federer with On, who is now a partner in the Swiss running sports specialist, Wendy Holdener with Emmi Caffè Latte, and Die Toten Hosen with their own beer brand Hosen Hell. These are just a few examples of products that have resulted from cooperation with celebrities.
Nowadays, products are also on the rise that have been developed by influencers in collaborations or independently. In the U.S., they are no longer anything out of the ordinary, and in Germany, too, these products are becoming more and more common. The cases are characterized by extremely positive sales figures. The fact that the products are sold out in a flash speaks for itself. We are pleased to present some of these success cases.
Naturally Pam by Pamela Reif
With almost 8 million subscribers, Pamela Reif is THE German fitness influencer on Instagram. She posts workout videos on YouTube, creates workout plans, has published various cookbooks and has her own app in which she regularly publishes new recipes. She also made it to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list in 2020. Pamela Reif is currently writing a real success story. Now she has also launched her own food brand under the name Naturally Pam. About 30 minutes after the launch, the entire range in the online store was completely sold out. Not even everyone made it to the check-out, as the servers partially collapsed.
In their products, quality and sustainability are writ large. The ingredients are organically grown and the packaging is also sustainable. They are plastic-free, biodegradable and made of recyclable cellulose film. In addition, the CO2 emissions of the production and shipping are compensated. (Source: Naturally Pam)
A product must live up to the values of the influencer. The example of Pamela Reif shows that her personal values are reflected in the production and the products. This must be the case so that the product appears authentic and is well received by the followers. Based on the sales figures, you can see that this works very well and based on the positive reviews, it is clear that the followers are convinced of the quality. Marie Inspire, for example, has recorded such a review and is convinced of Pam’s products:
Germany’s currently most successful rapper Capital Bra already launched his own pizza some time ago. Now he is at the start with the BraTee. So the musician with the most top one hits (source: Wikipedia), now has his very own iced tea brand, which is available to buy in four varieties. Available are watermelon, peach, lemon and pomegranate. (Source: BraTee)
The iced teas sell very quickly and are very well received. According to Raptastisch, 6 million units were sold even before the official launch. To understand the hype, Antonia, our Head of Marketing, also wanted to test the product and was just able to get hold of one of the last watermelon teas before everything was sold out. After talking to a salesperson at Drinks of the World in Zurich, the situation was explained: young people were already waiting in front of the store in Zurich HB before opening hours. Euro pallets, which were supposed to secure the stock for the weekend, were already completely empty on Friday.
Luca Pizza by laserluca
Together with the pizza manufacturer Gustavo Gusto, the German YouTuber Luca has launched frozen pizzas on the market. The first pizza hit the stores in 2017, though this collaboration was supposed to be just a project. But since the collaboration is so successful, they already produced the 3rd joint pizza in December 2020. The new cheese pizza will also reach the growing vegetarian part of Luca’s target group (source: Horizont).
A meet & greet was held as part of the “Pizza Release”, in which 3,000 kids took part and were able to meet their idol. The KPIs are also very positive. The videos of one of his creations generated a total of over 7.5 million views.
Rob’s Original by CrispyRob
With that name, it makes a lot of sense that YouTuber CrispyRob sells chips. On his website you can read that “creating the perfect chips” has been a dream of his since childhood. The chips are available in four varieties under the name Rob’s Original exclusively at Kaufland in Germany. (Source: Rob’s Originals)
Ralf Osteroth, Picstar’s CEO, also told us that the chips were so well received at his home that they were eaten away in no time. So Rob is proving to have a good nose. His passion for the perfect chips comes across immediately in his video:
Sucuk by Zeki
Germany may be a leap ahead of Switzerland in the field of influencer marketing. Nevertheless, there is already an example of a successful influencer-product collaboration in Switzerland. Zeki is one of the most successful influencers in Switzerland and a big Sucuk fan. He has discovered cooking as a new hobby and loves to combine traditional cuisine from his childhood days, with classic Swiss dishes (source: Werbewoche) . The product is a Sucuk, a Turkish, very spicy sausage, which Zeki sells under the brand name Zeki’s Original in selected Migros stores.
To announce the launch of his sausage and boost sales, Zeki has even, together with EffE, released a song and video, which – of course – is all about the Sucuk.
Influencer products are indisputably already an important part of influencer marketing. If one observes the development of influencer marketing in the USA and Germany to date, one can assume that the potential of these collaborations will also be recognized in Switzerland very soon. However, the limited space on the shelves must be taken into consideration. In contrast to Germany and the USA, there is a certain shortage of space in stores in Switzerland. So when a new product is added to the range, another has to be removed (source: 20 Minuten). However, many products can also be sold online. Pamela Reif, for example, offers her products at selected points of sale, but sells them mainly online.
Influencer products automatically carry a certain seal of quality, as they are directly linked to the name (or the better-known stage name) of a natural person, who thus vouches for the quality of the product. Of course, the whole thing always depends on the values behind which the influencers stand.
In any case, we are already very excited to see which collaborations and products our influencers will inspire their followers with in the future.
Are you interested in influencer marketing? Take a look at our case studies and click through the content of our fantastic influencers.
In this interview, our Senior Product Manager Robin introduces us to the in-house product team and gives us a little introduction to Picstars’ proprietary technology that even rookies can understand.
Robin Christopher Heering, 28, Senior Product Manager bei PICSTARS
Robin was born in Stuttgart, grew up in Geneva and has now lived on three continents. After his last stop in London, he has now moved to Zurich and lives there with his wife and a son.
In this interview, our Senior Product Manager Robin introduces us to the in-house product team and gives us a little introduction to Picstars’ proprietary technology that even rookies can understand.
Robin has a broad background in technology, business and entertainment. He started as a film composer at the age of 17 and later graduated from Tilburg University with a Bachelor of Science in International Business Administration. In Prague, Robin co-founded a Digital Development Agency, later a Digital Academy and completed a Master of Arts in Music Business Managment in London. He has always been involved in digital marketing and tech and since moving to Zurich has been a key member of the Picstars Family.
What exactly can Picstars’ proprietary technology do? In this interview, our Senior Product Manager Robin introduces us to the in-house product team and gives us a little introduction to Picstars’ proprietary technology that even rookies can understand.
“Picstars has a primary focus on digitizing key phases of influencer marketing, with the goal of building an efficient, scalable, and cost-saving process. The first key phase includes identifying the perfect influencers for the campaign – the first core element for a successful influencer campaign. This is followed by legal and compliance processes, which are also digitized. Later in the overall process, the focus is on content approval and creator task management. The campaign managers check the content proposed by the creators and verify that it is published on time and in the right scope. The influencers receive their payouts and finally the final monitoring and the creation of analyses and reports follow. All of these parts of the overall process are digitized using our technology. Through the Brand Cockpit, the monitoring, analysis and reporting functions are now also accessible externally for our customers.
At the beginning of December, a migration to a new and more powerful version of the “state of the art” Picstars technology took place. With this new system, the possibilities are endless and we look forward to implementing a variety of new and innovative ideas over the next year.”
What are your responsibilities at Picstars and how is your team made up?
“My responsibilities at Picstars are very multi-faceted, which is why I love my job so much. As Senior Product Manager, I am responsible for the product, Picstars Technology. This includes activities such as customer surveys, strategic planning (such as efficient resource allocation), optimization and tracking. For me, it is essential to be able to put myself in the shoes of the various stakeholders in order to address all concerns. This includes campaign managers, sales managers, creators and brands. In order to guarantee a positive user experience for all parties involved, I conduct ongoing discussions and am always looking for new approaches to optimization. While internally I am always up to date with technology and all stakeholders, I also keep an eye on the current market situation, looking for new opportunities. My knowledge of the behavior of the markets is essential for my work and therefore serves me very well.
I work with a small but very strong and agile team. This allows us to be particularly responsive. We still maintain a solid product management process, which allows us to keep our code at a high standard and build out our features efficiently. This allows us to analyze and optimize the implementation process, create transparency in communication, and evaluate potential investments in product development.
What are you working on at the moment?
“Currently, we are in the stabilization phase of the development process, finalizing post-migration features and adjustments to those already integrated to prepare for a dynamic and impactful launch in the new year. On a strategic level, we are finalizing our roadmap for the next year, aligning our product strategy with the business strategy.
What are highlights for you since you started working in October?
“Coming from a tech startup and agency background, I love the close-knit community spirit and proactivity in our team. There are many very talented individuals in all departments and in the management.
My product development team is absolutely fantastic. The energy, commitment and high-quality results are a great highlight for all of us. We can also rely on each other in any situation, so everyone can focus on what’s important. We also maintain very open communication and constantly inspire each other to improve our performance and generate the best possible output.
Another personal highlight is monitoring the successful migration of the new technologies. These had been designed and worked on for a year. What made the challenge special was that I mastered it with only 8 weeks of training. In order to make the right decisions and set the right priorities in the process, it was critical that I fully understood the product. I can only thank the entire team at Picstars for their support, guidance and patience throughout this process.”
What can we look forward to in the future?
“The year 2021 looks to be the most exciting year yet for the product development team and Picstars. We want to focus intensively on the Creator Discovery process, optimize our Creator database and offer an enhanced Smart Search Experience. This is aimed at guaranteeing an even more perfect match between brand and influencer. Another focus is the refinement of the entire reporting process, with further integration of branded content ads.
“Coming from a tech startup and agency background, I love the close-knit community spirit and proactivity in our team. There are many very talented individuals in all departments and in the management.”
“I look forward to providing more insights into our Picstars world and shedding more light on individual topics in the future.”
Branded Hashtag Challenges on TikTok offer a company completely new marketing opportunities. Therefore, it is highly recommended to deal with this option. Among TikTokers, hashtag challenges are very big, which is why it is impossible to imagine life without them. Many publish their very own version of the challenge under the corresponding hashtag. So you can find all versions at a glance under the hashtag. This is the basis for the concept of the Branded Hashtag Challenges.
The Challege is for six days in the carousel of the Trending Hashtags. During 60 days, the live time of the Challege, you can access a special overview page that summarizes all the contents. Branded Hashtag Challenge Plus also offers priority ad placements and an additional Explore Page with modular components such as banners, carousel, surveys, offline stores and related hashtags. Additionally, the Branded Hashtag Challenge includes 1 One Day Max and 1 TopView Ad.
#eyeslipsface – Exemplary campaign for a Branded Hashtag Challege
Elf Cosmetics, a make-up brand from the USA, sets an example: More than 3 million videos were generated by the Challenge with a total of 4 billion views. This makes it the most successful TikTok marketing campaign to date. The following video briefly introduces the campaign, focusing on the success and thoughts behind the concept.
The #eyeslipsface campaign is a prime example of what is possible with TikTok Marketing. Picstars is a TikTok partner in Switzerland and we will start the new branded hashtag hallges as soon as they are available in Switzerland. The possibilities are almost endless, so there are no limits to your imagination. Companies are offered the opportunity to spread their individual brand message through the Challenge and to anchor themselves in the minds of Gen Z. TikTok is a unique platform for this, as the viewers accept the content very well and continue to represent it independently, which is what the Challeges build on.