The Drum Awards Festival - Social Purpose

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Marketing Business Leadership Influencers

‘20% of media spend will move to social’: Creators’ new place in marketing


By Sam Anderson | Network Editor

May 25, 2022 | 5 min read

With ad spend continuing to rise and digital taking a bigger slice of that pie year-on-year, social too is growing its share. At a recent roundtable with experts from The Drum Network – from a global head of social to a founder of a leading social agency and a TikTok creator – we asked: how is the role of influencers shifting in the modern marketing ecosystem?

Graffiti that looks like social media buttons

Agency leaders on the new role of creators in marketing / George Pagan III via Unsplash

Harry Hugo, co-founder, Goat: capturing an ever-bigger share of spend

2022 is about getting involved in all the different marketing streams. It’s become a far more integrated part of the marketing mix, and a line of the budget that’s always put down first. It needs to be integrated into point of sale, it needs to be integrated into above-the-line. There’s no part of me that believes that influencers should be 100% of media spend; it shouldn’t. But it should be a larger proportion than it is right now.

We believe that 20% of media spend will move to social and influencer marketing. TV spend and above-the-line will be produced to make way for more trackable, effective, positive return on digital marketing. That gap being closed will force a more integrated approach for marketing environments.

Lauren McFarland, influencer marketing director, Journey Further: the fall of siloes

We’re seeing the fall of silos. We’re seeing influencer marketing being integrated through all other marketing channels. We’re working with different types of teams to work with influencers. That’s exciting because it’s giving us more of a comprehensive understanding of consumers’ journeys through to purchasing products.

Natalie Carson, senior account manager, Coegi: no more vanity metrics

2022 is the year of advanced measurement to determine success: not just vanity metrics, such as shares and comments, but integrating point-of-sale, Google Analytics and affiliate codes. We’ll even see whitelisting creators, so that you’re getting access to their accounts, and you’re able to put paid media dollars behind the content they created and make look-alike audiences based on people that follow them.

Chloe McCloskey, global head of social, Oliver: exploding creativity

We work across global brands, and we’re only seeing an increase in their interest in integrating influencers and creators to their always-on and campaign advertising work. Influencer marketing has now solidified its place as a key marketing channel in the mix.

Personally, I think that this transition to creators is great news for our industry, and possibly humanity, because we’re seeing a lot more creativity and a lot more positivity through the new voices that are coming through. I’m really excited to see where that goes in the next year.

Mollie Lyons, senior social manager, Wilderness: the nichification of influence

In 2022, we’ll see an uptick of brands showing interest in influencers and content creators – and an uptick of influencers in more niche industries, especially finance. A few years ago, I can’t imagine a bank would think they’d be pushing financial information on Tiktok and Instagram, but they are.

We’ll also see more niche industries that would never have thought that they could correlate their marketing tactics with such fluid techniques and tactics; we’ll see a lot of niche brands exploring the space and I think it will be very effective for them. But it is an education piece – that’s why we’re here to keep pushing brands to realize the value and worth of investment influencers have. It’s the most powerful tool we’ve got, especially in social media.

George Gossland, social media producer/creator, Favoured: influencers taking center-stage

From an influencer’s point of view, the role of the influencer this year is for them to really narrow down what their niche is; find brands that suit that niche and be the face of that brand.

It’s going to come down to what their niche is and how they can relate to a brand. I think you’re going to see influencers (rather than just a logo) at the forefront of it all and doing socials for brands. People will resonate more with that.

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Marketing Business Leadership Influencers

Content created with:

The Goat Agency

We’re the leading global social media marketing agency powered by influencers. We pride ourselves in bringing together data-led performance, real human relationships, expert creative strategy, authentic, engaging content and laser-sharp paid media targeting.

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Journey Further

Journey Further is a performance brand agency based in Leeds, Manchester, London and New York.

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Coegi is an independent digital agency providing services across digital strategy, media buying, paid social, search and influencer campaigns. We bring together people, platforms and tech partners to create custom marketing solutions focused on your business results.

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Our unique model moves at the speed of modern business to drive change from the inside out; working smarter to make our clients’ money go further, and helping them build better solutions, systems and brands. Client solutions include Unilever’s U-Studio (a platform used by almost three-quarters of Unilever's brands globally), adidas’ off-shore hub and PepsiCo’s global digital team. In 2020 we were ranked #1 in Adweek’s Fastest Growing list (US) and featured in The Drum’s Honours List of the best businesses that helped shape the year. We are part of the Inside Ideas Group (IIG), which combines specialisms from Adjust Your Set (content and culture), Dare (design, experience and engineering) and Aylesworth Fleming (property marketing). IIG joined the world’s first brandtech™ group You & Mr Jones in January 2019 to give their clients access to the latest marketing technology solutions. The group includes tech-driven marketing companies, 55, Mofilm, Collectively, Gravity Road, Blood and Mobkoi, and holds strategic investments in leading technology businesses including Pinterest, Niantic, AI Foundation, VidMob, Jivox, Zappar, EVRYTHNG, Automat, Blacktag and Beeswax.

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Working at the intersection of community and commerce we embed brands in online culture through social-first thinking.

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We are Favoured.

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