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Coronavirus: what a time to be live

By Ben Jeffries, chief executive officer



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May 13, 2020 | 6 min read

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, lockdowns around the world have forced influencers to get creative from the safety of their own homes. So how are they adjusting to the limitations?

instagram live

Coronavirus: what a time to be live

We’ve seen several changes to how creators are interacting with their audiences. While in the past, a polished post and a feed that has been thoroughly curated have been popular, Covid-19 has accelerated a shift towards creators and their followers favouring more authentic, raw content.

In turn, this has meant that instead of focusing on less authentic mediums of content creation - polished posts, amazing locations, product pushes and the like - we’re seeing creators returning to their roots and producing highly authentic and genuine content that allows them to build meaningful connections with their communities. And what feature could be better for this than Instagram Live?

As such, Instagram Live has become more popular with creators who are using this Instagram feature to connect with their audience, streaming their thoughts and feelings directly to their audiences. We love this shift and are behind creators sharing more ‘real’ content of their lives during lockdown, and going forward. Take a look at some of the changes we’ve noticed and the ways that brands are getting involved.

Across the board, Instagram Live usage has jumped by 70% last month. There are a few reasons for that:

People want to feel connected

Human Beings are fundamentally social creators; people are not designed to be in isolation, and most of us don’t like it. By sharing our live-action, and watching other people’s Lives, we feel connected and part of something. Many creators receive comments on their Instagram Lives and will interact with their followers as they record their Live video, creating that sense of connection we all crave.

It’s real

During this period, people are crying out for genuine content that feels authentic and showcases a creator's day to day life. It’s suddenly become very easy to see if someone is presenting a perfect life that’s not authentic because no one can go out and create the kind of content that perpetuates it. Covid-19 has created an even playing field and a sense that we are all in this together and this sense of realness is what makes Instagram Live so popular at the moment.

Live content is more interesting

Let’s face it, during a period where we’re all stuck inside, if done incorrectly creator content could be at threat of becoming boring. However, Live content provides that exciting ‘anything can happen’ feeling that keeps audiences on their toes. Whilst in some cases the content being produced on feeds might not be as sparkly and exciting as normal, Instagram Live offers creators the chance to produce highly engaging content from the comfort of their own home.

How are creators and brands making the most of Instagram live?

There are so many ways that creators and brands are using Instagram Live to engage their audience during this period. These include Q&As, a day in the life, workouts, and cooking tutorials to name a few. There are some really authentic ways for brands to get involved in these kinds of activities.

Instead of pushing products directly, brands have moved to subtle product placement within creator’s live videos, for example, working with a creator to wear their brand’s clothing during a Live workout, or using a brand’s ingredients to cook with. We’ve also seen creators doing ‘takeovers’ on brand pages, which have had great success with engagement and offered both parties the opportunity to expose themselves to a new audience.

When brands partner with creators using Instagram Live, it means that the content is more authentic to both of them and feels natural to the audience. For this reason, we predict that Instagram Live will continue to be a very successful way of communicating for creators and brands, even after this pandemic is over.

Why is Instagram Live important?

On a broader scale, Instagram Live has a social function beyond just keeping your audience engaged. It is also playing a very significant role in keeping people at home and enforcing positive social messages too. During this time people are looking to creators for guidance and inspiration with things to do to keep them busy at home.

Instagram Live has people hooked and engaged and subsequently has an extraordinary power to keep people at home and reinforce the messages that are keeping us all safe - stay home and entertain yourself inside.

During this period, brand purpose is becoming super important as brands are being noticed for the good they are doing. Those brands that are able to help spread positive messaging and to align with the stay home, stay safe message are building a positive brand image and creating authentic bonds with their audience that will extend way beyond the pandemic.

For more information on how your brand can build a relationship with their audience through Instagram live and creator collaborations, get in touch! Plus, if you want more info on when to use influencer marketing, head over to our blog.

Ben Jeffries is the chief executive officer and co-founder of Influencer.

Open Mic Marketing

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