By Tawny Bertolozzi
Where were you when the internet broke in 2021?
Well ok, maybe not all of it – just the main social media platforms that run many people’s lives. When Facebook and Instagram were down for the day on October 4, 2021, some lost their minds.
For the everyday person that just likes to check up on their family and friends through the platforms, this wasn’t a huge deal. It was a minor inconvenience that was laughed about afterward, but for some, it really showed a dependence on the platforms that they maybe did not realize before.
For those that live and work in these social media spaces, it was a scary scenario. Marketing campaigns come to a screeching halt; income was lost in the blink of an eye. It really brought to light the risk of putting all marketing efforts in the mercurial social media sphere, and how it leaves us all quite vulnerable to outages, algorithm changes, and more. It also showcased how ultimately, no one has very much control over these platforms, nor owns the content that is posted there.
We understand that working with social media influencers is enticing and can certainly produce great results. However, for the big reason above and other issues that we will point out below, brands should also not discount working with the original internet-based influencers: bloggers.
Who Owns The Content?
Bloggers have ultimate control over their website and content. While algorithm changes can mess with social media post reach, and when outages shake up the online world, blogger content mostly chugs along like usual. Articles get published, notices are sent to vast email lists, and social media posts may have been delayed but eventually reached their audience (the immediacy of such not usually being as important). Better yet – the content posted on blogs actually gains strength into the future and is not subject to the short shelf-life of social posts.
Don’t get us wrong, social media is not going anywhere and is a game-changing tool for many brands. However, it is important to realize that when content is only posted on Instagram and something big happens (as it did in October), the creators are at a standstill. They can’t access their analytics, communicate with their audience, download and save their existing content, fulfill timely contract obligations, nada.
And when algorithm changes stifle the reach and make posts and stories disappear from followers’ feeds, where does that leave your campaign? (But seriously, these algorithm changes can be a killer! It’s hard to keep up.)
Social Media Posts Are Fleeting – And It’s Just Getting Worse
If the rise in TikTok and Reels has shown us anything, it’s that those platforms want content to be consumed as much as possible, as fast as possible. They want you to be endlessly scrolling and thus feed you content at a very fast rate. Consumer attention spans are shortening quickly and content needs to keep up to be effective. For reference, the average attention span of a Millennial stands at a short 12 seconds, and the average attention span for Gen Z is a mere 8 seconds (source).
So where does that leave your marketing campaign? For some, it will be a fleeting blip in an endless scroll. With a large audience, it can be a quick flash in the pan and while it may generate some good impression metrics, consider again the shelf-life of the post. Replace (or at the very least, supplement) that instant marketing message with one that is deeper in context and grows in strength for years to come (like a good blog post). Which will stay relevant and make a lasting impression in the consumer’s mind?
Why It’s More Important Than Ever For Brands To Work With Bloggers
As you all know, our niche is tourism. And the argument in favour of working with bloggers is even stronger in this realm. Why? Because most people spend a good amount of time hitting up Google to research destinations before they travel there.
Utilizing those creators who identify primarily as bloggers also offers a multi-pronged integrated content approach for a campaign: meaning it usually involves blog content AND social media promotion. Instead of putting all your eggs in one basket with a TikTok-er, a blogger strategy will more likely produce a web of content on multiple channels. So many bloggers also have a strong presence on various social media platforms.
Additionally, it may be true that attention spans are shorter in the social media age, but content binging is at an all-time high! Consumers are spending a lot of time indulging and looking up relevant content. When it comes to content that is highly relevant to someone (say when they are looking to book a trip) it is still quality > quality.
Consumers will research a destination to find out where to go, what foods to eat, what they should pack, etc. Do you know what shows up in these types of searches? Blog posts. Not TikToks or Instagram posts, but good ol’ fashioned search-engine-optimized blog posts. And if your marketing messages are a part of those blogs, then all the better!
There is no discounting social media as an effective marketing tool that is here to stay (minus big outages). However, we strongly recommend that discounting bloggers is not an option either. The lasting effects of a well-written blog post will benefit your destination for years to come.
We do not want your marketing budget to be spent solely on a blip in an endless scroll. Contact us to see how we can help you utilize a multi-faceted marketing strategy to effectively reach your target market using influencer marketing.
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