February 2024 Influencer Marketing Roundup

February was a short month, but not a light one in terms of social platform releases. From TikTok’s foray into photos to Pinterest’s first ever streaming show, there wasn’t a dull moment. So let’s take this opportunity to look back at the top stories, standout brand influencer campaigns, and reports worth reading.


TOP SOCIAL NEWS

TIKTOK

TikTok wants you to pivot to photos.

TLDR: TikTok is running an in-app promo encouraging people to post photo carousels versus video and promising to “help you reach even more people.”According to TikTok, photo posts can get 2.9x more comments, 1.9x more likes, 2.6x more shares on average than videos. If long form was their assault on YouTube, carousels are their assault on Instagram. And if they are incentivizing something, you should be doing it because it likely means more reach!

TikTok Launches Live Test of Option to Automatically Identify Products in User Uploads

TLDR: We’ve talked about this over the last few months, and now some users are actually seeing this new toggle within the video upload flow that enables them to switch on “Identify Similar Objects”. When activated, objects in your videos via TikTok’s object identification AI are tagged, and potential product matches that you can purchase in the app are highlighted. This is a big step for social commerce, let’s see how initial adoption goes over the next 30 days.

TikTok’s Rights Stand-off With Universal Music Could See More Tracks Pulled

TLDR: The fallout from TikTok’s failure to reach a new licensing agreement with Universal Music continues, with Universal now pushing to have all tracks on which its artists have even contributed pulled from the app. If TikTok doesn’t see a drop in engagement or revenue, which it doesn’t sound like they have so far, we doubt they are going to cave to UMG’s wishes.

Google showing TikTok videos in featured snippets

TLDR: TikTok videos have been spotted in two prominent locations in Google’s Search results – featured snippets and Search Generative Experience (SGE). This has been rumored for some time, but if TikTok’s start appearing in Google searches, their value in driving SEO and discovery just got a lot more interesting for all marketers.

TikTok Prompts Users To Download a New, Dedicated Search Shortcut

TLDR: TikTok’s looking to get more people searching for more stuff in the app, with new prompts that look to get users to download a dedicated TikTok Search shortcut that can then be added to their device Home Screen. The new TikTok Search shortcut makes it easier to discover TikTok content without having to tap through to the relevant area in the app.

TikTok is testing a new subscriber-only, live chat feature called “Sub Space

TLDR: Sub Space essentially a private chat room for paying members. Subscriber only features are always meant to incentivize sign-ups, so TikTok is hoping that the ability to have dedicated focus in live chats is more reason to pay the subscription price. If you’re skeptical of people’s desire to pay for content on TikTok, the amount of creator donations on the platform will blow your mind (it’s in the billions).

META

Meta said it’s removing the monthly limit for the amount of money creators can earn through its performance bonus for posting on Facebook.

TLDR: Creators enrolled in the invite-only monetization program have historically faced a fixed earnings ceiling. But of mid-March, most creators will have access to unlimited rewards. It’s refreshing to see a juggernaut social platform transition from ad-based to performance-based revenue streams, let’s see if the creators feel the love.

Instagram Tests Live-Stream Games to Enhance Engagement

TLDR: Some creators now have the option to play either “This or That” or trivia, to generate more engagement within your IG live-streams. Meta’s been exploring more ways to make live-streaming a bigger consideration for IG creators, with a view to live-streams potentially catching on with more users.

Instagram’s Testing New Limits on How Many Hashtags you Can Add to Your Posts

TLDR: According to various reports, Instagram is now limiting the number of hashtags that some users can add to their posts, with five being the maximum number of tags that you can include within a single update. So unfortunately you can’t flood your post with 100 hashtags hoping it drives engagements!

Instagram’s Testing Carousel Posts Within the Reels Stream

TLDR: Currently testing with some users, Instagram is working on carousels within Reels, which will enable users to post multiple videos and/or still images in a single Reels post. Given the fact that both Instagram and TikTok essentially replicate each other as a matter of course, this update probably comes as no surprise.

Meta Launches New Engaged View Attribution Option for Video Ads

TLDR: Meta announced a new video ad performance measurement, which will take into account delayed response actions, like visiting a website in a follow-up session, as opposed to tapping through on an ad direct. Called “Engaged View”, Meta says that the option will enable advertisers to measure for conversions that occur within one day of a video ad play, so long as they’ve viewed at least 10 seconds (or 97%) of a video ad.

THE OTHERS

OpenAI just announced Sora, its new text-to-video AI model – creators are excited and terrified

TLDR:OpenAI released its new text-to-video AI model, and creators are already imagining what the generative tool could make possible. Marques Brownlee’s video does a great job of showing the functionality and the benefits and threats to him and creators. This may be the most exciting new technology release since ChatGPT.

Influencer marketing has arrived on Roblox

TLDR:Brands hoping to take advantage of the Gen Z hangout destination are leveraging existing worlds to maximize engagement while decreasing commitment. Think of it like a sponsored post, in place of a branded account. It’s also worth noting that Roblox paid out $741 million to creators last year, up 19% annually, making this an increasingly viable channel for creators.

75,000 of Reddit’s top creators will gain access to the company’s shares before its IPO in March

TLDR: This is a refreshing move by Reddit. Access to shares are typically only limited to top tier investors, so providing that opportunity to creators could potentially be a major incentive. That is if the stock price goes up!

Pinterest is partnering with Tastemade to launch its “first-ever streaming TV show”

TLDR: Pinterest is getting into streaming in a partnership with digital food network Tastemade.  Deliciously Entertaining, a cooking and lifestyle series hosted by culinary content creator Danni Rose, will kickstart each of the show’s 22-minute episodes by using Pinterest boards to curate menu ideas around a specific theme. QR codes embedded into the episodes will link to shoppable boards containing recipes, DIY tutorials and more. We don’t anticipate it’s going to be top TV to watch, but another great test of how commerce will be integrated into the viewing experience, and what features users actually want.

X will soon let advertisers run ads next to a ‘curated list’ of creators

TLDR: This means giving advertisers more control to be able to use the self-serve X Ads Manager to run pre-roll video ads against the video content of their chosen creators in both the home timeline and profile. Given advertiser concerns over brand safety, this level of control is a welcomed option and ensures your ads are paired with the right content.


BRAND INFLUENCER HIGHLIGHTS

Coke keeps innovation rolling with new TikTok Shop exclusive flavor

Claire’s assembles ‘Gen Zalpha’ influencer group to guide creativity

Priceline sends Victoria Browne to Swift’s show in Tokyo on Saturday & Super Bowl on Sunday

Benefit hosts an influencer trip exclusively for TikTok Shop creators

Cetaphil ‘made things right’ with TikTok creator Sharon Mbabazi post SB Ad

Coach pairs virtual influencer with real celebs Lil Nas X, Camila Mendes

Olipop seeks best friend creator duo for expenses-paid national tour


REPORTS & DATA WORTH READING

The most active 25% of U.S. adult TikTok users produce 98% of public content

TLDR: New data from Pew Research shows just how much content is produced by the top TikTokers. Now it’s not a new theory that most social media users are strictly consumers, early researchers of social media coined the “1% rule” meaning 1% of people create online content, about 10% engage with the content, and the remainder just view it. But that was pre TikTok, and it’s interesting to see the volume of content that the top 25% make up, and that 48% of adult TikTok users have never posted a video at all.

Nielsen report finds that YouTube accounted for 8.6% of TV viewership in January

TLDR: YouTube is once again the overall top streaming service in the U.S., with 8.6% of viewing on television screens. This marks 12 consecutive months of the platform being in the top spot (Netflix saw 7.9% of TV usage). We also know from YouTube’s CEO that viewers globally now watch more than 1 billion hours on average of YouTube content on their TVs every day and the number of top creators that receive the majority of their watchtime on TVs has increased by more than 400%.

Female creators and UGC content dominate the influencer marketing industry

TLDR: Data from Collabstr shows that female creators make up 70 percent of 80,000 influencer profiles analyzed in the study, and that the number of UGC creators is up 93% year over year. It’s important to note that the volume of UGC creators is driving down prices since there are so many available content creators for brands to work with.


That’s it for this month. See you next time, and don’t forget to listen to the Influencer Marketing Roundup podcast to get all of this information delivered straight to your ears. Happy marketing!

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Every quarter we look at campaign data across all Linqia influencer/creator activations, and compare
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