June 2024 Influencer Marketing Roundup

June brought Cannes, VidCon, a slew of Instagram and TikTok release including AI avatars, some very well executed brand influencer campaigns and much more. So let’s break down the top stories in social media and influencer marketing, the best brand influencer activations, and reports worth reading from the month of June.


SOCIAL PLATFORM UPDATES

TIKTOK

TikTok’s version of Prime Day is coming in July

TLDR: Deals for You Days will begin on July 9th and will offer discounts on thousands of trending products through TikTok shop. We can expect plenty of creators to be promoting products and daily live streams with big time incentives. Lets see how it stacks up to Prime Day, which is only one week after.

TikTok releases Symphony Digital Avatars

TLDR: The new tool will allow marketers to use AI-generated avatars to promote products in their ads. Brands will be able to choose from a set of stock avatars, based on video of paid human actors, or create their own custom avatars based on a brand spokesperson or creator. The multi language dubbing is what makes us most excited about this launch, as similar to YouTube it allows creators and brands to take their content way beyond their own borders.

TikTok Launches New Image Sharing App Called Whee

TLDR: The new app is an Instagram-like feed of images, designed to only be shared with friends. The company already launched a photo app called notes so this one is a bit of a head scratcher, especially with the looming ban. The hook with Whee is that it’s only sharing your content with close friends, but we have to question if that needs a standalone app.

META

Meta will enable influencers to create AI versions of themselves

TLDR: Meta’s launching the first stage of its “AI Studio” platform, which will enable creators on Instagram to build AI versions of themselves that can interact with fans via DM. The bots will be able to answer questions in the style of that account. Zuck received pushback in an interview about how this may diminish the creator audience relationship but he doubled down saying it’s a new art form for creators and will be 100% transparent for consumers.

Instagram Adds Live Streams for Close Friends Only

TLDR: More and more of the social experience is becoming about private messages and conversations. This is another feature Instagram is rolling out to make it easier to create content only for a select group of people and not for a brand or creators entire following. It seems like users want this type of functionality, but it makes brand/creator collaborations a bit more challenging.

Instagram Experiments With Audience Feedback for Unpublished Reels Clips

TLDR: Instagram’s trying out some new options to enable creators to get feedback on their Reels clips before they post them to the public, with the capacity to share draft Reels with friends, and a means to test your Reels concepts with a smaller audience.

Instagram tests ‘trial reels’ that don’t display to a creator’s followers

TLDR: IG began global tests of a new “trial reels” feature, which aims to give creators a way to explore different types of content or be more creative by publishing reels that don’t publish to their followers. After posting a reel using this feature, Instagram will share insights about the reel’s performance, like plays, likes, comments, and shares. Based on those insights, the creator could then choose to share their reel with their followers or archive it.

Colin and Samir interviewed Instagram’s Adam Mosseri, and the learnings were plenty

TLDR: The interview shed light on several key learnings including the fact that micro influencers are oftentimes a much better investment in terms of ROI than mega influencers, you need to be creating content that works both sound on and sound off given roughly half of all video impressions are sound-off, and shareability is the key metric now with “sends per reach” being what IG is prioritizing over likes and comments.

Instagram’s Testing Video Ads That Stop You From Scrolling Further

TLDR: Instagram’s new in-feed ad units will appear with a timer at the bottom, and you can’t scroll past the ad till the timer runs down. With half of Instagram’s main feed now AI-recommended content from profiles you don’t follow, Meta can add more ads without users feeling as disrupted.

Meta Is Testing Automated Creative Variations for Reels

TLDR: Some Facebook Page managers are being prompted to try out “Auto A/B” testing within the Reels posting flow, which will create variations of your Reel and sample them with audience segments. This combined with caption A/B testing makes for a powerful combination for brands and creators.

Instagram Tests Creator Insights Profile Performance Overview for Brands

TLDR: Selected creators have a new “Creator Insights” information link appearing on their profile, which brand accounts can tap on to glean insight into their recent analytics from the past 30 days. This is another seamless way for brands to validate their creator partners by understanding their recent engagement and reach metrics.

YOUTUBE

YouTube Announces Rollout Plan for Thumbnail A/B Testing

TLDR: You can now upload and compare the performance of up to three thumbnail images that will be sample tested with users. This is a huge win for brands and creators who manage YouTube channels, as thumbnails are a huge determinant of a videos success.

YouTube Adds More AI Assistance Tools for Creators

TLDR: YouTube is looking to provide more inspiration for content creators, and its revamped “Inspiration” tab in YouTube Studio analytics now offers A.I. recommendations for new video ideas. Creators will be able to enter a topic into the search bar, which will then prompt YouTube’s A.I. system to give you ideas and notes based on what your channel viewers are likely to be interested in.

THE OTHERS

Pinterest launches board sharing to other social platforms

TLDR: This update will make it easier for Pinners to share specific boards (not just Pins) on other social platforms, such as Instagram and TikTok. For brands this is a welcomed feature as it allows creator partnerships to have a Pinterest element in addition to other platforms without needing to have segmented content and relationships.

Walmart is planning its first-ever Creator Upfronts in LA

TLDR: a two-day mingle-fest this October will bring together brands and creators for potential partnerships. Similar to TV up fronts, creators will share their content suite and brands can make up front commitments to lock in the best creators and ad inventory.

New York passes legislation to ban ‘addictive’ social media algorithms for kids

TLDR: The Stop Addictive Feeds Exploitation (SAFE) for Kids act will prohibit social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram from serving content to users under the age of 18 based on recommendation algorithms, meaning that, instead, social media companies will have to provide reverse-chronological feeds for child users


BRAND INFLUENCER HIGHLIGHTS:

How Piece of Cake is using influencer marketing in the moving business

Cetaphil Sharpens Focus on Male Consumers with Influencer Push

Inside Danish Creamery’s creator marketing quest to become “the internet’s favorite butter”

Toys ‘R’ Us just dropped the “first ever brand film created with Sora”

NBCUniversal is sending 27 creators to the Paris Olympic Games

The White House will host a conference for creators


REPORTS WORTH CHECKING OUT

Social media overtakes search engines for discovery among Gen Z and millennials

TLDR: 46% of Generation Z and 35% of millennials prefer social media over traditional search engines, with 44% of Gen Z discovering new brands on social media daily

B2B influencer marketing is a growing field

TLDR: Eighty-five percent of US B2B marketers incorporate influencer marketing into their mix, according to TopRank research. The ideal influencer for these brands is oftentimes not the largest, and B2B marketers are measuring impact through impressions or views for awareness; likes, comments, shares, and saves for engagement; and website traffic for conversions.

Morgan Stanley survey shows 26% of Reels users don’t use TikTok

TLDR: The March survey included over 2,000 U.S. consumers aged 16 and above. According to the data, 37% of Instagram users now interact with Reels daily, with 78% engaging monthly. The study further reveals a shift in social media habits, with increased Reels usage correlating with decreased TikTok activity; notably, 26% of Reels users now report not opening TikTok at all, up from 20% in September 2023.


That’s it for this month. See you next month, 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!

June brought Cannes, VidCon, a slew of Instagram and TikTok release including AI avatars,
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