Staying Connected is Just an App Away

By: Dallas Keefe, Senior Media Manager and Andrea Aguilar, Associate Media Manager  |  May 14th, 2020

As the ripple effects of COVID-19 continue to take shape, everyone around the world is trying to find a “new normal” and adapt to new standards of living and working. With the changes has come a seismic shift in the way we communicate to family, friends, co-workers and clients. As humans, we crave connection to others but have had to adjust how this connection looks. With no social gathering spots or in-person meetings, how do we stay connected? Luckily, there are apps for that! Apps and digital platforms have seen a huge increase in usage as we utilize technology to connect virtually. Likewise, brands can look to these platforms to stay connected to their consumers. As young millennials and digital connoisseurs, here are a few of our favorite ways to stay connected:

TikTok:

Who knew a 15-60 second clip could go so viral? That’s TikTok for you! TikTok is a newer entrant to the American market that started as a platform where teens posted fun new dances or short clips of relatable content. What was once known as Musical.ly and mostly used by Gen Z, has now grown to be one of the most popular apps with over 800 million users worldwide. During this Pandemic, TikTok has expanded its user base across all ages and backgrounds. The app and website saw a 93% spike in Unique Visitors from October 2019 to March 2020, and similar growth in time spent. TikTok’s audience is predominantly Gen Z, featuring 41% of users between 16-24 and 50% of users under 30. As such, it’s a fantastic place to engage a new and younger audience.

While TikTok is still viewed as an emerging channel, advertisers are taking advantage of the easy-to-consume content being watched by millions to promote products and services in unique, visually compelling ways. They just recently launched their self-serve advertising platform with many solutions still in Beta. Advertising opportunities include Brand takeovers, in-feed ads, and branded hashtag challenges. Paid advertising can be targeted by age, location and interest.

Snapchat:

Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, SnapChat has made a conscious effort to push the boundaries of technology, offering their users real-time news and information as well as a platform to authentically connect with each other. As friends and families are forced to social distance, they are leaning into Snapchat to connect virtually. Snapchat gained 11 million daily active users in the first quarter of 2020 – a 20% increase over last year. While Snapchat’s key demographics are ages 13-29, with 62% of users ranging between 18-19, Snapchat has seen growth in parent and young professional audience segments during the COVID-19 timeframe.

“Snapchat Calling” capabilities rival Zoom, allowing up to 32 people in a live call. In March, they reported a 30% increase in usage across Chat, Calling and Snap Games (compared to the last week of January), and a 50% increase in geographic regions largely impacted by COVID. Not only is this platform perfect for a group chat, you can also utilize lenses and filters to augment reality during to spice up your calls.

Source: Social Media Today  

What does this mean for advertisers? Opportunity to reach an engaged audience.

Snapchat ads allow brands to connect to users with engaging, shareable, and interactive content. The app is known for their lenses and augmented reality filters to keep users engaged. Brands can take advantage of these environments by creating their own sponsored experiences. During COVID-19, Snapchat has reported not only large increases in user engagement across the board, but also on branded content:

In addition to branded filters, Snapchat now offers a shoppable augmented reality feature which allows advertisers to sell products through lenses and filters by adding a button that directs users to the brands website to browse and purchase products. Upon launch, this feature was only available to large advertisers but now accessible to advertisers of all sizes.

Zoom:

Another way that people are connecting face-to-face is via Zoom, which has grown from 10 million to over 200 million users during this stay-at-home period. Zoom is being used across many enterprises for conferences, webinars and remote meetings to stay connected and keep business moving forward. Even though Zoom has been known for its business communication services, consumers and brands are turning to it as another way to communicate via video and audio.

Here are some easy ways to spice up your video calls:

We urge you to lean in, embrace the digital world and connect with your audiences by utilizing the technology that is readily available. Consumers are craving new content, entertainment, and the ability to connect with the brands that they love. We leave you with a few more ideas to get the creative juices flowing:

As many of us follow the Stay-At-Home order due to this pandemic, we find ways to connect with our friends, family, and brands that we love through technology. While many things may be uncertain right now, Media+ remains a trusted and nimble resource to help you navigate these unprecedented times. There are lots of creative opportunities, and we would love to help you brainstorm ways to stay top of mind to your consumers.