Rui Duarte Catana, a Portuguese Instagram influencer operating under the handle of @ruiduartecatana, is a Cinderella story if there ever was one.
The husband and father of three began his IG career in March of 2018. What started as a fitness inspiration account blew up into so much more.
Rui's account now has over 100,000 followers, both men and women alike. Rui has ascended from mere eye-candy to coach, wellness guru, and trusted fitness buff. He's now making his mark in marketing.
In January of 2020, the novel coronavirus started to rear its ugly head, slowly taking over the entire world.
By October, nearly every aspect of our lives has changed. The same holds true for Rui and other influencers. As the virus made large-scale marketing production and collaborative campaigns nearly impossible, companies started to look for innovative ways to peddle their wares.
Influencers have been a creative and alternative way for marketers to bring attention to products since 2015. The pandemic has only renewed interest in these advertisement mechanisms.
Trends Are Changing
Since lockdown measures hit, following the pandemics global sweeps, interest in using influencers for product marketing campaigns has increased by 33%, with a 40% increase in ad performance of influencer-created content in social ads.
It's not just about staying inside and reducing production costs, however. More than ever, people are turning towards social media to get news about current events. And, of course, to keep tabs on friends and family during this time.
More eyes fall on social media as an authority of what's happening in today's world. These platforms are now hyper-relevant to ad agencies across the board. Not to mention that Influencers are already used to working from home, often without the need for collaborative content or big-budget productions.
Everything about it is making things all the more simple to color within the lines of governmental restrictions.
Influencers like Rui Duarte Catana are always looking for new and creative ways to innovate and branch out their own content. That's how they're creating a symbiotic relationship between influencers and marketers.
As more people are denied access to their favorite cafes, concert venues, and even shopping complexes, live video streams and online shopping have exploded in popularity over the last few months.
Influencers Are Seeing Higher Demand
This change in viewers' social habits has also encouraged a change in the creative content of influencers.
@ruiduartecatana is a prime example of the pivot most influencers have made with this surge in demand for more personal and comforting content. It's the content with less focus on constantly bombarding their audiences with products and more intimate on posts and videos.
Truly devoted to the subscribers, they help remind them that a sense of normalcy is still found in this new landscape, creating a new and dynamic system for everyone. Viewers and influencers can interact directly with one another. That's helping to market products more effectively while answering questions or showing real-world results.
Additionally, it helps niche product producers to get a better idea of what their customers are actually looking for. A perfect example is the beauty industry. It has seen a 62% increase in content vertices for influencers though people aren't leaving their homes.
Fashion, beauty, and Fitness
Fashion and beauty remain a priority to consumers. That's largely thanks to social media and influencers. Another burgeoning business in Covid-19 times is home life, such as domestic practices, cleaning utensils, and cooking tutorials.
Fitness, health, and wellness are not far behind. They beautifully fit into the other top two niches, with 72% of all influencers, as Rui Duarte Catana can attest, consuming, and producing fitness-related content. Regardless of what their base content is.
Influencers are also using these newfound attractions as a way to guide the content they create and how they inspire audiences to play along. That's something many are looking for as lockdowns take the toll on our socialization practices.
Using collaborative events and hashtags, like challenges, helps bring together a wider community. One that is entirely novel in the world of marketing.
And most importantly, one that has become necessary to consumers, influencers, and producers alike during these times.