Five ways to make sure an influencer marketing campaign goes viral

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Big brands told us what was cool. Today, consumers expect brands to be more human. In fact, the higher a brand’s emotional intelligence, the more it earns.

According to Kantar 2020 target report, nearly two-thirds of Millennials and Centennials (our future economic engine) express a preference for “brands that have a point of view and stand for something”.

What a brand says, how it says it and how it behaves makes all the difference. The challenge is that a brand can’t by default be a person – but it can show what it represents through people, which is why influencers are playing an increasingly important role in conversations than brands. have with their target audiences.

The National South African Lottery’s #LetsRebuildTogether campaign is a case in point. Lotto SA’s agency, Wetpaint Advertising, leveraged two of our platforms, accessing micro-influencers via Webfluential and nano influencers through salt to create an incredible and authentic campaign following the riots and looting that took place in July 2021.

To take a position

There are a number of reasons the campaign performed so well (in less than 24 hours it amassed over 10 million views and the #LetsRebuildTogether hashtag trended higher than the Nelson Mandela Day hashtag on Twitter), but the first and most important is that Lotto SA was not afraid to have a voice. Brands that represent something are more authentic which means consumers can connect with them, but it also means influencers can connect with them which can result in an incredibly powerful campaign.

In #LetsRebuildTogether, Wetpaint didn’t search for influencers and then told them what to say. Instead, the agency created a TV commercial, shared it with their chosen influencers, and then asked them to express their feelings and feelings with their fans. It created personal, authentic conversations that resonated deeply with South Africans back then, which is exactly what influencer marketing done well should achieve.

While not all campaigns can (or will go) viral, here are some great lessons we can learn from the success of #LetsRebuildTogether that you can leverage in your next campaign:

1. Start with a goal. Lotto SA wanted to show their unity and support for the victims of the looting, while stressing that as a brand they still believe in a positive future for South Africa. This is essential – without a clear goal, it’s impossible to choose the right influencers to work with or the best platforms for a campaign.

2. Pick the right influencers for your brand and message. It was a campaign of positivity. #LetsRebuildTogether was to say: “We believe in South Africa and we will continue to fight for the nation we love”. Wetpaint chose to work with authentic nano-influencers to create conversations that the micro-influencers then adapted to their wider audience.

They knew that the success of this campaign was based on influencers who focus on their lifestyle as part of what they do and the conversations they have with their audience, as opposed to macro-influencers who have a base. of fans because of the popularity of being a star. The influencers who were selected were all South Africans who could authentically share a message of hope, positivity and that as a nation we can stand together and rebuild.

3. And then trust them. This can often be the hardest step for brands as you cede control of the message to someone else. It is therefore essential to select the right influencers, as well as to trust your values ​​and your message. But at the end of the day, influencers have the most impact when they can express themselves freely, which is exactly what happened here. They weren’t told what to say or how to say it. Instead, they were asked to share how they felt. The results speak for themselves.

4. Choose the right medium. This is an important and often overlooked issue. It’s easy to say, “Facebook has the most followers, we have to be there.” The question is, where is your target audience? Where do they have the conversations you want to participate in? Twitter tends to be highly political, so the strategy was to bring some positivity and hope to conversations about the looting and rebuilding of South Africa.

Wetpaint also kicked off the ad campaign on Facebook and Instagram, but influencers led the conversation on Twitter, and it was clear South Africans were hungry for it, with We Stand Firm, We’ve Got This Mzansi and Together We Can. Conquer Anything dominating the feelings that the campaign sparked.

5. Positivity can prevail. With endless social media posts parading our screens every day and opinions shared everywhere we turn, it’s easy to think that the only way to get noticed is to be nervous, when in fact. (and going back to the beginning of this post), most people just want to be human. A good dose of positivity is often just what we need.

For an in-depth look at the campaign in action, listen to our conversations with Petra Liu, Founder and CEO of Wetpaint Advertising, on our bi-weekly podcast Coffee Conversations on Influencer Marketing


Qualified Chartered Accountant, Pieter Groenewald began to deploy his profession in the media world 20 years ago, but for the past 11 years he has focused on influencer marketing and growth support. companies, through this exciting and rapidly developing channel. He founded theSALT, the first channel to market nano-influencers in South Africa, which is currently being rolled out internationally as a technology solution. Groenewald is an experienced CEO with a proven track record of working in the marketing and advertising industry. He is currently CEO of SA’s # 1 influencer marketing group at Nfinity, helping brands capitalize on “trusted credentials” through influencer marketing. Our channels are theSALT, Webfluential, Echocast, theInternship and Nfluential.


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