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How To Pivot Your Creator Marketing Strategy During Uncertain Times

clock-ic 6 minute read time

By Lindsay Jerutis

In the face of rapidly changing technology, evolving social media algorithms, and economic uncertainty, the buoyancy of the creator marketing landscape can help brands and marketers adapt to huge societal shifts. 

In fact, during unpredictable times, creator marketing can serve as a solid foundation for brands to maintain meaningful connections with audiences. Collaborating with creators allows brands to stay top of mind in changing markets by targeting audiences on emerging platforms and tapping into current social trends in real time. And partnering with diverse creators can help them broaden their reach and deliver messaging that resonates to all types of consumers. 

Leveraging our years of expertise at the forefront of the creator economy, here are seven tried-and-true recommendations for crafting a strong, flexible creator marketing strategy that adapts to shifting industry winds.

1. Reassess Goals and Objectives

Shifts in industry dynamics, technological advancements, social trends, and economic conditions can significantly impact consumer behavior, preferences, and expectations. As a result, brands should continuously evaluate and adapt their marketing goals.

First, brand awareness goals should be revisited to align with industry changes. Pay attention to the shifting social formats that are bringing in the most eyeballs. As new platforms emerge and consumer attention shifts to different platforms, brands should be looking to partner with creators on these emerging platforms, who are utilizing new technologies and increasingly popular formats. These days, short-form video is commanding consumers’ attention at scale, so creating a video-first creator marketing strategy can help you capitalize on this growing format.

Similarly, conversion goals should always be evaluated in the context of economic conditions. Currently, economic fluctuations are impacting consumer spending behaviors, and consumers are prioritizing value and seeking more cost-effective options. Brands can respond by optimizing their conversion strategies to emphasize affordability and exclusive promotions. A brand whose main objective was previously to promote their luxury offerings may be creating new goals to focus on conversion for lower-priced items. By aligning conversion rate goals with economic realities, brands can enhance their competitiveness and cater to the evolving needs of their audience.

2. Build a Diversified Casting Strategy

A diversified creator casting strategy can help marketers safeguard their brand during uncertain times. Working with a range of creators from different backgrounds, with different content, strengths, niches, and specialties, gives you multiple avenues for success. 

To adjust to changing consumer attitudes, your strategy should include working with promotion-focused creators. With economic instability and rising prices, consumers are becoming more cost-conscious. Partnering with deal-driven creators with a proven track record of driving sales can help you amplify messages of affordability, ensuring a targeted and effective approach in price-conscious markets.

Similarly, social media trends are changing frequently. Casting tastemakers in your campaigns can help you stay ahead of these fast-moving trends and reach young, technologically savvy audiences. These tastemaking creators have their fingers on the pulse of current trends and seamlessly integrate products into their content with authenticity. 

Finally, working with diverse creators remains a key aspect of creator marketing at any time. And especially in times of societal change, having a roster of creators that represent various backgrounds and perspectives ensures that the brand remains inclusive and resonant. By embracing diversity in creator partnerships, you can build trust with consumers across various demographics, establishing a robust and resilient brand image.

3. Leverage Authenticity in Creator Partnerships

With changing social media preferences, consumers are favoring less polished content that feels genuine and relatable. Leaning on authentic, honest creator content helps brands build trust with their audience, garnering legitimacy and stability. 

As consumers become more discerning about their purchases, authentic creator content becomes a valuable tool for brands. The genuine nature of creator reviews and endorsements lends legitimacy to product evaluation, helping consumers navigate the clutter of information. Honest, enthusiastic reviews can lead to viral moments on platforms like TikTok, where products such as the Stanley Tumbler and the Laura Mercier Flawless Weightless Perfecting Waterproof Foundation have achieved a devoted following. This emphasis on authenticity not only adapts to the changing preferences in content consumption but also reinforces the credibility of brand messages in an environment where consumer trust is paramount.

The best way to foster authenticity during brand partnerships? Encourage creator partners to freely express their creativity. When creators are able to integrate products into their content in ways that resonate authentically with their audience, their content feels more organic and aligned with their established style. For example, during creative briefing, you can suggest key talking points instead of asking them to follow a strict script, empowering creators to integrate the brand messaging into their narrative in the best way for them.

4. Lean on Rising Creators

As social media becomes more saturated, and short form video gains continued popularity, investing in rising, niche creators can help you adapt your marketing strategy to capitalize on these changing currents. 

Niche content is on the rise, and audiences are seeking out creators with unique voices and similar interests. Plus, working with niche creators allows brands to be at the forefront of social media and emerging trends. Importantly, it allows brands to target highly engaged audiences with specific interests, and tap into genuine creator and audience sentiment. 

And as niche creators often command more reasonable rates in comparison with macro-ceators, this investment strategy can yield a greater bang for your buck: creative content, targeted audiences, high engagement rates, and a better ROI.

Because you’re going to need multiple touchpoints over multiple months when you’re thinking of a purchase…you want to make sure you’re investing in Creators over time so that brands can leverage their evolving influence and their evolving audience to maintain continuity in their marketing efforts.
Lindsay Jerutis
GM, Collective Voice

5. Capitalize on UGC 

User-generated content (UGC) is becoming an increasingly popular means of content creation. For creators, UGC is an opportunity to put their creative skills to use, gain recognition from potential brand partners, and make money from their content without needing a significant following.

As a brand, it’s an ideal moment to seize on the growing popularity of UGC.

First, utilizing UGC allows brands to acquire high-quality marketing content at a lower cost. In fact, UGC saves brands money by outsourcing their content creation. And as UGC isn’t about driving sales or awareness from creators’ channels, it encourages brands to contract content from creators of all sizes. 

Second, you can use UGC to experiment with unique and highly creative content that may not fit within your typical brand confines. The lower cost, and the wide array of UGC from all types of digital creators and artists, creates a low-risk environment for trying new things.

Finally, the authenticity and relatability of UGC lends credibility to your brand and products, fostering a sense of trust with your audience. In fact, 48% of customers have said that UGC is a great way for them to discover new products, and 92% of consumers find UGC content more trustworthy than other types of advertising. This proves that UGC is a lower cost way to secure brand-friendly content that drives sales. 

6. Embrace Data-Driven Decision Making

Real-time data is a potent tool for brands who want to remain agile, as they can assess campaign and marketing performance and make quick adjustments. By closely monitoring metrics such as engagement and conversion rates in real-time, brands can gain immediate insights into the effectiveness of their creator strategies. 

Importantly, a data-driven approach can empower you to identify successful tactics, tweak underperforming content, and promptly respond to emerging trends or unexpected shifts in consumer behavior. For example, paying attention to your creator performance might shed light on the rising home decor category, and you can quickly pivot your campaign to feature more home-focused creators and products. 

Working with a creator marketing partner like Collective Voice that provides detailed data, and has its finger on the pulse of trends and current societal sentiments, can also empower you to smoothly adjust brand messaging or harness the newest technologies.

Importantly, don’t be afraid to look past traditional metrics to measure campaign efficacy; examining long-term engagement, consumer feedback, and shifts in brand perception can tell a more detailed story.

7. Focus on the Long Game

This is an industry that’s inevitably guided by change. New social platforms emerge, trends rapidly evolve, and economic and consumer headwinds are often out of brands’ and marketers’ control.

As important as it is to be flexible, it’s equally important to focus on the long game. Building a robust brand presence is a marathon, not a sprint. And when it comes to creator marketing, nurturing long-term relationships with creators through always-on campaigns provides consistent content and brand awareness during unpredictable times

Always-on campaigns build continuity and a sustained presence in the market, promoting a consistent brand narrative through multiple touchpoints across social platforms. The reliability of always-on creator campaigns can position a brand as a constant presence in a frequently shifting consumer landscape. And over time, creators become associated with their brand partners, taking on the role of a brand ambassador. As a brand ambassador, they become trusted sources of information and recommendations, strengthening their credibility amongst audiences. 

Plus, the steadiness of an always-on campaign creates ideal conditions for flexibility and experimentation! Within a strong, enduring creator strategy, brands can feel free to tweak their messaging, try new things, and embrace new industry trends, without fear of putting the whole campaign at risk. And it’s in these experimental moments that some brands find their most innovative and effective strategies. 

Ultimately, always-on campaigns can be a safeguard against big industry changes, driving a steady influx of sales over long periods of time. 

About The Author

Lindsay Jerutis

As the driving force behind Collective Voice, Lindsay is at the forefront of the Creator Marketing industry as the company’s General Manager. With over 2 decades of experience in digital commerce and operations, she navigates consumer trends, empowers Creators to build thriving businesses, and emphasizes the importance of brands investing in Creator marketing to drive growth and success. Learn more about her here.

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