Our industry is ever-changing. Get insights and perspective from our experts as we share our knowledge and experience on how to successfully navigate the marketing landscape.
A buzzing topic in the world of data security and protection is the upcoming Google Chrome changes. That’s right, we will soon be living in a cookieless world. Technology solutions in the current landscape are optimizing their efforts much before the implementation as they’d like to get well-acquinated with what the future of advertising may look like. “We want to be early adopters and hand-raisers as a part of these cookieless and new ID solutions,” said Meghan Galligan, Stop & Shop’s director of digital marketing. (Source: AdExchanger) AMP Agency partnered with Stop & Shop and Dstillery to learn more about how to navigate through an ever-changing cookieless landscape. Read the news here.
After Super Bowl 56, we polled AMPers to find out their top 10 ads. Their picks? The silliest, unexpected, and most star-studded spots the night had to offer. Check them out below. Coinbase - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zLsUhOCqyU What AMPers are saying: Incredibly simple, unexpected, and disruptive. The Coinbase QR code was simple. It got people to get up, pull out their phones, and it hit the corner of the screen as a cherry on top. Amazon Alexa, Mind Reader - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0UEAr8I9G8 What AMPers are saying: Hilarious, innovative, favorite celebrities featured. Uber Eats, Uber Don’t Eats - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ri-rXPw5Cnk What AMPers are saying: Simple and silly. This spot had emotional attachment and humor! Plus, Jennifer Coolidge makes everything better. Toyota, The Joneses - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtQIz5pkwwg What AMPers are saying: Fun twist on a common phrase, funny and classic. Rocket Mortgage, Dream House - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukLeyxOA8uk What AMPers are saying: Nostalgic, but still very relatable. Planet Fitness, What’s gotten into Lindsay? - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnoVFlMMdK8 What AMPers are saying: Amazing comeback for Lindsay and promotion for Planet Fitness. Squarespace, Sally Sells Seashells - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0rl8j5631Q What AMPers are saying: Alliteration at its best. Squarespace did a great job of showcasing benefits in a fun way. Pringles, Stuck - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aP2up9N6H-g What AMPers are saying: So funny and self-aware. Michelob Ultra, Superior Bowl - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rcw6GdCQC8 What AMPers are saying: Cinematic, loved the Serena Williams feature! Lays, Golden Memories - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KjatG0hqwE What AMPers are saying: Simple idea, hilarious execution. Data doesn’t lie, and neither do AMPers! See you next year.
Podcasts are a rapidly growing platform but still feel like a new frontier for advertisers. AMP Media Director Shoshana Przybylinski discussed her podcast ad-buying experience in Marketing Brew’s recent piece, ‘The host-read ad is still king, but podcast advertisers are experimenting with programmatic ads.’ “Shoshana Przybylinski, media director at AMP Agency, says she still buys a lot of podcast ads directly—with no tech involved—depending on the client. ‘It really depends…If [the client is] local, we’ll typically buy through a network or programmatically, just because we can’t waste any media dollars on something that’s going to run nationally,” Przybylinski said. “So that’s definitely when we would lean more towards the network buying. But sometimes you do want that host connection, and that’s when you would go to the show directly’.” Get up-to-date on the great podcast push by reading the full story here.
2022: THE YEAR OF THE PODCAST It's hard to find someone who isn't plugged into at least one podcast. And the numbers support that. Podcast listeners have been steadily climbing, increasing by around 20 million each year. And according to Statista, forecasters are projecting podcast listeners will surpass 160 million in 2023. This rise in podcast listening is a significant opportunity for advertisers to reach listeners through the voices they know and trust. So we decided to look within, probing AMPers to share their all-time favorite podcasts. If you're in need of fresh, easy listening material or simply want to dive into the world of podcasts, here's a lineup of AMP's top picks of 2022: The A-List Podcast: Origin stories about how some of your favorite ad campaigns came to life and how the people that made them got to making them. This American Life: A weekly podcast around the American experience. Each week they choose a theme and gather different stories around that theme. What AMPers are saying: Love the storytelling. Sometimes delightful, and sometimes devastating. They always tell diverse and unique stories, doing their due diligence to research and interview a range of memorable characters. The Experiment: A show about people navigating our country's contradictions. Hosted by the Atlantic. What AMPers are saying: Love their unbiased and bite-sized deep dives into different fascinating and relevant topics about our ever-evolving country Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness: Curious about everything under the sun? JVN chats with experts in their respective fields to create awareness about topics that we may not have ever thought of digging into. What AMPers are saying: Super open-minded and interesting topics from pop culture, animals, history, and events that have shaped the world as we know it. HBR Ideacast: A weekly podcast featuring the leading thinkers in business and management. What AMPers are saying: I like how it's a quick podcast that covers some innovative ideas that often challenge the norms in modern business. Hidden Brain: A conversation about life's hidden patterns. What AMPers are saying: I like the interesting psychological insights, plus they can be relevant to our work in marketing. The Huberman Lab: Stanford professor and neurobiologist Andrew Huberman discusses science and science-based tools for everyday life. What AMPers are saying: I like how they explain how different parts of the nervous system affect our bodies and everyday life and provide tips to improve things like sleep, skill learning, and more in a digestible format. In Search of Hope Podcast: Inspiring interviews with people from all walks of life that endured and overcame hardships. The host, Ugo, and the people he interviews shed light on specific topics that can bring insight and hope to people that need it during dark times. What AMPers are saying: I like hearing how others go through things and hold their heads up high. It's helpful when I think I'm alone in hardships, and it's very open-minded and explorative. Ugo's also a great orator and storyteller! LORE: Frightening history on some good ol' folklore. What AMPers are saying: All the spooks are great for long car rides. Constantly on the edge of my seat. National Park After Dark: Their tagline is "A podcast for the morbid outdoor enthusiast," but it's more than that. It's terrific storytelling about crazy things that have happened in National Parks, and it's also educational, with a lot of great historical and safety content. What AMPers are saying: Some of the episodes are pretty dark, but overall I've learned so much about nature, indigenous communities, animals, etc. It's such an interesting listen! The Secret Room: Interviews with guests about the deepest and darkest secrets they keep. Smartless: Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, and Sean Hayes interview surprise celebrities guests. Hilarity ensues. What AMPers are saying: The dynamic between the hosts is very entertaining, and they get great guests. Song Exploder: A podcast where musicians take apart their songs and, piece by piece, tell the story of how they were made. What AMPers are saying: Learning different musicians' creative processes and how they think and play is fascinating. Stuff You Should Know: Josh and Chuck, two writers from How Stuff Works, cover a different topic each episode. If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Niño, true crime, or Rosa Parks, then look no further. What AMPers are saying: You learn something new each episode, and the hosts have a knack for making complicated ideas easy to understand. Even the most random topics (history of the ballpoint pen) are interesting. The hosts have great chemistry and banter. Unlocking Us with Brené Brown: Brené Brown is a researcher and storyteller who's spent the past two decades studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy. While many things remain uncertain, one thing is for sure, we love Podcasts here at AMP. Stay tuned for more of what AMPers are listening to in the coming future.
AMP Agency, a division of Advantage Solutions, has named Michael Mish president. Mish, who joined AMP Agency in 2012, most recently served as SVP, general manager and previously as SVP of business development. As president, Mish is responsible for agency operations, strategy and growth, including strategic acquisitions. Under Mish’s leadership, the agency has experienced consistent year-over-year growth on a national and now global scale. “AMP’s growth is in large part attributable to Michael’s focus on shifting to strategic relationships and evolving AMP’s capabilities to meet the changing needs of clients,” said AMP Agency Founder Gary Colen. “Michael has specifically focused on the demand for top-tier, growth-focused digital media services, experience design, dynamic creative, data science and advanced analytics.” Mish serves on Advantage's DE&I board, which is supporting a multiyear diversity, equity and inclusion strategy that includes the establishment of employee resource groups, training programs, talent benchmarks and policy recommendations. Working with other senior executive leaders, Mish is focused on developing a positive culture and recruiting diverse talent to the company. “Improving DE&I within the marketing and advertising industry is nothing new,” Mish said. “As a Hispanic leader from humble beginnings, I recognize the need to create opportunities within and outside of our agency. “I want to be part of the change in the industry. At AMP, our core values are Openness, Empathy and Growth. Our leadership team is focused on developing an inclusive culture and recruiting multicultural talent. Not only is it the right thing to do, but diversity of thought and experience will drive breakthrough work for our clients, increase innovation and accelerate our momentum.” Last year, AMP established a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee and developed a pro-bono program, setting a goal of dedicating up to 10% of annual billable hours to support organizations led or owned by Black, Latinx, LGBTQIA+ people or people impacted by disabilities. “We decided our role in solving inequalities is to focus our intellectual capital on growing businesses that support these communities,” Mish said. “When Michael joined AMP, he immediately drove value for the agency and our clients and has always stood out as an innovative and strategic leader,” Colen said. “The larger vision for the agency has consistently been at the forefront of his contributions. I’ve always looked to Michael for opportunities to lead and guide the agency, given his proven marketing genius and passion for growing our clients’ brands with breakthrough work and for growing our people. In his new role as president, I know he will combine these areas of focus to continue to elevate our agency and our people for our clients.” Mish has had an amazing journey here at AMP! View this video to learn more: Congratulations, Mish! READ THE NEWS: https://www.adweek.com/agencyspy/amp-agency-elevates-michael-mish-to-president/173862/ https://www.lbbonline.com/news/amp-agency-names-michael-mish-as-president
How the first impression a brand makes on social is similar to online dating: Online dating… It's an often-times scary place for newcomers and people who want to find a connection. Similarly, social media is oftentimes a scary place for brands that are looking to make a splash, tell their stories and create longtime, engaged customers. But how do you do this? It’s all about the first impression, and then, of course, keeping people interested. And more importantly, sharing interesting and entertaining content that either sparks joy or inspires the audience to want to know more. It’s all about the first impression People put a lot of effort into their online dating profile, showcasing their interests, and selecting the best photos that show off a full life. When you think about a brand’s social media presence, are the best images being shared? How do you want the audience to feel when they view the content? Is the brand showcasing a lifestyle that is aspirational and grabs interest? Can the audience visualize the product or service in their life at first glance? Can you think of the last ad or content on social from a brand that made you think “Wow, that was funny” or “I need that product in my life”? Whatever it was, try to evoke that same feeling in any ideas or strategy. Is the content conversational? On a dating profile, the hope is that the profile info is interesting enough to grab someone’s attention so they *swipe right*, so to speak. On social, there’s a difference between talking at the audience and inspiring engagement, whether through a like or comment. Nobody likes being talked at or told to buy something they might not need. It doesn’t feel authentic and it doesn’t spark a 1:1 conversation. When you look at other brands, are their captions engaging? Is it only informative and robotic, or is it playful and humanized? Nobody wants to date a robot. Swiping right vs. hitting follow on social: With online dating, the goal is to get people to swipe right on your profile and be interested enough to send a message. For brands, the goal is to get people to hit follow and engage on a regular basis. If a brand’s not getting any engagement or steady follower growth, the question could be asked: Is this content boring? Is there anything interesting enough that inspires people to follow? Keeping your followers interested If someone is dating you, they have decided they find you interesting enough to want to be more immersed in your life and interests. Similar to a brand’s social media, once the first impression is nailed with a following, the real work comes in by knowing how to keep them interested. If someone is following a brand, they likely know what the products are or what the brand is all about. So, how do brands keep them interested as time goes on, knowing they already know the brand? New product launches, new special features, and staying up to date on all the latest and greatest ways to make content (*cough, cough* TikTok). Also, consistency. Is the brand trustworthy? Similar to dating, would you introduce the brand to your friends? These two things go hand in hand.
In times of social distancing, how can we still connect with friends and play sports and games? We looked to Google Trends to find out which backyard games were more than just a COVID fad. We found that both cornhole and pickleball saw highs in search volume in the summer of 2020, and we predict that they will continue to trend up in 2021. Pickleball Pickleball had a spike in the summer months of 2020 and continues to rise in popularity through April 2021. According to Google Trends, the keyword “pickleball” had its highest search interest over the past 5 years in late April/Early May 2021. Users were mostly interested in the rules of the game and how to play. Some of the most popular pickleball keywords and questions were: Keyword April 2019 April 2020 April 2021 pickleball 246,000+ queries 201,000+ queries 550,000+ queries what is pickleball 22,200+ queries 18,100+ queries 60,500+ queries how to play pickleball 6,600+ queries 8,100+ queries 18,100+ queries pickleball court near me 6,600+ queries 6,600+ queries 40,500+ queries how to score in pickleball 320+ queries 390+ queries 880+ queries Cornhole Looking at Google Trends over the last 5 years, we’ve seen seasonal spikes for cornhole searches in the summer months. However, cornhole saw its largest search interest in June 2020. As of the end of May 2021, this trend looks like it will continue – and potentially even pass – the volume of searches that we saw in 2020. Keyword April 2019 April 2020 April 2021 cornhole 110,000+ queries 135,000+ queries 135,000+ queries how to make cornhole boards 5,400+ queries 18,100+ queries 8,100+ queries how to make cornhole bags 1,300+ queries 4,400+ queries 1,900+ queries bean bag toss 12,100+ queries 14,800+ queries 9,900+ queries custom cornhole board 8,100+ queries 12,100+ queries 14,800+ queries Yard Games Lastly, we found that people were searching for yard games in general, which may have led them to find cornhole or pickleball if they were previously unaware. Consumers were searching for any ways they could get outside and have some fun while social distancing. Some of the most popular keywords related to yard games we found were: Keyword April 2019 April 2020 April 2021 yard games 18,100+ queries 33,100+ queries 22,200+ queries lawn games 9,900+ queries 14,800+ queries 14,800+ queries backyard games 8,100+ queries 22,200+ queries 14,800+ queries backyard sports 1,900+ queries 6,600+ queries 2,900+ queries diy yard games 1,000+ queries 1,900+ queries 720+ queries Game On What may have started out as a socially-distant, at-home activity novelty in the summer of 2020 has progressed into a behavioral change. These backyard games and sports have taken on a life of their own as more people become aware of the fun that could be had in their own yards. Will this trend continue beyond 2021? We can’t say for certain; but as for this summer, the popularity of these backyard games is increasing. Like how we pulled these insights from search data? Learn more about our SEO agency services.
In our continuing series of examining Google Search Trends to gain insights into the top keywords queried in the USA, we present our findings for March 2021. Every day, we capture the top three keyword phrases in terms of search volume as reported by Google Trends (US Only). Each term has an estimated query volume attached to it, which we also record. The number scale tops out at 10,000,000+ with a lower limit of 200,000+. After the conclusion of the month, we look at the phrases we collected along with their volumes to get an understanding of what drove queries for the month. The Cruelest Month Is March We know that T.S. Eliot, in his poem “The Waste Land”, stated that April is cruelest month, but we beg to differ–and we aren’t the only ones. Here in the Northeastern part of the USA, winter sticks around too long and the thought of being cooped up in the house for another month is enough to make us loathe March. Last year, the lockdown started in March, so we can add to the list of bad stuff that happens in this month. Luckily, there were more things to distract us this year, like The Grammys, movie releases and NCAA basketball. Let’s take a look at what drove people to search last month. Here are the top Google Trends keywords of March 2021, as analyzed by AMP Agency. March 13th - Wha’ Happened? March is so cruel, Google Trends skipped a day. For some reason, Google Trends didn’t post any information for Saturday, March 13th. There appears to have been a glitch that lasted over 24 hours. From the screenshot, you can see that March 14th was also affected. Typically, for any date, the top 20 phrases are posted in the Trending Searches module. On the 14th, only the top 5 were reported. It’s a good thing we don’t use Google Trends in place of our calendar because we would be at least a day behind while writing this article. Coming In Like A Lion Along with the March 13th glitch, we had a doubled query count on the first of the month. Dr. Seuss - 3/1/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries Dr. Seuss - 3/1/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries The announcement from Dr. Seuss Enterprises stating that they will stop publishing six of its books did stir users to search for more information but we’re not sure why this query had to be published twice. March is so cruel. What Keywords Were Searched The Most in March There were four phrases that drove over 10 million queries in March 2021. Texas - 3/2/2021 - 10,000,000+ queries Meghan Markle - 3/7/2021 - 10,000,000+ queries St. Patrick's Day - 3/16/2021 - 10,000,000+ queries Spring season - 3/19/2021 - 10,000,000+ queries Texas was hit with extremely cold temperatures and massive power outages in the beginning of March. The Oprah Winfrey interview with Meghan Markle and Prince Harry was quite the bombshell and people wanted to learn more about it. This interview drove a number of related phrases that will be examined in the next section. The other two phrases were driven by Google Doodles where clicks on the altered logo are registered as queries. About That Oprah Interview As stated, the Oprah Interview had some lasting effects in the daily top 3 most searched keywords: Meghan Markle - 3/3/2021 - 200,000+ queries Piers Morgan - 3/8/2021 - 500,000+ queries CBS Oprah interview - 3/8/2021 - 500,000+ queries Piers Morgan - 3/9/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries Piersmorgan - 3/10/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries Before the interview aired, Meghan Markle was in the news because an investigation was started into her alleged bullying of two personal assistants that forced them to leave their positions. After the interview aired, the UK broadcaster Piers Morgan reacted to the story Good Morning Britain, which led to him walking off the set and quitting the show. Other Holiday Queries St. Patrick’s Day and the first day of Spring were the most popular dates, driven by Google Doodles. Here’s the list of the other top searched March holiday related keywords. International Women's Day - 3/7/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries St. Patrick's Day 2021 - 3/16/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries St. Patrick's Day - 3/16/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries Leprechaun - 3/17/2021 - 200,000+ queries April Fools pranks - 3/31/2021 - 500,000+ queries International Women’s Day gained in search popularity year over year. Looking at the 5 year trend, there were more searches for the holiday in 2021 than in 2020 and 2019. AMP Agency celebrated the day this year and you can read more about it in this post. Entertainment There were a few movies that were released during March 2021 that made the daily top 3. Also, the Grammys were held last month, which is unusual because they are typically held in late January or early February. Raya and the Last Dragon - 3/5/2021 - 500,000+ queries Coming to America 2 - 3/4/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries Grammys 2021 - 3/15/2021 - 5,000,000+ queries Justice League Snyder Cut - 3/18/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries Godzilla vs Kong - 3/31/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries The four movies that are listed above had the highest search volumes in the month of March. We like to use the search interest in films on their opening days as an indication of how many people are going to watch, either in theaters or at home. It’s curious that Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon did not make the 2 million plus query mark. The 63rd annual Grammy Awards reportedly had less than half the audience tune in to watch the show live in 2021 vs. 2020. The search volume was down year over year but not by 50%: According to the same reports, streaming of the event was up 83%. From our search data analysis, it appears that audience interest in the awards show is down but not dramatically so. Politics Thankfully, with no raid on the Capitol or impeachment trial this month, there were much fewer keywords related to politics making the daily top 3 in March 2021. Kyrsten Sinema - 3/5/2021 - 500,000+ queries Covid relief bill - 3/10/2021 - 200,000+ queries Matt Gaetz - 3/30/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries The senior United States Senator from Arizona made headlines with her vote on the minimum wage bill last month. The H.R.1319 - American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 became law on the 11th and the announcement that Matt Gaetz is facing an inquiry from the Justice Department made headlines on the 30th. NCAA Basketball We guess they don’t call it March Madness for nothing. The NCAA Basketball tournament was back this year and queries related to it took up a lot of the top 3 this month. Check out the timeline of these 15 keyword phrases as the tourney progressed. Michigan basketball - 3/12/2021 - 200,000+ queries March Madness 2021 - 3/14/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries NCAA Tournament - 3/18/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries Oral Roberts - 3/19/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries Syracuse basketball - 3/19/2021 - 500,000+ queries Abilene Christian - 3/20/2021 - 500,000+ queries VCU basketball - 3/20/2021 - 500,000+ queries Oral Roberts - 3/21/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries Illinois basketball - 3/21/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries Michigan basketball - 3/22/2021 - 500,000+ queries Oral Roberts - 3/27/2021 - 5,000,000+ queries Syracuse basketball - 3/27/2021 - 5,000,000+ queries Alabama Basketball - 3/28/2021 - 500,000+ queries Gonzaga basketball - 3/28/2021 - 200,000+ queries UCLA basketball - 3/30/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries The maddest thing about the tournament? The champion isn’t crowned until April. We’ll have to wait until the next article to discuss it. So cruel. Thanks for reading. If you liked this article, we invite you to learn more about our SEO services. Until next month.
The Intersection of Relationships and Empathy in PR and Influencer Marketing The nature of the job for public relations professional and influencer is to inform, drive and capitalize upon trends and insights, but the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the tumultuous political landscape in 2020 resulted in a re-evaluation of how we approach important conversations and relationships with media contacts, influencer partners and all of their respective audiences, and that is bleeding into how we march forward in 2021. Understanding the intersection of new and continued relationships and cognitive empathy will drive success in 2021 across all marketing disciplines, especially within the public relations and influencer marketing world. Here are five important pillars that reflect what we learned and applied throughout the course of last year, and how it can help move brands forward: Build Solid Foundations for Trust Whether it’s in developing trust with new press contacts or influencer partners, the first step to truly building a solid foundation for trust is demonstrating an understanding of workload and being transparent surrounding your goals or those of your clients. This can be accomplished from the very beginning by developing a thought-out program brief outlining everything from content usage and timeline requirements or even priority storylines to help streamline any work that needs to be completed on the partners’ end. These first steps serve as a kicking off point for continued conversations and a mutual understanding that their time is valuable, ultimately gaining points and trust with any type of partner. Utilize Shared Experiences and Values While it can be difficult to break through to new contacts, what better way to get someone’s attention than to start up a conversation about a shared experience or value you may hold? Perhaps you recently saw an article pointing to a product or service you chose to try thanks to the very media contact you’re reaching out to, then mention that. Or maybe you saw the influencer you’re working to secure visited that donut shop you’ve been meaning to try—use that as a starting point for your potential relationship. Utilizing shared experiences and values is an approach that can humanize the person behind the email and show a media contact or influencer that you took the time to be thoughtful in your engagement with them. Prioritize Personalized Communications In 2020, it became blatantly clear that pitching products or generically conducting outreach to influencers just wasn’t enough anymore, not when there was so much noise to break through across all industries. On top of that, media newsrooms shrunk dramatically, making it more difficult, and even more important, to prioritize personalized communication. Dedicating time to researching each and every media contact and influencer, followed by tailored outreach, is a sure way to balance the messaging you’re trying to get across while also remaining human and showing that you’ve paid attention. An example would be to put yourself in the shoes of an influencer partner you’re trying to reach who you know just recently had a new baby. How would you approach communication with someone that likely has a lot on their plate but would benefit from a partnership with the brand you’re representing? Prioritize a hyper-personalized note that will mutually help you gain perspective on their current situation while also educating them on how you’re here to potentially help make their every day easier. Understand Transparency Openness, clear communication and accountability all factor into understanding transparency, and ensuring this pillar is a part of all relationships you curate is paramount. When it comes to any media or influencer relationship, being up front and clear about your goals, expectations and preferred outcomes helps guide conversations and educates both you and your contact. As it pertains to influencers, we found it was particularly important to be in tune with upcoming local and national events to appropriately communicate any needs to shift posting dates. Being empathetic and mindful of the larger cultural atmosphere ensures that both the brand and the partner do not risk coming off as tone deaf during a sensitive time. Develop Genuine Long-Term Humanized Relationships Once a solid foundation is built and trust has been established, development of that genuine long-term humanized relationship isn’t as difficult as it might seem. At the end of the day, behind every screen is a person, just like you, curious and happy to be asked about their day or their recommendation for a fun at-home activity they recently enjoyed. Staying in tune to what is happening in the media or influencer’s life can be a great way to do this, i.e. sending flowers for an engagement or sharing condolences on a recent loss. Authentic and continued empathy is the key to developing genuine long-term humanized relationships. If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that people like to be acknowledged for their work and capabilities, but through a humanized lens. Finding the right intersection between new and current relationships and cognitive empathy has the legs to make anyone a great communicator, not just a skilled public relations or influencer marketer. When we put people at the center of our business we are all better together and can prioritize a listening first approach to further foster unconventional ideas that will grow brands.
2021 Edelman Trust Barometer Reveals Brand Leaders Expected to Take Lead on Social Issues Each year, global communications firm Edelman releases its Trust Barometer — a survey-driven report of how trusted governments, NGOs, businesses, and media are around the world. The 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer draws on survey responses from 33,000 individuals in 28 countries. It reveals insights about both the general population (ages 18+) and informed public (college-educated, ages 25-64, in the top 25% of household income in their country’s age group). This year’s Edelman Trust Barometer notably uncovers a growing distrust of government in the U.S. and China, and increased expectations for business leaders. Here are 10 key takeaways for brands, marketers, and advertisers: Business is more trusted than government, NGOs, and media in 18 of 27 countries surveyed. Community organizations, local leaders, and scientists are more trusted than government leaders, religious leaders, journalists, and CEOs. CEO credibility has dramatically declined in India, Brazil, Indonesia, Argentina, Russia, France, and Japan during the past year. Trust in search engines, traditional media, owned media, and social media has declined. People are placing more importance on information literacy. 68% of those surveyed believe CEOs should step in when the government does not fix societal problems. 66% think CEOs should take the lead on change rather than waiting for the government to impose change on them. 65% believe CEOs should hold themselves accountable to the public and not just to the board of directors or stockholders. 86% expect CEOs to speak out publicly about one or more of these societal changes: pandemic impact, job automation, societal issues, and local community issues. 68% agree that consumers should have the power to force corporations to change. So what does this mean for your brand? With consumer trust in business and expectations for brand leaders steadily rising, it is essential that you understand how to build trust with your audience. Read on to learn how you can inspire confidence and loyalty among your current and potential customers. Get involved with grassroots organizations that your community cares about. Partner with local non-profits, small businesses, and community leaders to engage with social causes that matter to your audience. Make sure you’re reaching out to organizations and influencers who can authentically connect with your brand. For example, during International Women’s Month, AMP helped create PUMA’s “Do You” campaign, which sparks conversation around female empowerment. The campaign features professional basketball player Skylar Diggins-Smith and New York City Ballet principal dancer Lauren Lovette, athletes who volunteer with programs that uplift young women. When you have a great brand-cause and brand-influencer fit like this, authenticity is sure to follow. Invest in influencer partnerships. According to Business Insider, brands are projected to spend $15 billion on influencer marketing by 2022. And that’s no surprise given that 1 in 5 Gen Zers and millennials in the U.S. and UK makes purchases inspired by influencer or celebrity social media posts, as evidenced by a 2019 survey from GlobalWebIndex. Influencer partnerships are so much more than the stereotypical pastel aesthetics and travel photos we often associate them with. They are powerful resources that can humanize a brand and give your company access to a devoted, loyal fanbase. And fortunately, influencers are not one size fits all. Smaller companies might consider micro influencers (1K to 100K followers) or nano-influencers (under 1K followers), who have the power to attract niche audiences on a lower budget. You don’t need a Hadid sister to make a splash in this industry! Be transparent and hold your brand accountable. It is no longer enough for brands to exclusively talk about their products and services. Consumers want to know that the companies they buy from have values that resonate with their own. In fact, up to 83% of millennials say it’s important to them to buy from companies that align with their beliefs and values, per the 5W PR’s 2020 Consumer Culture Report. When you’re planning your marketing strategy for the 2021-2022 year, consider how and where your brand might appropriately express its values. Which social media platforms are your customers most present on? Which current events are they following? Keep in mind that what matters to the average Gen Z customer may be different from what the average baby boomer cares about. Research and relevancy are essential. Diversify your workforce. Representation among brand leadership teams has been a hot topic this past year. A new Instagram account called True Colors highlights the lack of diversity among top brand leadership by re-imagining logos based on the whiteness of their leadership teams. Beyond enriching your brand with new ideas, skills, and perspectives, diversifying your workforce can also improve your standing with consumers. In fact, 38% of consumers are more likely to trust brands that do well with showing diversity in their ads, according to a 2019 Adobe research report. Creating nuanced, inclusive representation in your marketing requires diverse leadership and supporting teams. Consider who your audience is and who is creating their ads. It may take time to increase diversity among your brand’s teams, but it’s an effort well worth making. Click here to discover more insights from the 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer. And remember, with great brand, comes great responsibility.