From fashion weeks to ramp-ups to TV appearances, digital influencers have gone beyond just social media. In Colgate’s new campaign, digital creator Dolly Singh appears in an advertisement for the influential Karima Barry Sprite, while Shaun Roy advertises for the Cadbury Fuse. Awaj Durbar and Nagma Mirajkar appear in an advertisement for McDonald’s 25th Anniversary campaign. Other brands that feature web-oriented individuals in advertising include Godrej Air, Uber Eats, Amazon Pay.
Advertising filmmakers and brand strategists think getting a popular face from social media is an innovative way to connect with Millennials and Gen Z. It is also a cost-effective measure. “I call it a ‘tremendous influence’ because without spending billions on ads or getting them as ambassadors, the brand can still influence the masses,” says brand expert Jagdeep Kapoor. He adds, “The audience is familiar. There is also the benefit of targeting regional consumers with their range.
According to a report on the influencer marketing industry, celebrities make up 27% of the cost of influencer marketing, while social media influencers make up 73%. In addition, nearly two-thirds of the Indian population is influential.
For some, the definition of influencer is a constantly changing concept. “The influencers are now famous celebrities. They have created a niche for fashion, tech or automobile and the masses know that they have a credibility factor, ”says ad filmmaker Ajay Gahlout. He explains that Bollywood celebrities are notoriously famous, but DG influencers have a niche and a target audience base. He adds, “This is a win-win scenario. The campaign wants to stand out and engage with the masses, and having a digital influencer on board serves both purposes.”
“There is an instant connection,” says ad maker Pinaki Bose [with Gen Z] When there is a digital influencer on board. However, it also comes down to brand identity and strategy. Targeting middle-aged audiences with commerce that includes web-born influencers doesn’t work the same way.
Jagdeep Kapoor, a brand expert, adds, “I call it a treasured influence – the brand influences the masses without spending crores on movie stars. The audience is familiar with them, so they trust them.
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