A New Crop Of NFL Influencers Offers Opportunities For Brand Marketers

The NFL’s audience has changed significantly over the past few years: it’s more diverse, female, and affluent. That means brand marketers seeking to reach audiences with complex content consumption patterns may find new opportunities for engagement with NFL influencers.

The NFL Brand Opportunity: Caution, Strategy, And Results

While NFL influencers play a vital role in driving sponsorship revenue for NFL teams, they also power deep brand-consumer connections that are challenging to achieve through other means. They leverage their powerful social networks to accelerate brand awareness and drive engagement among niche and hard-to-reach audiences. For example, per a report by SponsorUnited, The Miami Dolphins’ Tyreek Hill, averaged 183k likes, shares, or comments per post and generated the most engaged branded post on the list, with 3.4 million likes.

That influence is driving brands to connect with highly social NFL players as they attempt to leverage their networks and their power to reach new audiences.

However, as any marketer knows, brand partnerships can be risky—and high-profile campaigns can implode when personalities (or the brand itself) suffer a brand or PR misstep. That’s why influencer partnerships are often seen as a safer middle-ground for brands seeking to leverage star power via an endorsement without building an expensive ad campaign around a single personality. 

That’s important, as NFL viewers are not the same as in Madden’s glory days. For instance, according to Sponsor Pulse, 70 percent of NFL-engaged audiences earn over $100k per year, and 64 percent are under 39, and 58 percent engage with NFL-related content weekly. 

Today’s audiences are also more diverse and engaged on social channels that allow them to share their thoughts in real-time—making brand or social content fails (or successes) instantly viral. 

Statistic: Level of interest in NFL in the United States as of January 2023, by ethnicity | Statista
Find more statistics at Statista

Statistic: Level of interest in NFL in the United States as of January 2023, by gender | Statista
Find more statistics at Statista

Results can be powerful for brands, per Nielsen’s global study of football fans:

  • Eighty percent of viewers browse social media during games
  • Fifty-nine percent of football fans stated that sponsorship or endorsement would drive  their selection of one product  over another (if quality and price were the same)

The Takeaway:

While Nielsen’s study was global in focus, it tracks with how NFL fans engage with branded content and social media while viewing a game. According to a 2022 survey, sixty-nine percent of NFL viewers use a second screen after seeing an ad to find more information on a product or service that interests them. But those “ads” can also be social media mentions—or content delivered via a social platform, where NFL fans are already engaging during a game. That means brand marketers with an ad or a powerful influencer relationship can leverage that interest to drive conversions—simply by being present on social, even in the absence of an ad placement.

How Rare Beauty And Fenty Leverage Gen Z Values To Drive Media Value

For millions of fans, Selena Gomez is an icon of contemporary pop stardom—proudly Latina, openly embracing her “real stomach” and upfront about her mental health and body-shaming challenges, Gomez leverages authenticity effectively. For her brand, Rare Beauty, Gomez’s consistent messaging drives media value and boosts sales. The same could be said for Rihanna’s Fenty, which has helped transform the beauty industry with inclusive cosmetics. But according to a new report from Piper Sandler, the success of both lines reflects the power of retail’s most coveted demographic: Gen Z.

Gen Z’s Top Five Cosmetic Brands Are Mostly Cruelty-Free, Socially Conscious

According to the PiperSandler report, which surveyed 5,690 teens across 47 U.S. states, three out of five of Gen Z’s favorite cosmetic brands are cruelty-free and vegan. Two of the most famous—Rare Beauty and Fenty—are helmed by beauty icons who are outspoken on the topics Gen Z cares about.

Source: Piper Sandler

The fact that e.l.f., Rare Beauty, and Fenty have woven eco-friendly and cruelty-free principles into their branding and made it prominent is not an accident. Recent research shows that Gen Z tends to shop according to their values, per the PiperSandler report, and ecological concerns dominate that list, along with inclusivity and abortion.

Source: Piper Sandler

For brands seeking to connect with a generation through the media—signaling alignment with the topics they care about can easily increase brand engagement. In just two years, per Statista, Rare Beauty boasts 46 percent brand awareness among cosmetics users, compared with Fenty’s 53 percent. That’s significant, as Rihanna’s stardom easily eclipses that of Selena Gomez, but part of Rare Beauty’s appeal may be just that: Gomez’s deep investment in making Rare Beauty part of a personalized journey of self-discovery. For many Gen Z consumers, this may play as authenticity—something that major brands struggle with and often fail to create.

Gen Z Buys Based On Topics They Care About, On Recommendations From Influencers Who Represent Their Beliefs

There’s another reason why authenticity and connection via values make sense for brands. According to Nielsen, Gen Z is willing to change their buying habits to find products that reflect who they are and what they believe in. For Gen Z consumers, brands that reflect their values are more appealing than those that do not, even when the price comes into play. That trend appears to be global. A stunning 84 percent of Gen Z consumers stated that they buy brands based on their beliefs that the company is aligned with their values, according to a 2022 World Economic Forum Report. According to a recent Edelman study, 73 percent of Gen Z consumers only buy from brands they “believe in.”

Earned Media Delivers Awareness And Gen Z Engagement

According to Hootsuite, 83 percent of Gen Z stated that they shop on social media, and another 97 percent stated that social platforms are their top way to research shopping options. Entering Gen Z’s consumers’ social streams is a powerful way to drive brand awareness and translate that awareness into sales. And one simple way to do this is to connect with Gen Z around trending topics—or concerns—that provide an opportunity to showcase a product’s solution.

How Fenty Leveraged Earned Media

Fenty, launched in 2017, ushered in a new era of inclusive beauty products. For many makeup artists and consumers, the range’s now 50-plus shades demonstrated a familiarity with the diversity of ethnic skin colors that had been woefully absent in the industry for decades. That messaging translated into significant media coverage. As consumers’ social media posts praising the brand’s launch of a range of darker and medium to- shades that included a range of complex undertones rarely represented in other foundations gained traction, media outlets such as Vogue and Time Magazine incorporated consumer posts into new conversations about beauty inclusivity, untapped audiences, and ethnic representation in advertising. Fenty became the biggest beauty brand launch in history on YouTube in 2017, with 132 million views.

Why It Worked For Fenty

Social listening can yield powerful results for brands, from delivering powerful audience insights to amplifying brand recognition. Media outlets also practice social listening, so brand-linked trending topics can create new value through mass media coverage. In Fenty’s case, media coverage helped the new brand connect with audiences beyond its targeted demographic while introducing new insights that likely informed Fenty’s later expansion of its product line from an initial 40 foundation shades to 50. Fenty’s influence on beauty, inclusivity and representation in advertising is still quite strong, with publishers like Adweek and industry trade publications like The National Retail Federation’s blog highlighting the Fenty brand as a revolutionary force in beauty and advertising years after Fenty’s first Instagram post, even in absence of new product launches. Within the first six months, Fenty earned approximately $73 million in earned media value. Fenty garnered $100 million in sales within the first 40 days of its launch.

How Rare Beauty Leveraged Earned Media

While Gomez is a global star, Rare Beauty’s appeal might have been diluted by other cruelty-free, inclusive star-founded brands like Fenty. But Rare Beauty gained traction due to its strong influencer collaborations and its founder’s willingness to build the brand personally on platforms like TikTok while driving a public narrative around self-acceptance, independence, and inclusivity—values that, until relatively recently, were not the concepts most often associated with makeup brands. That shift in the national zeitgeist—towards brands that reflected the diversity and complexity of audiences—was seized upon by some of the most successful brands, led by Rare Beauty.

The Market Opportunity: Gen Z Is Spending More On Beauty, Despite Inflation Concerns

The Piper Sandler study found that Gen Z’s average spending on color cosmetics, skincare, and fragrance rose by 19 percent year-over-year to $313 annually. Color cosmetics spending, like lipstick, blush and foundation, rose by 32 percent year-over-year to $123, outpacing skincare for the first time since 2020.

That makes Rare Beauty’s influencer relationships, and Gomez’s willingness to walk the walk on social issues such as self-acceptance and body image key to Rare Beauty’s appeal to Gen Z. Earned media allows Rare Beauty to broadcast its brand messaging to millions while drawing audiences from multiple channels to social media spaces where it’s simple to click into a sales funnel.

For example, the brand’s collaboration with beauty influencer Nabela Noor highlighted the line’s inclusive foundation shade range while amplifying Rare Beauty’s message of celebrating diversity and self-love.

Maximizing The Marketing Budget And Being Responsibly Irreverent With Ben Mand, CEO At Harmless Harvest

Ben Mand is the CEO of Harmless Harvest, a pragmatic innovator, and a believer that business can be a force for good. Ben has successfully led Harmless Harvest to more than double its business in four years by transforming it from a brand solely focused on coconut water to a leader in premium functional beverages and plant-based dairy. Under his leadership, Harmless Harvest has streamlined its supply chain, invested over $1 million in Fair for Life and community support initiatives, and transitioned to regenerative organic agricultural practices to bring the company closer to its goal of 100% zero-waste. Ben sees the role of marketing as driving loyalty and advocacy in ways that benefit the business and delight the customer. He sums up his marketing philosophy as being “responsibly irreverent” and notes, “If you’re comfortable with an idea today, it’s going to be boring tomorrow.”

In this episode, Ben and I discuss the innovative and adventurous approach he has brought to expanding the product lines at Harmless Harvest and how he is leaning into the Constructive Capitalism model the founders built the company on. Ben tells us that he believes we are past the point of disruption-based marketing and instead focuses on placing the brand in places and, at times, when it makes the most sense that people would be looking for it. Overall, Ben’s pragmatic approach to innovation, the lifelong skill of maximizing a budget, and commitment to the company’s mission-led objectives have transformed Harmless Harvest from an unprofitable business into a durable and scalable company that is making a real difference in the world.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • What Constructive Capitalism is and how it looks in practice
  • What they do with the rest of the coconut
  • What it means to be responsibly irreverent

 Key Highlights

  • [01:50] Phoneless in London
  • [04:00] Ben’s path from General Mills to Harmless Harvest
  • [06:40] Harmless Harvest overview: “Constructive Capitalism”
  • [08:20] Ben’s reason for joining Harmless Harvest
  • [11:30] What do you do with the rest of the coconut?
  • [13:40] What are the key insights Ben used to turn the business around?
  • [14:40] New Product Innovation Buildout
  • [16:30] Having a great product can help you overcome
  • [19:00] Strong velocity allows for expanded distribution
  • [21:50] Harness Harvest innovations and proprietary methods
  • [23:40] The state of business today
  • [26:00] What it means to be Responsibly Irreverent
  • [29:15] Being there when and where your product is most desired
  • [30:45] Maximizing marketing on a tight budget
  • [33:20] Lessons learned from growing up poor
  • [36:05] Confidence is key
  • [39:00] Leveraging technology as a lifestyle brand
  • [40:05] Brands to watch
  • [42:30] Marketing is a muscle that is strengthened on the front lines

Resources Mentioned:

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 Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Post-Production Credits:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Getting People To Try Your Product With David Sandström, CMO At Klarna

David Sandström is the Chief Marketing Officer at Klarna and a member of its executive management team. Since joining Klarna in 2017, he has overseen the transformation of the brand from a traditional financial institution to a vibrant retail media network with a hot pink edge.

As CMO, David is responsible for driving consumer growth as well as leading design, marketing, branding, communications and sustainability efforts. David’s diverse background includes experience in agency and client roles and working in various industries around the world, which has shaped him into the marketer he is today. David warns against full outsourcing and instead advises using agencies as an extension of the company to maintain control over the marketing efforts. This approach is one of the main reasons he looks for people with diverse backgrounds when hiring.

In this episode, David and I discuss what makes Klarna unique in the fintech space, how he approaches marketing, and what he is trying to do with the Klarna brand. Klarna is primarily known as a buy now, pay later platform, but it is so much more than that. The core of Klarna is a payment company with the aim to become a shopping utility platform where customers can search for products, find deals, and get inspired. Klarna benefits both retailers and purchasers by making sure incentives align and staying on top of ever-changing consumer behaviors. They are in about 45 markets worldwide and have over 150 million consumers and 400,000 retail partners. David views marketing as an avenue to increase the likelihood of people trying Klarna and then letting the superior product and user experience speak for themselves. He does this by investing in the Klarna brand to counteract negative perceptions of finance and leveraging culturally relevant partnerships to showcase the product. David has launched several pioneering marketing campaigns and has brought in high-profile celebrities like Lady Gaga and Snoop Dogg to help build a stage from which they showcase Klarna. He and his team are working to build a brand that really stands for something in fintech and will push the industry forward.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • David’s approach and philosophy around marketing
  • The three levers to engage that get people to try your product
  • A new way to think about in-house vs. outsourcing

 Key Highlights

  • [01:55] The hippie/engineer blend
  • [03:15] David’s early obsession with consumer behavior
  • [05:00] The path through DDB Sweden to Klarna
  • [07:10] The current state of Klarna
  • [11:55] How “Buy Now, Pay Later” is fueling shopping and the evolution of e-commerce
  • [14:30] BNPL vs. Credit Cards
  • [18:10] The benefits of Klarna partnerships and integrations for retailers
  • [21:10] Becoming a retail media network
  • [22:30] How Klarna is benefiting from the Big Tech Wars
  • [24:45] David’s main focus when guiding his marketing team
  • [29:25] The concept of building a brand that stands for something in fintech
  • [31:10] Leveraging partnerships to build yourself a stage
  • [34:50] Extending instead of outsourcing
  • [39:40] Diversity in experience makes a good marketer
  • [41:00] Start the side hustle
  • [41:45] Empathy as the counter-weight to AI
  • [43:00] Brands to watch
  • [44:50] Creativity will never go out of style

Resources Mentioned:

 Follow the podcast:

 Connect with the Guest:

 Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Mobile Gaming Dominates Play As Frequent Gamers Embrace Personalized Ads

A recent YouGov report shows mobile gamers represent the world’s most ad-friendly audience.

Mobile Gaming Takes The Lead

According to the YouGov report, Global Gaming & Esports 2023: Reaching Gamers – Everywhere, most gamers use their mobile devices most often when gaming weekly. At least 60 percent of gamers across every demographic surveyed use smartphones when gaming, with Gen X (45-54) showing the highest rate of mobile gaming adoption. Desktop, laptops and gaming consoles came in second and third in popularity.

Source: YouGov, Global Gaming & Esports Whitepaper 2023: Reaching Gamers – Everywhere

Globally, the study also found that for entertainment, gaming surpasses watching live TV for every demographic under 45, with Gen Z spending the highest average time gaming (9.8 hours).

Source: YouGov

Globally, Chinese and American consumers spend the most time gaming, with consumers in both nations spending roughly the same amount of time engaged in gaming activities (11.3 and 11 hours, respectively).  

Source: YouGov

For marketers, consumers’ affinity for mobile gaming presents new opportunities to connect with untapped audiences. Per the YouGov report, weekly gamers are already primed to engage.

Frequent Gamers Show Deep Brand Connections

According to the report, consumers who participate in gaming weekly are most open to receiving ads via social media, with 31 percent stating that ads on the platform inspired positive product perceptions. In addition, Gen Z (ages 18-24) weekly gamers are far more likely than others to rank in-game advertising as a preferred way to engage with brand messaging (seventh most popular versus third most popular among Gen Z).

YouGov data also reveals deep brand connections among weekly gamers. Half of the consumers who game more than an hour per week said they would like “deeper, more meaningful connections with brands” versus 45 percent of all consumers. In addition, weekly gamers show a strong preference for personalized ads. Forty-two percent of frequent gamers prefer personalized ad experiences versus 36 percent of other consumers.

Weekly gamers also have a higher tolerance for ad-supported content, with 54 percent agreeing that “It’s fair to watch ads in exchange for free content,” compared to 49 percent of consumers. In addition, consumers who game often have a higher level of trust in influencers (36 percent versus 26 percent of all consumers), are more likely to engage with ads on social media versus other websites (34 percent compared to 29 percent) and enjoy social media game experiences more than other consumers (47 percent versus 36 percent).

This data tracks with recent research from Fandom, which reveals powerful brand influences over gamers purchasing choices. Per the Fandom report:

Eighty-six percent of gamers reported being influenced to purchase a brand or product that invests significantly in gaming or on a gaming platform, with half reporting that they were “heavily influenced” to do so.

Millennials are more than 24 percent more likely to be “heavily influenced” to purchase than the average gamer.

Back To The Future: How Marketers Can Embrace “Phygital” Customer Engagement

A recent Newzoo report reveals that consumers spend more leisure time in digital spaces than in physical leisure activities. However, an emergent flavor of consumer interaction—phygital engagements—is creating new links between physical and digital social, entertainment, and commercial interactions. Phygital spaces also present new opportunities for brand marketers to reach audiences with engaging experiences. 

Defining Phygital: Purpose-Driven Mixed Reality

Phygital spaces are “everywhere spaces”—agile, often autonomous gateways for new interactivity that can be tailored for almost any environment or device, creating a secondary space for interactions wherever the consumer might be. These potential points of contact between consumers, brands, platforms or products (digital or physical) optimize immersion, personalization, and granular consumer control over their interaction with specific technologies that use context to scale impact. Phygital spaces are usually designed to foster intense engagement, with user-experience features focusing on amplifying brand messages by delivering a unique, valuable interaction at a certain touchpoint.

Some examples include:

Retail Stores with augmented reality (AR) Integration: Brands like Nike and Sephora allow consumers to virtually try on items at home via mobile as well as in-store with AR kiosks.

Virtual Reality (VR) Showrooms: Audi and Volvo, among other car manufacturers, use VR showrooms that permit shoppers to customize cars and explore them through a virtual 3D environment.

Live Events with AR/VR activations: Live events like Coachella and The Essence Festival have leveraged phygital features like AR filters and VR headsets to expand their content’s reach via streaming and deepen engagement onsite. 

Gamified Experiences in Physical Spaces: Pokémon GO is a prime example of a phygital space that combines real-world exploration with digital gaming elements. As millions of users worldwide shared their experiences with the phygital scavenger hunt on social media, new, non-gamer audiences were introduced to AR games.

According to the most recent Newzoo report, A New Era in Media & Engagement, consumers are now spending nearly twice as much of their leisure time in virtual spaces—including in phygital experiences—as they are in pure physical activities.

A recent Newzoo report reveals that consumers spend more leisure time in digital spaces than in physical leisure activities.

The Phygital Shift: Why It Matters For Marketers

As people spend just over 12 hours per week on video games and virtual spaces, brand marketers have ample opportunity to reach them in lean-back mode. Yet a new kind of engagement, phygital experiences, also presents new opportunities for marketers. The report states that Gen Z consumers spend 53 percent of their leisure time engaging with game IP in other ways than playing through their consoles.

A recent Newzoo report reveals that consumers spend more leisure time in digital spaces than in physical leisure activities.
Source: Newzoo Consumer Research

The report shows nearly 70 percent of Gen Z identify as digital creators. Gen Z is leading a wave of independent creators who are not only micro-influencers within their social circles but also national tastemakers—raising the bar for the types of content and interactions consumers will expect from branded content. 

That means a brand with the capacity to share or feature user-generated content in tandem with a phygital strategy can scale a new kind of earned media value—as consumers share and interact with influencer content and share their own.

Here are three reasons brand marketers should consider integrating phygital experiences with their marketing strategy:

Consumer expectations: Immersive, powerful, and modern experiences are table stakes for consumers online. Their expectations drive engagement; exceeding those expectations with phygital experiences that provide a unique value, such as the ability to view a product at home through an AR lens, can build brand equity and accelerate conversions.

Data-driven insights: Phygital spaces are data reservoirs with plenty for everyone. When consumers engage with phygital tools, they are also connected to gateways that can lead them to shopping carts, social media, or customer service portals. Access to that level of granular data allows brands to perfect personalization efforts with new insights from each interaction.

“Everywhere engagement”: The phygital world is rapidly becoming just “the world” as AR and VR tools become more accessible via mobile. As Gen Z embraces new experiences that connect virtual spaces to physical locations, marketers can leverage access to those tools to make engagement and conversion possible almost anywhere, with the added benefit that consumers who engage are likely doing so based on interest and preference, with high intent.

Earned Media Value 101: Revisiting A Powerful Consumer Engagement Tool

Advertising is evolving as consumers change the way they interact with content. Today, influencers and user-generated content such as TikTok videos are driving consumer engagement and ROI.

That makes earned media value (EMV) an increasingly useful metric for brand marketers, not just as a campaign enhancement but as a powerful tool to lead customer engagement efforts.

How EMV Works

EMV can do the heavy lifting for marketers, amplifying brand trustworthiness and visibility when audience reach and high-quality content is in sync with brand messaging. Unlocking the value of EMV starts with the basics: developing relationships with influencers and creators, producing high-quality content and optimizing social media platform strategy.

This article will explain the concept of earned media value, how it can benefit your brand and provide tips on how to implement an effective earned media strategy.

A Primer: What Is Earned Media Value?

Earned media value (EMV) refers to the estimated financial value of the attention and exposure a brand receives through unpaid or “earned” media coverage. EMV includes any media mention, endorsement, or coverage that a brand receives through channels such as social media, traditional media, or influencer marketing.

Marketers often focus their efforts on accruing EMV through multiple categories, frequently tied to specific brand equity goals:

Authenticity And Relevance

When consumers interact with a brand’s social media content, it can increase the brand’s relevance within consumers’ most intimate social circles-creating a sense of authenticity via the “passive” endorsement of a social share. Those powerful, organic connections to individual and group identity can amplify a brand’s ability to deliver brand messages through more traditional means like banner ads to sometimes ad-resistant demographics. 

Visibility and Credibility

When a brand is featured in traditional media outlets, depending on the context, it can produce a powerful, evergreen level of visibility beyond name recognition. Savvy brands can enhance their wider relevance to new audiences by weaving a public narrative on the brand’s identity into more personalized messaging to targeted audiences—contrasting the media narrative or supporting it to cement brand identity.

Accessibility And Value

Influencers make brands more accessible to new audiences by illustrating the practical side of a product or service’s value proposition. By interpreting a brand’s appeal into “what it means for me,” influencers do the same work that agency creatives attempt to do in a 30-second ad—illustrating product or service value to a broad audience—but without the gloss that often leads consumers to mistrust traditional promotions. Since many influencers are popular because of their deep connections to their audiences based on identity, they can leverage granular insights to optimize messaging for their viewers’ specific needs. 

How Marketers Quantify EMV—And Why It Matters

There are also multiple ways to quantify EMV. Here are some of the most common categories:

Media Impressions

Media impressions are the number of times a brand’s message or story appears in the media. They’re a simple way to measure the reach of your earned media coverage, as they quantify how many people were potentially exposed to your brand through the coverage. 

While media impressions are a useful way to measure the potential reach of your earned media coverage, they don’t necessarily reflect the impact of that coverage on your brand’s reputation or business objectives. Impressions can’t connect your efforts to actual ROI until those views are contextualized with audience data.

Advertising Value Equivalency (AVE)

Advertising value equivalency (AVE) measures the value of earned media coverage in terms of the pricing of similar advertising. For example, if your brand receives a positive review in a newspaper that would have cost $25,000 for a full-page ad, the AVE for that coverage would be $25,000. Still, context matters—access to the right data is key to connecting AVE to branding or sales goals.

Social Media Engagement

Social media engagement measures users’ level of interaction with your brand’s content, including likes, comments, shares, and other types of engagement. Social media engagement can offer valuable insights into the messaging that resonates with users. Still, it can be deceptive if viewed without actionable insights that interpret activity through the lens of audience branding objectives.

Sentiment Analysis

Sentiment analysis measures the tone or sentiment of your brand’s earned media coverage and connects it to your marketing strategy. Sentiment analysis is typically conducted using natural language processing (NLP) algorithms that analyze the language used in the coverage to determine whether it is positive, negative, or neutral.

How marketers evaluate EMV matters because the definition of value depends on calculation. When data is obscured or presented out of context, strategy can fail as resources are devoted to media plans that can’t materialize results.

Social Index 3.0

Since 2017, a.network has helped over 3,000 companies measure their EMV and campaign ROI through Social Index. And with the latest iteration, Social Index 3.0, machine learning algorithms have upgraded its data analysis capabilities. The Index uses vast proprietary and public data to help brands understand their customers and their brand’s power in the marketplace.

The Index also makes it easy for marketers to use its data to monitor strategy and enrich findings with insights from a range of data tools. Users can integrate the Earned Media Values API with their existing analytics or data reporting suite to gain continual access to fresh EMV data. 

Vincent Juarez, Ayzenberg’s Chief Media Officer, stated that The Social Index’s effectiveness in providing marketers with one of the most comprehensive tools for tracking EMVs. 

“Most platforms provide robust analytics in terms of video views, time spent, followers, likes, comments, and shares, among other metrics,” stated Juarez at the launch of the latest iteration of Social Index. “Filling the void and providing marketers with earned media or advertising value equivalents (AVEs) for platforms like TikTok provides a foundation for testing, learning, and optimizing future content efforts. It will also help standardize benchmarks to compare against other platforms.”

Social Index: Visualizer

Social Index 3.0 is introducing its latest feature, the EMV Visualizer, to help you better understand how specific KPIs perform on various platforms and locations.

The EMV Visualizer allows you to select a date range from January 2020, making it easy to analyze your historical data and enhance post-mortems. The EMV Visualizer is available for seven top social media platforms: YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, LinkedIn and Twitter.

Social Index 3.0’s global values allow marketers to compare KPIs across key markets, North America, Europe, the Middle East and several Asia-Pacific countries. Marketers can gain insights that inform their future content strategy and social media campaigns by selecting any two locations and comparing the differences between the areas for the same industry platform and KPI.

This means that marketers can now track their global TikTok campaigns’ performance and use the data to optimize their content strategy for the platform.

Register for your demo today.

Trends In Fintech With Drew Glover, Founding Partner At Fiat Growth And General Partner At Fiat Ventures

In this episode, Drew and I discuss Fiat Growth, Fiat Ventures, and why it makes sense for them to go together. They also talk about the challenges of raising venture capital and the success companies can find by organically leveraging affiliate partnerships to add value for the user while driving revenue to the business. Drew explains total addressable markets, how he thinks about shifting an existing committed user base into a marketplace, and the reasons he sees fintech as the industry that will have the largest impact on generational wealth. Drew emphasizes the importance of taking risks, valuing different experiences, and learning that solutions and problems are not one-to-one. Finally, he notes that podcasts are becoming a force in marketing and that AI is not a competitor but a source of power.

Drew Glover is a founding partner of Fiat Growth and a general partner at Fiat Ventures. He has experience leading go-to-market strategies, marketplace development, user acquisition, and growth teams. Drew further developed his skills at Steady, Namely, Fjord, and Portal A, and has helped companies like Root, JP Morgan Chase, Adidas, and Nike bring award-winning services and partnerships to market. Drew has a very diverse work history, and when he was younger, he was concerned that jumping from industry to industry would be a downfall, but it gave him a wide range of skills and knowledge he would need to find and succeed with Fiat. Those broad interests are still with him, and he tells us his biggest competition is a lack of focus.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How Fiat Growth leverages unique insights and exclusive access to make winning investments with Fiat Ventures
  • The trends Drew sees in fintech and his predictions for the industry
  • How data can simplify The Client’s Happy Path

 Key Highlights

  • [01:30] Fresh perspectives from fatherhood
  • [03:15] Drew’s path to founding Fiat
  • [06:00] Leaving the day job and leaning in: What Fiat does and why
  • [08:00] Fiat only works with winners. Let’s invest in them too.
  • [10:00] Raising money is never as easy as you expect
  • [12:45] Leveraging partnerships and marketplaces
  • [14:45] Generating additional revenue streams from affiliate partnerships.
  • [18:00] What fintech can do for people who need it most
  • [19:40] How money and finance will be different for GenZ
  • [22:10] Data’s impact on simplifying The Client’s Happy Path
  • [24:00] “Change is inspired by incentives.”
  • [25:30] Predictions and trends Drew sees coming in fintech
  • [28:20] Looking at the world as a growth marketer and as an investor
  • [29:30] When should I focus on marketing, and how should I think about it
  • [33:30] It takes a village
  • [35:30] How his father’s passing changed Drew’s life
  • [36:50] Value different experiences and take the risk
  • [38:30] Solutions and problems are not one to one
  • [40:20] Podcasts are becoming a force in marketing
  • [42:10] AI is not competition; it’s a source of power

Resources Mentioned:

 Follow the podcast:

 Connect with the Guest:

 Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Too Big To Fail: What’s Happening With TikTok?

The world’s biggest brands don’t appear to be disentangling themselves from Tiktok, as ad spend on the platform increases by 11 percent and Congress mulls The Restrict Act.

TikTok: Come On In, The Ad Revenue Is Fine

TikTok, which doubled its year-over-year ad revenue in 2022—earning approximately $10 billion—is having a moment. Like a popular high school quarterback who got into a spot of bother at the Valentine’s Day dance, TikTok is still at the “cool kids” table, with some of the world’s biggest brands still directing spend to the platform despite the threat of legislation which might impact the platform. In March, advertising grew by 11 percent on the platform, with Pepsi, DoorDash, Amazon, and Apple as top advertisers, despite some creative agencies advising caution, per The Financial Times. Current forecasts suggest that ad revenue will reach nearly $15.2 billion by the end of 2023, per WARC Media, up from $9.89 billion in 2022.

Banned Or Not, TikTok’s Surge Will Make It Hard To Abandon

For marketers seeking to reach Gen Z and Gen Alpha, TikTok is critical to branding, marketing, and direct sales through influencer marketing for many brands and retailers.

With 672 million downloads in 2022, TikTok was the most downloaded mobile app last year. According to Sprout Social, Gen Alpha spent 62 percent more time watching videos on TikTok than on YouTube last year, with the average user spending 95 minutes per day watching videos. 

TikTok’s growth is also unlikely to end soon; the app’s user base has grown by an average of 340 million users per year since 2018, per Statista. That will make TikTok hard to abandon if, as some countries have, the US bans its use outright.

Yet TikTok’s future may be uncertain, even if two billion people will likely use the platform in 2024, per Statista. TikTok’s future as a viable platform for marketers may depend on upcoming legislation.

New Legislation May Impact TikTok’s Future

For many government workers, TikTok has become off-limits on personal devices used for work. Britain, Canada, France, India, Pakistan, Taiwan, the governing body of the EU, and the US have all issued rulings restricting government employees’ use of the app in recent months. These rulings were based on lingering security questions that the governments felt were not adequately addressed by numerous statements from the company, including those of Shou Chew, TikTok’s CEO, who declared before the US Congress that TikTok was not “owned or controlled by the Chinese Government.”  TikTok, has protested that 60 percent of its shares are owned by international investors, with 20 percent of the shares owned by employees and 20 percent by founder Zhang Yiming.

Currently, the US is considering The Restrict Act, which may impact access to TikTok, but could also change the way other social media companies interact with consumers, marketers, and private data. Portions of the bill read as follows;

  • This bill requires federal actions to identify and mitigate foreign threats to information and communications technology (ICT) products and services (e.g., social media applications). It also establishes civil and criminal penalties for violations under the bill.
  • Specifically, the Department of Commerce must identify, deter, disrupt, prevent, prohibit, investigate, and mitigate transactions involving ICT products and services (1) in which any foreign adversary (such as China) has any interest and (2) that poses an undue or unacceptable risk to U.S. national security or the safety of U.S. persons.

If the bill is passed, it could lead to further scrutiny of TikTok and other Chinese-owned apps, as well as other social media companies with foreign ownership. The bill has, not surprisingly, been met with protests from politicians and various nonprofits.

Revitalizing A Heritage Brand And Climbing The Career Jungle Gym With Amanda Tolleson, CMO At WeightWatchers

In this episode, Amanda and I discuss Amanda’s path to WeightWatchers, how she’s working to revitalize a well-known heritage brand by tapping into the roots of the founder, Jean Nidetch, and what she is doing to bring new marketing ideas to life. Amanda tells us her three big focuses at WeightWatchers are rethinking the organizational structure and culture, making data-driven decisions to increase performance, and honing in on their new brand strategy. Amanda also talks about the depth of understanding WeightWatchers has of their target demographic, and Alan learns that he is a Life Craver.

Amanda Tolleson is the Chief Marketing Officer of WeightWatchers, where she is responsible for leading the company’s global marketing strategy across performance marketing, branding and creative. Amanda has over 20 years of experience building customer-centric, purpose-driven brands focused on creating unique value for the consumer. Amanda used to say she never wanted to be a CMO because she loved being able to focus exclusively on brand and market strategy. Still, as she tells us, Amanda thrives most when she is ten steps outside of her comfort zone, so Amanda threw her name in the ring for CMO at Birtchbox, landed the job, found out she loved the position, and then went on to be CMO of Maisonette before ending up at WeightWatchers. Now, she is using her experience and love of risks and big changes to shepherd a 60-year-old brand through a startup-paced transformation.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • Why your target audience has to be realistic
  • How Amanda is taking risks to refresh a 60-year-old brand
  • What WeightWatchers is planning for the future

 Key Highlights

  • [01:40] Remembering a runaway racehorse ride
  • [04:45] Climbing the career ladder jungle gym
  • [11:30] Amanda’s three main focuses at WeightWatchers
  • [15:20] Who are the Weight Watchers?
  • [16:30] Jean Nidetch created a movement that became a company
  • [17:30] Who is the Life Craver?
  • [21:00] Your target demo needs to be a real type of person we all know
  • [22:45] Connecting through counterintuitive messaging, partnerships, and content creators
  • [29:10] The costs and benefits of being a well-known brand
  • [31:00] The benefits of staying in your lane and focusing on a narrow target audience
  • [33:20] What’s next for WeightWatchers?
  • [37:00] The Duck ComposureTM Amanda gained from an early cancer diagnosis
  • [39:00] Stick with the journaling
  • [40:00] The challenge of fostering creativity within the flat hierarchy of ideas in the digital world
  • [41:15] Brands to watch
  • [42:30] Marketing leaders should work to establish the value of independent board members

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Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies but is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.