There is no distinction for young people between ‘digital selves’ and ‘real selves’.
Sixth Wall founder Lindsey McInerney opened Day 2 to talk about identity in the Metaverse and crafting more fluid self-representation in immersive spaces. We learnt that identity can be incredibly fluid or multidimensional and that it’s not always possible or desirable to be who we are in reality. The internet is the place where we’ve been able to express ourselves and if social media is the output of Web 2.0, then the Metaverse is the output of Web 3.0, meaning more exciting and nuanced ways to explore who we are or tell people who we are.
UGC is quickly taking over as the top consumer brand strategy for growth in 2023.
Skinny Tan's Hayley Hall and LoudCrowd's Justin Papermaster talked about how the exponential reach of UGC is quickly taking over as one of the top brand strategies for growth in 2023. Reach and engagement have dropped across platforms because social algorithms have been reworked to prioritise authenticity and UGC. You’re more likely to engage with people you know or follow so brands can’t rely on their own posts and must develop a strategy that thinks about audience holistically, such as working through micro creators and figures who facilitate trust.
Put community connections at the heart of brand strategy, not just social strategy.
Depop's Jumoke Adekunle spoke about social commerce and the role of influencers in creating communities, all while doing it sustainably. Depop's mission is to build the world’s most progressive and diverse home of fashion with a community-powered ecosystem. They seek to be the home of fashion, not the house of fashion. Jumoke spoke of the importance of focusing on authentic, long-term relationships, not just tactical partnerships and to make sure you have long-term feedback loops in place. Initiatives that create meaningful, mutual value rather than one-way value extraction are key to their success.
Always think ‘platform first’ and tailor social ads to the people seeing them.
Mediaocean's Javed Laher, MBA shared his strategies for personalisation and making sure ads are tailored to audiences correctly. Consumers expect relevant experiences and brands must deliver that consistently with each social channel. Each channel requires a different mindset. For example, if you’re in a club and you see an ad for Harry Potter, or you’re in a library and see an ad for drinks, that might seem odd. Swap them and they suddenly make sense. 70% of consumers expect brands they interact with to know their needs and preferences.
Create niche, useful social content that is relevant to your audience on TikTok.
Chef and TikTok star Poppy O'Toole talked about how she uses TikTok to communicate and ways the platform supports her in growing an engaged community. Poppy gave some lessons for brands, such as how niches always seem to perform better on the platform than broader content. Niches build a community of lovers and keeps them there and engaged. TikTok needs to be seen as a continued conversation and not just a video you made three months ago and uploaded.