With lockdowns, shelter-in-place orders, and quarantines in effect around the world, people are confined to their homes passing the time online and on social media. Statista estimates that social media usage during the month of March rose by 32%. Coronavirus may be the first global pandemic chronicled across social media — people are looking to online news sites and social media to find updates, voice their opinions, and entertain themselves.
Many brands have already taken the initiative to launch coronavirus influencer marketing campaigns. Most have been met by positive reactions while some influencers have made headlines during the outbreak for the wrong reasons.
Many influencers are using their social presence to aid, encourage, and inspire others. We share how influencers are responding to Coronavirus and share examples of influencers who are taking the extra step by creating charitable content for social good.
3 Primary Ways Influencers Are Responding To Coronavirus
COVID-19 has caused many influencers to rethink their social content strategy and re-align sponsorships. The lockdown presents an opportunity for influencers to engage differently with their followers, have well-being and mindfulness conversations during times of adversity, and for some, use their social clout to generate donations for COVID-19 relief charities and nonprofits.
1. AMPING UP CONTENT
- Many influencers are using their time in isolation to up their content by creating IGTV tutorials, hosting Instagram LIVEs, and posting more frequent Stories.
- Influencers are taking the opportunity to create specific at-home tutorials including loungewear clothing hauls, DIY crafting for kids, self-care routines, etc.
- Goodwill Content: A study shows that 88% of influencers are actively seeking ways their content can help small businesses during economic hardship.
- Coronavirus Influencer Trends: Boredom is bringing influencers to TikTok. Many Instagram-focused influencers have created TikTok accounts in the wake of the national lockdown.
- Fitness influencers are energizing followers by posting at-home fitness workouts and challenges.
2. Business As Usual
- While nearly 50% of influencers recommend brands acknowledge COVID-19 in current campaigns, some influencers are partaking in campaigns with a “business as usual” approach.
- The same study shows that while influencers are worried about seeming insensitive during the pandemic, they are more concerned about a lack of collaboration opportunities.
- In a transparency effort, most “business as usual” influencers are careful to clarify any posts that include content taken before the quarantine — especially travel influencers.
3. Social ‘Media’ Distancing
- Some influencers are taking this period to take a social media break altogether. These influencers are welcoming the systematic downtime to escape work and also possibly avoid creator burnout.
- While many influencers are postponing partnerships that may come across insensitive during these times, some influencers like Sina Duvinage of popular account @happygreylucky are pausing content altogether before deciding how to best serve their quarantined followers.
How Influencers Can Continue To Adapt During Coronavirus
- Leverage their platform(s) to share a socially positive voice
- Utilize ‘Swipe up’ links in Instagram Stories to share health information, donation links, etc.
- Take the time to connect with their followers without “capitalizing” on the moment
12 Influencers And Celebrities Creating For A Cause During Coronavirus
Health officials have repeatedly stated that the millennial generation is the core demographic that’s going to help stop the spread of coronavirus around the globe.
Well managed, close relationships with influencers can help companies and brands continue to deliver high-quality content during uncertain times. Influencers work as ambassadors for brands by providing valuable exposure and trust through relevant and appealing influencer content.
Here are 12 examples of influencers and celebrities using their influence to address and aid communities:
1. DR. LESLIE KEEPS KIDS SAFE ON TIKTOK
Dr. Leslie was one of the first TikTok influencers to address the coronavirus back in January and has since grown her platform to over 560K followers. Her first coronavirus video generated over 4.2 million views and her light-hearted humor resonates with her Gen Z audience.
Dr. Leslie answers health questions, busts coronavirus myths, and incorporates TikTok challenges in her content to stay relevant and peak viewer interest.
2. COLOR ME COURTNEY PROMOTES SMALL BUSINESSES
Macro-influencer Courtney Quinn was quick to shift her usual content to focus on COVID assistance creating a small business movement where her followers promote their favorite businesses and business owners could share the best ways to help.
Her audience praised her for her quick thinking initiative and Courtney received more than 3x the average number of comments on her post. The candid influencer known for her motivational captions also launched a #ColorMeChallenge to help her followers through quarantine.
3. TIKTOK QUARANTINE CREW TELLS BACHELOR FANS TO WASH THEIR HANDS
Reality TV star and influencer Tyler Cameron forms TikTok supergroup @TheQuarantineCrew keeping over 560K Bachelorette fans entertained.
The crew made headlines when Hannah Brown, Tyler’s famous Bachelorette-ex joined the quarantine party fueling romance rumors. The friend group creates comical TikTok skits, many of which provide users with relevant health information.
4. BEAUTY YOUTUBER CARLI BYBEL PLAYS FANS’ MONTHLY BILLS
Early on in the Coronavirus outbreak beauty guru Carli Bybel took to her YouTube channel to give back to her fans. In the “Get Ready With Me” video Carli announces the worldwide giveaway will have two winners, and each will have all of their bills paid for the month of April.
The contest took place on Instagram and YouTube and Carli further promoted optimism by requiring giveaway contestants to each share “a positive thing they are taking away from this scary time.”
5. DUDE WITH SIGN ADVOCATES BEST HEALTH PRACTICES WITH WHO AND INSTAGRAM
Seth Phillips, aka dude with sign is a @fuckjerry influencer who captured America’s heart by sharing first world grovels on a cardboard sign. His simple content garners millions of likes per post and has allowed him to work with Jimmy Kimmel and Justin Bieber.
On March 16, he partnered with Instagram and the WHO to create a 6 picture post to publicize best health practices to his over 7 million followers. His blunt approach was well received with a 32% engagement rate, 12% higher than his average.
6. INFLUENCERS JOIN TV ROSTER FOR NICKELODEON LIVE! SPECIAL
A study shows that 75% of Gen Z and Millennials want to become YouTubers when they grow up. With the line between celebrities and social media stars becoming increasingly blurred it is not a huge surprise that social media influencers account for almost one-fourth of Nickelodeon’s LIVE programming talent.
YouTubers David Dobrik and Emma Chamberlain, and TikTok stars Addison Rae, Annie Leblanc, and Charlie D’Amelio were some of the influencers included in the children’s channel event. The “#KidsTogether Nickelodeon Town Hall” sought to answer children’s questions about COVID-19, and share how kids can make an impact during the health crisis.
7. DAVID DOBRIK AND HIS VLOG SQUAD SHOCK THE INTERNET WITH CORONAVIRUS GIFTING SPREE
The recently crowned “Favorite Male Social Star of 2020” returned to YouTube after a month break only to surprise fans with one of his biggest giveaways. The star drove around Los Angeles gifting families in need video game consoles, $10,000 checks and even cars!
David’s generous video immediately started trending worldwide on Twitter. Fellow YouTube vlogger @RyanAbe tweeted, “David Dobrik shooting $10,000 checks out of a t-shirt cannon at random people from his car is the kind of energy I needed to see in the world right now.”
5 Celebrity Influencers Rising to the Cause During Lockdown
1. ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER TEAMS UP WITH TIKTOK TO FEED FAMILIES AROUND THE U.S.
With a $3 million donation, TikTok announced a new partnership with the former governor’s charity to provide relief to families during the virus outbreak. His After-School All-Stars program was quick to modify their operations to help children and families affected by the nationwide school closures.
While the partnership may take some by surprise, TikTok has long been a fan of the Terminator. In April 2019 TikTok excitedly welcomed Mr. Schwarzenegger to the app in a newsroom post that launched the #LikeArnold trend.
2. @STASSIEBABY AND DOORDASH ENDORSE #DOYOURPARTCHALLENGE FOR @FEEDINGAMERICA
Anastasia Karanikolaou better known as @Stassiebaby, is a celebrity influencer whose high-profile friendship with Kylie Jenner has helped her amass to near 8 million Instagram followers.
Using her platform for good, Stassie posted a video starting the #DoYourPartChallenge. The challenge has since collected over 1,082 posts and caught the attention of @doordash who eagerly assisted by gifting meals.
3. SELENA GOMEZ TAKES TIME TO SHOW FANS HOW TO HAVE #SAFEHANDS
In a video post notably different from her usual content, Selena Gomez showed her 176 million followers how she washes her hands. The actress/singer got candid with her followers in the one-minute long video, showing she too is abiding the stay at home orders.
Her raw approach to the #SafeHands hashtag challenge was viewed more than 5.6 million times and the star tagged a chain of celebrities friends to help continue the health-conscious trend.
4. JOHN KRAZINSKI SPREADS SOME MUCH NEEDED ‘GOOD NEWS’
John Krazinski created ‘Some Good News’ in hopes to make people smile amid the chaos of COVID-19. While the one month old channel has only 12 videos, it has raked up 2.3 subscribers with an exceptional average of 4.3 million views per video.
Synonymous with its name the channel features uplifting, positive news stories and is filled with celebrity guest appearances. Oprah, Steven Spielberg, and Martha Stewart are just a few of the big names who have virtually joined the news show.
5. KYLIE JENNER ALTERS COSMETIC OPERATIONS TO FOCUS ON CREATING HEALTHCARE NECESSITIES
Kylie Jenner joins a posse of business owners who are switching operations to make COVID-related products in wake of the health crisis. The CEO announced that her cosmetics brand will be producing hand sanitizers to be donated to emergency and healthcare workers. The makeup mogul is just one of the many celebrities who are giving back to the community by making considerable coronavirus donations.