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Influencer marketing became the go-to strategy for brands to reach out to their target audiences during the lockdown, as per a survey conducted by Zefmo Media.

The India Influence Report 2021 by Zefmo says that influencer marketing witnessed a massive growth in spending by leading brands and agencies to the tune of over 40 per cent (year-on-year) growth.

As per the survey, the FMCG category was the highest spender with over 62% increase in their influencer marketing spending as they focussed more on stay-at-home consumers. Categories such as mental health (116%), holistic wellness (87%), physical fitness (84%) and sub-genres such as baking (233%) within the culinary category saw massive industry traction.

It further says that traditionally high-spend categories such as fashion, luxury, auto, beauty and cosmetics, went through a sluggish phase mimicking the consumer spending pattern during the lockdown period.

The report goes on to add that 2021 was the year wherein brands clearly communicated their preference towards the globally established social media channels in form of the ‘big-four’, namely – Instagram, YouTube, Facebook (now Meta), and Twitter to run influencer campaigns

During this phase, Zefmo on-boarded a higher number of hyperlocal micro-influencers for its campaigns with the aim of making content more relatable with their followers. This segment saw over a 35 per cent jump in earnings for the micro-influencers. Additionally, the vernacular medium grew by about 15% in terms of the number of campaigns, further corroborating the rise of vernacular across India.

“It was during lockdown that the true power of influencer marketing was harnessed to the hilt,” said Shudeep Majumdar, co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO), Zefmo Media.

“The brands were swift to realize that information consumption was predominantly happening over social media, and it gave them the tried and test catchment zone to conduct relatable hyperlocal influencer engagement. In fact, Zefmo stamped industry leadership by enabling some pathbreaking campaigns that saw a 43% jump measured in ‘per influencer earning’(PIE) terms. The ability to create user-generated content within the safe confines of their homes gave the influencers an unprecedented edge to connect with their followers in a scenario where live shoots had come to a standstill.”