Having come from a non-PR background when I joined Clareville a few months ago, I had completely underestimated the importance of “influencers” in this industry. Being an active social media user myself, I was very much aware of influencers, but hadn’t fully appreciated their significance in the PR world, which still continues to surprise me.
However, a week into my job at Clareville working on well-known baby brands, I was astounded to see the vast amount coverage coming from Instagram and “mummy bloggers.” Even more surprisingly, the coverage wasn’t necessarily from celebrity mums either, but everyday mums, both stay at home and working, who had built up large followings on social media and a very engaged audience at that, which is key for brand awareness and reach.
I had expected that the large national consumer magazines and parenting magazines would be primary source for PR coverage, but quickly learnt that in fact Instagram expanding on that and providing a much wider audience overall. Of course, coverage in a top parenting magazine is a big win for our clients and there is a great deal of satisfaction that comes from seeing a full page spread, but on a day to day basis, Instagram produces the volume.
Instagram Stories accounts for approximately 95% of the daily coverage and with the arrival of Instagram TV too, brands can now get even more coverage. Posts are still popular and useful in that they have longer term visibility as stories disappear after 24 hours, but stories are definitely leading the way in the parenting arena. This is understandable as it is easier to post a quick story than write a longer blog post, but it does make me wonder what is coming next!
From what I have seen so far, the parenting network is showing no signs of slowing down and according to a recent survey, this sector has grown 3.5 per cent in the first half of 2018. The survey carried out by CampaignDeus also showed that engagement rates are on average 11 per cent lower on sponsored posts versus organic posts, although parenting is the only sector where this engagement drop-off is not present. It looks like it’s set to continue, so watch this space!