Microsoft lists ‘demetrication’ as a trend to watch in 2020 – how can brands prepare?

Written by Jo Seward: Digital marketing manager.
· 4 minute read

Earlier this week, Microsoft released a study identifying the most important trends that marketers and businesses alike should be aware of in 2020. One that stood out was ‘demetrication’ – a concept that Zuckerburg confirmed was being tested back in 2019’s Facebook F8 conference.

The idea is that ‘vanity’ social media metrics such as likes and views would be removed from the public eye in an attempt to combat the negative impact they can have on mental health. What if people started focusing solely on the content they share as opposed to the feedback it receives?

Instagram wants to create “a less pressurised environment where people feel comfortable expressing themselves”. It makes perfect sense, and hopefully social media will become a more positive space as a result.

But brands are going to have to learn to adapt. Although they will still be able to see their own metrics, the possibility of this roll out does come with some drawbacks. No longer will they be able to measure their success against other brands’, no longer will they be able to check up on how their influencer posts are doing, and the overall public perception of brands is in jeopardy.

So what do brands need to think about in order to prepare for the possibility of demetrication?

Building their own social presence

As influencer metrics may no longer be available, a brands’ own social media presence starts to become more important than ever. Businesses will need to focus on building their social following by sharing quality content and start to learn what their audience respond best to. This means that instead of relying on someone else’s audience to connect with their brand, they can rely on their own.

Paid social advertising might also start to become a more attractive option if demetrication comes into effect. It helps brands to focus on the metrics that matter, and these platforms offer very clear reporting on business objectives.

Attribution

Only 29% of brands are tracking links in their influencer content. So it’s likely that the rest are relying purely on social metrics to determine the success of their campaigns and justify influencer spend.

In this respect, demetrication could actually be a good thing for brands as it will encourage them to think more about attribution and how their influencer campaigns are affecting their bottom line.

It may be that some influencers will allow direct access to their analytics meaning engagement can still be measured, but we would always recommend focussing on a more slaes driven approach. Providing them with unique trackable links, landing pages and discount codes will allow brands to see how much traffic these influencers are driving to their site and more importantly, how much revenue they are producing.

Customer reviews

As influential as influencers can be, there will always be a question mark over the authenticity of this type of marketing. They may well be true fans of a brand, but those consuming this content have a right to be dubious. Influencer content hasn’t been earned, it’s essentially just another form of paid advertising.

With demetrication potentially harming the world of influencer marketing, now might be the time to start focusing on the real influencers – your actual customers.

With only 4% of people trusting influencers, yet a huge 76% of people trusting online reviews as much as personal recommendations, the stats speak for themselves in terms of where brands should place their focus. Brands should encourage people to review their products or services in as many places as possible in order to become less reliant on seeking unauthentic approval from influencers.

As annoying as demetrication may be for brands, think of the positives in that it will force us all to focus on the metrics that matter. Not only that, seeking approval in the form of ‘likes’ should become a thing of the past meaning a more positive social space for all. If you’d like a hand devising a future proof social media strategy, get in touch with our team today.