Toral: Trends defining digital Filipino influencers in 2024

Digital Rebel
Jannette Toral.
Jannette Toral.File

The digital influencer scene in the Philippines is undergoing a transformative phase, fueled by a unique amalgamation of global innovations and local nuances. Filipino digital influencers, known for their substantial online presence on blogs and various content-sharing platforms, forge deep connections with their audiences.

They influence opinions, behaviors and purchasing decisions across diverse domains such as lifestyle, fashion and technology, resonating with both local and international Filipino audiences. Here’s an in-depth analysis of these trends:

Focus on sustainability; social responsibility

The global discourse on sustainability and social responsibility is increasingly resonating with various audience segments. Sustainability is at the forefront of consumer concerns.

In the Philippines, there’s a notable emergence of the "green-inclined" consumer segment, as highlighted by Germaine Reyes, chief executive officer of Synergy Market Research, in her Market(In) Sights report. Filipino consumers are actively willing to pay more for products that align with environmental values. As of April 2023, about 70 percent of consumers belong to this category, marking a significant shift in purchasing behavior towards sustainability. The expectation for supply chains to be free from harmful practices such as forced labor has also risen to 61 percent in 2023 from 58 percent in 2021.

There's a steady demand for corporate charity and community upskilling initiatives, with 48 percent of consumers expecting companies to give to charity and 47 percent looking for them to upskill community members in 2023. This shift indicates that sustainability is transitioning from being a mere corporate value or marketing strategy to a fundamental consumer expectation.

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) revolution

AI and ML are becoming indispensable tools for digital influencers. From content generation to search engine optimization and personalizing user experiences, AI is streamlining content creation workflows while offering new creative possibilities.

Niche content channels

The upcoming year is likely to see a surge in niche-focused channels. Digital influencers are increasingly concentrating on specific topics, creating separate channels as needed, aiming to cater to targeted audience segments. This approach not only builds dedicated and engaged communities but also aligns with platform algorithm behaviors, enhancing content visibility and reach.

Influencers as affiliate marketers, entrepreneurs

As most influencers start by creating content as a hobby, earning opportunities are often inconsistent. The major players delve into various revenue streams, including sponsorships, advertising, memberships, merchandise sales, and live events. Many are evolving into entrepreneurs, leveraging their online influence to launch businesses. Affiliate marketing is becoming integral to influencer strategies, effectively driving brand awareness and sales conversion. Consequently, directly or indirectly, brands and influencers are moving towards long-term partnerships rather than one-off collaborations for sustained branding and audience engagement.

Influencer networks and collaborations

Joining forces through influencer networks or collaborations is becoming a popular strategy. These partnerships offer shared resources, cross-promotion opportunities, and access to broader audiences, enhancing the overall impact of influencer campaigns.

The digital space in the Philippines is marked by its rich diversity, with influencers having varied access to resources and technological proficiency. It's essential to note that these are forward-looking projections based on current trends and data, and they may evolve.

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