By Rachel Lyall, Marketing Manager, EMEA and APAC at Mediaocean
As we head into the Golden Quarter and towards 2023, marketers are focused on how to respond to the ever-changing market conditions. The challenge is ensuring they can still provide the right customer experience and ultimately, produce revenue. To make matters more complicated, there’s a new element to add to the mix – BeReal. The app is being pegged as the next big thing in digital marketing.
There’s a new kid on the block
BeReal is the latest trending social media app, and it’s safe to say that it’s making a splash. Its user base – who all share a combined selfie and camera photo at a random time each day – has grown from 10,000 to over 15 million daily active users in the last year, according to the Financial Times.
But why on earth has it become so popular, so quickly? BeReal encourages users to share pictures of themselves in the moment, with the enforced spontaneity often creating unexpected moments and discovery for its subscribers. This is making it a popular choice amongst users who may be tired of apps like Instagram giving users endless control of pictures with filters, effects, and edits.
If the numbers weren’t enough, BeReal’s success can be echoed in the recent activity of its competitors. Notably, Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok have all launched their own copycat BeReal-style features and services. In response to BeReal’s surge, last month TikTok announced a new feature called TikTok Now, giving users daily prompts to share impromptu photos or short videos, using the phone’s front and rear cameras. The move came as Instagram confirmed it is working on a similar feature, called IG Candid Challenges, weeks after Snapchat debuted its own dual-camera mode.
The age of authenticity
Despite being created for individuals, BeReal is currently an untapped wealth of opportunity for businesses. Consumer priorities are shifting, and they are choosing to engage and spend their money with brands that appear to care about more than just their bottom line. While having a quality product is no doubt essential, it’s not enough. These days, authenticity is what makes a brand stand out among its competitors. The modern customer is savvy, research-oriented, and informed. Often, all they crave is a genuine and credible experience in this hyper-connected world. While brand authenticity is never going to be achieved overnight, using tools such as BeReal can help brands to uncover and promote their true voice.
How can brands leverage BeReal?
Marketers and advertisers shouldn’t underestimate the rapidly growing power of BeReal and instead should consider how they can incorporate it into their strategies. Though there are currently no pay-to-play advertising options on BeReal, this hasn’t stopped brands from creating accounts and promoting content in the same raw and authentic manner that was intended for the platform.
The first step for marketers is to start testing the app and understand how it works. The experimental phase is essential, as BeReal won’t be the appropriate platform for every brand. The brands which have already made a success of it are those which have made content that feels native to the platform – and that’s for any platform a marketer is considering. A given brand doesn’t need to be present on every platform. Marketers should pick their channels based on where their audience spends time and share content accordingly. After all, sharing unrelatable content on a channel which doesn’t work for one’s brand is likely to do more harm than good.
If used appropriately, BeReal should inspire marketers to be more authentic and unguarded in their approach. What appeals to consumers using the platform is the unexpected discovery of what their peers are really doing in the moment, and the same can be applied to their favourite brands.
From recognition to revenue – BeReal keeps moving forwards
Interestingly, BeReal hasn’t yet settled on its revenue-generating model. While it hasn’t ruled out selling advertising, it seems to be leaning more towards in-app purchases. Either way, while the app is still in its infancy, marketers should be taking note of this new powerful social marketing platform and using it as inspiration to help channel their brand’s more authentic inner voice.