By Greg Bailie
Greg Bailie, Head of Growth and Innovation at Nfinity Media, says consumers are gearing up to
spend their hard-earned cash, but instead of idly walking through malls and hoping to find the perfect
gift, much of this year’s discovery will be done online. This is partly because of the ongoing pandemic,
which continues to influence foot traffic through shopping centres, but mostly because how
consumers engage with social media has shifted and social commerce is the result.
Shopping has always been fun – it’s not called retail therapy for nothing – but social platforms have
added an entirely new layer to the full retail experience. These platforms use videos to blend our
visual and auditory senses to tap into the thrill of discovering new brands and watching creators share
their favourite things. Then the loop is closed because platforms are now enabling both brands and
creators to create their own shopping storefronts. Using shoppable content, our favourite content
creators can now inspire us with a specific summer look or product review and at the tap of a screen
we can instantly purchase and checkout right from the creator’s account.
This isn’t the future – it’s right now. 88% of Gen Z and Millenials turn to social for guidance on their
purchasing decisions and 8 out of 10 consumers purchased off the back of seeing it on a content
It’s a phenomenon that’s changing the way brands engage with consumers. Take the partnership
between Dunkin Donuts and Charli D’Amelio, the most popular TikTok star in the world with 125
million followers. Charli is 17 years old, and in 2020, when Dunkin Donuts collaborated with her to
launch a signature cold brew drink with her name (the Charli), the result was a 20% increase in all
cold brew sales on the day the collab was announced, followed by a 45% increase the following day.
No other form of advertising can trigger hundreds of thousands of people to suddenly want to try a
So, why does influencer marketing result in such big bumps in sales? The success of influencer
campaigns come down to the creators themselves, who work extremely hard on building their own brands and cultivating an organic and engaged online following. The best creators obsess over fun
and creative ways to create content that people will love – and we do. How many TikTok videos are
shared through your Whatsapp group chats each day? What about your Instagram Newsfeed and
Reels? This is all user-generated content and we love it.
What’s particularly interesting about social commerce, however, is that users don’t feel that
advertising has no place in their social media feeds. In fact, they want to hear which brands
influencers like and why. We aren’t opening our social media apps just to see what our friends are
doing, we are using them for almost every aspect of our lives, from keeping up with current affairs to
entertainment to shopping.