Emerging Platforms: BeReal and WeAre8
In the wake of new platforms WeAre8 and BeReal, we wanted to discuss how to approach new social platforms entering the market, sharing key learnings and considerations and highlighting exemplar brands that are tapping into these emerging platforms effectively.
The social landscape is constantly evolving and although there are key players that dominate the field, there are lots of platforms that tap into niche behaviours and communities throughout the world. Below you’ll find a graph that demonstrates how the social platform market looks right now:
As expected, the most used channels from a global perspective sit at the top with Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok all within the top five. But there's far more to social than meets the eye; with smaller platforms providing an alternative opportunity for subcommunities to connect in a more unique space depending on their common interests or their country of residence.
Every platform is at some stage of its development and can be tracked on our graph below: it allows us to monitor the life stage of a platform to properly assess its development and its viability for our clients.
So what should we be thinking about when it comes to these new social platforms that enter the platform life cycle?
We’ve categorised our considerations into 3 main pillars:
What is it?
How do people use it?
What do people think?
Why is it gaining popularity?
Brand & Market Relevance
Will it add value to the brand?
Are they the appropriate platforms for brands to be on?
Content & Community
Can we reach our audiences there by demographic or location?
What kind of content will we need to create?
Does the content have to be entirely unique or can it be similar to other platforms and other channels?
How will we drive our audience there? Or will we have to build a new one?
We also need to consider if the platforms are short-term fads or if they have the potential to become part of a longer-term strategy. So with these questions in mind, we're going to do a deep dive into the latest social platforms, BeReal and WeAre8.
What is BeReal?
A self-described app that gives you ‘your chance to show your friends who you really are, for once’. This candid approach is BeReal's main appeal and feels similar to the reason for TikTok’s success. Audiences are seemingly growing tired of highly curated images and users are shifting towards more authentic content from their friends. Similarly, the absence of brands and influencers has prompted many to say it feels like one of the few 'safe spaces' online.
How does it work?
The app captures the essence of the moment you’re in by prompting you everyday at a different time to capture an image using both front and back cameras simultaneously. Users have just 2 minutes to take the photo or it will be labelled as ‘late’.
The scarcity factor is its main draw; in a world where Meta regularly releases features designed to keep you scrolling for as long as possible, BeReal is praised for prompting participation once a day as a maximum.
The app isn’t without its issues as daily glitches and delays means the app can be quite slow and sometimes even deletes the content. The longevity of the app will lie in BeReal’s software developers’ ability to fix the glitches to encourage people to continue using the app. The nature of the app doesn’t lend itself naturally to businesses; it’s still not hugely explored by brands as it’s hard to locate them on the platform with accounts not verified intentionally. But, over the past few months, brands have been trying out content. Because of BeReal’s ability to pop up throughout any 24 hours of your day, we’ve seen content trends that lean into the day-to-day such as food/meal shots, personal experiences, behind-the-scenes shots etc,. and these are just a few of the ways brands can get involved.
Brands that are crushing it:
Monzo is tapping into culture by ensuring its Twitter followers get in on the BeReal action by using its mascot as a representative of the brand.
And Chipotle dominates the space as it shows the transparency behind the food on BeReal, giving the brand a more relatable and human approach.
How can brands (and people) play a role on the platform?
Global access to one account
Access to exclusive drops
Transparency in production/BTS
Build their personality and online presence
What is WeAre8?
An up-and-coming social media platform with a social conscience at its heart: it pays its users for watching ads and donates a portion of ad spend to charity. Currently, its aim is to challenge the monopoly held by tech giants by encouraging brands to reimagine what could be done with billions of ad spend.
The app is unique as it stops bottomless feeds. Instead, there is a focus on a "hate-free" curated feed that aims to “help people imagine and build a better way”. But, instead of integrated ads into the general feed, users are incentivised to watch ads and respond to a short survey at the end. This is inviting for brands as the app promises completed video views and a 10% click-through rate!
Along with carbon offsetting, brands also have access to a built-in ad manager called 'SAM-i' which monitors performance, insight, and charity donations, and 5% of their ad revenue goes to a creators fund which aims to empower creators to create freely through monthly challenges and regular events.
What are the benefits?
50% of every pound goes directly to your account
A further 5% of all advertiser spend goes to charity and carbon offset
An additional 5% goes to a creator fund through monthly creator challenges
Regular creator events
8 Stage ”hate free“ curated feed
But in reality, the payments are low, you have to be a verified creator to post, the app is socially limited currently so very few social interactions and the feed is limited as well.
The general consensus for the app is that a large proportion of the public are keen on the idea but the app needs improvement as ads can become repetitive for users and it should include more access to content and social features. The app should also look to focus on dispelling trust and skepticism around the platform to attract more people and brands.
What to do next?
When new social platforms arise it can feel like the wild west, and most people avoid early adoption because of the risk associated with this initial leap of faith. For brands, we recommend that you sign up, observe the trendsetters, critically analyse if the platform is for you and then get posting!