The Digital Monkeys
"Be Unrivalled"

Frank: Good afternoon. I’m Frank Kabu today we’re going to look at the year in review for 2021.¬† I’m joined by Jackie. So today we’re going to talk about the things that you’ve noticed, the happenings of digital for 2021.

One of the key things that you’ve noticed as growth for this part of the year would be the use of influencers and I think what we eat is you’ve seen celebrities as influencers being used the most over a couple of years have been in existence of digital but now. 

I think the focus has changed. I don’t know what you’ve noticed Jackie for this past year that cements what the term influencer means nowadays.

Jackie: Definitely, there has been a shift from those mega influencers to the nano influencers mostly because from what I’ve picked with the big influences everyone after their believability has gone local as long as there is cash then they are in. But with general influences, it’s easier, like the believability is high and most of them they don’t go forward they don’t use so they are easy to connect with the audience.

Franc: What about now when you think about awareness? I think the majority of these big influencers celebrity influencers play that card a lot when you’re negotiating with them in terms of what engagement rates they would get with the following that they have do you think that’s still valuable in today’s context in terms of influencing

Jackie: Right now most companies and brands are not going for engagement. They are going for a return on investment so whether they get an engagement or not without the return on investment they won’t go for that. You see, with most brand awareness mega influencers they are fully delivering on that. But what they are not delivering is the reason. Why should I use that brand? Why should I go for that brand? That’s where the shift is. What you find with nano-influencers is that they won’t give you that big brand awareness but they’ll give you the authentic audience that you are looking for. 

Franc: Do you have a loyal influencer that you follow personally? Maybe you can just talk about the products they seem to push and what they really address whenever you choose to listen to what they’re offering.

Jackie: I do but for me, it’s more of a passion about that person I tend to follow Joanna Kinuthia. she’s an influencer and also she has a brand a lipstick company.  I tend to like her. I’ve even subscribed to her content and with that, you’ll tend to find that anything she does all the products she uses whenever  Igo to the supermarket or to any store I’ll look for them 

Franc: So like I was mentioning I think one of the influences I follow is YouTuber: Carnversations, because I used to do car vlogs back in the day. But I think the rise of the believability of those small influencers and non-influencers plays a really huge critical role in terms of not just them consuming a product, they have been paid. It’s a paid partnership but not they’re not really brand users. I think that’s the main thing that like you say resonates with the audiences in terms of return on investment that’s quite key 

Jackie: When you’re following something what do you go for?

Franc: It’s believability like are you a customer of what you are trying to put I think that’s the main thing for me 

Jackie: What about from an individual point of view 

Franc: Still the same if you’re influencing something because of the sake I won’t believe you. But if you are a user of the product tell me the good the bad the uglies, without hiding your face all in terms of what that product does. I think that’s a believable aspect today.

If I tell you Bic is the best pen to use and I don’t tell you if you put it in the pocket when the sun is out it will melt in your pocket you’re just sending one aspect of that Bic which is the best but you’re not telling me why it’s not the best as well so. I think that believability plays a very critical part in just consuming content. 

Jackie: Also the other problem we have with these mega influencers is that they are very much plastic. They’ll go for anything and sometimes they even position some of their products where they don’t use them so as a consumer you get to keep on wondering like were was that it was a misplaced ad. 

I guess what we should be looking for is the nano influencers and also it’s good for the brands to note whenever something I’ve realized most of the brands they’re like no we don’t know that person even if you can’t give some very nice recommendations. I’m not sure how to address such an issue. I don’t know if you have an idea.

Franc: Well I guess it’s an issue that will still continuously face. I don’t think it’s something that you can explain till they feel the impact of when they’ve signed someone and proving a return on investment is quite hard. I think that lesson becomes more of a lesson at that point so I believe you have to dip your toes in the water and see what comes out of it and then take the learnings from it.

Jackie: That will be a very expensive lesson.

Franc: True well another thing I think we’ve noticed but if  I came into the market   I’m big music streaming service fan  I don’t know if you use Spotify or apple music or youtube  I don’t know 

Jackie: Personally, youtube

Franc: So Spotify came into the market. What are your thoughts in terms of streaming music services? There have been local ones like countries can’t discount them posting local music but what are your thoughts on Spotify coming to the market?

Jackie: I see it as a growth actually in the music area and the audio area but personally I’m not that big on music I’m on vlogs so that’s why I’m big on youtube but with Spotify definitely we will see some growth in it, especially for our artists from a point of view. When I think of Spotify, I think of the investment of an artist like they’ll start gaining from that and I guess that’s also a good thing.

Franc: All right. I think one of the key things that you’ve noticed this year is we got the privilege to do a lot of live events and live streaming to social media channels and then just noticing from we’re ending in 2021 and live audio has become something that is quite picking up. there’s been one platform that was at the frontier called clubhouse and then Spotify joined the bandwagon with green rooms then Twitter spaces came on board as well and I think it provides that medium in terms of connections from a conversations point of view 

Jackie: Something that is good to know is what audiences are going for  people are not going for the conference kind of content people right now it’s a more social world so wherever there is a social conversation  I guess that’s speaking  I don’t know okay   I’m not sure about clubhouse but for twitter spaces, I’ve interacted with it and  I can see it  I like going somewhere alright so maybe you can expound on Clubhouse and Spotify 

Franc: So this was this has been a fine  Ithink in Q2 of this year and just coming to that live live audio space and kid the first voice notes that was sent where in 2013 with what’s up and and that’s how from conversations we’re sending voice notes and then we went to live sessions of the video and now we have now the separation of live where you can’t just have live audio so clubhouse was the first just to experiment where you were invited into a room and participate in the conversation without filters  Ibelieve zuma was really keen when they launched the webinars when guys are presenting case studies or presenting presentations and by default you’re entered when you’re muted so that opportunity came about when audiences want to actually just portray what they are feeling at that moment without having to die  Ithink that’s a very  it’s it’s a connection in itself it’s very personal it’s very   it’s very open and  Ithink with that came about now peter singh   it’s an opportunity and twitter is a big boy club is a very small boy but twitter’s like hey this is an opportunity that  Ithink we can open up and  Ithink in may 2021 they launched a month later spotify opened green rooms so it’s interesting to see like we’re really growing granular in terms of trying to see where we can engage audiences where the audiences can actually have a voice.

Jackie: Also Believe how the world was disrupted as we can no longer have one-on-one meetings and all that I think that’s a contributing factor to the growth of their voice tools 

Franc: True quite interesting as in we’re with so many things for the year 2021 as year in view. I think one of the biggest things that I never thought would be quite big as you know.  I don’t know how many do   how many billion views exist in one single day with youtube videos for instance 

Jackie: I’ve never thought of that but come to think of it with the world having around eight points something billion people it should be more than that 

Franc: That’s true I think that is coming I think this is more with technology. so I don’t know how far you’re going with the voice I think we all know google assistant we all know to see we all know Alexa   and always have this feeling like at some point they’re really listening into the conversations they do and then at some point, voice search will be something as well where you’re triggered you trigger something, ask Google something and a result is read on to you 

Jackie: Come to think of it google has been having that  option for quite some time but how many people think about it when you think of searching something on google do you think like you can talk into their computer and it tells you to like what to come 

Franc:  I think  I just tried for the sake of it when it came but moving on I think the biggest growth opportunity that presents is the automation of things so imagine now cars are becoming smarter TVs are becoming smaller and smarter and I think humans are becoming lazier you picking up battery mode and typing MK phd video is becoming more mature than something that you can actually do but with a voice that presents a really huge opportunity just like the same way and this is this is a very bad example when you have that telephone over here that. I don’t know if it has a term and there’s someone downstairs for instance and instead of you walking down to them like let me just dial in they could just come up and that’s how. I see   as humans, we think we’re evolving to that automation level we free up more time to do more innovation innovative stuff so I think these opportunities come in a good and a bad way I think that’s a trade-off with technology   you’re seeing it as a good but we really don’t know maybe it’s a whole better bunk and a data boat maybe a couple of years from now someone will be using that data to target you 

Jackie: That’s true 

Franc: Let me ask you what you think about privacy in the context of this data economy 

Jackie: What do you think about when I think like there is no pregnancy I tend to think like my emails are private but just the other day we had an issue with email links and google had to apologize for that so  I don’t think there is any privacy with that  definitely someone somewhere is watching the other is watching each other is everywhere

Franc: That’s interesting so darling back now to also the point you had about the influences I think we were in a creator’s economy  where you can   it’s become trading itself and more and more content creators are there are more content producers up there which in which plays a very huge  role and opportunity for there’s a lot of noise but how do you separate yourself from that noise 

Jackie: That’s a good one because one of the issues that   I’m finding especially for the future given that this year we’ve seen a rising so many social users and so many people using the internet  I think  I will have a problem if we don’t adapt to the specialization   that one of the issues   I’m finding is that we tend to communicate for the sake and the reason we do that it’s cause we are yet to get the gist of it of what to say like who to talk to and that’s an issue because when you think you are talking to someone then you are saving out the other person  I guess that’s why we need to do it like we should have like small groups that we are talking to instead of generally talking to everyone 

Franc: That’s blasting. Basically blasting messages across just to get you to know the few numbers instead of what that leads to. I think one of the key things that is growing is  I think this year  not done a lot of lead generation campaigns but looking at 2020 just when covid teaches more lead generation campaigns and I think about it you’re morphing into   not just blasting because you’re blasting to get a few but you can work in javascript with demand generation where you actually look for those few numbers and then make up a consistent customer base with the actual users of the product and loyalists they can pitch that product to someone else I think that’s how marketing should be 

Jackie: Come to think of it what I’ve realized is that brands are moving from their normal advertising they are becoming more targeted to smaller groups actually I see the rise of Facebook groups in the coming few years because that’s we have that authentic audience  I think that’s something to look out for 

Franc: That’s true I think of like 15 Facebook groups as well as they speak one’s for construction ones for the motto and you’re actually right in terms of all the conversations that happen in those groups someone will ask a question in terms where do  I source for the cheapest segment and by the time a brand gets to that person an answer has been put up by someone maybe he’s a brand user in that group which becomes   a point of quick turnaround information where someone converts their own on the go rather than trying to search someone constructing a house now  I think those groups really make sense because even in own circles known WhatsApp groups we tend to push out communication that really resonates with the group   

Jackie: So recommendations will be a kid to look out and coming the coming year cause you find that when I recommend something to a friend they are likely to get it rather than getting it from somewhere else so getting to talk to those specific individuals is what we are looking for also something an interesting thing I’ve been thinking about is that  I tend to see what’s up trying to. I’m thinking WhatsApp might start producing statistics for their messages  I don’t know why given that they were bought by Facebook I see that one happening very soon 

Franc: I think out of that this opportunity to sell data like who these groups that these conversations that are happening can of easier way anything that also happens up naturally for our clients they ask do you have a pool of WhatsApp groups and it’s more on data collection where can  I place my brand based on the interests of those groups. This is quite quite quite quite interesting another thing that I’ve noticed  I’ve sent a bunch of newsletters this year for one of our clients and  I was asking myself if newsletters still work  I find it to be like the old dog no thanks to the newspapers but is it really is it in this world of  I can subscribe to a channel without having to leave the email address it just gives me notifications topical notifications let’s say for instance google channels when you subscribe to cars for instance and then you see trending this week in cars without having to leave a lot of your details without having to receive a newsletter you think you still think it’s it’s a valuable platform 

Jackie: Actually I think newsletters are one of the things that I should stay because if you’re subscribed to something you’ll receive you can’t subscribe without like thinking about that thing without liking that thing so  if you’re subscribed to it it means    you want that information you want more access to that thing so  I think that is one thing that should stay 

Franc: Speaking of which just talked about the old newspapers what do you think about guys digitizing their papers and subs putting subscriptions to those papers I’ve really struggled myself when I read an article her friend is like   I’m the chillings and   I’m like it’s a newspaper it’s insane online version maybe it’s me or maybe I don’t know if you are in a better experience a different experience and just highlight 

Jackie: Okay from thinking like  the companies that are doing that I think they are looking for more ways to generate revenue but thinking from their consumer’s point of view  I don’t  I would rather they sell through the ads than sell me the newspaper when  Isay that like  I don’t want to mention names here  I was about to but there are some newspapers there are some states  I don’t visit anymore because the story is very enticing but halfway you’re like subscribe you can’t even finish that and they’re like for this amount 

Franc: And I think that also leads to how blogs are set up and I think looking at  I think in 2023 google’s tend to find a way of removing cookies and the old way of not containing those users is getting their email addresses and the personal details and the only way you do you can only pass now that communication is through newsletter so   I’m tending to think in 2023 we’ll see even guys pushing more guys to subscribe to leave their details for newsletters because that will be the only medium now you can actually now push your messaging because   with cookies it’s already collecting data it’s passing that data it’s selling that data how I think they’ll arise but that’s not the thing   if all brands, for instance, all cookies are cut that will be the first touch point where someone goes in in terms of  I want to get this number of user base  I want to pass this communication to them and the easiest one is please let us 

Jackie: I really hope they’re going to do that they do save us a lot as consumers 

Franc: I believe we should do that because I think there’s a lot of data collection on us that we don’t even know and policies come late to the party   because mistakes have happened that’s what  Isay it’s like even when you look at GDPR it can relate to the department something had happened   and that’s  I think if you come if policies could come into play early on  I think that’s a way of protecting the users because it’s the same way even us as marketers when you think about the end user only thinking is  I need to push this spot  I need to show this product  I need to get that contact and at some point, you don’t think about their consent and consent is really big in terms of when you’re pushing  I can’t come and just force down  I can’t come and force anything down your throat without you giving me the consent in the first place 

Jackie: As much as I get that but still, the cookies are active actually they ask for permission the sites use cookies anymore that and then you accept you accept her to deny it but without the cookies, the consumer will be limited because for example. I’m looking for something  I won’t get like a variety of those things but with cookies like they know this is where my interest is and their very easy to recommend something that  I wouldn’t have thought of so   I’m not sure that   I’m not sure the direction they should take 

Franc: Actually something interesting is we just got our phone or iPhone to do content and one of the key things, when I was installing the app permissions, In terms of what you should allow and what you shouldn’t allow at the time of use on   those things and it really came to my mind in terms of if this is a technology brand that is pushing that agenda and  I think also when you look at even   the android  four that has been introduced  I think this year you can actually choose now you can set those permissions and   it makes me wonder how much data has been collected is it really beneficial for me if I give out everything and where you say that is just looking at   those terms and terms and conditions it’s normally paragraphs you don’t have time to take too legal you don’t have back and forths with   what you’re signing up for you’re just hoping of the best interest and by the time   it data leaks do happen 

Jackie:  As much as I get where we are going and where we are coming from I still feel like we make by giving out our information make the world a better place so why should we stay with whatever   the information and all that well it will be used for better so  I don’t have a problem with giving out like their rights and everything but  I don’t know about you

Franc: I mean I think  I just look at it from a public point of view   I’m announcing I stay in this place it’s the time I open my windows this time I close my windows so it’s up to them to choose whether they’ll come and pick my stuff um 

Jackie: Why are you not thinking of it like you are a shop and you’re selling this and that are you only looking at it from one point of view 

Franc: Because  Icollected it  Iused to collect data that’s right moving moving in terms of now conversations and I think something that has come strong this year would be conversations kenyan conversations on these social channels and  there’s a lot there’s been a lot of clout chasing where people just put out stories and and and people follow those stories  people put clickbait on those stories and when I look at now the general content page you find ourselves looking using the plot as   people who are creating content people consuming that content do you think at some point you’re really losing or it’s just part of entertainment and  because   as content people who create content there’s some level of influences some level of trust there’s some level of   when the audience is consuming that stuff and true to it some people don’t really think about that they’re all about chasing those views just in those impressions chasing those   link clicks for instance what do you think about  content creators who are chasing or chasing is it do you think it has entertainment value  do you think it’s just   being being in the trend at that time do you think it’s sustainable 

Jackie: what I’ve been feeling is that when most of these people are creating content when they’re starting out they tend to have some objectives and some goals to meet but with time  I guess is it fame or is it  the platforms that have grown bigger than themselves so instead of staying objective they tend now to start looking for more and in that looking for more they lose out on what they once believed in 

Franc: Cool. Coming to a close  what are you looking for in December or already in December so the next two-three weeks what are you looking forward to in terms of   the opportunities you see opportunities within yourself what do you think what were you looking forward to 

Jackie: well December is quite tricky in terms of what   I’m looking for because there is a lot of noise and a lot of clutter in the digital space so it’s hard for me to try to tell what to look out for but I’m open   I’m open to what’s coming through and   

Franc: Let me think   I’m looking forward to the memes   generally it’s around the corner guys going broke save your use your November salary for December okay it’s just your noise but I think I’m just looking generally or rather hoping for entertainment content  I think going into this season it’s more light it’s not you’re selling a product it should be lightly it’s not heavy like come by this and that should be   art festival festivities should be very very light you think brands are actually exploring that exploring with moments because the moment is quite key   in terms of where you are based on the brand interaction at that moment I’ve never interacted with you but you positioned yourself in a moment where  I feel like  I can actually do a purchase or can   to listen to you what do you think brands can actually do 

Jackie: I think some brands are adapting to that especially the financial sector because you find that they are trying to be relatable to people   before we used to think especially when we were growing up we used to think like to be in a financial sector you have to have the tithes and all that and right now they are relaxing and   I’m hoping it will change

Franc: Have you participated in any challenges Tiktok and IG challenges I think that’s the highlight of when you came towards the end of last year and this year I’ve seen a lot of dance challenges on social media and guys actually just. It’s been a trend in itself guys going over and beyond even in moving water to those challenges   they mean much and all that what do you think of is it just entertainment is it just part of being social actually

Jackie: Okay it’s part of being social to start with but  I personally haven’t participated what I’ve realized with these challenges is that they started out with a young adult between 15, 16 to around 25 but at the moment the older people are trying to get into their trends 

Franc: So thank you guys we’ve had a really good session I hope you’ve had a lovely time as well we hope to do this sometime next week so peace. Franc Kabu your host joined by Jacqueline and see you soon