Here's a few important tips for brands looking to embrace today's online activations and connect with consumers through them.

Emerald-Jane Hunter, President

December 1, 2020

2 Min Read

Whether you like it or not, the status quo is changing. So much so that if the version of yourself from a year ago got to peek into the somewhat dystopian present, they’d likely do a double—no, TRIPLE—take. Digital transformation has always been on the horizon, and for quite some time it’s been slowly (but surely) seeping into the lives of many.

What’s different now, though, is that thanks to the socially distant world brought on by COVID-19, the days of digital transformation being a luxury and only available to those who could afford it are gone. Now, we all need to embrace the digital world.

Change can be disconcerting and scary. Oftentimes we fear what we don’t understand. The push toward digital transformation, though daunting to the uninitiated, is actually a beautiful opportunity. Without downplaying the tragedy, hardships and lives lost during the pandemic, COVID-19 has granted brands the opportunity to seamlessly embed digital into their consumer outreach efforts.

The future of digital activations

Digital brand activations have already been making leaps and bounds. I see two instances, though, that have endless growth potential. The first is influencer marketing. Being able to keep up with your favorite influencer won’t require anything but your social media and their camera, ring light or tripod. While influencers have disrupted the status quo, they’ve done so in such a digital way that virtual reality won’t have much leverage to disrupt them back!

The second key thing brands should make use of is virtual events. Artists like Marshmello and Travis Scott have blown the digital roof off of Fortnite, bringing in millions of simultaneous viewers and creating countless impressions. Brands can follow suit by hosting virtual events over e-sports and digital platforms like Fortnite, Rocket League and social channels that are only limited by one's imagination (as online events aren’t limited to constraints of the human world). When in-person events are at a standstill, brands can still have an impact in creative, fun and memorable ways.

This is the new normal. But that doesn’t need to be a bad thing! If our industry can find its silver linings and embrace the impetus for digital transformation, I believe that we will all make it out of the pandemic as better, stronger and more connected human beings.

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About the Author(s)

Emerald-Jane Hunter

President, MyWHY Agency

As the head of myWHY Agency, Emerald-Jane Hunter is a force to be reckoned with. A four-time Emmy Award-winning producer and a master of all things media, storytelling and content creation, EJ has a background of 15 years working in TV and is now making a splash in the world of integrated marketing.

Born in Ghana, West Africa, she relocated to the US at the age of 19 and received her B.A. in Communications at Luther College in Iowa.  In 2003 she moved to Chicago where she discovered her “WHY” was storytelling via television. From reality TV to live events, showrunning to talent booking EJ has done it all. She is an Emmy-Award winning Producer who’s Hollywood connection runs deep. EJ has brought Hollywood to Chicago numerous times through her many high-quality bookings, including stars such as Jennifer Hudson, Common, Cindy Crawford, Tony Goldwyn, Ne-Yo, Mike Tyson, Jane Lynch, Martha Stewart, Larry King, Cody Simpson, Sting, Boys II Men and Barry Manilow—to name just a few.

Now as president of her own agency, EJ is finally living (and basking) in her WHY. She’s most fulfilled working with entrepreneurially minded brands and companies, managing strategic communications and crafting integrated marketing campaigns aimed at further elevating and amplifying brand voices—and, of course, telling compelling, inspiring stories.

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