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Five trending takeaways from NZSOMO

Fresh from the New Zealand Social Media Forum, Sam Snowden, Head of Social at DDB Aotearoa, unpacks five trending social takeaways that every marketer should know about.


Earlier this month, I was lucky to chair #NZSOMO, the New Zealand Social Media Forum in Tāmaki Makaurau, gaining valuable insights from some of Aotearoa’s leading brands, agencies and social media experts into the ever-changing social landscape. 

Here are some top trending social takeaways from the two-day event that every marketer should integrate into their social strategy:

#1        Prioritise Trending, Adaptable and Reactionary Content 

Tapping into social audio, transition and meme trends is an essential ingredient for your 2022 social strategy. Reacting as topical events trend and adapting your schedule to accommodate reactive content will benefit your organisation by raising its relevance, sentiment and talkability with Kiwis. 

Leaning into trending content and prioritising adaptive reactionary content over pre-planned allowed speaker Alex Spence from The New Zealand Olympic Committee to acquire 425k new social followers and attain world leader Instagram reels views status with 18.8M views. 

#2        Emotive and Impactful Storytelling Matters 

Emotional storytelling builds consumer empathy, establishes a more authentic connection and inspires social action. This is why campaigns like National Geographic’s  #ThinkBeforeYouLike, Dove’s #NoDigitalDistortion and Bodyform’s #WombStories acquired so many UGC shares and social mentions. 

Bringing the Proud to be Māori campaign to life through emotive storytelling, notable portraits and an unapologetic message of hope, resilience and pride. Allowed Te Whānau o Waipareira Strategist and event speaker Kātene Durie-Doherty to deliver an enduring body of mahi with deep cultural significance and everlasting relevance to the issues faced within Aotearoa. 

#3        Collaborate with Authentic and Relatable Influencers 

The influencer landscape has changed significantly over the past decade and is no longer reserved for those with massive followings and unattainable lifestyles. Today’s influencers can be creatives, relatable micro-creators, industry thought leaders, loyal customers and social change makers.  Collaborating with these more authentic influencers offers brands more significant ROI, allowing them to integrate influencer content into their owned paid social content strategy and increase their relevance with audiences who represent the diversity of Aotearoa. 

NZSOMO speaker Simran Kaur from Girls that Invest shared how being an authentic influencer that shares relatable content which makes people feel happy, benefits their lifestyle and builds trust. Has helped her to grow her 160k+ Instagram following and launch the #1 investing podcast for Millennial and Gen Z women. 

#4        Social Success Has Been Redefined 

Vanity social metrics such as followers, engagements and views have been redefined in 2022. It’s now talkability and whether people are actively talking about and responding to your brand on social media. The sentiment and interaction levels on your content and people’s time spent engaging with your brand on social media, not just the number of people you reach, matters most. 

Joshua Lewthwaite, the Co-Founder of Izzybots, shared how they were helping Kiwi brands to make the most of their social interactions through Messenger Marketing tactics that increase conversions, email subscribers and website traffic. 

#5        Short-Form Vertical Video is Key 

TikTok and Reels have redefined how we consume video content on social media, and these short-form formats provide more than entertainment. They are offering marketers a powerful tool for social engagement, lead generation and conversions, with 85 percent of marketers saying that short-form video is their most effective social format right now (HubSpot Social Trends Report 2021). 

TikTok Specialist Hannah Copeland reinforced the importance of short-form content, stating that the first frame matters most, open with eye-catching visuals, thumb-stopping audio,  emotion or entertainment, and do whatever you need to do to stop that scroll.

Trending content, impactful storytelling, authentic influencer collaborations and short-form video all have the power to connect with your target audiences on social in fresh and relevant ways. These social marketing tactics will help you build trust and strengthen your consumer engagement, so if you haven’t tried them, now is the time to integrate them into your social strategy.

About Author

Sam Snowden is Head of Social at DDB Aotearoa.