Video marketing is continuing to make a name for itself. In fact, in a recent study, we found that social video generates 1200% more shares than text and images combined and a one minute video is worth 1.8 million words. In addition, studies are showing that by 2020, 80% of marketing efforts will be video-driven. Here in the blog, we will discuss one latest trend in video marketing which is – ASMR

Do I have your attention yet?

Now, I’m not dismissing the importance of words, I am a writer after all. However, maybe when it comes to captivating our audience, they must be used in a different way. Let me explain.

What is ASMR?

One of the latest trends in video marketing is known as ASMR and stands for “autonomous sensory meridian response”. ASMR is related to the feeling or sensation a person feels in direct response to specific sounds. The most common sounds used in this technique are whispering, tapping on a glass surface, brushing on a hard surface, lip-smacking and white noise. This phenomenon was given a name in 2010 and before long, Youtube was filled with influencers creating videos. I’m sure you’re scratching your head at this point and I don’t blame you. It’s not the most conventional trend we’ve seen, but the sensation it produces has people obsessed.

Why Do People Love ASMR?

These “triggers” prompted by ASMR are said to lead to feelings of calm and relaxation. Some listeners even describe feeling “a tingling, pleasurable sensation down their spine”. After listening to certain techniques, often resulting in a slower heart rate and the relaxed feeling I mentioned. The video marketing trend has gone viral and has been used as a coping mechanism for anxiety, depression and an overactive mind and there are limited scientific studies on ASMR, we are now seeing more and more benefits. If we stop and analyze the feelings ASMR produces, they are all “happy” feelings, resulting in a greater state of social connection. If you feel less anxious, you feel more connected to the world around you and that’s a powerful takeaway when we look at the big picture of ASMR and its potential in the world of digital marketing.

Who’s Using It?

Everyone. Well maybe not everyone, but after an hour of scouring Youtube that’s certainly what it feels like. Some of the top ASMR  Youtube channels have millions of subscribers and the numbers are rapidly increasing. In January 2019, search results for ASMR video marketing had increased by 122% compared to the first week of January in 2018.

Although this has certainly taken off as a natural way to combat feelings of stress and anxiety or even help people get to sleep at night, it’s now becoming more mainstream and celebrities and businesses are beginning to tap into it, knowing that it makes people feel good and consumers want to connect with people and brands that make them happier and feel part of a community. Recently W magazine created a series where a variety of celebrities explored the trend through an ASMR interview. Needless to say, viewership skyrocketed. The series included celebrities like Cardi B, Kate Hudson, Jennifer Garner and Margot Robbie.

How is it Relevant for Digital Marketing Strategy?

In Digital marketing, creating a feeling of calm and relaxation are all perks for brands wanting to connect with their audience in an intimate way. The key is the sense of belonging, community and social connection it is reported to create. These stimulating sounds combined with video of people or imagery consumers can connect with, allow for a more intimate relationship. One that we haven’t see in mainstream marketing. It’s not a secret that the more senses captivated, the more engaged someone is likely to be. If you watched the Superbowl this year, you may or may not have noticed multiple brands embracing the trend in their commercials with Michelob and KFC being the standouts. Since then, we have seen more companies embrace it in their own way through commercials, Youtube videos and social media posts. You can check out our favourite example from Safeguard below.

These are some of the first brands to embrace ASMR in their marketing efforts and it looks like by the number of views, it’s paying off. Let’s be honest, as digital marketers our goal is typically to cause a bit of disruption and ASMR video marketing is doing exactly that. Now larger brands like Ritz, McDonalds and Dove are beginning to tap into the world of ASMR with the understanding that like it or not, this is going to become a part of our global culture and in order to stay relevant, advertisers need to get on board.

Important to understand the full scope of the technique.

Since the Superbowl, there have been some companies who have tried to embrace ASMR and have fallen flat. For example, Applebees released a 60-minute video of meet sizzling on a grill. There was noone speaking, noone cooking the steak, just the sound of steak sizzling. Now although this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it doesn’t quite hit the mark when it comes ASMR. McDonald’s did something similar, but they added the human element and it made all the difference.

Like I said before, one of the major benefits of ASMR outside of producing pleasurable and relaxing feelings is the sense of human connection and community. We live in a world where people want to feel a part of something and that’s difficult to do alone. The beauty of ASMR is its ability to engage multiple senses, allowing a deeper connection to the content.

The Future of ASMR

Let’s just say it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. As you can see, major companies are embracing the newfound technique in addition to hundreds of Youtube stars who are making a living creating ASMR content. What does the number of views and subscribers on Youtube tell us? It’s that this trend is going to continue to disrupt digital marketing strategies on a global scale. In fact, technical advancements are already being made to make the recording of ASMR video marketing content easier, including a new smartphone case cover equipped with faux human ears. I’m guessing this is just the beginning for ASMR and the advances yet to come.

Some of you may still think this sounds ridiculous but I encourage you to think of ASMR as a psychological way of making your company irresistible. Are you intrigued by this and want to meet with your team to talk about incorporating ASMR into video strategy? I would advise you to walk into that meeting with three things. One, a clear understanding of ASMR. Two, examples of how some of the most well-known brands in the world are using it. And three, the desire to use it as a means of connecting more intimately to your audience through feelings of community and social belonging. With these three concepts in mind, your team will jump at the opportunity to continue disrupting current video marketing practices.

Want to know more? Get in touch for a free consultation with one of our creative digital consultants.


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