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Coronavirus impact: Lockdown inspiring creativity as content platforms see spike in user engagement

Brands are leveraging this increased engagement on such platforms by coming out with campaigns to reach people

April 01, 2020 / 06:14 PM IST

The coronavirus lockdown, in a way, is inspiring creativity as Indians are taking out time to create content on user generated content platforms.

People are writing poetry, blogs, short stories that sum up in 100 words and also creating vlogs (video blogs).

Wattpad, an Internet community for readers and writers to publish new user-generated stories in different genres, saw that the writing time almost doubled in recent weeks in India.

“People are at home and in quarantine. As a result, one trend we are seeing is more people turning to storytelling as a way to connect and cope with the situation. Users who were previously readers are turning to writing as a way to express themselves,” Devashish Sharma, Country Head, Wattpad, told Moneycontrol.

Even Mompresso’s Vishal Gupta said creation of content like 100-word stories, blogs and vlogs in March was the highest ever. The platform which is a place for mothers to express themselves has seen 15-20 percent increase in volumes of content in the last one month.


Along with increased volumes, user activity on these platforms is also high.

Headquartered in Toronto, Wattpad is seeing 25 percent increase in user activity in India. The platform, which has more than 2.6 million monthly users in the country, has seen a 30 percent increase in reading time in last 30 days.

Wattpadders in India, who have overall shared more than four million story uploads, are currently showing more interest for two genres like their global counterparts.

“Romance is trending and so is dystopian fiction. Similar to interest in pandemic movies on Netflix, we’ve seen a surge in reading time for stories associated with zombies, viruses, and apocalyptic situations. Some writers, sensing an opportunity to make their stories relevant, are adding the tag #coronavirus to previously written stories,” said Sharma.

Even, Mompresso is seeing more traction and to leverage this increased engagement it is offering content relevant to the present situation to keep its 30 million monthly users entertained.

Mothers who are worried about how to keep their children busy while they are stuck at home can log on to Mompresso’s Facebook page to let their children connect with authors of children’s book.

In association with Penguin Random House India, Mompresso starting March 30 launched live sessions with authors who tell children interesting stories from their books.

Authors like Harshikaa Udasi who read Kittu's Very Mad Day and Neha Singh who narrated I Need to Pee have taken live sessions so far.

The opening live session saw over 11,000 views.

Along with kids, the platform is trying to keep mothers occupied and fit. It launched a digital show that has live fitness sessions.

Every day from March 23 on Facebook and IGTV Channel (a standalone video application by Instagram) mothers can connect with leading influencers like Usha Chengappa who is a Yoga and Pranayam expert; Vesna P Jacob, who is a holistic 3D Pilates expert; Vrinda Jain, a fitness and Zumba expert; Ridhima Bhal, a lyrical dance choreographer, Pooja and Sourabh Soni, who are Bollywood fitness experts.

Increased activity on content platforms is also turning out to be a strong opportunity for brands to connect with people.

“Brands that are active currently include those who are focusing on immunity, sanitization. We have worked with Pediasure, Savlon, among others” said Gupta.

He also shared few recent brand campaigns on Mompresso.

The platform launched #CraftingMemoriesChallenge on social media in association with Fevicreate to encourage kids and families to create craft.

The first session was launched by Shilpa Shetty. Also, more than 1,000 influencers will spread the word about the challenge to give it a bigger push.

Kellogg's also collaborated with Momspresso. The brand got celebrity chef Ranveer Brar and his son to host a live session on cooking recipes with kids using Kellogg's cereal. The session was live on Mompresso's Hindi Facebook page on March 23.

Such campaigns signal to how brands are staying relevant to people by using such platforms.

“The relevance of user generated content is much higher now. People can’t shoot hence; ad production is not happening. But on platform like ours we have creators and we leverage them to create content. Plus, brands are enhancing their reach by using influencers on our platform,” said Gupta.

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Maryam Farooqui
first published: Apr 1, 2020 06:14 pm
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