The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has dealt the booming influencer economy its first real setback. Despite the fact that social media usage is up, brands faced with the threat of a prolonged economic downturn are cutting their influencer marketing engagements.

According to SocialBakers, UK posts using the hashtag #ad dropped by more than a third this quarter, and a survey of influencers conducted by Mavrck found that more than a third of influencers have reduced their rates or may decrease them in the near future.

For brands that continue to use influencer marketing, even in a reduced fashion, changes are realistically required.

Here are seven keys for effective influencer marketing in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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