Commentary english

Purr-fect Partnership

How brands in Indonesia are capitalizing on catsfluencers by doing a cross-species promotion

Marc Jacobs has been the talk of the internet for acing their TikTok strategy. Michaella Lee Bloom has summarized a few important takeaways that we are missing. They include quickly hopping on trends, being chronically online, trusting your team, challenging the “not on brand” mindset, and moving at the pace of culture. (See the original post here: LinkedIn). The last two is often the hardest. Each brand comes with their own rule, and to keep everything on-brand is usually their priority.

So is there a ‘recipe’ that could fit all those strategies but doesn’t require you to move at the pace of culture all the time because it is THE culture and the always-on trend itself.

Enter… cats.

For a long time, cats have ruled the internet. It’s filled with their memes, videos, stories, and commercials. They even have their own crime documentary! (If you haven’t already, go watch “Don’t F*ck with Cats”).

It’s common practice for brands to engage in ‘catsvertising,’ whether by using cats as the face of the brand or starring in commercials. Local brands like Bank Neo Commerce, GrabFood, Shopee ID, and Smartfren are a few examples. Even Ecommurz, an Indo tech execs and workers community (also a meme account), is a passionate cat admirer based on their account.

The catsvertising cult hasn’t stopped there. The ‘catsfluencer’ culture has now flourished. In the midst of an ocean full of influencers, catsfluencers are my favorite! (Everyone act surprised.)

We can argue all night long about who the first catsfluencer was, but names like Nala Cat, Grumpy Cat, and Maru are among the oldest cat influencers. They have successfully built unique personas and business opportunity as well for their cats!

For audience, they already expected to see those cats promoting pet supply products. But, fortunately, there are brands in Indonesia that are bold enough to partnered with catsfluencers, even though it’s not on-brand for them. The results are fresh, and we are blessed with unique collaborations!

I’ll start with our sassy Miss Emma (@mradammm). This cat became an internet sensation because of her ‘balanced’ life, some nights seen DJ-ing with liquor bottles on the side, and other nights showing her cute collection of mukenas.

Recently, Emma did a unique collaboration with SanDisk. Who would’ve thought a cat would promote a portable SSD!

The video garnered 2.1M views and 1.7K comments on Instagram and 922K views and 133K likes on TikTok. Not bad at all for a four-legged furball!

Next, there is Kiwi, a British Shorthaired cat who’s also an attention stealer. Last month, Kiwi (@kiwibritishcat) did the cross-species recruitment promotion by partnering with @birosdmpmj Human Resources Bureau of the Greater Jakarta Metropolitan Regional Police (Biro SDM Polda Metro Jaya).

This policemeow collaboration did great as well! They’ve garnered 336K views and 590 comments on Instagram and 888.4K views and 79.5K likes on TikTok.

When I first saw the video, I was torn about whom I should applaud more: the Polda Metro Jaya social media team who proposed the idea or their manager who approved it! Special shoutout to Kiwi and his owner who made this happen.

I hope this unique collaboration continues. It’s a true manifestation that pokes fun at the internet and meme culture itself: never let them know your next move!