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2020, and beyond! Fifty’s thoughts on the need-to-know trends.

It’s always hard to pin down the trends of an upcoming year, especially at the rate social media moves. Who knew we’d see memes transcend into the political world, or that Premier League footballers would be entertaining us in 5-second bursts via TikTok…but it’s happened and will likely continue to happen for the foreseeable future. There’s really no place quite like social, and every brand wants to tap into that ‘next best thing’ which will put them front and centre.

Here at Fifty, we’re always keen to experiment with new formats, capitalise on cultural moments and make content that stands out. So, what are the trends in 2020? We’ve jotted down some of our thoughts as we enter a new decade.

Video (remains) King

With the rise of Instagram, where stunning imagery is at the forefront, perhaps it was thought that video wouldn’t continue to surge, but you only need to take note of the exponential rise in Stories to see just how valuable video has been for the platform.

TikTok has seen huge growth this year with over 1 billion downloads and has inspired some of the biggest sporting brands such as the NFL and NBA to become a part of it. Despite initially being seen as a platform for the younger age demographic, as more of the bigger names in sports, celebrity and entertainment use the platform, there could be a shift in the average age using the platform.

It’ll be interesting to see how brands, teams and clubs create differentiating content to exist on TikTok compared to the other platforms in the next year.

Interactivity: Engage and engage some more

Above we’ve highlighted Instagram Stories as a frontrunner for 2020, and one reason for that is for its higher levels of interactivity. From polls to quizzes, decisions being based on opinion alone (just look at how Pret created an entirely vegan menu from one post) means brands are being given an entirely new level of accessibility to customers and fan bases with Instagram Stories creating a two-way conversation for being a part of the action.

For sports this could mean player of the match voting polls, sporting knowledge quizzes, filters in the form of team colours to ‘show your support’ or gamifying content like the new Football Manager ‘Choose Your Adventure’ launch video which put the decisions directly into the hands of the audience.

The Rise of ‘Realness’

We’ve slowly seen social giants Facebook and Instagram remove the vanity metrics from their platforms, so where does that leave brands? We think the lack of likes isn’t necessarily as much of a game-changer as people may have thought and still the underlining role for brands is to be authentic and build real, meaningful communities. More and more we see influencers with a huge follower count, but not much engagement per post, going to show that metrics aren’t everything, it’s what brands do with the content they post which counts.

Social through a new lens

It seems like an age since AR was first launched back in 2015 and after a lot of hype, some people believed that the novelty was starting to wear off. Fast forward to 2019 and AR is certainly at the forefront of a lot of social media platforms content, predominantly seen in 16:9 formats, on Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok to mention a few.

The key to AR is to make it engaging and/or useful for the user. Look at what IKEA did with the IKEA Place app that helped customers see what furniture would look like in their homes. Sports fans have been enjoying AR this year with AR lenses showing off their team spirit which have helped to further drive fan engagement, experience and enrich loyalty.

There are even rumours that Facebook and Apple will be launching their own AR spectacles to drive that next-level AR experience. Will the introduction of said spectacles further drive AR into a key format to be used when engaging fans? Or will we see another Google Glass flop?

Bringing back the classics

Creative at Fifty Digital is core to the work we produce, so it was only right that we asked our graphic and motion-graphic designers to share their thoughts on what they think we be the creative trends in 202o.

As we enter into 2020 we can see retro synthwave creatives are becoming more and more popular. Thanks to shows like Stranger Things and Black Mirror we are seeing a lot of creatives replicating this retro 80’s style.

What else are people typically doing in graphic design? We have also started to notice a trend in animated posters. A lot of posters we see today are in 2D, but now people are starting to incorporate a mix of 2D and 3D. If done well, it can make the poster come alive and stand out amongst it’s lesser evolved 2D counterpart.

With the ‘battleground’ for content and creativity at its peak, what we view, create and engage with, will only continue to get bigger and better in the years to come. Watch this space!

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