In a recent blog, we looked at film production trends of the future, from localised content to VR technologies. But what about broader changes in media which influence our understanding of the world?
Let me quickly set the scene - it’s 2019. There’s a smartphone in everyone’s hand, and consumers consider themselves content creators and curators. Window shopping has evolved thanks to online shopping and social media, and brands are positioning themselves as trendsetters, social advocates and early technology adopters.
The Innovation Group just released The Future 100: Trends and Change to Watch in 2019, a comprehensive report on the biggest trends set for the year ahead. We’ve looked at a few ways in which the world is changing, and considered how this relates to our favourite topic ever - film production. Read on to learn how your brand can stay ahead of the curve.
Culture – The influencer backlash
With influencer marketing reaching fever pitch in 2018, brands and consumers have started to rebel against curated lives, sponsored products and purchased followers.
As a result, brands can no longer fall back on securing big name talents and simply plopping them in front of a film production crew. Instead, content needs to be authentic and genuinely helpful in order to build consumer trust.
Technology – Unexpected formats
Brands are experimenting with novel media formats to stand out from the crowd. For instance, some fashion brands are producing feature length films to showcase new collections, or immersing consumers in interactive changing rooms using augmented reality.
As Millennials continue to fuel the demand for ‘experiences over things’, experiential marketing will demand more from technology to generate buzz and engage audiences.
Travel – Generation Z hits the road
Generation Z will outnumber Millennials this year, and travel companies need to keep up. Studies have found that this demographic is motivated to travel in the search for authentic experiences, so brands need to show them exactly what their holidays offer.
Mind you, no one wants to produce another Fyre Festival ad campaign – it needs to be real. We worked with Eurocamp to lead a film production campaign that provided a fly-on-the-wall perspective, documenting the genuine holiday experiences of real families.
Marketing – Media revolution
As print sales continue to drop, brands are recognising that new generations of consumers prefer to engage online. As a result, the race is on to move from traditional print media into digital content – but this is sometimes easier said than done.
Simply uploading your editorial pieces to a webpage is unlikely to see success – neither is cropping a billboard ad to fit an Instagram Story. In our expert opinion, film production campaigns should be planned with unique dimensions in mind – more about that here.
Food and drink – Conscious consumers
When it comes to our lunch, today’s consumers want to feel good about their choices. Vegan options, ‘clean’ alternatives and ethically sourced food have all seen growing demand, with diners increasingly concerned about their own health as well as external factors such as climate change, environmental impact and animal welfare.
In a nutshell, consumers are becoming less conventional and more comfortable challenging ‘the norm’ in line with their personal beliefs. This is also an era when brands are aligning themselves with serious social movements. Just look at Gillette’s latest campaign addressing toxic masculinity, Nike approaching ex-NFL player Colin Kaepernick to feature in its ads, and Dove’s recent stand against airbrushed images.
Beauty – Swipe right for innovative packaging
Some beauty brands are taking inspiration from our much-loved smartphones. Innovative new packaging employs one-handed swiping and scrolling gestures, mirroring the way we behave on our touchscreens!
In crowded markets, brands need to innovate to hold the attention and purchasing power of young consumers. In a broader sense– if this doesn’t convince you to shoot multi-format content during film production to optimise for screen sizes, nothing will.
Retail – Shopping is social
Social media platforms are making moves to monetize engagement and feed retail fever. Are we entering the age of S-commerce?
Instagram unveiled shoppable Stories in June 2018, letting users navigate directly to brand websites to complete in-app purchases. Snapchat and Facebook also announced AR ads, allowing users to virtually try on sunglasses, makeup and other products.
So what can we take from this? While social media becomes increasingly important for retail brands as a direct source of income, it stands to reason multi-format film production will also experience growing demand. Create content optimised for every platform to achieve social media marketing success.
Luxury – Rewarding loyalty
Luxury brands are rethinking the red-carpet treatment to keep hold of valuable customers. For instance, several airlines are targeting first-class passengers with thoughtful touches. Emirates is introducing NASA-inspired zero-gravity seats, Virgin Atlantic is partnering with top chefs to redefine plane food, and Alaska Airlines is trialling VR on-board entertainment.
What can we learn from this? Today’s consumers are less brand-loyal and more open to trying out alternatives in the market, so it’s up to businesses to convince them otherwise. Offering unique experiences such as VR entertainment could help luxury brands stand out.
Health – empowering
Gen Z consumers are rejecting the notion of one-size-fits-all conventional beauty. Beauty brands are taking notes from body positivity campaigns and adopting a more holistic approach to marketing, whether through model diversity or unfiltered photography.
It’s therefore more important than ever to find a director for your film production campaigns who understands and reflects your core brand values. Browse our talented lot and see if any catch your attention.
Lifestyle – sustainability
It’s all very well to promote sustainability, but it’s time for brands to put their money where their mouth is. As eco-conscious consumers continue to speak up, growing numbers of brands are developing sustainable behaviours in response.
The Gate Films is taking its own small steps in the journey to sustainability. For instance, we no longer provide any single-use plastic bottles on set, having invested in a water filtering urn. This simple change reduces our everyday environmental impact, and makes our green hearts feel happier too!
So there you have it, the top media trends for 2019 and what they mean for film production campaigns in the future.