We’re back! 2018 was a great year for influencer marketing, and 2019 is expected to bring with it exponential growth to our industry: with forecasts that the industry will soon be worth $10 billion. With expansion on the horizon, our team at Whalar are pondering which creative trends will be the driving force this year.
We’ve got some ideas.
As more people become more connected online, more and more platforms and creators will be putting in the effort to grab our attention. The question is, who will come out on top?
We have become used to creators like @qmike (see above) dazzling our feeds with professional images that provide escapism from the conventional lifestyle content.
As time goes on, the content that is of a higher creative quality will dominate.
A Little Bit of Magic
'Lifestyle content' has always presented itself as an idealised version of reality. Sometimes it represents escapism; for others, inspiration. However, as this space becomes more competitive, a creator’s ability to diversify their content while maintaining a high-quality aesthetic will give themselves that added edge.
An exciting adaptation of style from @mossonyi
Creator’s such as @mossonyi have recognised the need to shift from simply producing aspirational lifestyle. In recent weeks, she has injected a tone of fantasy and mystique to add a little more 'magic' and variation to her brand. Her subtle shift into content that evokes an air of fantasy, alongside her fashion-leading content is a recognition that to grab attention, her style needs to ever evolve.
Another creator we have worked with who has always stood by mixing a sense magic with realism within her feed is @kutovakika.
This recent and high performing image showcased the rewards to distorting reality to suit your artistic flair. Veronika’s style is maintained, meaning she hasn’t compromised her familiarity with her audience, yet she brings something new - and her skyrocketing engagement reflects this.
Adding a little magic continues to be a cornerstone to many of the campaigns. Not only does the extra creativity breath life into a collaboration, if followers are to be convinced that a sponsored post is a celebration of their skill, then the level of creativity within that post should be at the pinnacle of that creator’s abilities. The trend-setting @allthatisshe delivered on this front in a recent collaboration with her breathtaking interpretation for the recent Mary Poppins revival.
Moving Imagery in Less Than 60 Seconds
Video content is a perfect example of a medium that has been growing in popularity. Although IGTV has been launched and certainly has potential to become our main video-watching platform, the main grid of Instagram still dominates in short-form video content.
Looking at storytelling creators such as @captainpotter, his recent post has set the bar high for travel video content. This is a mini travel documentary of epic proportions.
For 2019, the heralding of bigger, creative concepts will be the driving force behind sponsored posts. Well practised product placements will no longer be enough to cut through the influencer marketing space. Creators and brands both need to be bold, confident and inventive - regardless of the brand they are working with.
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Playing With Light and Colour
It might sound basic, but we've noticed that creators are thinking differently about light and colour, and exploring them in unusual ways to create thumb stopping content.
To us, it feels like the trendsetting influencers of today want to find a way to showcase their talents using the most basic principles of visual creations.
@musesuniform explores dark tones for her work with Andaz Hotels.
And it's not just the light that you can't see in these images, but it's the light that becomes the main focus in the image.
@markomorciano for Grey Goose accentuates the brands colours using festive lights and gift wrap.
Selfies Are Out, Portraits Are In
Another look back to classic techniques is the rise of the portrait. Where once we had selfies, we are now going round full circle to artfully captured portraits.
In a recent collaboration for Boots, @rag.moth created a portrait of herself that was reminiscent of Yayoi Kusama, Leigh Bowery, Keith Harring and Cindy Sherman.
And it's not just the surreal, the classic rennaissance portrait is making a comeback, as displayed by the likes of @annstreetstudio...
It's clear to see that classic art still inspires creators in the digital age.
An early prediction from us; brands who are prepared to diversify and innovate with every post will reap the rewards of this thriving industry. With the majority of brands preparing to increase their influencer budget for 2019, high quality creativity will continue to be the solution.