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As we inch closer to December, most marketers are focused on their Christmas strategy. While budgets might be dedicated to boosting e-commerce around the crucial festive season, it’s worth keeping the ‘New Year’s Eve to January’ period in mind.
New Year’s trends are likely more of a focus this year than ever before. The pandemic has shifted trends globally, even changing the way we shop and consume content online. Diversity is at the forefront of corporate social responsibility for most brands, as Black Lives Matter protests happen worldwide. To top it off, the US election has had most of us glued to the news this month. In short, 2020 has been one long year.
Memes from as early as March have been counting down to the end of 2020. There’s already a viral TikTok song & trend: F*** 2020! By Avenue Beat, where hundreds of thousands of users are sharing how this year has gone (spoiler: not well). So, everyone’s really looking forward to the end of this year and we expect a surge in New Year’s trends.
Here’s our top predictions for the kinds of trends brands are likely to see (or help create!). We hope your brand is ready to capitalise on the New Year’s hype.
The ‘New Year New Me’ phrase is a reliable trend that crops up every year. The hashtag #newyearnewme has almost 300 million views on TikTok, and it’s full of videos with genuine or ironic takes on the term (some garnering millions of views themselves).
This trend is likely to crop up again next year. It lends itself naturally to self-care: last year, a dermatologist tried to encourage people to commit to ‘double cleansing’ their skin in 2020, with a demo done on an orange (it has 51k likes!). This makeup tutorial has a similar concept: ‘peeling away the last year’ to reveal a ‘New Me’ (107k likes).
We predict a rise this year in self-care and skincare, especially with the ‘New Year New Me’ association with ‘washing the year off’. Brands could create a skincare challenge or resolution for users to follow and replicate with a hashtag challenge.
Another common thread we expect to see is humour: lots of new year’s resolutions fail, and TikTok users are great at making fun of themselves. ‘New Year New Me’ has significant meme potential: think of Expectations vs. Reality content that your brand could capitalise on around whether people have maintained their New Year’s Resolutions. This is a really versatile concept too, so it works across industries like beauty, clothing, and fitness.
Thinking of all the key events that have happened this year, we definitely expect some flashback or highlights themed content as part of New Year’s. There’s a hell of a lot for users to look back towards and make memes about.
Last year’s ‘Months of the Year’ trend is a good example which leveraged the song ‘The Months Of The Year” by The Kiboomers which has 1.2 million videos attributed to the sound. Users reflected on when they were single or in a relationship over the past year in a game format. Even the famous Charli D’Amelio took part, generating 6 million views on her video.
The sound was also utilised by users who shared highlights throughout the year. We saw glow-up transformations, pregnancy journeys, makeup looks, to weight-loss transformations. @jamescharles also participated in this trend and received a whopping 3.2 million likes.
Another example of the flashback and highlights trend uses the song ‘Sunday Best’ by Surfaces remixed with a ‘2019 rewind’ sound. This is extremely similar to how James Charles utilises ‘The Months Of The Year’ sound and uses a slick transition to showcase all the memories, good and bad, that 2019 had to offer.
The most popular New Year’s resolutions focus on health, fitness and diet themes. Everyone tries to pick up virtuous habits like working out or eating better. TikTok has been great for fitness motivation both at the start of the year, and during coronavirus lockdowns.
In fact, TikTok called 2020 ‘the year of the pushup’ after seeing the influx of fitness videos coming in at the start of the year.
We expect fitness challenges will make a huge comeback right after the New Year. For athleisure, sportswear, gyms and wellness brands, this trend has huge potential. Brand videos can demo exercise and workouts in branded gear, or use TikTok’s Duet and Stitch features to collaborate on videos amongst a group of influencers.
An example of a brand leveraging this trend comes from the app ’30 Day Fitness’. They partnered with several influencers to demonstrate their workouts and tied it together with the hashtag #30dfchallenge which drove 13.7 million views.
However, this trend isn’t only for fitness brands. For food and beverage brands, a little outside-the-box thinking could help capitalize on the diet element of the fitness trend.
New Year’s Resolutions are an obvious but massive trend every year. Beyond fitness and diet, people set a diverse range of interesting resolutions and wishes.
A great example of this trend we worked on last year is the #alliwant2020 TikTok campaign, for Irish band Kodaline. Our launch in December 2019 coincided nicely with the New Year to look forward to. The hashtag not only drove 4.8 million views, but also generated over 5,000 pieces of content from TikTok users who shared their own take on what they wanted in 2020.
This is a novel and really interesting way of tying together New Year’s trends and music marketing – the band’s song was the backing audio for all of these videos so there’s a boost in its popularity too. Brands can create a similar trend, kicking off with influencer videos that are replicated by everyday users.
Part of TikTok’s appeal is the amazing range of native filters and effects. These give the app it’s unique ‘vibe’ and aesthetic and make videos more interesting. AR filters are no longer just for Snapchat selfies – they make your TikTok videos a whole lot funnier too.
We think AR filters have the potential to become a viral trend again this year. Last year, an Instagram filter went viral on TikTok. The filter predicted your upcoming year (2020) in episodes of popular TV shows. Ironically, it never took off on Instagram but people recorded content with the Insta filter, and posted their videos to TikTok (with a mammoth 6.3 million views on the hashtag). This filter was so popular because it was topical and encouraged humorous reactions. Savvy brands wanting to get ahead of the curve could work on their own AR filter for the upcoming year – you never know how viral it could be.
Another great example is the 2020 Yearbook feature, which puts a ‘Most likely to…’ yearbook-style superlative under your video. The #yearbook2020 hasthag has accumulated an outstanding 5.8 billion views and TikTok heavyweights Charli D’Amelio and David Dobrik have tried this one out. This trend is especially nice considering the themes of remote graduation this year.
Think about how your brand can incorporate New Year’s themes into a filter: it could be a lookback, highlights reel, predictions or something totally different.
While Christmas is an obvious focal point for marketers this quarter, it’s worth keeping New Year’s trends and plans in mind. The New Year period gives way to tons of trends that brands can leverage. Remember that cultivating a sense of participation is highly valued by TikTok’s Gen Z audience – so hashtag challenges and AR filters are likely to set you up for viral success.
If your brand is thinking about New Year’s campaigns on TikTok, but you’re not sure where to start – get in touch with us!