APAC guide to staying ahead of societal trends - Wishevoke

APAC guide to staying ahead of societal trends

It can often feel like a new social trend is peaking every minute. But not every trend will have lasting meaning or relevance to your business – marketers need to be able to uncover trends and decide what is worth investing time and resources on.

However, first it is important to build an understanding of trends. TikTok has developed a framework for understanding three different types of trends:

  • Powers: Long-lasting trends that reflect long-term cultural changes affecting everyone online.
  • Signals: Trends that represent major cultural changes in specific populations and communities and last for a few years.
  • Moments: Trends that grab attention and resonate with existing customers for a few days, weeks or months.

LinkedIn Australia’s Ruppert suggests brands develop a trending profile that best suits their business goals. This means saying “no” to many trends that won’t benefit your brand in the long run, no matter how viral those trends may be.

“I strongly advise against just jumping on every trend. “That seems disingenuous,” says Rupper. “Smart, social audiences won’t hesitate to praise a brand that seems to be trying too hard to be relevant.”

You can appoint team members as engaged members Trendspotter develop a robust trend profile. Even experienced marketers need to identify trends from time to time in order to immerse themselves in changing consumer sentiments and create truly relevant content.

Use Social listening to reveal trends relevant to your audience and look at social data to understand which trends can have a business impact. “Follow enough topics on social media to understand whether a repurposed piece of content will make it into the FYPs,” explains Diogo Martins, Bloomr.SG Lead at Mediacorp. “Consider not just the topic, but also how a particular social platform works.”

Martins points out that they have the advantage of having “multiple content producers at Mediacorp” working with Bloomr.SG to track trends. “When we see a trend emerging, we can usually see whether it will gain traction in the Singapore market, which suggests it would be wise for us to embrace it from a customer-centric perspective,” he says.

Social listening proved very effective for Macquarie University’s Smith in 2022 when they wanted to promote their university’s course results. At that time, the Little Miss trend (a meme template featuring characters from an illustrated children’s book series called Mr. Men) was making the rounds on social media.

Smith and the team decided to capitalize on this trend and develop branded assets that relate to their price results.

A screenshot of an Instagram post from Macquarie University tapping into the Little Miss meme trend.

“The audience loved it,” Smith remembers. “The series became one of our most saved content for 2022. We had a flood of DMs from alumni and the comments coming in were overwhelmingly positive.”

Smith suggests that teams decide together which trends to pursue and develop a strategy from there. “Our weekly standup begins with the entire team sharing what content they’ve seen on their social networks. As a group, we then discuss how this might be used in our context (aligned with our content pillars) and then vote on the ones we think are worth exploring,” he says.

You will then need to schedule a follow-up visit. “Be prepared to move on. A trend without follow-up is a waste of resources. “Never just trend and disappear,” says Smith.

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