The Trend Bend

Marketers stress sometimes. 

  • Will the campaign work? 
  • Are the metrics efficient enough to measure the outcomes? 
  • Is the brand sentiment positive? 

Aside from visible concerns that come and go, there is one question that remains consistent – it’s the one that creeps into nightmares – 

Will the marketing landscape, chill for even a minute?

In the world of digital everything, the routine replaces evolution. As much as these new avenues are exciting, they are also overwhelming. They present a very valid argument: do upcoming trends even matter when the changes seem so regular?

In a word, yes. 

Why are Trends Important?

In the case of marketing, trends are a way to understand the changing preferences of your consumers and connect with them.  Moreover, if consumers (which includes influencers and content creators) worry about what is currently trending and pursue it to remain “relevant,” then it becomes an important prerequisite for brands to include trends in upcoming marketing plans and brand strategies.

To illustrate an example, when the infamous pandemic compelled a quick transition to embrace the digital way of life, several brands took the effort to switch to virtual and hybrid business landscapes. As the virus dissipated, people started to leave the comfort of their homes, businesses started to observe a slump in virtual engagement.

It is not always easy to keep up with the changes in the quick-paced marketing world yet, marketers cannot expect to stay connected with their audiences if they fail to stay ahead on top of the trends.  

Where to Look for Trends?

There is a catch with everything. While trends are important, what makes the difference between a “compelling” marketing strategy and a “wannabe” one is whether a brand is hopping on to a real trend or a stale one. Marketers need to verify the reliability of their sources for trending information. There may be several guides claiming to assist with the most relevant trends in marketing, but it never hurts to take that information with a grain of salt. Here are some initial questions you can ask while researching what is trending: 

  • What is the source of information of the publication/website you are seeking your information from? 
  • Does it come from a survey or a research paper, or is the information provided by an industry expert? 
  • Is there a hidden agenda for promoting the said trends?
  • Is the publication relevant for my industry?

Once you find the answers to the above, it is safe to assume that your research may head in the right direction. Yet, besides marketing trend guides, there are several other ways to stay on top of trends. This article helps expand your scope of research by enlisting potential areas to look for trending discussions.  

Which Trends Should Your Brand Follow?

Whether it is TikTok videos, hashtag contests, or influencer giveaways, the emerging trends that keep marketers busy every year also provide a wide variety of options to fruit pick the ones that may best benefit the brand’s interests. When something trends, it does not mean it is relevant to your brand. The process of weeding out what may not be relevant saves the marketing budget and experiments in better prospects. Before reacting to a trend, marketers must first see where it is headed – in short, its trajectory. Here are some quick tips to ensure your brand follows the right trends: – 

  •  Don’t Perplex Your Audiences: If a trend does not speak the language of your brand, then pursuing it might not be the best idea as it will confuse your existing customers about your brand’s personality. Instead, try running the content by trusted customers to know whether the strategy you are planning will work in your favour. Most of the times, customers are willing to share their thoughts with brands that dare to ask.
  • See How Things Are Faring with Your Competitors: The easiest way to know whether a trend might work for you is to see how well it is doing for your competitors. This is not an encouragement to copy-paste ideas but an endeavour to assist brands in saving their time, money, and effort.
  • Plan a Follow-Up: Once you choose to capitalise on a trend, also plan your follow-up strategy so that your efforts don’t fizzle out after an initial fanning of the fire.

To conclude, trends act as an efficient roadmap into the future and if brands plan their strategy of utilising these trends, they have a greater chance of connecting with their audiences and remaining relevant despite decreasing attention spans in a digital world.

Stay curious. Stay Secure. 

See you next week. 

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Jai Bahal
Jai Bahal - Co-Founder @ NAVIC
NAVIC aims to educate, inform and train students, professionals and entrepreneurs about the future of communications. NAVIC has collaborated with SCoRe for its flagship course: EVOLVE – A first of its kind curriculum that discusses hyper-relevant subjects like Meme Marketing, Trolls and Bots, AI in communications and more.

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