We love the New Year – it gives people a chance to recalibrate their goals, think about the year ahead, and refocus on ways to improve in the coming months.  It also gives companies a chance to do these things.  For media companies, who see new technologies and audience behaviors constantly changing the landscape, it’s incredibly important.  As content creators and marketers are looking ahead to the New Year, we’ve identified a few trends that could help your planning in 2023.  

CREATIVE PERSONALIZATION WILL BE MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVER

There is a long history of A/B testing and optimizing ad spending on social media.  After all, it makes sense – launch multiple creatives and serve the ad creative that best matches the audience you’re targeting.  But for SVOD (Subscription Video on Demand) platforms like Netflix, advertising has not been an option – until now.  With the announcement of ad tiers from Netflix, Disney+ and others who are moving to an SVOD/AVOD mix (https://www.adweek.com/convergent-tv/streaming-in-the-fast-lane-how-avods-are-giving-tv-back-to-the-advertisers-2/), there is an opportunity for advertisers to create content for streaming much in the same way they have for social platforms.  Working with internal teams or vendors who can create multiple ad creatives for clients will be essential in 2023.

CLOUD-BASED WORKFLOWS WILL CONTINUE TO GET BETTER

While some managers and commercial real estate would love to see more folks in the office, work from home days are here to stay (https://www.cnbc.com/2022/12/01/why-labor-economists-say-the-remote-work-revolution-is-here-to-stay.html).    As companies become more comfortable with managing staff remotely, reliance on cloud-based workflow and project management solutions has increased.  Luckily, there’s lots of cloud-based workflow apps of varying shapes and sizes that have improved over the past 12-18 months – everything from SalesForce’s suite of products to Monday to the classic Google Drive.  When it comes to post-production work, in particular, media companies work with freelancers as much as any other industry.  With that in mind, there’s a variety of useful apps to find creative oriented freelancers, including Upwork and Fiverr.  The ability to swiftly and easily hire freelancers through these apps can give your company the opportunity to scale quickly. 

MORE POINTS OF DISTRIBUTION THAN EVER

As we mentioned, with the ad tiers created by SVOD platforms, advertisers will have an additional channel to reach consumers.  But that isn’t the only place that’s growing.  The pandemic gave a rocket-fuel-powered boost to live streaming platforms like Twitch, which grew to nearly 10 million active channels in 2022, and more traditional platforms like YouTube and Instagram.  While the usage of live streaming has declined since the height of the pandemic, active viewers are still way above pre-pandemic levels.  These live streams offer great opportunities for ad insertions to niche audiences.  And as some social platforms like Twitter become an unsafe ad environment, new platforms like Mastodon and Post News may become alternative options for advertisers in 2023.  

EDUCATIONAL AND INFORMATIONAL VIDEOS WILL PERFORM WELL

A trend we saw across multiple platforms – specifically on YouTube and TikTok – towards the end of 2022 was a focus on Educational and Informational Videos.  Content oriented around delivering information has proven to be a fantastic way for companies to create a branded video that doesn’t feel like an ad.  YouTube is the 2nd most used search engine in the world, behind only Google – having great educational content on a brand’s channel that’s optimized for search will have benefits that last long past the campaign’s initial run.  Additionally, TikTok has famously cornered the market on Gen Z and younger audiences, but these audiences are using TikTok as a search engine in ways brands may not have predicted (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/09/16/technology/gen-z-tiktok-search-engine.html).  Having informational content that’s tagged for search on TikTok can also have long-term benefits.  Consider making educational and informational content for these platforms in 2023.

TikTok video from @atlantaeatsTV

photo credit: BNB Staff

TIKTOK AND SHORT-FORM VERTICAL VIDEO SHOW NO SIGNS OF WANING

As we mentioned above with TikTok, they are the most used video platform among younger audiences.  Outside of external factors, like the federal government’s concern over user data going to China, the app’s success with Gen Z shows no signs of abating.  Its success has spurred Meta to alter the Instagram algorithm, where it has prioritized the reach of Reels over all other forms of content on the app.  YouTube, one of the internet’s oldest video platforms, has built its advertising success on the backs of creators, creating a mutually beneficial financial relationship between creator and platform by giving creators a percentage of the ads played during their videos.  When YouTube launched YouTube Shorts in 2021, it did not pay creators for shorts content – that will change starting February 2023 (https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/YouTube-Shorts-Monetization-Begins-in-February-2023/640087/).  With this much competition in the short form vertical video space, it will be more important than ever for advertisers to build vertical video into their 2023 marketing plans.