Today we finish our 2018 predictions by analysing our last two trends for the year that will impact both the market research and the advertising industries. If you’re just catching up, don’t forget to read our 2018 trends post, as well as check our in-depth review of the first four trends here and here.

So, to finish our 2018 trends analysis will check the last two trends we predict will shake up the market research industry as well as the entertainment and advertisement businesses.

Trend #5 – Content “Wars” Intensifies

Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Youtube Red… the number of streaming services popping up is growing each year and the battle to serve the best and most original content is getting fiercer. With Facebook launching Facebook Watch, Twitter betting on live streaming sports, and Disney preparing to launch its own streaming service in the next two years, 2018 will continue to see a growth in investment from the top content providers in the bid to engage more viewers.

The leader so far has been Netflix with an increasing growth of subscribers and a constant influx of original content that gathers more fans each week. Since the launch of House of Cards in 2013, the company has consistently invested in developing exclusive series and movies that rival with the best that more traditional content producers have launched. Netflix is also investing in buying new movies and series and bringing to its fold, such as it did with the popular series Black Mirror.

But competition is getting fiercer and investing bigger budgets to offset Netflix from the limelight. Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale has won a Golden Globe for Best Television Series – Drama, and Amazon Prime is stepping up its game by bringing Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings universe to the e-commerce behemoth streaming service; Amazon certainly wants to emulate the success that HBO is getting with Game of Thrones, the tv series that will end in 2019 with several spin-offs already in motion.

The creation of cinematic universes is touted as the new holy grail of entertainment, and no one is better equipped than Disney that, aside its animation universe of cartoon characters and princess’ stories, boast Star Wars and Marvel franchises in its portfolio – the last being one of the major assets of Netflix’s originals shows – and continues to grow its influence with the acquisition of FOX. Disney already has a streaming service of sorts in its cruise line ships, and it has a huge advantage in terms of content creation if it follows suits with its intention.

With streaming services growing in influence, the advertising industry will have to start to better understand where to place itself in a new world where people are migrating to on-demand platforms that have a “no ads” policy as one of its major benefits. Live sports broadcasts might become even more important to advertisers to reach their target audiences.

Trend #6 – Advertising Metrics Evolve

The backlash against advertising metrics has been growing, with advertisers not too happy with some shoddy metrics on the digital space, lack of transparency from streaming services and the need to go beyond exposure in audience metrics.

Let’s face it: we still can’t say with certainty which half of the ad budget is wasted and where!

Brands are pushing for better metrics, capable of integrating tv and digital, but also looking beyond merely measuring eyeballs. Audience measurement is the staple of the industry for decades, but we know that having a tv set tuned to a channel when an ad is shown does not equate that the viewers “saw” it.

Emotional engagement, as a metric, will start to be more widely used as brands, and broadcasters, understand that it is the emotional impact that creates engagement and persuasion and has the capacity to imprint a message in a viewer.

As more solutions are brought to the market, with simpler and faster methods, more advertisers will seek to include emotional engagement as the north star for its campaigns.

unsplash-logoJens Kreuter