The year 2017 is a wrap, and to help advertisers go into 2018 with knowledge of what is likely to be popular, Facebook IQ compiled data on rising topics and trends across the platform. Specifically, seven categories emerged in their 2017 findings: beauty and fashion, commerce, culture, entertainment, food and drink, mind and body, and technology.
1. Beauty and Fashion
Beauty and Taboo Topics—Once-taboo topics are now discussed at length on Facebook, such as hair removal and body image. There is more transparency, with models and celebrities sharing photos of themselves pre-photoshop. Beauty buyers are more open to sharing their authentic selves and the lengths they go to achieve their ideal beauty.
Uniform Not Wanted—Rather than having one style of the times, users are inspired by the diverse styles of social media users across the globe, not just major influencers. Facebook found that popular terms to describe jeans on Instagram, for instance, include “bell bottoms,” “capris,” and “mom jeans.” These terms are diverse and a far cry from the typical skinny jeans that were once the dominating style according to fashionistas. Now everyone who considers themselves a fashion expert can inspire style, and bell bottoms are among jean styles discussed the most.
Women and Men’s Wear—”Androgyny,” “boyfriend fashion,” and “unisex” are among the popular terms used online when discussing clothing. Traditional dress prejudice is becoming less and less of a concern as the world becomes more accepting of men who like to wear skirts and women who choose to dress more masculine.
Choice Simplified—Businesses that specialize in a limited number of products or designs have seen great success when they simplify the decision-making process for consumers. For example, one company sold only one model of mattresses in a box and established a thriving business. It found a niche and made it simple, making its business attractive to buyers. Convenience and simplification in today’s commerce are major buying influencers.
Make It About Me—A personalized service or experience delights the average customer, especially when it comes to subscription business models, which use past shopping behaviors and browsing histories to personalize products for each unique consumer.
The Rise of Cryptocurrency—Facebook users have increasingly discussed the concept of digital currency, cryptocurrency, and blockchain. Facebook found that regulation of such currencies is beginning to take shape, meaning users will soon likely see new ways to participate in online commerce.
Empowerment Marketing—A topic of major popularity on Facebook is empowered women. Images of women in army or firefighter uniforms are likely to sell better than women in their underwear. Today’s culture of gender equality is strongly influencing the online market.
National Day of What?—Whether it’s Friendship Day or International Coffee Day, users are continuously finding new, everyday holidays to celebrate on social media. It’s a way to celebrate the simple pleasures of life, which can make for a great marketing strategy.
West Meets East—Social media connects the East to the United States through holidays such as Singles’ Day and the Chinese New Year. Since users can connect with cultures across the globe, it’s easier to stay in the know about such holidays, making for a more cultured online society.
Get Your Geek On—That which used to make people snooze during scientific lectures is now the cause of viral videos shared on social media. For example, the American Eclipse was highly discussed on Facebook, with users sharing videos and memes of the cultural experience.
Mid-core Mobile Gamers—A step below hardcore gamers, mid-core gamers, who like the competition and like to nerd out but don’t have time to spend hours playing games, are drawn to mobile game experiences. Popular mobile games like adventure games, multiplayer online games, and role-playing games are among the popular Facebook conversations in 2017.
The New Water Cooler—Similar to coworkers discussing their favorite shows at the office water cooler, users share opinions and discussions about shows on social networks. Stranger Things, for instance, was the focus of many Facebook conversations shortly after the release of its second season in 2017.
5. Food and Drink
Adventures in Eating—With users sharing more and more photos of their eccentric and colorful meals, social networks have become a hub for inspiration when it comes to more adventurous and cultural cuisines. Among the top conversations on Facebook include dishes like adobada and chicken feet.
Convenient Formats—Meal kits and online food ordering are increasing in popularity, as ease and convenience are all the rage. Online food ordering and online grocers have become a more sophisticated form of dining.
Picture-Perfect Food—Facebook says that 69 percent of Millennials take a photo or video of their food to chronicle their experience. Conversations about food photography, milkshakes, and cotton candy have been among the most popular in food and drink.
6. Mind and Body
A New Age for Pain—Holistic approaches to health are now more highly recommended than prescription medication, with acupuncture, myotherapy, and reiki, a Japanese stress-reducing technique, taking a major focus in online conversations.
Industry of Calm—More attention is being given to stress as the world becomes more attentive to mental health. Chakra, introspection, and meditation are dominant online conversation topics.
Personality at Work—Personality and the role it plays in building effective workforce teams among Millennials is more of a priority now that it ever has been. Leading online conversations on the topic have revolved around the Enneagram of Personality, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, and personality.
Everyday AR—For both advertisers and social media users alike, augmented reality (AR) has been on a steady rise in popularity. From realtors who may use it to show the insides of a home for sale to users posting Instagram Stories with fun AR face filters, AR developers are frequently creating new capabilities. Augmented reality, head-mounted display, and mixed reality are among the most popular AR-related terms used in online conversations.
Friendly-bots—Today’s marketplace has a growing fascination with artificial intelligence (AI). Consumers are beginning to really experience AI in their homes in the form of the Alexa Echo or the Google Home. Terms such as artificial intelligence, computer program, and deep learning occupy a majority of online conversations on the topic.
The World, Customized for Me—Technology is getting better at adjusting to personal preferences for a more convenient world. With phone and smart technology advancements, consumer behaviors are becoming readable, so that devices can predict what a consumer wants, such as new music or Netflix releases. Popular online conversations on this kind of technology include terms such as “Bluetooth,” “headset,” and “proximity marketing.”