Trends are a funny thing. They appear seemingly out of nowhere, usually as the result of a creative mind looking for new challenges. Some trends are here for the long run, like nature-driven photography, the rise of video and the mobile-first approach to website creation. Others live fast and die young, like planking and the Harlem Shake (thank goodness).
As a video creator, you’re exposed to endless trends every day, both in your creative field and normal, everyday life. How are you meant to keep track of all of them? Especially since most will die off within a few weeks and thus may just be a waste of your valuable time. To help you navigate the waters of your field’s tendencies and make sure you’re up to date on the newest styles, we’ve put together a list of the most lasting video trends for the new year.
Ready to take your work to the next level? These are the top 10 video trends that will dominate 2020:
The great outdoors
Search Engine Optimization
Once the subject of laughs (how weird was it to see someone talking to a camera in the middle of the street just a few years back?), vlogging is expected to be one of the biggest video trends of the year. Granted, vlogging in 2020 is not quite the same as it was in its early days. If you want to become a successful vlogger, you’ll need more than a well lit room and a nice voice.
Nowadays, being a vlogger means taking your audience on your adventures across the world. Think of it as a travel video with a more personal touch. It’s that combination which makes this type of content so popular, as viewers not only feel drawn to the visuals but also establish a connection with the media creator. As a result, you’ll be growing a loyal audience around your work.
02. The great outdoors
The great outdoors have strongly positioned themselves as key media subjects, becoming one of the top video and photography trends we’ll see in 2020. Wanderlust feelings have claimed a space in the soul of videographers around the world, leading them to the most remote locations on the planet in search of awe-inspiring visuals.
While the popularity of this type of content is far from new, it doesn’t look like it will stop growing any time soon. Each of these videos inspires many other creators to follow their adventurous dreams of adventure, which only strengthens the fame and power of this video trend. Brands are also playing their part by sponsoring trips and paying creators to include their products on the videos.
03. Non-horizontal videos
The launch of IGTV in mid-2018 was widely considered a major turning point for video, with many believing that most videos would be shot vertically from then on. This initial craze failed to meet expectations, and the platform started supporting landscape video a year after its launch. In spite of this, IGTV in particular and social media in general has had a huge impact on the way we create, share, and consume videos.
While the vast majority of videographers is still shooting their content horizontally, they’re now open to other creative approaches when sharing their work online. Vertical and square formats will be one of the biggest video trends of 2020, as creators aim to take as much space as possible on overcrowded social media feeds. These clips are usually cropped editions, both in framing and duration, of complete versions available on the artist’s website or on video-centric platforms such as YouTube or Vimeo.
Since the beginning of time, humans have dreamt of experiencing the world the same way birds do. Nowadays we can do so from the comfort of our own home, thanks to the ever growing popularity of camera drones. This piece of equipment has become one of the most popular types of cameras for photographers and videographers alike.
The use of drones in video creation is especially popular to capture wider types of shots such as establishing and long shots. This helps creators introduce the context of the action while offering an unparalleled view of astonishing sceneries. The visual power of this unique perspective is the main driving force behind the establishment of drone footage as one of the biggest video trends of the year once again.
Hyperlapses function on the same basis as timelapses: taking photos at regular intervals with minimal to no camera movement. Only on hyperlapses, cameras are in constant movement through longer distances.
We know what you’re thinking. Yes, hyperlapses have been around for quite some time and they already had their time as one of the biggest video trends of the year somewhere around 2014. But if the Backstreet Boys can have a successful comeback, why can’t hyperlapses?
While their original success was primarily due to technological advancements on smartphones and powerful photography apps’ features, this time around they take a much more professional approach. This new popularity surge for hyperlapses is taking place primarily in the events, commercial, and travel videos spaces. This creative technique allows professionals in this field to offer a much stronger feel for the story as well as set their work apart from the swarm of video content that has taken over the internet.
06. Live Streaming
Live streaming has become an internet sensation with the launch of Facebook Live in 2016 - albeit the platform’s success was short-lived because once the initial rush slowed down, so did the majority of users. The popularity drop of this space, however, did not translate to general live streaming practices. Live video has claimed a strong position in the industry, and we have yet to see it reach its maximum potential. As creators strive to explore new potential uses for live streaming, this type of content will become one of the main video trends of 2020.
Recently, this has been one of the preferred forms of engagement between creators and their audiences as it’s not often that they get to have conversations in real-time. This type of practice is commonly used as a means to hold Q&A sessions and share video tips and experiences. Most live streams are announced a few hours in advance in order to generate buzz and ensure that there are enough viewers to make it worth the effort.
07. Educational videos
Online studies have become incredibly popular across all disciplines. This is, of course, nothing new. Educational videos and tutorials have been around for many years now, even before platforms such as YouTube became as popular as they are today. The reason why educational videos will be one of the biggest video trends of the year is not a huge increase in users, but because of a brand new wave of teachers.
The popularity of social media platforms has allowed experts across many fields to share their knowledge with people all over the globe and build a reputation for themselves. In order to monetize their efforts, most of these experts have started creating online workshops and video courses to share more in-depth content. Thanks to tools such as Wix Video, they can easily offer content subscriptions and sell their educational videos without depending on third-party learning platforms.
08. Ephemeral stories
The introduction of ephemeral content on social media platforms was actually one of the main forces behind the expansion of video creation for those who aren’t professional videographers. Tools such as Instagram Stories offered other creatives in other disciplines the chance to give video a try without any pressure to produce content good enough to be part of their portfolio. The main reason for this is that people who consume this type of ephemeral content do not expect it to be as high of quality as that shared on public feeds.
There’s a common belief that these pieces of content are usually unfinished clips or sneak peeks into upcoming projects. As a result, these features are used to share bite-sized video clips, spontaneous stories, and keep your audience updated on your whereabouts. In a time where engagement plays such a huge role in creative fields, the importance of these platforms has placed them high up the list of the main video trends of 2020.
09. Muted videos
No matter how many hours you spend finding the perfect free music for your videos, you need to keep in mind that a lot of people will see your content without sound. Avoiding such a crucial part of video content was unheard of just a couple years ago, yet it’s now become the norm for most social media users. It all began when Facebook introduced its autoplay feature, which automatically plays video content with no sound. This was an action that other social networks implemented shortly after.
Muted videos are not a video trend per se, but proper adaptation to overcome this challenge will be a dealbreaker in 2020. Start by planning for this possibility during the shot list process. This will allow you to find the best way to keep viewers engaged even without sound. Furthermore, if your video includes any type of spoken dialogue you’ll need to transcribe it and display the proper subtitles. Doing so will ensure that viewers stay engaged and don’t miss any of the action, as well as making your work accessible to those with hearing impairments.
10. Search Engine Optimization
SEO is something you’re probably very familiar with after creating a video website. If you haven’t done so yet, make sure to pick one of these free videographer website templates on your way out and build your site as soon as you finish reading this article.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which in real English means something along the lines of following a set of guidelines to ensure your content appears among the results of Google, Bing, Yahoo and other similar platforms. SEO used to be focused solely on written text, however Google has started to use AI to identify relevant video snippets that are then autoplayed on the results page.
Since having your content appear on the leading results for related Google searches is probably the biggest opportunity for any creator, it’s easy to understand why SEO will be one of the biggest video trends of the year. In order to make your videos discoverable, make sure to include relevant keywords on their descriptions and titles, as well as a transcription of any dialogue in it.
Want to know more about search engine optimization? Take a look at this video SEO guide to learn all about this practice.