What’s The Next…

What’s the next Harry Potter? What’s the next True Blood? What's the next Hunger Games? As soon as the light of the latest entertainment franchise fades (and sometimes well before it does) we start to hear “what’s the next” questions. With so much of major pop culture coming out of youth culture and YA literature, we try to keep our finger on the pulse of the next big things to watch. When it comes to brands taking advantage of the next big entertainment craze, one of the keys is to be aware and be ready early. With that in mind, we’re giving you a rundown of the entertainment properties that are already gaining buzz and could be future major hits.
 

 

 


Could be the next Life of Pi


The Giver
This YA novel by Lois Lowry came out in 1994 but is considered a modern classic by many, and has been trapped in pre-production purgatory—until now. Oscar winner Jeff Bridges has been trying to make the book into a feature for years, and will produce and star as the original Giver in the film, which could begin filming late this summer. Brenton Twaites, a young Australian actor who is currently not well known in the states has been cast as the main character, Jonas. (He will also be starring in next year’s Sleeping Beauty adaptation Maleficent, and is definitely a young actor to watch.) Though The Giver is dystopian and dark, the movie won’t likely be as action-packed as Hunger Games, as much of the action takes place in the main character’s head as he lives through memories. Like Life of Pi it’s a one-off book about a male protagonist dealing with some heady and dangerous issues, and has the potential to be both beautiful to watch and heart-wrenching.

Why it could (probably will) be big: Millennials from ages 32 to 12 have all likely read The Giver, and it doesn’t take much…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“I want to work for myself so that I can have more flexibility and be my own boss. I have an online business.”
—Female, 16, FL

Fast fashion is only getting faster as Asos & Boohoo outpace industry front-runners, Zara and H&M, moving clothes from concept to sales floor in less than four weeks. These up and comers’ fast paced supply chains, coupled with millennial-minded tactics and strong social media presences, are driving a 30-35% expected sales growth for Asos and 50% for Boohoo. A major contributor to Boohoo’s profit margin is its army of celebrities, bloggers, and other influencers who promote its clothing across Instagram. Zara and H&M, meanwhile, saw slowing YOY sales growth; H&M has admitted its need to speed up and announced plans to change its supply chain accordingly. (QuartzThe Guardian)

A new Doritos bag will be loaded with the entire Guardians of the Galaxy 2 soundtrack, via a built-in cassette player. A limited number of the “Awesome Mix” soundtrack bags will be available on Amazon tomorrow, and influencers will be activated to take the bag to surprising locales and sing a song of their choice. Fans will also be invited to go to custom pop-up recording booths, record their track, and upload it to social media for a chance to win prizes. Thanks to social media posts and unboxing trends, packaging has the potential to become a spotlight stealer, and brands are thinking outside the box to make packaging as interesting as the product. (Creativity)

Apple wants to be Gen Z’s Starbucks. The brand is reimagining stores to encourage teen hang out sessions, rebranding the Genius Bar as the Genius Grove, and aptly adding some foliage to the space. The start of a series of educational sessions next month will also bring in photographers, artists, and musicians to teach lessons and in some cases, perform concerts. Apple’s head of retail says of the effort: “I’ll know we’ve done a really, really great job if the next generation, if Gen Z says, ‘Meet me at Apple. Did you see what’s going on at Apple today?’” Ypulse’s Experiencification trend explored the fact that more retailers are looking to turn stores into social spaces to attract young shoppers. (QuartzApple)

Coachella has become a profit powerhouse, with earnings of $94 million last year, and nearly half of all attendees are 18-34-years-old. Brands have been looking for any way to activate their spending power through the event—including influencer marketing, which reportedly earns an estimated $6.50 for every $1 spent. This year, American Express became the first official credit card of the prodigious festival, using influencers to spread their message on-site instead of signage and “overt product messaging.” One AMEX executive emphasizes, “You can’t deny the power and reach of influencers today.”(Forbes)

Mars’ new ad has gone viral with Gen Z, thanks to the power of online celebrities. The video, promoting popular U.K. candy bar Maltesers as it launches in the U.S, features social media and YouTube stars Caspar Lee, Andrew Huang, and Dytto and has earned almost 2.8 million views in the last few weeks. The campaign encourages positivity in the face of typical “teen crises” as the influencers are shown turning #FML moments into “Fun Maltesers Life” moments. The spot is part of a larger effort, which will include distribution across social media channels, custom content creation with BuzzFeed, and a tour featuring an experiential photo-op, game play zone, and 10 million free samples. (MediaPost)

Quote of the Day: “I don't drink on a typical night, but my choice when I do have a drink is often red wine.”

—Female, 34, FL

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