At the start of this year we asked PopJammers about their trend predictions for 2018 and have followed each quarter to see how accurate they were.
Slime, squishies, unicorns and iPhones have been huge this year. Fidget spinners didn’t last the year and no one saw Fortnite coming, but as usual the experts on kids (the kids themselves) were pretty spot on.
Baby Shark Dance
With over 1.8B views, the Baby Shark Dance video is a genuine online sensation. Created by Korean YouTube channel PinkFong, the song and dance video went viral when people started taking the #babysharkchallenge – the challenge of performing the song (in shark costumes/ from moving cars, etc) and posting it on social.
The video is obviously intended for younger kids, but the simple lyrics and easy to copy dance moves have made it a playground smash.
YouTube remains the dominant platform for under-13s, so it’s no surprise that the most popular digital content originates there. On YouTube, as well as satisfying slime videos, PopJammers are enjoying DanTDM, the Crafty Girls, Denis, Sis V Bro, Wengie, The Ace Family and Family Fizz, all of whom also have profiles on PopJam. PopJammers also mention watching the ‘Johnny, Johnny, Yes Papa’ nursery rhyme animations – for the memes and alternative versions.
Gacha videos (made using the Gacha Studio app) are mentioned as popular by PopJammers.
The videos feature customisable chibi characters with speech bubbles and backgrounds used to tell stories. The video quality isn’t great and the stories aren’t always good or appropriate for children – but that hasn’t stopped them from getting millions of views.
We know you’re probably bored of slime by now but kids definitely aren’t. Squishies aren’t getting as many mentions, but slime remains dominant. We asked kids why the trends refuses to pass and the answers focus on using it as an anxiety or stress-buster. “I like it because it’s bendy and if you’re stressed you can pull it and not have to rip it”.
Kids love slime videos, and use the word ‘satisfying’ when describing them. Some PopJammers listed slime kits as desirable Christmas presents (along with phones, dogs and laptops), so even if the trend is on the decrease, branded kits as a stocking-stuffer look likely to power a comeback.
At school, everyone is talking about Fortnite. However, increasingly this was accompanied by a sad face or a few additional words (“urgh boring” and “it’s so over now”).
Fortnite appears to be primarily a trend with boys (“Boys are talking about Fortnite and girls are talking about slime/ Barbie/ LOL Dolls/ fashion”). However, Season 6 has brought in new skins and characters and a new narrative (mysterious moving cube is moving mysteriously), keeping players interested and excited.
With Christmas on the way, kids will start thinking about how they can turn their hobbies and fave things into presents and what they really want to receive as a gift – really putting trends under the microscope and helping us create their trend predictions for 2019.