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Don’t simply Google it, TikTok it instead

How important is TikTok SEO and should brands consider it?

By Carla Watts

Monday, 30th of January 2023

It’s undeniable that TikTok has more than made its mark in the social media world. The app, which is known for its crazy dance trends and perfectly personalised ‘For You’ pages, has been downloaded over 3.5 billion times and has been the most downloaded app three years in a row now.

The app’s popularity, however, does not stop at singing and dancing. TikTok has proven to be an extremely influential and powerful app which leads to products – from mini uggs to Dior blush – completely selling out after trending on the platform, with the hashtag #tiktokmademebuyit being used over 39.3 billion times. Now, users are turning to TikTok to find top beauty products, the best spots for dinner or even reviews of the latest skincare – rather than Google.

LinkedIn: Georgia Branch

This recent shift has not gone unnoticed. Google’s Senior Vice President Prabhakar Raghavan highlighted how younger generations were using social media platforms as search engines, instead of Google, at Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech Conference in 2022. Raghavan also mentioned that according to internal research, approximately 40% of young people will use platforms like TikTok to search for lunch options, rather than Google. 

It is important to note that TikTok is not the first social media platform to have been referred to as a search engine. YouTube has been increasingly used to search for products, tutorials and recommendations over the last decade. Furthermore, the same can be said for Amazon, as well as Instagram which has also provided users with the latest fashion and beauty trends. 

It would appear, however, that TikTok’s short and snappy videos provide up-to-date and instant answers which is perfect for Gen Z’s decreasing attention span. 

Moreover, TikTok users are given recommendations from their favourite content creators and can check the legitimacy of any recommendation with a quick scroll in the comments section. Even the creators themselves are talking about how they are ‘TikTok-ing’, not ‘google-ing’.

TikTok has acknowledged that users are beginning to use the platform as a search engine and have added in more features accordingly. When you start a search in the search bar for example, you will now see a list of other suggestions –  just like on Google.

When you click on the search bar it also shows you some of your past searches, as well as a “You may like” list of searches.

Furthermore, there are also search suggestions in the comments section.

It would seem, therefore, that TikTok is becoming the go-to Gen Z search engine. 

Jumping on the increased interest, TikTok have also recently released an advert showcasing the ‘search’ feature on the app, and the advert ends with the words “search it with TikTok”. 

If TikTok is being used as a search engine, what does this mean for brands and content creators?

As users of TikTok are increasingly finding content through the search bar, brands and content creators need to ensure that their videos are at the top of the search results if they want to keep increasing their views and building their audiences. 

But how do you do this?

This is where TikTok SEO comes in. Thankfully, this is not as complicated as it may sound. Let’s break it down. 

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) has traditionally been used in regards to increasing a website’s chance of being discoverable on search pages. When applied to TikTok, it means making your content more discoverable, and therefore more likely to get views and engagement.  

How can you incorporate TikTok SEO into your marketing strategy?

Luckily, TikTok SEO is super easy to incorporate and one of the best ways is to use keywords. 

Just use keywords? Almost.

The best place to start is to do some keyword research. This doesn’t mean hours of reading and note-taking, just a quick scroll on TikTok is all you need to do. 

Search the product/topic/content your video is about. If your TikTok is about skincare, for example, search skincare in the search bar.

You will then have a list of related words which you can then use in your videos, like “skincare routine”, “products”, “aesthetic” or “must haves”. You can use these by saying them in the video, putting them in captions and hashtags, and including them in any on-screen text.  

This should increase the likelihood of your video showing up in the search results.

Is TikTok really going to overtake Google as the number one search engine? 

Whilst TikTok may be great for searching for the best rooftop bars in London, there are some things you just can’t TikTok. 

The *very* important questions: what time does Starbucks open? Or where is the nearest Joe and the Juice? They may be more efficiently answered by a quick Google search. Furthermore, it seems like this shift in using social media as a search engine is more prominent amongst younger generations. 52.3% of all TikTok users, for example, are aged between 18 and 24. Furthermore, more than 75% of all users are aged between 16 and 34. Therefore, I don’t think Google will be disappearing any time soon. 

The way that people, and particularly younger people, are searching and using social media however has shifted. Consumers are looking for instant and direct results from the creators they trust. Brands and creators would therefore benefit from incorporating TikTok SEO into their marketing strategies if they haven’t done so already.

Trendsetters: Influencers are The New TV Stars

As their reach and influence expands, social media stars take on prime-time TV

By Milan Charles

Thursday, 26th of January 2023

The social media star-to-celebrity pipeline is no secret. With thousands, sometimes millions, of followers across their social media platforms, this celebrity stardom should come as no surprise. 

Red carpet invites and fans stopping them in the street for pictures are to be expected given their reach, but many social media stars have now made their way into mainstream media too. 

For the most part, social media content creators have a younger following than traditional celebrities and television stars, so when introducing them to prime-time television shows, not only does it benefit the reach and career of the influencer, but the success and viewership of the TV shows too. Knowing this, over the past few years TV networks have begun to welcome talent outside the traditional celebrity.

Gen Z now watches almost seven times less broadcast television than the generations before them, according to a report from regulator Ofcom. It said 16 to 24-year-olds spend just 53 minutes watching TV each day, a two-thirds decrease in the past 10 years. Understandably, this is not great news for television networks. 

Social media stars tend to have millions of followers who are of the generation that no longer engages with TV in the way we used to – incredibly loyal followers who, more often than not, are prepared to follow the lives of their favourite creators wherever it takes them…even if that means turning on the TV. By utilising some of the most influential online personalities, TV shows are strategically increasing their own audience, viewing ratings and engagement.

YouTube star Nella Rose and her co-host Oobah Butler

Many prime-time shows have therefore welcomed famous social media faces to their line-ups. The most pivotal is YouTuber Joe Sugg who appeared on BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing in 2018. Joe was one of the first social media stars to appear on such a show, making quite an impact. Strictly Come Dancing’s social media presence almost doubled, with Sugg’s jive being viewed by over 1.3 million people compared to the 80,000 average. With Sugg alone potentially bringing his 8.2 million YouTube subscribers to the BBC, it is no wonder that the show saw such an increase in viewership. That is no coincidence. 

Joe’s Strictly success led to other shows also casting social media talent, and this has been the case year after year ever since. Strictly Come Dancing, I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here and Dancing on Ice are just three of the leading reality shows that have welcomed social media influencers with open arms. Gogglebox even aired a celebrity special featuring YouTuber KSI. The results speak for themselves.

YouTuber Joe Sugg with dance partner Dianne Buswell

Some networks have taken it a step further and given influencers their own shows altogether. MTV’s latest seasons of Catfish UK sees YouTube star Nella Rose and her co-host Oobah Butler help lovelorn hopefuls determine if they’re being duped by a devious catfish, a perfect fit for Nella who has always expressed her desire to become a TV presenter. Mo Gilligan, a renowned English stand-up comedian, who launched his career through social media skits and shorts on Instagram is now the host of his very own show: The Lateish Show with Mo Gilligan. It’s a total triumph and now onto its third season on Channel 4 with celebrity guests, music, sketches, games and prizes.

Seeing the proof in the pudding, Channel 4 has completely transformed its approach to casting and viewership. Why make social media users come to TV when they can bring TV to them? 

Introducing Channel 4.0. In October of 2022, Channel 4 launched its digital-first brand Channel 4.0, a brand new content destination, home to loads of fresh new social formats all rooted in youth culture. The core focus: reaching, engaging and entertaining 13–24-year-olds.

With a dedicated space on YouTube and across social, Channel 4 gives the generation’s top content creators the chance to collaborate and give young audiences a new place to get their daily dose of entertainment. The content features a whole host of established social first creators, from Chunkz, Nella Rose and Alhan Gençay to Spuddz, Mist and Dreya Mac. Channel 4.0 is a platform for the next generation of stars, both in front and behind the camera.

So, it seems that social media content creators are continuing to prove just how impactful their influence is. And with more and more shows and networks utilising their social media stardom, could this mark the beginning of a brand-new era of television altogether?

Get to know the new FIFTH Apprentices: Carla Watts

Carla joins us on a two year apprenticeship

By Esra Gurkan

Thursday, 19th of January 2023

This January, we’ve welcomed our next intake of apprentices to THE FIFTH. 

After the success of the first cohort last year, we’re proud to announce that Carla Watts and Laina Claydon are joining the agency on a two-year basis. 

They will spend their first six weeks getting to know how the whole agency works, joining each of the key departments that make up the business including Marketing, Strategy, Creative, Accounts, Talent Research and Talent Management. 

Equipped with a solid understanding of how each part of the business works and what they do, they will then join their respective team for the duration of their apprenticeship whilst also undertaking a Level 3 Digital Marketer (Social Media Pathway) course.

Carla, who will be joining THE FIFTH Talent, spoke to us about what made her apply – and the best content she’s consumed recently.

Can you describe yourself in a sentence or two for us?

I am 23 years old, from Surrey and have just completed a degree in history and politics. I am obsessed with all things social media and you’ll rarely see me without my phone (or a coffee!) in my hand! After falling in love with making content on Instagram and TikTok whilst I was at university, I knew that I wanted to have a career in the industry. 

What attracted you to the apprenticeship at THE FIFTH?

I have always had a passion for social media, but this became particularly apparent over lockdown when I started to grow my own social pages. I knew that I wanted a career in social media but was unsure where to start, especially as I had no qualifications in this sector. When I came across the apprenticeship at THE FIFTH on Linkedin, I could not believe my luck: it seemed like a dream come true! It was the perfect introduction to a career in social media as I would be working with an agency who had worked with very well-known brands, combined with having the opportunity to study for a Level 3 Digital Marketer course at the same time. 

Can you describe your perfect working day?

My perfect working day would be an early morning trip to get an oat milk vanilla latte and a catch-up with the team. Then a productive day of work, followed by a team-outing to the pub to unwind and relax.

Which social media channel do you use the most and why?

I definitely use Instagram the most, but TikTok is a close second! I have practically grown up with Instagram and have been posting for over ten years so definitely feel the most confident on there! You can usually find me on Instagram posting about mental health, body positivity and other fun lifestyle content. 

Are there any campaigns of ours that you’d have loved to have worked on and why? 

There are so many I would have loved to have worked on – it’s hard to pick just one! I think the Lucozade #positivechain campaign would have been amazing as I thought it had such an incredible message behind it, as well as being able to work with Maya Jama and Anthony Joshua. I am hoping they do a part two!

I am definitely excited to see what campaigns I get to work on over the next couple of years!

What would be a dream campaign or brand that you’d like to work on or with in the future?

Lounge Underwear would definitely be a dream brand to work with as I absolutely love how inclusive they are and how they promote body positivity! 

I would also love to work on a Coachella campaign after growing up watching all my favourite content creators go there every year. That would be a huge career achievement. 

Which content creator are you loving following at the moment and why? 

At the moment I am really enjoying Lauren Tiby on TikTok and Instagram. I love her fashion content and she is always my go-to for style inspiration! I also love how down to earth she is and find her get-ready-with-me videos comforting to watch. 

Who inspires you? This can be in your personal life, or on social 

One of my biggest inspirations is Matilda Djerf. Not only is she hair and outfit goals, she is such an authentic and down-to-earth content creator who spreads positivity on her social media. Matilda, and her partner, have also built a very successful business – Djerf Avenue – which is always ahead of the fashion trends whilst also being ethically manufactured and promotes sustainability by creating ‘timeless’ pieces. 

Lastly, tell us your favourite piece of content that you’ve consumed recently?

I love watching Olivia Kirkby’s TikTok as she is always so positive and helps me feel confident in my own body. I always watch her videos when I need cheering up!

Get to know the new FIFTH Apprentices: Laina Claydon

Laina joins us on a two year apprenticeship

By Esra Gurkan

Wednesday, 18th of January 2023

This January, we’ve welcomed our next intake of apprentices to THE FIFTH. 

After the success of the first cohort last year, we’re proud to announce that Carla Watts and Laina Claydon are joining the agency on a two-year basis. 

They will spend their first six weeks getting to know how the whole agency works, joining each of the key departments that make up the business including Marketing, Strategy, Creative, Accounts, Talent Research and Talent Management. 

Equipped with a solid understanding of how each part of the business works and what they do, they will then join their respective team for the duration of their apprenticeship whilst also undertaking a Level 3 Digital Marketer (Social Media Pathway) course.

Laina, who will be joining the marketing department, spoke to us about what made her apply – and the best content she’s consumed recently.

Bella and Laina with singer-songwriter Tom Grennan

Can you describe yourself in a sentence or two for us?

I am 21 years old, from Hertfordshire and love social media – especially Tiktok. I often create my own on the app and am interested in makeup and fashion. I was first introduced to social media via Instagram when it came out, and have been watching YouTube since I was about 11 years old when I was obsessed with the OG Brit Crew; Zoella being my favourite. Something I was always particularly fascinated by was when YouTubers would be with their managers, and seeing them go into their management offices in their vlogs -I think that’s where I first got the interest to work in this industry.

What attracted you to the apprenticeship at THE FIFTH?

I had wanted to get a marketing job since I left sixth form really, but I struggled as I had no experience and it’s a competitive field, so I worked other jobs whilst looking for one. Apprenticeships always appealed to me as I didn’t go to university, so being able to work while getting a qualification is perfect for me. I was attracted to THE FIFTH in particular as I love what they stand for. The fact that it incorporates influencer marketing is an added bonus for me as I have been a follower of creators for years.

Can you describe your perfect working day?

Put simply: an iced coffee to start the day, a productive day in the office, a team lunch outing – and this includes filming some office TikToks for our growing channel.

Which social media channel do you use the most and why?

TikTok or Youtube. I don’t like silence so even when I’m around my house I will have a YouTube video playing on my phone. I realised how addicted to TikTok I was when I slowly replaced YouTube with TikTok videos!

Are there any campaigns of ours that you’d have loved to have worked on and why? 

I’d love to have worked on our YouTube Shorts Brits campaign. I’ve always watched the Brits so to get the opportunity to work on that and be there would be really cool! Preferably on a year when Harry Styles is there…

What would be a dream campaign or brand that you’d like to work on or with in the future?

At the moment, I’m loving Selena Gomez’ Rare Beauty makeup brand, so I would say working with them would be amazing!

Which content creator are you loving following at the moment and why? 

Alix Earle – she is trending at the moment and has suddenly blown up on TikTok. I love the casual get-ready-with-me content, product recommendations and stories she tells. Another TikToker I love is Amelia Olivia who also creates makeup content. I’ve bought a lot of what she has recommended!

Who inspires you? This can be in your personal life, or on social 

I am very inspired by my colleagues, particularly Jess and Esra, who I am very lucky to learn from and my mum who works hard everyday and still manages to do so much for others.

Lastly, tell us your favourite piece of content that you’ve consumed recently?

Zoe Sugg’s vlogmas on her YouTube channel. It gave me so much nostalgia and cosy vibes at Christmas time. Having watched Zoe from a young age to seeing her as a mum now is so lovely – and her home gives me interior goals!

The Brit Crew: Where are the oG YouTube trendsetters now?

We check in on what Zoella and Louise Pentland are doing – and where they could go next

By Bella Hales

Friday, 13th of January 2023

In 2010, Youtube was still mostly a free-for-all mashup of music videos, comedy sketches and parodies. Slowly, however, a new trend was emerging: of creators posting charismatic and relatable content. 

In the UK, this trend was pioneered by a young group of 20 year-olds who would later be given the nickname the ‘Brit Crew’. The group included Jim Chapman, Marcus Butler, Alfie Deyes, Tanya Burr, Caspar Lee, Niomi Smart, Louise Pentland and siblings Zoe and Joe Sugg. Within just two years, it was almost impossible to escape this group of friends, and between 2012 to 2016, they were the ultimate trendsetters. From fun and humorous challenges going viral to beauty products selling out, they were the ones to watch. 

But what made this group of YouTubers so popular?

What audiences loved about the ‘Brit crew’ was that they were relatable, young and seemingly wholesome. Each week, you’d be able to watch them have fun, candidly share their lives and talk about things they were passionate about. YouTubers were the new celebrity and, unlike the typical out-of-reach A-listers we were used to, it felt as though these were real people with authentic and relatable lives. 

As the group grew in fame, however, with book deals being signed and awards won, the sense of innocence that was once there started to fade and slowly the fun and simplicity that was the world of the Brit Crew began to lose its shine. This was often through no fault of their own; audiences were simply growing up and the group’s squeaky clean content was less relatable as they aged and the YouTuber’s lifestyles became more affluent.

Zoe Sugg, Alfie Deyes and their daughter Ottilie

Some of the creators eventually decided it was time to move on to the next chapter and pursue other passions and careers, whilst others pivoted their content to be more in keeping with their ageing audience. Entrepreneurial brands were founded and companies formed, and some are still a success to this day.

As of 2022, the Brit Crew combined still have more than 42 million subscribers and here at THE FIFTH we have noticed an increase in visibility surrounding the group, and therefore wanted to learn more about where the original trendsetters are now and what they are doing. 

Here is what we found…

Zoe Sugg and Alfie Deyes 

Zoe Sugg and Alfie Deyes, potentially two of the most successful members of the group, are now settled down in Brighton with their one year-old daughter, Otillie. Whilst they haven’t been posting as consistently as they used to, they do still upload videos – with Zoe even participating in Vlogmas this year! Understandably, as they have gotten older and they have started to expand their family, their content has matured from the playful challenges and become more parenting-orientated. As well as Youtube, they both have successful businesses which they continue to run. Zoe turned her original channel name ‘Zoella’ into a successful blog where she and her team write about taboo subjects surrounding sex and relationships, whilst Alfie has a clothing company called Future Self which he set up with the idea of creating fashion-forward pieces that fit with his community’s lifestyle. 

Louise Pentland 

Louise Pentland aka Sprinkle of Glitter has continued her YouTube journey, and regularly posts videos. Her channel now, however, is lifestyle and family focused, showing her audience a realistic insight into parenting and co parenting after she separated from the father to her first child. She is now a Times #1 Best Selling Author and has written five books, has gone on to work with amazing brands such as Walt Disney World and Universal Pictures UK. On top of that, she is an NSPCC Ambassador for Childhood, and also hosts the Mothers Meeting podcast, where she covers all things parenting, from daily struggles to mum hacks. 

Marcus Butler and Niomi Smart 

Marcus Butler decided it was time for a new chapter when he last posted to YouTube five years ago, with no final exit video or reason why. Marcus has, however, recently come forward in an interview with the Rolling Stone, describing his choice to leave Youtube as an overnight decision, with him crediting this to simply “falling out of love with it.” He is now living in Berlin and is the co-owner of music management company Stripped Bear and is the co-founder of a sustainable fashion company called Nu-In

Marcus’ ex-girlfriend, fitness fanatic and health guru Niomi Smart is still an active user on YouTube. Living between Bali and the UK, her content continues to be centred around food and fitness and she has an extremely impressive resume of brand partnerships under her belt, from TAGHeur to BMW UK and Jimmy Fairly. On top of content creation, she was the co-founder of SourcedBox – a now-retired healthy snack monthly subscription service. She is the author of Eat Smart, a healthy and plant-based recipe book and more recently, she launched Smart Skin, a vegan, sustainable and natural skincare brand.

Alfie Deyes, Zoe Sugg, Jim Champman, Tanya Burr, Marcus Butler and Niomi Smart

Joe Sugg and Caspar Lee 

Whilst Joe Sugg, brother to Zoe, continued to do YouTube until about a year ago, his main focus has turned to acting and TV. In 2018, Joe became the first ever social media star to become a cast member of Strictly Come Dancing in which he came second place alongside his partner Dianne Buswell, who is now his long term girlfriend. Post strictly, he took an interest in animation films, and has starred in Shaun the Sheep, Wonder Park and more recently The Amazing Maurice where he plays main character Sardines alongside Emilia Clarke and David Tennant. Finally, he is co-founder of a talent management agency, MVE (previously known as Margaviane) with fellow YouTuber Caspar Lee. 

Caspar stopped YouTube in 2019 in order to pursue a number of entrepreneurial companies. He is now the founder of four companies, MVE (Margavaine), aforementioned, Influencer (a data-led, global influencer marketing business), Creator ventures (a venture capital firm that invests and collaborates with creators) and Proper Living (an affordable student accommodation company in Cape Town).

Tanya Burr and Jim Chapman 

Tanya Burr quit YouTube three years ago to pursue an acting career. Since then she has featured in the TV show Holby City and movie Venice at Dawn to name a few. Whilst her YouTube presence is now non-existent, Tanya still maintains a strong Instagram presence and continues to collaborate with beauty brands such as Elizabeth Arden and Function of Beauty. Around a similar time to when she left YouTube, Tanya got divorced from fellow Brit Crew member Jim Chapman. Since then, she has entered a new relationship, one that she has kept private, and recently gave birth to her first child.  

Jim Chapman is now remarried and has a daughter called Margot. Jim still creates videos for YouTube, however on his own personal channel he has steered away from challenges and moved onto family, lifestyle and high fashion content. He recently started a family TikTok page called The Chapmans where he and his wife, Sarah, document life as a family of three.

The Brit Crew all seem to have gone on to successful ventures since their group YouTube days when they were all associated with one another, but where do they go from here? It is clear that many will continue down the route of content creation, but the market is far more saturated than when they first started and there’s competition for audiences from younger, Gen Z creators like @olivianeill and @lookingforlewys on platforms like TikTok. 

Over the past few years, short form content has been on the rise, so adding TikTok to their platforms in which they post could help. The app has made it easier than ever to go viral and grow in popularity. It is also interesting to note that as the Brit Crew’s original audience have now grown up, many have started to frequent TikTok more often. 

Louise Pentland recently posted a TikTok video where she speculated that many of her original YouTuber following have now moved over to the short form entertainment app. This video went viral, with it gaining nearly 1 million views, 107 thousand likes and a multitude of comments validating her theory. 

Whilst many of the creators do have TikTok accounts, they are posted on a lot less than their YouTube accounts. Take Alfie Deyes for instance, who has posted 5 times on YouTube in the last 2 months, compared to 3 times in the last year on TikTok. 

My recommendation? To keep up with the Gen Z content creators and audiences, the Brit Crew should aim to up their presence on TikTok in order to reinstate their trendsetter status. 

The biggest social trends of 2022

From minimalism to the 5-9 routine, we take a look back at this year’s top trends

By Nana Akosua Frimpong

Friday, 23rd of December 2022

As 2022 comes to an end, THE FIFTH is looking back on some of the top trends that took over our social channels this year. 

We’ve seen more self-expression across platforms, the strength in online communities and have been endlessly inspired by the content being created. 

From shunning aspirational content with the rise of BeReal to creators reading the room and pivoting their content in response to the cost of living crisis, we wanted to give you a round up of some of the biggest trends we’ve seen take place on social:

Bobby Hobert

Minimalist and Maximalist Aesthetic 

This year, we saw creators such as Bobby Hobert show us the benefits of living a minimalist lifestyle. From decluttering and using only things that serve a purpose to de-stressing and putting your mental health first, we’ve loved watching and learning about ways in which we can all make small changes and adopt a more minimalist lifestyle. 

The Scandi-like fashion and lifestyle were adopted by many as we leaned into living a much slower, more attainable and sustainable lifestyle. Read our previous Trendsetters piece where we wrote about how Scandinavian style has become the fashion crowd’s most coveted aesthetic.

Like with anything on the internet, trends can often change and as we entered the colder months, we were introduced to the maximalist lifestyle. 

Maximalism involves embracing both quantity and quality. Layering and extravagance is a great way to express individuality and uniqueness and creator Sara Campz shows us exactly how to embrace being a maximalist. 

In the battle of minimalism and maximalism, which are you? 

Music and Dancing on TikTok 

TikTok keeps dominating the download charts and has become the platform in which up-and-coming artists are born. This year alone we saw Pink Pantheress soar through the charts after her discovery on TikTok. It has also become the platform for artists to preview their latest single and unexpectedly, it is now a tool for artists and music labels alike to discover new music. 

Just like the music we discover on the platform, TikTok has also become a discovery platform for dancers. Most of the time, when a song takes off on the platform, there is usually a dance challenge attached to it. 

We have seen the likes of Diversity’s Perri Keily create and take part in many dance challenges and his recent TikTok saw him dancing to a DJ remix of Coi Leroy’s latest single ‘Players’. We’ll have also seen the famous dancing duo Brooke and Jessie dominating our For You pages with their viral routines for songs such as Louis Theroux’s ‘jiggle jiggle’ or Meghan Trainor’s ‘Made you look’. Read more about Brooke and Jessie and the guide to getting your song TikTok viral in our Trendsetter piece

Twitch diversifies

Twitch as a platform is known for its live streaming services that are focused on video game live streaming and Esports competitions. This year, however, the app has seemingly grown and with that has been introduced to new audiences. 

Now, Twitch is no longer known as the gaming platform. Instead, it’s the platform where everyone and anyone can live stream their interests, whether it be cooking, baking and/or cultural commentary, you will find your audience on the growing platform. After all, ‘just chatting’ is one of the most popular categories on Twitch. 

Want to know more about how Twitch is diversifying, have a read on how French content creators used the platform to raise money for a great cause in a Trendsetters post here

Alicia Lartey

Clean and cold girl aesthetic 

From the clean girl aesthetic to the cold girl make-up look, this year we saw different beauty and fashion trends emerge as an ode to the early 2000s.

Many discussions have been had about the authenticity of some of the emerging trends, questioning their inclusivity and overall branding. Creator Alicia Lartey, for example, challenged the brown lip liner ‘trend’ on TikTok, taking to Refinery29 to write about why the ‘brownie glazed lip’ “doesn’t sit right with her”. 

Despite some controversies, there have been a few emerging trends that have encapsulated all. We saw #coastalgrandma gain over 269.6 million views, with creators such as Rachel Speed showing us how they style the trend.

Quiet Quitting vs 5-9 routine

This year, we were introduced to #quietquitting – a term encouraging people to renounce hustle culture and make more time for themselves. Many discussions were had to uncover the true meaning of the term and why it was so important amongst Gen Zers. Learn more on the topic in our Trendsetters piece

The topic of quiet quitting then birthed the 9-5 and 5-9 routine. With over 7 million views, we saw people sharing their post-work routine with the hashtag #my5to9. This trend looked to encourage people to take time for themselves after a long day’s work. On the surface, the trend is considered to be healthy as it promotes selfcare, however it also seems to be promoting hyperproductivity – encouraging you to be productive in your downtime. 

It is clear that Gen Zers are all looking to find ways to reclaim their power and encourage mental stability and despite some fall back, it is encouraging to see the future generation promoting mental health.

Cost of living crisis

The cost of living crisis has been a prevalent issue around the world this year and many discussions have been happening around influencer culture and their seemingly cash-rich lifestyles.

We have, however, also seen some creators pivot their content to be more in line with their audiences’ growing financial concerns. Creators have used their financial expertise to help their audience during this difficult time and, if you would like to see a more extensive list of creators sharing their best financial advice, head over to our Trendsetters piece highlighting creators using their platform for good in a time of need. 

The authentic app of the year: BeReal

BeReal was the surprise app of 2022. 

In the past, we’ve come across new apps looking to join the likes of TikTok and Instagram in ranking but every year a few fall short. In the peak of the pandemic, for example, we had Clubhouse and House Party – both created to keep us all engaged, entertained and connected. Sadly, we saw both apps fall through the cracks as we slowly returned to normality.

This year, with the conversation around Instagram changing and TikTok practically taking over our lives, we were introduced to BeReal. The app is about being in the moment and encourages users to be their real selves (read our Trendsetters post here). Many flocked to BeReal, making it a success and a clear competitor.

Cementing its status as a trend setter, in the last few months of 2022 we have seen TikTok introduce TikTok Now – a similar concept where users share a daily photo or video of themselves. Instagram is also introducing their own candid feature Dual which allows you to take a photo or video using both the front and back cameras simultaneously. 

As always, social media was anything but boring and this year we witnessed new and exciting trends taking place that encouraged more and more of us to get involved. As we look to 2023, we’re excited to see where trends go next – and we’ll be here to keep you updated and at the forefront every step of the way. 

Trendsetters: The rise of the Vox Pop

The street-style content taking over your FYP

By Nana Akosua Frimpong

Friday, 23rd of December 2022

A vox pop is a short video made up of clips taken from interviews with members of the public. The vox pop, which comes from Latin and translates to mean ‘voice of the people’, is often used to gather audience insights and opinions on any given subject – and will undoubtedly have been all over your For You page recently. With over 240 million views on TikTok and counting, the hashtag #voxpop has become one of the most popular trending content on the platform. 

A vox pop is known to be used in traditional journalism as a form of getting news from the ‘man on the street’, and can be used for numerous reasons such as testing public opinions, influencing decision-makers, stimulating public debates or promoting radio, TV or even newspapers. 

Creators such as Kofi McCalla have, however, demonstrated on their channel that vox pop or street-style interviews can be used purely for entertainment. In keeping with the style of content that is usually seen on TikTok, vox pops fit perfectly as they’re quick, engaging, occasionally educational but most importantly, entertaining.

Now, more and more creators are starting to adopt this style of content. It is becoming particularly popular within the lifestyle, beauty and fashion community. Creators like World Microphone Ldn travel all over the world asking people on the streets of London, Milan and even China about what they are wearing. 

‘What are you listening to?’ is one of the most popular forms of vox pop content, with creator Joshua Robinson aka Oshu Clips restyling the content to ask people on the streets: ‘what is your favourite song?’. 

Some brands have clearly seen the benefits of this short form interview style. A vox pop is an effective way of building brand awareness in an entertaining and informative manner, and allows brands to promote their product or service without having it feel like an #AD piece on the timeline. 

Branston is an excellent example of a brand utilising vox pop-style content to engage with its audience. They took their new product ‘brantonnaisse’ to the streets of Glasgow, London and Cardiff, asking people for their taste opinion. 

Burberry has even collaborated with creator Hunter Prosper on a series of content for the brand’s TikTok page. In a series called ‘Stories from a stranger’, Hunter interviews people on the streets, asking them life questions such as ‘who is your greatest love and why?’. The street style series has garnered an average of 3 million views on the brands’ page. 

Vox style, or better known as street interview, content is just as popular within the UK as it is within EMEA and across the pond in the US.

Parisian clothing store, Sézane, has been using vox-style content in the form of a challenge. They go around asking people on the streets of Paris, and most recently San Francisco, ‘Do you speak Sézane?’. After pronouncing a few easy French terms, participants receive ‘un cadeau’ (a gift).

Social creative agencies have also jumped on board the street style interview trend, with THE FIFTH taking to the office to interview colleagues.

Interestingly, creators are evolving the format of the vox pop, adding their own creative flair, and this is a trend that is likely to stay all through 2023. With different variations always forming, brands should utilise this trend by working with expert creators to maximise their brand awareness and engagement. 

Would you take part in a street style interview when stopped on the streets?

From margin to the mainstream: why brands don’t start a revolution, consumers do

Our takeaways from Helen Edwards’ keynote at the 2022 Marketing Week Leadership Summit, hosted by THE FIFTH

By Esra Gurkan

Friday, 16th of December 2022

Last week, we hosted the Marketing Week Leadership Summit at our offices and delved into three themes: business growth, brand growth and self-growth. 

The invitation-only summit saw speakers from the marketing and leadership world including Editor-in-chief of Marketing Week, Russell Parsons, Marketing Week columnist, author and brand consultant, Helen Edwards, and former Met Police superintendent, Leroy Logan MBE PhD FRSA, who took to the stage to talk about their learnings and experiences. 

Here, we share with you our takeaways from Helen Edward’s keynote on how brands can capitalise on lifestyle choices being made by people who may sit in the margins now, but will soon find themselves part of the mainstream. 

Helen Edwards at the Leadership Summit 2022

Consumer driven disruption

Marketing Week columnist and brand consultant, Helen Edwards, said “brands don’t start a revolution, consumers do”. 

In her keynote, Helen spoke about how consumer demand has the power to foster new industries, and an example of this is the rise of veganism. 

The term ‘veganism’ dates back to 1944 when activist Donald Watson started a movement based on a dairy-free lifestyle. The term ‘vegan’ was coined because it’s the beginning and the end of the word ‘vegetarian’ and was marginal for the next 60 years due to resistance from the mainstream. 

Helen says: “Veganism only really took off in around 2017 and now nearly everybody is a vegan at least some of the time. When a category takes off, we think about how to react and not be left behind and it can feel like a scramble. We can do better than that, before the demand-led disruption takes off”. 

So how can marketers get a better understanding of demands so that we can be there when they “take off”? 

An important discovery is that you can read behaviours and there are actions you can take to propel them on their journey to the mainstream. 

Intensity and Resistance

Intensity, Helen says, is “vital for a marginal behaviour to have any chance of going mainstream”. 

She continued, saying: “You need those intense zealots to get it going, because if you want to adopt one of these behaviours in the early stages it’s hard, less socially acceptable and more expensive”. 

We need people willing to start a movement because without them, there’s no traction. 

There will, undoubtedly, be resistance and opposition from the mainstream but these forces are crucial to understand because when that resistance starts to falter, that’s when you can jump in and make change. 

Resistance, Helen told a packed audience at the Leadership Summit, is nuanced: “You get different types and you need to be able to understand the nature of it”. 

That’s when you can go from the marginal to the mainstream. 

Reframing the narrative

It’s all about reframing the narrative when it comes to topics, issues and brands that are marginal or under the radar. 

We as marketers have the agency to shift the public’s perception and change the way in which people see something. 

In her keynote, Helen continued saying cognitive reframing allowed us to understand and get on board with veganism. 

Being vegan went from being seen as a life choice for “tree huggers”, for example, to being a legitimate way of life after being reframed as “plant based”. 

So, how can we apply reframing to marginalised behaviours and soften resistance? 

Revealing antiquity in a behaviour stands in good stead with the public consciousness. The idea that a behaviour isn’t new and was a part of our ancestral past helps people understand the idea is cemented in deep-rooted history. A lot of the time, longevity can add strength.

Cultural diversity also helps to reframe a marginalised movement. New audiences will better take on board an idea or a particular behaviour that is a norm in other parts of the world. 

Making things personal. Sometimes, making a lifestyle choice like going vegan, personal to the person, and less about the broader population or planet, makes it more relatable and easier to approach. It’s about reframing the narrative to make it work for particular people, rather than everybody. Personalisation therefore helps. 

Helen rounded off her keynote with something we should all understand going forward: “Today’s margins are tomorrow’s pot of gold if you know how to find them”. That way, we can have a richer and fuller growth.

Helen Edwards’ book ‘From Marginal to Mainstream’ is available to pre-order from Kogan Page now. 

Language has always evolved naturally, but what happens when it’s unnatural?

Generative AI tool ChatGPT is about to tell us

By Robert Stevenson

Monday, 12th of December 2022

2022 has been a break-out year for generative AI tools. 

They are quickly moving from niche tech interest to mainstream awareness, albeit with relatively modest practical usage as of yet. 

We are, however, seeing just the start of their adoption and the extent of their capabilities – and they’re already astonishing.

Want a quick overview of how GPT (Generative Pre-Trained Transformer) tools work?

Firstly, an enormous dataset of content (not Google search results) is trained on user prompts. A neural network is then set, based on what it has learnt. Given a prompt, the tool then draws on relevant information and uses the neural network to produce results. 

If you want to know more, the details are available on the OpenAI website.

The GPT3.5 model has 175 billion parameters compared with GPT2’s already vast 1.5 billion, which goes some way to explaining the significant advancement of this release. ChatGPT4 due in early 2023 is expected to be another leap.

Ease of use, accessibility (many AI tools are free for now, or have free credits before a paid subscription) and the ability to gather inspiration and quickly spin up ideas, is likely to lead to adoption from any industry – including or perhaps even spearheaded by brand and marketing industries.

ChatGPT is conversational, with call and response

Prompt to text generative AI tools are now able to produce anything from concise brand straplines and website copy right through to business plans and entire novels. 

These may dent Google search domination – TikTok already has. 

When search results look less like a menu you have to assess and choose from, and more like a conversation or a recommendation video from a friend, it’s apparent why people may favour this over traditional search. 

The ability for users to ask follow up questions to initial searches is intuitive and leaves Google results pages looking rather antiquated. Google does have a standalone AI unit called DeepMind, which “taught” a computer to beat a human champion of the notoriously complex Chinese board game Go!. So, while Google is by no means out of the race, they are facing some serious competition.

Coders, who often rely quite heavily on Google to tell them how to improve their code (no judgement), have found that AI tools will absolutely outclass existing results. This in itself means that every business that relies on code can be more efficient and produce more, arguably better products, faster.

Of course, there are huge challenges too.

Envisioning weird futures with AI is my new favourite thing

Data Protection

Firstly, there’s data protection, licensing and remuneration for creators whose source material is the basis for AI generated text and images. Elon Musk, who co-founded OpenAI (the company responsible for DALL-E and ChatGPT), has stepped away citing data protection issues.


Secondly, there’s the ethics. A child could, in theory, do their homework in minutes with little investment or understanding – and this carries through to the world of work. To what extent could AI replace a human workforce? 


Thirdly, accuracy. While AI is drawing from almost any available source and should average out in some way, programming quirks and where data is extracted from gives rise to serious trust issues. 

As fast as factually incorrect content can be produced with AI, it can be published, distributed and consumed. 

There is opaque validation within the code and little validation outside of it. With ChatGPT, instead of “computer says no”, you get a rough approximation of an answer. OpenAI does state upfront: “ChatGPT sometimes writes plausible sounding but incorrect or nonsensical answers”.

Despite these concerns, speed is an enormous advantage and the low barrier to entry presents egalitarian opportunities to collaborate with AI – in theory.

Yesterday morning, for example, I was on the London Underground and found myself staring at two posters next to each other for the entire journey (full 8am zombie vibes). They were for a Muslim marriage app called Salams and an African mobile money transfer company called NALA. Both had short-form large-font copy that used English language in a dialect that was highly relevant to their intended audiences, but would mean almost nothing to others.

This prompted me to think about localisation. Could the language of niche communities, minority groups and marginalised sections of society be suppressed, leaving them behind or out of this generative AI revolution? If AI language becomes the first port of call in brand and marketing, the opportunity for nuance and cultural distinctiveness may be squeezed. 

In the future, what effect would this have on language interacted with on a daily basis? Is it possible that communities already fighting for their voice to be heard and seen are about to be drowned out by the white noise of AI? 

Further in the future, growth of content produced by AI, may become de-facto source material. This has the potential to upend existing language structures. When you consider how quickly language is adopted and adapted already by school kids, in music, games and across borders.

Another OpenAI product “Whisper” is an ASR (automatic speech recognition) “trained on 680,000 hours of multilingual and multitask supervised data collected from the web…. the use of such a large and diverse dataset leads to improved robustness to accents, background noise and technical language”. 

I am intrigued as there is a distinction between accent and dialect that cannot be overlooked. Reinforced or supervised learning and open-sourcing means that specialisms can be honed and trained, but this requires input.

Ultimately, if equilibrium is to occur, early measures should be taken and an emphasis should be placed on the assistive capabilities of AI alongside the value of human creativity and quality.

Creativity is in essence most alive when it is drawing from disparate sources and producing something new. Outside of translation, how can localisation of dialect and culture be included and factored into this before content multiplies to an extent that it is detrimental?

I will be continuing to put AI through its paces and trying to understand how my own neural pathways work while doing so. There is also a lot of fun to be had! Try it for yourself here: ChatGPT

the guide to getting your song TikTok viral

Brooke and Jess are the not-so-secret duo behind new music success

By Laina Claydon

Friday, 9th of December 2022

We’ve all seen a TikTok dance go viral when a new song is released, but who creates them in the first place? 

More often than not, it’s the same duo behind a dance routine: Brooke and Jess aka BrookieandJessie

Wearing their trademark tracksuits and sunglasses, the pair have created many of the TikTok viral dances to your favourite songs. 

With 2 million followers on the short-form video platform, Brooke and Jess are the girls in glasses you need to know. 

Remember the ‘jiggle jiggle’ dance to the rap from Amelia Dimoldenberg’s Chicken Shop Date interview with Louis Theroux? That was them. It’s now been named the top US trend on TikTok’s fifth annual ‘Year on TikTok’ report for 2022.

Amelia even joined the girls to do the dance after it became a success. And if that’s not impressive enough for you, the dance became a feature on Fortnite. It also earned the girls a shoutout on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon when Shakira did the dance. 

The routine was created initially on Jess’ solo account before they set up their joint account and began making dance routines together.

Their success saw the duo employed by Netflix (and their 28.8M TikTok followers) to create a promotional dance video for season four of the sci-fi smash hit series Stranger Things and then First Kill.

More recently, Brooke and Jess danced to Meghan Trainor’s new single ‘Made You Look’. The video racked up more than 500K likes, and Meghan herself even made a video to the dance and tagged the pair with dance credits in the caption. The video has 3.7M likes.

When Lewis Capaldi made his music comeback earlier this year with ‘Forget You’, Brooke and Jess also helped the song grow on TikTok. The singer later joined them for a video but struggled to keep up with the dance routine and simply bopped along in the background. 

Their choreography took the platform by storm again when they danced to Lizzo’s song ‘2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)’. The girls posted some of the stars who recreated their dance to their Instagram page, and names included Lizzo herself, Dani Minogue, Jojo Siwa, Lorraine Kelly, and Stephen Mulhern.

But how did they start out?

“We were just messing around in our lounge”, the pair told Echo News. “I was making pasta at the time and Jess played the Jiggle Jiggle song and it was so catchy that we were bopping around to it. 

“We didn’t plan on dressing up or anything, so we put the glasses with the hoodies on, because we didn’t want to make an effort, and that seems to be our brand now”.

Brooke and Jess are both professional performers in musical theatre, have been in pantos, and are graduates of the Laine Theatre Arts in Epsom, Surrey.

And it’s not just TikTok that they’re big on, the duo also have an Instagram account, YouTube channel, and their very own merch line where they now sell the hoodies they are always wearing in their videos.

Another creator who has been influential in the TikTok dance world is Nifè aka @itsjustnifee who created the Love Nwantiti dance. 

Love Nwantiti is a song by Nigerian singer and songwriter CKay. 

Nifè’s sound to her original dance has racked up 642.3K videos being made to it and the video has 1.8 million likes. As a thank you to Nifè, CKay then brought the TikToker on tour with him. 

That’s not all she’s done. Nifè also choreographed the dance to Antigoni’s ‘You Can Have Him’ and was later featured in the music video.

TheLady aka @4ladycapri also made a viral dance to Camidoh, Mayorkun & Darkoo feat. King Promise’s Sugarcane and was later brought out on stage at Ghana Party In The Park which took place at Trent Park in Enfield. 

These are just a few examples of the amazing ways in which musicians give credit to the choreographers and creators who had a huge impact on a song’s success.

There are some artists, however, who are accused of creating a song or specific lyric just to go viral, as it usually results in high charting and more sales. 

Taylor Swift did it well when she released her latest album ‘Midnights’ and created the  #antiherochallenge to promote the leading single. 

Initially on YouTube Shorts, the trend was quickly picked up on TikTok which is commonplace when  something goes viral on one platform for it to quickly pick up traction on another. It’s since racked up 34.4M views on TikTok and ‘Anti Hero’ has been at number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for five weeks running – so it’s safe to say this was a success.

The beauty of TikTok (and the randomness of its algorithm) means it’s not just new songs that trend. An old song can pop up and trend at any time and even Meghan Trainor herself couldn’t explain why her 2016 song ‘NO’ started trending recently, but she went with it! 

TikTok dances are no new thing and have been around since the app first launched, but it’s exciting to see the new and innovative ways in which artists and creators are collaborating – and that artists are making sure to give credit to those who coined the dance routine which helped make their song a success.

The creators tackling the cost of living crisis

We share the creators using their platform for good in a time of need

By Bella Hales and Nana Akosua Frimpong

Thursday, 19th of November 2022

With the cost of living crisis being an ever prevalent issue in the UK, there have been questions raised about influencer culture and their seemingly cash-rich lifestyles.

According to a survey by Room Unlocked, six out of ten people find influencers insensitive and infuriating amid the dramatic rise in the cost of living. There are, however, many people using their platform for good during the recession. The #costoflivingcrisis hashtag, for example, has been trending on TikTok and has been viewed over 556 million times – but this time for a more positive reason. Under this hashtag, you will find content creators across many different niches using their platform to make a difference, whether it be by providing their audience with accessible budgeting tips and financial information or key money saving advice. 

Keep reading to find out some of the top content creators who have used their financial expertise to help their audience during this difficult time and, if you would like to see a more extensive list of creators sharing their best financial advice, head over to our Instagram.

Gemma Bird is a very well known money saving guru. Growing up with a saving addiction, she decided to turn this into her personal brand where she educates people on the power of scrimping and saving. She can be found sharing bargains, deals and discounts to her audience in an attempt to show that being thrifty doesn’t have to be boring. Her relatability and down-to-earth personality has grown her a loyal and dedicated following.

Clare Seal aka My Frugal Year is a Fin-fluencer (financial influencer) from London. She began her account in 2019 as a means to tackle her £27,000 debt that she had accumulated, and now shares tips and tricks on budgeting and improving relationships with money. Clare founded @thefwforum as a place for honest and supportive conversations about money and more recently, is known for her coverage on topics such as mortgage and financial property.

In addition to the increase in financial advice being shared by content creators, here at THE FIFTH we have seen a noticeable increase in crafting and DIY content. #CraftTok, for example, has now been viewed over 1.3 billion times on TikTok, with more and more people going online to get DIY and crafting inspiration in a bid to spruce up their homes and give their decor a refresh on a budget. 

Here we highlight two of the top craft creators using their platforms to share thrifty craft and DIY tips:

Sergei Urban aka The Dad Lab is a craft, DIY and parenting content creator and shares cheap yet exciting activities to do with your children. These include fun science activities, building sets, activity books, educational tools and creative paper crafts. A lot of the activities are created from upcycling, for instance making an infinity car track from cardboard, all of which share the message that entertainment doesn’t have to include buying expensive toys.

Duygu is a DIY content creator, retired teacher and founder of the Good Things Studio. She specialises in Punch needle embroidery, an old and special technique where a punch needle is used to poke loops into fabric. In 2015, she started her youtube channel, Duygu’s DIY Diary, in order to share her crafty, do-it-yourself ideas with more people. As her content creation career has progressed she has taken this over to Instagram and TikTok where she shares how-tos of her latest cheap and innovative creations. 

If you would like to continue reading on crafty influencers, head over to our Instagram post where we spotlighted some of the key talent in this area. 

Crafting and DIY isn’t the only thing to trend as a result of the cost of living crisis. With  supermarket prices on the rise, there has been an increase in appetite for cheap and budget-friendly recipes. Below, we include some of the most influential UK foodies and content creators who are exhibiting some of the most delicious and cheap, home cooked meals, for those who are looking to tighten their belts.

Jack Monroe is food content creator, author and anti-poverty campaigner. She used to be known as the £10-a-week blogger, who would share how you can make 3 cheap and easy recipes a day for a total £10 a week. Now she shares affordable recipes on her website and often creates series such as 20p recipes or 15-minute meals. Most noticeably, after the increase in prices of essential products at Asda, Monroe complained that even the low-price range was too expensive. This resulted in the supermarket agreeing to make the range more accessible. She is a great example of the power influencers have in making a positive impact. 

Nina Mackenzie is a lifestyle blogger who shares parenting content on instagram. This can include reviews and recommendations of children’s products and crafting activities. Nina is also well known for her cooking content, where she shares affordable meals for the family, and recently has partnered up with Sainsburys to create a series called family dinner for under £5. 

Click here to read more on the most influential talent creating budget friendly recipes. 

As mentioned previously, influencers and celebrities who spend large amounts of money on clothes are frowned upon amid the rising costs of living. There are, however, a number of fashion content creators, who are promoting upcycling and thrifting as a way of staying stylish whilst saving money. Here we highlight those creators who are using their platform to talk about how cost-effective these methods are, and not to forget, how sustainable they are too! Head over to our Instagram post to read more.

Hudi Charin aka @thethriftythinker is the CEO of the sustainable and personalised fashionwear service @bigsisterswap. She encourages her followers to swap clothes instead of buying new clothes as a contribution to being sustainable and without breaking the bank.

Alexandra Stedman is an art director, writer and social media consultant, best known for her ethos that ‘dressing stylishly needn’t be expensive’. She is also the owner of the blog page The Frugality, where she shares accessible and budget-friendly fashion tips.

With the cost of living crisis being troublesome for most, it is understandable as to why creators who are sharing content centred around budgeting and financial advice are more in-demand than ever. Crucially, social media and content creators play an integral role in providing their audiences with accessible and easy-to-digest financial information. 

The Power in Owning Your Name

To mark Black History Month, we explore why names should be pronounced correctly

By Nana Akosua Frimpong

Friday, 27th of October 2022

To mark Black History Month, we wanted to talk about names and why we should all make an effort to pronounce them correctly in the workplace. We hear from THE FIFTH’s Apprentice Nana Akosua Frimpong who explores why her name holds meaning to her as a Black woman – and how creators are now using their platform to speak out on an issue that has been overlooked for years. 

Imagine there’s a new starter at work. They introduce themselves as you shake their hand and realise you didn’t hear their name clearly enough. You ask them to repeat it, not once but twice, and then say it back to them again incorrectly. The new employee might shrug it off and accept a somewhat close enough variation of their name to avoid awkwardness – but they shouldn’t. 

Your name is your identity. It is what your family, friends, colleagues and even strangers use to call upon you. Our names have meaning, whether it is cultural, religious or personal, and are a part of who we are as an individual.

Repetitive mispronunciations can lead to people not feeling important or worthy then, and it can induce annoyance because the same people can easily pronounce Euro-centric names such as Niamh and Llewyn. 

This has driven some ethnic minorities to anglicise their name for the sake of being accepted. Failing to call someone by the name given to them is the eradication of the culture and heritage that has been bestowed upon them, and not only undermines inclusivity but can affect the person’s emotional well-being.

When you refuse to take the momentary effort to pronounce someone’s name correctly, it suggests your own discomfort with their identity and essentially shows that they aren’t important enough to expel the energy – making it a form of microaggression. 

Many influencers have come forward in support of owning their names. Yewande Biala from Love Island wrote for The Independent and has even written a book, Reclaiming, as an ode to reclaiming oneself a piece at a time. 

After experiencing teachers mispronouncing her name at school, Yewande wrote that she vowed to give her future children European or normative names. When she told this to her mother, her response was: “There is power in your name, and power in the tongue who speaks it. Raise your head, smile, and boldly tell them that your name is Yewande, daughter of Biala.”.

As a Black Woman with a strong African name, I have faced multiple forms of racism and microaggressions. My younger self barely understood the relevance of shortening my name. It wasn’t until my twenties that I learnt the true reason behind the shortening of my name: I chose to make it easier for others to pronounce my name by forgoing the entirety of my first name. I chose to put others’ comfortability first before my own. 

I distinctly remember a point in my life when I would hate to introduce myself because others couldn’t take a moment to ask or learn to pronounce my name correctly, instead, they chose to ‘remix’ my name.

I remember being uncomfortable hearing my name be pronounced differently and worse the dismissive attitude of the person when I tried to correct them. I learnt quickly that it would be easier to introduce myself with an easily pronounceable version of my name than to ask people to learn my full first name.

As I entered my twenties, however, I realised that no one knows who I am. Most people call me Nana and a fair few outside my family know me as Akosua or Akos yet not many know me as Nana Akosua. 

Although I still go by Nana, I no longer choose to forgo the entirety of my first name when introducing myself. My name has meaning and it is an embodiment of who I am. Nana means Queen/King and Akosua means Sunday born translating to Queen of Sunday. 

To truly understand the damaging effect of mispronouncing someone’s name, you have to educate yourself as to why names matter. 

In some cultures, names are given that are deeply rooted in social and cultural beliefs. In Ghana, Abadinto (outdooring) is a traditional naming ceremony. This occurs eight days after the birth of the child when parents present their newborn ‘outside’ for the first time to give them a ‘day’ name. A day name is chosen depending on the day of the week and the gender of the child. 

In other cultures such as India, an infant naming ceremony is called Naam Karan. It is a tradition where parents, families and relatives make extensive efforts to determine a suitable name for the child, often relying on astrological beliefs.

Our names hold power and should be celebrated. We all should therefore be making a conscious effort to pronounce them correctly. Take a moment or several to ask someone how to pronounce their name. The effort in asking shows a willingness to learn, which is duly appreciated and acknowledged. 

Content creator and poet known by her pseudonym simplysayo introduces herself as “Adésayó not Sayo” on her podcast Nailing It, reminding everyone of who she is whilst owning her name. 

Having phonetic spelling in your bio or email helps to educate people and alleviate social hesitation. It also helps to normalise the practice for others and makes it easier for those who benefit from it to do the same. 

It is worth noting and remembering how different people prefer their names to be said, even if it requires more effort. Taking the time to pronounce a person’s name correctly conveys respect and inclusion and a willingness to treat everyone equally. 

We should make saying names a positive experience for everyone. We have the power to promote a more positive, diverse, inclusive and accepting culture and environment. 

Take power in owning your name, like I have of mine.

THE top video podcasts you should be listening to right now 

We look at why vodcasts have become so popular – and which ones you should be watching

By Nana Akosua Frimpong

Wednesday, 26th of October 2022

Over the last few years, we’ve seen an influx of creators take to podcasting alongside posting on their various other channels. 

While podcasting has been around for more than a decade, video podcasts have grown in popularity as it connects listeners to the hosts in a different way – and adds another element to the way in which you can consume the content. 

Video podcasts have created an opportunity for listeners to feel much more involved, almost as though they are privy to behind-the-scenes of the filming process. 

It has created an intimate interaction between the host and their listeners, as they pick up on body language nuances that you can’t experience through audio. It creates a feeling of being part of the conversation as it transpires.

With 24.2% of users going on YouTube to watch and listen to podcasts, it’s no surprise that Spotify has taken to expanding its podcast resources to include vodcasts. Pushing this expansion to other territories such as Italy, Germany, France, Spain and others, Spotify is looking to compete with YouTube and Apple Podcasts as the best platform for vodcasts.

Here, we share a few of our favourite video podcasts where the conversations are real, unfiltered and, most importantly, entertaining.

Nailing it: A Spotify Original vodcast about navigating the everyday challenges and toasting the triumphs of life in your twenties with your hosts Priscilla Anyabu, Wunmi Bello and Adesayo Talabi aka Simply Sayo.

The Receipts Podcast: A Spotify exclusive podcast where Your girl, Tolly T, Just Call me Audrey and your Mamacita Milena Sanchez come together to give their fun and honest truths about anything and everything.

Cocktails and Takeaways: Hosted by Madame Joyce, C&T is a podcast all about oversharing, unpopular opinions, failed relationships, light-hearted banter, celebrity gossip, world news and everything in between with a dash of alcohol to keep in good spirits. 

Call her daddy: Alex Cooper hosts the most listened-to podcast by women. Cooper cuts through the small talk with every guest and topic. Asking the questions you want answers to, you can never guess what is going to happen or be said.

Private Parts: Join Made in Chelsea’s Jamie Laing and friends as they dive deep under the covers of your favourite celeb’s lives to find out their most intimate stories and naked truths.

Say It with your chest: Hosted by Char, this is a visual podcast that shines the light on the corners of important conversations that are often missed out of the media or seen as taboo.

Working hard, hardly working: Grace Beverely moves away from the traditional business podcast rhetoric to get a better understanding of what actually goes on behind the scenes of the brightest success stories. 

Diary of a CEO: The unfiltered journey into the remarkable people who have defined culture, achieved greatness and created stories worth studying. Hosted by entrepreneur Steven Bartlett, this podcast regularly tops the podcast charts. 

The Peter Crouch Podcast: Hosted by Pete Crouch, this podcast is a guide to being a professional football player with insight on dressing rooms, transfers, managers, football confessions and everything in between. 

ShxtsNGigs: A weekly podcast from two best friends, James and Fuhad, where they try to give their full, unfiltered opinion on anything that comes to mind. 

On Purpose with Jay Shetty: Join Jay Shetty as he has fascinating conversations with the most insightful people in the world.

Pass the Meerkat: 8D Audio of the animated web series hosted by 9 Black/Asian men from London. The guys give their interesting takes on a variety of topics and share crazy stories.

JaackMaate’s Happy Hour: Join Jack and Stevie as they invite an array of the internet’s best celebrities to join the conversation ranging from YouTube drama to life’s big questions.

Saving Grace – Join TikTok’s GKBarry for absolutely outrageous conversations with a selection of very special guests, walking you through her WILD life filled with embarrassing stories from university and beyond.

Podcasts have an innate ability to reach a captive audience with personalised messaging and with many podcasters having built a passionately dedicated following over the years, brands would be remiss not to consider podcast adverts as a marketing tool.

Spotify keeping up and listening to its audience’s preference by boosting video podcasting on its platform is a step in the right direction. It is also an excellent opportunity for brands to further connect with new audiences or engage their current audience through authentic brand partnerships. 

Podcasts or vodcasts are intimate and trusted digital media channels that reach people in a very direct and personal way, and they offer brands the ultimate opportunity to gain insights into their audiences and creative solutions that can truly capture consumer attention.

What vodcast keeps you engaged and entertained?

The live stream event Raising Millions for Charity

Z Event 2022 raised over €10 million

By Nana Akosua Frimpong

Friday, 14th of October 2022

Z Event is a gaming charity project organised every year since 2016 by well-known gaming creators Adrien Nougaret and Alexandre Dachary. Named after his online pseudonym ZeratoR, Adrien alongside Alexandre organises the annual Twitch event to bring together French streamers and players whilst raising money for charity. 

Streaming events are well-known and popular everywhere but what makes Z Event special is the unique format. The event takes place face-to-face with personalities invited by the pair and the public tune in remotely, watching live on Twitch via the player’s channels. The three-day marathon welcomes all types of streamers from around the world to participate in hilarious challenges, mentor new streamers and produce worthwhile content with the ultimate goal of connecting with each other and raising money.

Adrien and Alexandre, aka ZeratoR and Dach, unexpectedly started the Z Event in Adrien’s living room back in 2016 when they invited fifteen streamer friends over to join Belgian player Athene’s humanitarian battle call to raise funds in aid of Ethiopia’s famine crisis. That year, they raised 170,000. 

The success of the first unofficial event prompted Adrien and Alexandre to improvise and organise another the year after. The team grew to include well-known influencers in gaming such as Doigby, Mister MV and Sardoche, and they raised 500,000 for the French Red Cross.

Since the first unexpected and unpretentious event, Z Event has grown and consistently broken its previous donation record. In 2021, for example, they raised a whopping €10 million for Action Against Hunger.

With the help of 57 gaming personalities and over 50 hours of streaming, this year’s Z Event in September raised donations across five charity organisations – Time for the Planet, Sea Shepherd, The Bird Protection, WWF and the Sea Cleaners.

It started with a fun-filled musical concert featuring musical ensemble French Fuse, beatboxing crew Berywam, rapper Soprano and many more. The opening night also saw participants share their donation goal cards all across Twitter using the hashtag #ZEvent2022.

Streamers use donation goal cards to set challenges to complete when a donation goal is reached. This is tracked on the participants’ Twitch channel as they stream online. Viewers are then able to see when a goal is reached and watch the streamer complete their challenge. 

Streamer Ceb set a goal of coaching a viewer live on his channel when he reached a donation goal of $7,500, whilst another streamer pledged to send a picture of Lionel Messi to Cristiano Ronaldo Jr on Instagram when his donation goal reached €1,000,000.

Each participant created their own donation goal making it entertaining for viewers everywhere. 

Z Event is also known to attract well-known celebrities. On the second day of this year’s event, French streamer Etoiles invited TV host, actor and director Alain Chabat to host Z Event’s quiz game “Questions for the streamers: Burger Edition”.

Over the three-day action-packed marathon event, viewers tuned in to watch their favourite streamers’ Twitch channels, donate and join in on the fun. This year, Z Event raised €10.1 million with a massive upsurge in viewership. 

Every year, fans of the event look forward to joining the event, and it goes without saying that Z Event has become a staple in the French Twitch gaming community.

The event has not just become a big opportunity for streamers to grow their platform but to connect with their fans by showing their real and personable side – and fans can be active participants. 

Twitch is a platform that enables communities and Adrien and Alexandre have taken the opportunity to not only shed light on world issues through charitable donations, but to also grow a community where people can reach out and learn from their mentors. 

It has become evident that streamers love to challenge themselves and others and so we are likely to see more creator-led streaming events in the future. 

Will you be tuning into the next Twitch live stream or, like Z Event fans, are you eagerly awaiting the 2023 event that is sure to be even bigger and better than the last one? 

Check out the best of #ZEvent2022 on YouTube.

What is Quiet Quitting and will it last?

The latest trend to take over the workplace

By Bella Hales

Friday, 7th of October 2022

Quiet Quitting is the latest buzzword to emerge on TikTok in the past few months, exploding in America and quickly taking over Europe. Contrary to what it sounds like, it isn’t about quitting at all. Instead, it represents a rising trend where employees are actively embracing the traditional concept of ‘work-to-rule’ – but this time, as more of an antidote to relentless work expectations, long hours and post pandemic fatigue. Quiet Quitting builds on the emergence of a culture which embraces the work/life balance. 

The term was coined by American TikToker, Zaid Khan aka @Zaidleppelin, who posted a video in July 2022 after his job as a software engineer became all encompassing. In his post on TikTok, he encouraged people to renounce hustle culture and quit “the idea of going above and beyond”, arguing that you as an individual are worth more than just your labour and that “work is not your life”.

In a recent interview, he summarised the reasoning behind the movement, stating that “overworking only gets you so far. And like a lot of us have experienced in the past few years, mental and physical health really takes a backseat to productivity in a lot of these corporate environments.” This idea sure hit home, with his social media post being viewed by 3.5 million people.

It is no coincidence that this trend comes with the influx of Gen Z’s joining the corporate world. In a survey carried out by ResumeBuilder.com, 30% of people between the ages 25 and 34 said that within their workplace, they are doing the bare minimum, which is in stark contrast to 8% of workers who are over 54 years of age. This indicates that the younger generation are more inclined to take a step back and remove themselves from certain responsibilities.  

It is also clear that the pandemic has changed people’s attitude towards work. An associate professor at the University of Nottingham, Maria Kordowicz, told the Guardian that the rise in Quiet Quitting is linked to a noticeable fall in job satisfaction. She stated “the search for meaning has become far more apparent. There was a sense of our own mortality during the pandemic, something quite existential around people thinking ‘What should work mean for me? How can I do a role that’s more aligned to my values?”.

This heightened sense of self and ability to challenge previously accepted norms is part of the work revolution, where there is a growing confidence that it is good to look after yourself and work life balance is healthy. Quiet Quitting normalises this mindset; it’s not aggressive, but is a clear antithesis to the ‘work every hour you can’ ethos.

But this idea of covert action is not necessarily healthy – both for employees or employers. Stepping aside from certain responsibilities without conversation can create an atmosphere of distrust and secrecy. It would be far more beneficial for employees to be able to have an open dialogue with their employers so that they can create a better working environment and there be greater opportunities for change.

Crucially and undeniably, the role a job plays in our lives has shifted. It means the ways in which we are working – and where we are working from – are changing. And though the pandemic might have been the catalyst for the Great Resignation and Quiet Quitting, this isn’t something that started with the COVID crisis. These feelings of dissatisfaction in the workplace were there already, the pandemic simply acted as an accelerant. Now, employees are prioritising workplaces that cater more to their needs and offer a better work/life balance. Instead, things like flexible hybrid working, ensuring you take lunch breaks and frank discussions about burnout and mental health are seen as the tent poles to a good working environment – and that’s definitely a good thing and one we encourage.

Social media has allowed employees to take matters into their own hands, but with the cost of living and major recession, these trends may well be slowed down – and the quiet confidence that allowed employees to Quiet Quit could be halted altogether.

Trendsetters: Scandinavian Fashion

Where Sustainability meets Style

By Milan Charles

Friday, 30th of September 2022

Scandinavian style has become the fashion crowd’s most coveted aesthetic. With brands like Arket and Ganni growing in popularity, the Scandinavian look breaks away from the glitz and glamour of fast fashion and leans into a slower, more attainable, and most importantly sustainable lifestyle.

This is nothing new. Scandinavian lifestyle trends have been all the rage for years, and if you’ve been scrolling through Instagram, you’ll see many are doing their best to replicate them in their wardrobes and homes. 

Capturing the unique characteristics that Norway, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland have in common, the Scandinavian style is about far more than just aesthetics. It’s a philosophy encompassing art, furniture and interior design, mindset, attitude, lifestyle and cultural norms. 

Looking to adopt the Scandinavian style yourself? Here, we share some guidelines for you to live by:

Sustainable and Ethical Fashion Choices

Scandi fashion goes beyond aesthetics to promote sustainable and ethical living by removing what’s not necessary and focusing on what’s left – as well as higher quality and longer-lasting items. Finnish fashionista, Sandra Emeliah, adds her own personal touch to Scandinavian fashion by finding staple items second-hand and championing slow fashion.

Everything Must Go With Everything

The idea behind the Scandi style is that everything must go with everything. You can play with textures, but mainly within a neutral colour palette. Characterised by functionality and minimalism, Nordic clothing mixes high-quality solid fabrics with sleek accessories and elegant details creating a look that is both casual and stylish at the same time. Check out Phalguni, from Sweden, for ultimate neutral fashion inspo.

Comfort First

The Scandinavian design aims to improve people’s lives under the modernist mantra “form follows function”. To achieve the ultimate state of cosiness, most Scandinavian clothing breaks the confinements of form-fitting shapes. In Copenhagen, Maria Jonsson marries style and comfort perfectly – often spotted in airy fabrics and loose-fitting silhouettes, her wardrobe embodies this mantra. 

Building a Capsule Collection – Items that are High Quality and Long-lasting

The typical Nordic wardrobe is not about what’s trendy and completely about what’s timeless with simple and classic clean-cut lines. For instance, you’ll rarely see Scandinavians wear T-shirts with flashy logos or extreme embellishments. Instead, the style opts for long-lasting items, basics and tailored pieces that you can repurpose throughout the seasons for many years to come. Swedish content creator and healthcare worker Lydia Tsegay has been building her Scandi-inspired capsule collection over the years. Her ethos is “personal style, not fashion” truly embodies the Scandi way.

Genderless Clothing 

The Scandinavian fashion industry challenges gender stereotypes, with many brands opting for a more fluid approach to style. Nordic countries have maybe the most inclusive cultures, with the dress code being one of the many ways in which they demonstrate this to the world. The Scandi street style tends to feature androgynous silhouettes or outfits consisting of both masculine and feminine items. William from Norway and Emelie from Sweden could most likely share a wardrobe, leaning heavily into genderless street style with a heavy Scandinavian influence. 

So, what do you think – could you adopt a Scandinavian wardrobe? If you’re still in need of a little inspiration, check out these content creators:

Nicole, Stockholm

Anna Sofia, Stockholm

Elin Wahlberg, Sweden 

Greta Urban, Sweden

Selina, Denmark

Austeja, Norway 

Dina Hansen, Norway

The Fifth wins two blogosphere awards

We were the Beauty Creator Campaign Winners for our work with fenty beauty

By Esra Gurkan

Monday, 26th of September 2022

We’re absolutely over the moon to have won two awards at the Blogosphere Awards last week.

We were delighted to be announced as the Beauty Creator Campaign Winner for our collaboration with Fenty Beauty and their Fenty Icon Lipstick. A special shout out to the incredible creators ALICE x T, Danielle Marcan, Candice Brathwaite, Anchal, Ava Welsing-Kitcher, Alice Dickson, Michaela and Lisa Potter Dixon who helped bring this campaign to life. THE FIFTH’s Charlie RossFreya Sheard and Milan Charles also deserve a special mention for working tirelessly on the campaign and for sourcing the perfect creators.

Not only that, THE FIFTH TALENT’s creator Tasha Bailey also won Health and Wellbeing creator of the year. If you don’t follow her already, Tasha is a qualified therapist and creator who uses her Instagram platform to talk about all things mental health, anxiety and wellness.

Bringing a modern and intersectional perspective to the topic of wellness, Tasha openly reflects on her experiences as a Black British, plus-size woman navigating a field which lacks diversity. Tasha is passionate about systemic change for mental health and intersectionality, and enjoys working closely with brands to encourage this. As a qualified creative psychotherapist, she brings her expert knowledge to the social media space in a “real talk” way.

Congratulations to the Fenty Beauty team, to Tasha and to all nominees. What a night!

Shuffles: Pinterest’s worst kept secret

The new collage-making app that is already trending everywhere

By Laina Claydon

Friday, 16th of September 2022

Shuffles by Pinterest is a new app designed for collective collaging. You can ‘unleash your creative energy’ and build your own aesthetic scrapbook-esque mood board using photos from Pinterest’s library or photos you’ve taken yourself.

Soon after it was released, Shuffles managed to have its own trend on TikTok, where these “aestheticcollages were then set to music and posted. This helped create a buzz around the app and is also where a lot of people found out it wasn’t as easy as just popping into the AppStore to download it. 

Interestingly, Pinterest decided to go down the ‘invite only’ route with Shuffles. If you’re lucky enough to receive a code from somebody who already has the app then you can download it and share a code with five others. If they’re too late and your five exclusive codes have already been used up, they’ll receive a ‘we’ve reached the limit for this invite code’ message.

Understandably, this exclusivity tactic has led to more of a buzz around the app and created FOMO for those that can’t get a code. When something seems limited, time-sensitive or exclusive, it only makes you want it more, however this strategy doesn’t always work. Clubhouse, for example, launched with a similar technique but hasn’t been able to sustain its popularity since. It does, though, give Shuffles more time to fix any bugs that emerge and make changes to the app before it’s available to the masses. Pinterest was originally released in this format back in 2012, and there are already TikTok accounts dedicated to Shuffles such as @pinterestshuffles_ and @pinterestshuffles.x whose only posts include giving out codes for others to get on the app. It’s like a secret club!

Admittedly, this is an interesting marketing strategy from Pinterest. Last year they introduced an in-house team, called TwoTwenty, whose sole focus is to grow the user base through innovation, and they are the same people who released this app. It’s safe to say that this was a success as Shuffles has already spent time as the No.1 Lifestyle app in the US App Store. There are even videos on TikTok showing users how to create their very own Shuffles and people sharing their love of the app

On Shuffles, users can choose to add effects and motion to the images to make them shake, spin, pulse, swivel and more. You could, for instance, add an image of a record player and then animate it so that it actually spins. Other cool features include being able to ‘reshuffle’ someone else’s Shuffles, meaning you can take another user’s design and customise it to make it your own.

Like with any other trend or creation, once something is popular on one platform, it then spreads across others in similar forms. We aren’t, for example, just seeing this collage content on Shuffles anymore. TikTok users are already jumping on it and calling it the ‘collage trend’, and people are using apps such as Canva, Capcut, and Magic Eraser to create that similar ‘cut-out’ style and put it to music on the platform.

Shuffles is also very similar to a new iOS 16 feature from Apple. Here, you can effortlessly crop an object from one of your photos and then paste that cutout anywhere you choose – like in an iMessage chat. You only need to touch and hold to lift the image away from the background. Cool, right? This style of content is also becoming more common on Instagram ‘Reels’.

Even since beginning writing this article, Tiktok has now created a filter to give a very similar ‘cut-out’ effect which feels eerily familiar.

Shuffles is targeting a younger demographic that’s using social media in a new way: for self-expression, not just networking. Why the app is resonating with Gen Z seems to be a combination of the technology it uses to simplify collage-making, coincided with the desire for creative expression tools that serve that demographics’ social habits.

The app also opens up new social commerce opportunities. The objects in users’ collages, for example, are linked to Pinterest and a tap will bring you to a dedicated page for the item in question. In the case of items that are available for purchase — like fall fashion or home decor, for instance — users could also buy the item by clicking through to the retailer’s website.

Shuffles has provided users with a great way to get creative and people are using this app for a variety of reasons, from creating their dream outfit to their dream home. It might even be the new platform to create memes such as this beauty. And despite its soft launch, Shuffles is currently placed number 21 in the lifestyle section of the UK AppStore. Will it fall out of popularity, or will it continue to rise as more users are allowed access to the platform? Only time will tell.