Cozy up with a #PSL and pull on your riding boots. Autumn is on its way, writes Bridget Johnston.
A quick scroll through Instagram will confirm that, for many people, fall is not just a season – it’s the season. The crisp air, the crunchy leaves. People love it.
So, how can advertisers tap into that enthusiasm? What images should they turn to?
To find which trends are clickiest, we consulted our artificial intelligence platform, Shutterstock.AI. The tool analyzed every image and video in its data set (including more than 600 billion creative data points) to determine the click-through rates (CTRs) for “objects present” in content.
So, are cozy sweaters up or down? Are pumpkin pies in, or out? Here’s what we learned:
Set your content outside
The pandemic hasn't gone away, which means many of us are unsure of whether we’ll have another winter spent social distancing and cooped up inside. Perhaps that’s why, according to AI, people seem interested in making the most of the great outdoors while they still can: the most clickable content features scenes outside.
- Videos and imagery of hiking are 112% and 155% more clickable, respectively, than they were in fall of 2020.
- Bonfires are 126% more likely to be featured in ads this year, and their CTR has remained strong and steady since pre-pandemic times.
- Consumers are even clicking more often on corn mazes and hay fields, with their CTRs surging 132% this year.
If you’d rather go with indoor settings, AI has detected a few features that will boost your content’s clickability: Videos that feature fireplaces have seen their CTR increase 200% since this time last year. And, imagery with books have seen their CTR increase 179% over the same time period.
Play up fall fashion
AI discovered that the following cool-weather pieces have the highest engagement rates this year:
- Boots, which saw an 89% CTR increase (in images) from last year
- Sweaters, which saw a 19% CTR boost (in images) from last year
- Jackets, which saw a 50% increase in CTR (in video) from fall of 2020
- Beanies, which saw a 177% increase in CTR (in video) from last year.
AI also noticed a shift in clickable colors. In a move away from 2020’s wider variety of popular hues, data tells us that dark greens reminiscent of camouflage have become the most clickable shades this fall. In fact, dark olive green has seen its CTR rise 233% since this time last year.
Bewitching costumes drive clicks
Trick-or-treating took a big hit throughout much of the US last year, and that shift was observable in ad creative. In fact, according to AI, costumes’ use in ads dropped 43% since 2019.
But, when looking at holiday-specific sartorial choices, nothing tops Halloween.
The CTR for imagery of costumes has continued to hold a solid performance. Videos featuring costumes have seen increasing success, with a 282% higher CTR this year. And, interestingly enough, witches in particular have seen a 178% boost in CTR since 2020.
Curate the most clickable feast
Once the candy is eaten and the costumes are put away, all thoughts turn toward what will be another unique Thanksgiving.
In terms of imagery, pies top the charts. They’re the most clickable fall food content for photos, with a CTR that’s increased 23% since this time last year.
Despite candy’s popularity at Halloween, fruit has it beat in terms of clickability. (Fruit has a 28% higher CTR than imagery of candy. Can you believe it?) The CTR for apples in particular has risen 6% since this time last year.
Videos of feasts have gone up 109% in clickability since 2019. And, when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, AI’s findings may surprise you: Ham has a 381% higher CTR than turkey!
Soup has also seen a 115% boost in CTR when compared to fall 2020.
If your feast needs drinks and place settings, keep these findings in mind:
- Red wine has decreased 59% in clickability since last fall. Audiences are more inclined to click on content that features beer and cocktails.
- AI has predicted the perfect after-dinner drink: Lattes have a 461% higher CTR than black coffee.
- Candles will boost your CTR, too. Their clickability has gone up 385% since this time last year.