Binge subtitled watching, dry dating, equity investing - Top pop culture trends of 2022
- In 2022, dry dates became the norm, with most singles opting for sober outings, according to dating platforms Tinder and Bumble.
Revenge traveland revenge shopping massively influenced consumer behaviour in 2022.
- Conversations on finance dominated Twitter, especially on topics around cryptocurrency and decentralised finance.
AdvertisementThe year of 2022 will always be remembered as the one that marked a ‘beginning of the end of the Covid’. As a number of new normals came to be during the pandemic, this year itself set its own set of trends — some which might stay on and some that would vanish.
Dates goes through a ‘dry’ spell
For two years, singles have checked vaccination status of possible dates and their stance on ‘masks’ before swiping. In 2022, dating turned dry where people don’t want to drink on dates. What’s worse is that they don’t wanna want dinner together either as per a Tinder’s Year in Swipe Report for 2022
Apart from sober dates, people want to check the stance on social issues – from politics to LGBTQ+ – before they agree to have a coffee or even a smoothie with a potential romantic interest.
“While they (young adults) may go on blind dates, they no longer turn a blind eye to red flags and increasingly look for green flags or positives in a match or a relationship,” said Dr Chandni Tugnait, Life Coach & Tinder’s relationship expert.
In its 2022 dating predictions, Bumble also said that ‘34% of folks using the Bumble app say they’re more likely to go on a ‘dry date’ now than pre-Covid’. With Covid waning, maybe there are less reasons to drink on a date or otherwise?
Out of lockdowns - Revenge travel
Travel has come a long way since the pandemic, from taking incoming travellers right into quarantine to 2022 – when airports are so congested that people are being asked to arrive 3.5 hours in advance to catch a domestic flight.
As lockdowns ended, vaccinations increased and Covid itself turned milder with the Omicron wave – people stepped out of the four walls and rode into the sunsets. It’s now called revenge travel as people are going for more trips – even if they are shorter.
As per the Travel Lifestyle Network survey, India was the global leader in domestic travel with 24% people undertaking at least one vacation every month. The global average stands at 11%.
AdvertisementSo much so, domestic air traffic in November stood at over 4 lakh in November 2022 - though it’s still not close to pre-pandemic levels.
And the number is only expected to rise further in 2023.
“Despite some current instability felt globally, nearly 72% (people) report that travelling will always be worth it. If 2022 was about the triumphant return of travel, 2023 will be about creatively reimagining it amidst the chaos,” shared online travel agency Booking.com.
Travel search engine Kayak also surveyed 1900 people and reported that the top three reasons Indians are travelling again are to explore the world (62%), live out their dreams (61%), and chase thrills (55%).
Revenge shopping led to a dip in household savings for Indians
AdvertisementPandemic made people make large and chunky investments as auto and home sales went up and kept going up in 2022 in spite of multiple interest rate hikes. Stores opened and people stepped into them in droves – triggering the trend of revenge shopping — be it clothes, accessories, make-up and all forms of consumer goods.
But that did not take away the sheen of online shopping that saw a dream run during the pandemic.
“Simultaneous growth of online and offline revalidates the domestic consumption story and indicates ample growth opportunities for both formats,” said a Redseer report.
According to the Redseer report, the festive season saw bumper sales online with 64% of the transacting shoppers coming from Tier 2+ cities — showing that a new set of consumers are going online.
Yet, if economists are to be believed, this trend might wane off. The love for shopping in the face of rising inflation put a dent on consumers’ savings with Indian household savings falling to a five-year low in 2021-22.
Indians changed they way they invested
Pandemic, or the end of it, seems to have made Indians stop playing it safe. Bank deposits, which have been where Indians always packed their excess cash, are now no longer popular. They are favouring equities and the love for deposits is fast vanishing from metro and urban markets.
As per reports, in October 2022, monthly investments into SIPs crossed a record ₹13,000 crore.
Showing that young and novice investors are keen on changing their investment patterns is evident in Twitter searches. Most of them searched for NFTs, cryptocurrency, and later, the cryptocurrency crash, making ‘Finance goes social’ one of the biggest trends on the social media giant.
Tweets about finance went up 78% YoY, as per the Twitter Trends Report 2022. “Finance Twitter used to be exclusive, highly technical… and just kinda boring. Crypto and DeFi (decentralised finance) have blown those notions right out of the water” stated Twitter.
Reading while watching
It’s not what it sounds like – people are not flipping books while watching TV. Instead they are watching shows, series and movies in languages they do not understand and reading subtitles to understand dialogues.
While hit movies like KGF-Chapter 1 and RRR were dubbed in Hindi, OTT viewers tuned into Korean Squid Game and Spanish Money Heist as well. In general, Indians across the nation are looking down South for entertainment as their popularity with the Hindi audience stayed on – as seen with Kannada superhit, Kantara.
On the other hand, Bramhastra too was dubbed in four South Indian languages–Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and Kannada–showing movies, like music, too have a universal language and appeal.
New-age celebs go traditional
The lines between social media celebrities (or ‘influencers’) and mainstream stars is starting to blur and how!
After debuting with a cameo in Netflix’s Ghost Stories, popular influencer Kusha Kapila played a working pregnant woman in Netflix's Masaba Masaba S2 this year. YouTuber Prajakta Kohli was also part of the multi-starrer drama Jugjugg Jeeyo and returned for S2 of Netflix’s Mismatched.
Vishnu Kaushal, famous for his ‘peach gang’ and hilarious sketches, made his acting debut with the drama series Feels Like Home. He was also nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category at the Filmfare OTT Awards 2022.
This trend will continue to grow. In 2023, Dr Trinetra, one of the most popular and active voices on social media for sexual health and the Indian trans community, will star in the highly anticipated sequel of Amazon Prime Video’s Made in Heaven.
Going green, everywhere
Apart from buying EVs, Indians are embracing climate sensitivity in multiple ways. From weddings to dating to travelling – they are thinking green. And they are willing to pay the extra buck too, as per a EY Future Consumer Index report.
“Consumers are choosing to make more sustainable purchases, doing what they can to preserve their environment, with 56% saying they will pay more attention to the environmental impact of their purchases and 52% committing to pay more attention to the social impact,” stated the report.
Kayak also reported that 43% respondents consider sustainability as one of their main criteria for a summer holiday.
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