A quick search for selfie on Instagram will bring over a 140 million results, and Twitter, you’ll get about 240 posts per minute. Which means, unfortunately that the selfie is probably not going away anytime soon. The real question is what is next for the selfie? According to Dr. James Canton, CEO of the Institute for Global Futures, apparently a lot.
According to Dr. Canton, brands will start to look towards selfie creators to create unique branded content for social campaigns. Let’s examine what is probably the most popular selfie of all time, the infamous Oscar selfie which went on to smash Twitter records as the most retweeted tweet of all time. Ellen’s selfie was actually a very ingenious product placement by Samsung, the tweet according to Publicis CEO Maurice Levy, was valued anywhere between $800 million and $1 billion dollars. While brands probably won’t see another moment like this, they do have the opportunity to leverage other selfie influencer’s like Norwegian artist, Helene Meldahl, who has recently been gaining a lot of attention (and Instagram followers) for her whimsical mirror selfies. She’s already showcased what she could do with branded content for east coast ice cream chain Thomas Sweets, could other brands be far behind?
With influencers creating great content for brands, how can brands create great content for themselves? JC Penny recently launched “Express Yourselfie,” an interactive campaign where it invites students to create a personalized emoji that expresses their personal style, then shares their creation alongside a selfie via the “Express Yourselfie” online gallery and on social media with the #expressyourselfie. The online experience also allows teens to view shopping suggestions based on what features they added to their emoji.
Chicago landmark Cloud Gate aka “The Bean” is also getting in on the selfie action with a new social media campaign called “Seen @ The Bean.” Which takes what people are already doing when they visit the famous sculpture, taking selfies, and curating them in an online gallery to showcase how people from all over the world view the same object, and in turn, hopefully generate more excitement and tourism dollars to come into Chicago.
The selfie has engrained itself in our popular culture and has begun to infiltrate itself into advertising and social campaigns. So what do I think is in store for the selfie? With the oversaturation of the selfie filling newsfeeds, the effectiveness will eventually (hopefully soon) wane. But now that you’re able to put a selfie on your toast, the selfie is still holding strong. So like it or loath it, the reign of the selfie is far from over.