This past November & December, we had the incredible opportunity to visit our diverse and talented author community across Vietnam & Indonesia. Here, we brought our new series of Envato Worldwide Conferences to Asia for the very first time.
We invited authors to connect and engage with all things Envato, share feedback on new products, platforms or changes, meet fellow authors, while also reflecting on the past year, lessons learned and hopes for the new year.
For our Envato team, it’s been a privilege to be able to hear from authors on the things that matter to them the most and the ways we can work better together in the future, including more author and item insights, the value of localization, responding to changing customer demands and more.
Thank you to all the amazing authors who contributed and volunteered their time to make this a success and welcomed us into their city, their home with open arms – we couldn’t have done this without you.
We also thank you for also teaching us two very important things. In Vietnam, when you put two fingers together in a shape of a heart, it means to give love – and it reminds us that we should always give love in everything we do.
In Indonesia, we learned that no matter where you are from or who you are, visiting this place feels like ‘pulang kampung‘ or coming home – because you become family. This sentiment reminds us that we now have over 150 more family members to visit each year.
Highlights on Tour: A Run-down of Envato Presentations and Observations.
Across our series of conferences, authors and staff engaged on a number of topics, particularly around selling on Elements and the changing landscape for authors as customer demands shift and evolve over time. This included upcoming trending categories such as flutter, uploading behaviours and using the Elementor page builder, as well as updates to the current review process.
The Envato staff team also presented on a number of key topics including; The Value of Understanding Author Feedback, Getting to Know Envato Customers, How Trends Evolve and Rising Trends, Looking at Envato in 2020 and Beyond.
All events were led and coordinated by Louise – our talented Envato Worldwide Events Manager, who works with authors everyday to create unique and engaging conferences, bridging both Envato HQ and local author communities together from around the world.
The Future of the Author Dashboard by Jimmy, Envato Associate Product Manager.
In Jimmy’s presentation, he addressed some of the common feedback that Envato receives from authors and discussed the ways in which we are responding. Here, he introduced the exciting future of the Author Dashboard, a project that will help to visualise and communicate item performance, portfolio insights and earnings information to authors in one unified space.
Our team also conducted user testing and collected feedback into what authors are looking for and need when it comes to these insights.
Understanding Envato’s Customers by Brett, Envato Senior Product Manager.
In Brett’s presentation, he took authors through the different types of Envato customers and what they’re looking for when they visit our marketplaces, including one-off buyers, a semi-regular buyer and a regular buyer. Here, he looked at how they use each platform and why – he asked, what value do customers receive from each platform and how can authors take advantage of this information.
Knowing who is buying your item and why is an important way for authors to design and create better items that meet these needs, whether its for a one-off buyer vs. a regular buyer looking to learn, experiment or want something more advanced. Focusing on your platform and content-type (e.g video, web, graphics) it’s crucial to know what your users look like and why.
Once this is done, he then asks authors to look at their portfolio and answer whether the current items they’ve created offer something for these customers and if not, is there an opportunity to take advantage of?!
The Latest Opportunity – Flat Illustration by Jonathan, Envato Associate Product Manager.
In Jonathan’s presentation, he looked at the importance of having a pulse on current industry trends and anticipating future market movement when creating relevant content for customers. In his presentation, he examined what it means to be a ‘trend’ and how a trend evolves overtime.
Here, he focused specifically on the rising star of ‘Flat Illustration’ – using basic principles to create quick and easy illustrations that are emotive, diverse and have the ability to provide context to typical user scenarios within digital products (aside from landing pages). He recommended tools such as icons8.com/ouch and Humaaans.com to help source inspiration for illustrations and ways to leverage the trend as it grows.
Trends in Review & Predictions in 2020 by Sarah, Envato Author Development Coordinator.
In Sarah’s presentation, she showcased some of the top trends from 2019 based on customer search data and introduced top predictions for 2020. Here, she shared some of the most popular searches by customers from the past year and the top trending styles across content types, including; Isometric Drawings, Comic Style, Neon, Glitch, Cyberpunk and more. Top cross-site themes in search also included Podcast, eSports and Gaming, Era (80’s/90’s), Quiz and Geographic/Regional Terms, reflecting more demand for specific localised regional content across the globe.
We also saw the impact of social media with Instagram, YouTube and Facebook continuing to rank as the most popular sites for creative content both in the industry, but also backed up by what people are purchasing on Envato’s marketplaces. In particular, item functionality that improves the social media experiences on websites continues to be in demand, for example vertical video.
We also explored how smaller social media platforms, like TikTok are making their way to the top,and how keeping an eye on changes in the industry can be very valuable as they grow in popularity.
Looking into 2020 now, we can see rising visual and digital trends including; Portrait and Square photos, Drone Photography, People-Power related photos and themes around Artificial Intelligence and Augmented Reality. We also see trends in Fluid or Liquid animation, Gradients, Bold Colors & Texture, UX Illustration (or Flat Illustration) coming from a range of styles that have Isometric, Minimal, and Modernist inspirations. We are also predicting styles in 70’s Vintage and Brutalist or ‘Anti-Design,’ so think more functionality instead of beauty, using hard geometric concrete structures and angles.
Lastly, with Illustrator & Photoshop for iPad coming out and foldable phones just starting to appear, anticipate demand for items that help to facilitate these activities, such as designing on the go (while travelling) and for fully built mobile apps or UI collections.
*For more trend predictions and insights, keep an eye out for the 2020 Creative Trends Guide coming out soon!
Envato – Here, Now & Beyond by James, Envato Author Engagement Lead.
In James’ presentation, he explored Envato’s growing ecosystem and the work that we’re doing to create more opportunities for authors to earn a living, doing what they love. This included reaching important milestones, such as the addition of launching audio on Elements, reducing wait times for ThemeForest and VideoHive, completing ADP (Author Driven Pricing) for all sites and audio finger-printing all audio tracks. We also invested in new platforms such as Placeit, Twenty20, Mixkit and Milkshake.
Alongside these new ways to earn, James also explored a few practical ways to maximize an author’s potential to earn and some of the things Envato has been doing and is planning to do to help authors be effective and successful. This involved understanding what problems are being solved and how value is made for Envato. We believe value is created for authors, customers and Envato when we can connect the right item to the right customer. What does this mean?
This means paying careful attention to details such as traffic sources. Traffic gets to item pages from three primary sources; google search, Envato search and Envato category pages – but the source most likely to lead to a sale is google. It’s also important to master your marketing skills, including growing your email list, building your own community, educating your users, being strategic and exploring other avenues to earn, such as the Envato Market Affiliate Program and the Envato Elements Affiliate Program.
Looking into the future and lessons learned, James explored how we will be investing more into discovery features. The aim is to improve the percentage of customers who find what they are looking for through category pages and improving the way customers find content through search.
We will also be investing in the uploading experience. We have been working with a small group of authors to advise and help us prioritize improvements to uploading and we’re planning to launch these changes in coming months.
Lastly, we have also invested in the author’s experience, including redesigning the community blog, redesigning our author newsletters, made google analytics available to all exclusive authors, started improving the Envato Elite Rewards program and introduced the Envato Local Program worldwide.
Cities Snapshot: Check out the Photos & Presentations From Vietnam and Indonesia.
“Web designing is never a career to us, it’s a wonderful reflection of our life, our passion and our dreams.” Our very first event in Asia was organised by Ken from ThimPress at Goo Coworking space in Hanoi.
As a successful Power Elite Author, we were very lucky to have Grace from ThemeMove present their user persona study in web design, sharing insights into customer scenarios (potential, current, returning and future customers).
Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam.
Our second event was organised by Kelly and Tommy from NinjaTeam at Nhà hàng Én Tea House & Restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City.
Here, we had Toai from catsplugins present on how to make a profitable product for the long term, sharing insights on how to research an idea and how to identify your competitors. They also looked into what authors can do to be unique and effective when it comes to product development and sales.
We also had Minh from InspireUI present on building a best-selling mobile app and all the latest mobile development trends, followed by a Q & A. In his presentation, InspireUI shared their journey in building a best-selling e-commerce app by using React Native and Flutter for two years!
In Yogyakarta, our main event was organised by an extraordinary IdEA team (Indonesian Envato Authors community). This was held in Sambi Resort over 3 days, surrounded by beautiful nature, local food, culture and activities. The conference branding was especially designed by Deka from BadSyxn, which represented the beauty and diversity of Indonesian people and their islands.
We are extremely grateful for the incredible opportunity we had to witness this unique sense of community and collaboration. As our first large-scale, multi-day event, we could not have done this without the many authors and volunteers, who travelled from all over Indonesia to be here with us.
The main volunteer team included:
- Budi from bukrie
- Fahmy from afahmy
- Ingga from telllu
- Aditya from weirdeetz
- Aliv from VisualColony
- Imam from foundstrap
- Aryo from letterhend
- Ahya from ahyagawiss
- Agung from sahabatransel
- Fitryan from xwisnux
- Priyo from micromove
- Deka from BadSyxn
- Rizki from rautanstudio
On day one, we had a series of presentations from both staff and authors. This included two local author speakers, including Yanuar from uicreativenet. In his presentation, Yanuar shared his experiences of joining Envato and shifting from WordPress to Graphic Templates, then to Envato Elements. Here, he explored how to create a strong strategy to help build and recruit teams, managing operations and tools to work effectively as a team.
Rian from RahardiCreative also presented on his experience with Envato Elements and how it has changed his life. Coming from a self-taught design background, working as a Banker and moving to number of various other job opportunities over the years, he then attended an IdEA National Meetup and began selling on GraphicRiver and ultimately, Envato Elements. Using his experiences and lessons learned, Rian shared tips on how to research and invest in a winning product and become a successful full-time Designer.
For the following few days, we continued the conference by spending time outside together and exploring all that Yogyakarta has to offer. This began with an amazing trip to Borobudur temple, followed by rafting at CitraElo.
From there, we went back to the resort and had a BBQ, exchanging gifts, speeches and reflections on the past few days. This BBQ also included a local author market, where authors set-up stalls showcasing their work and we have the privilege of seeing them in-person and learn about their creative process. Here, we also received amazing caricatures by Rizki from rautanstudio to take home with us!
On the very last day, we took an unforgettable lava tour of Mt Merapi Volcano on Jeeps and was able to learn and experience the natural surroundings, both the devastation of past eruptions and the tranquility of the local area. We then visited the Ullen Sentalu Museum, where we learned about the local Javanese culture and art from royal houses and kratons.
We then returned back to the resort and had our final lunch together, where we reflected on the last few days and the exciting adventures to come in 2020!
Looking Ahead in 2020.
This past Envato Worldwide tour has been an incredible opportunity to see and experience firsthand, the unique lives and community of Envato authors in Asia. We learned about what authors need and want, and took this feedback, tips and ideas for future improvements back home with us.
We saw and felt the impact of community and the strength that comes from collaboration, peer-to-peer learning and networking with local authors. We felt the passion that only comes from doing what you love and those that you love, whether that’s a team, a family or a creative community.
Thank you to all the authors in Vietnam and Indonesia, who connected with us and took the time to attend the conference. To all the volunteers who helped us from the very beginning, whether that was registering authors at events, managing and securing the venue, to organizing food and activities – from the whole team at Envato HQ, we want to thank you for all your help in supporting your local event and community.
Here are some of the words that you used to describe the conference:
These words are powerful and we know that these experiences make a difference. We are excited to keep supporting you on this journey and help to create more amazing conferences together.
This is wrap! Now, India & Bangladesh – you’re next and we can’t wait to meet you.