Ad Fed held another breakfast event at the International Market Square this past Wednesday and this time we welcomed Ann Mack to present the top ten trends of 2011. Ann provided some very insightful and thought provoking points throughout her presentation about how consumer behavior has changed due to the slow recovering economy, our growing reliance on technology, and more. Here were some of the takeaways from her presentation.
1. All the World’s a Game
Social “one-up-manship” is at play. Social media is starting to turn life into a game. NIKE turned running into a game and apps like foursquare have made everyday tasks like running errands and buying coffee more fun and rewarding.
2. Urgency Economy
Group deals will continue to expand far and wide. Consumers like the gaming and urgency element (time’s running out!) that are offered by group deals. Group deals also make items that are normally seen as commodity products more exclusive.3. Non-Commitment Culture
High un-employment rates and a slow recovering economy have made consumers weary of committing to long contracts with companies. Mobile phone plans and car purchases have become difficult decisions for consumers to make and will continue to be the trend through the next few years.4. Eat, Pray, Tech
Technology keeps advancing and consumers are welcoming it. The need to be connected with the digital world, in some cases, has become even more important and than owning a car or even a house.
Technology may be openly embraced by consumers, especially by Millennials, but unplugging has also become important. Technology has become a distraction from our real connections to the people who we really care about. Ditch Facebook and go to Facepark.6. Retail as the Third Space
Retail stores aren’t just a place for the consumer to buy a product anymore. They need provide an experience that the consumer can enjoy. Retail spaces should be designed to be about face-to-face interaction and less about shopping, and simply allow customers to spend more time with the brand. Apple stores have been doing this for years and continue to set the gold standard.
7. Creative Urban Renewal
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been very important to consumers and continues to be. While being green and sustainable are still strong strategies to implement, companies are also taking a different approach to CSR by beautifying urban cities and advocating urban renewal.8. Worlds Colliding
The line between the digital and real world is getting blurred and will continue to blur. QR codes are being utilized more and more in today’s advertisements. Even the technology to create the Minority Report-style advertising is now available.9. Hyper Personalization
Businesses are becoming more specific with how they treat each consumer. Amazon recommends certain items for their customers based on their buying history and navigation through the site. Bing and Facebook partnered up to provide a more consumer centric search. Remember the Twitter Youtube videos that Old Spice created in response to individual tweets? That’s hyper personalization.10) Outsourcing Self Control
Technology has helped make our lives more efficient, connected, and also distracted. However, technology has also been a way for consumers to outsource self control for the things that we know we need to stop doing. Brands can build some goodwill by offering its consumers some help with self control. Got a habit you would like to break, like speeding, drunk texting (resulting in drunken digital remorse), buying one or two too many pairs of shoes, or texting while driving? There’s an app for that.
Here’s a two-minute video from JWT Intelligence, recapping the ten trends for 2011.
Thanks for everybody who attended and thanks to Ann Mack for giving us the scoop on what marketers should be keeping their eye out for this year.