Eleven Trends for 2011

Eleven key consumer trends to watch in 2011 include acts of kindness from brands, the developed world launching products for emerging economies, and online status symbols, according to consumer insights firm trendwatching.com.

Following is a brief overview of each of the 11 consumer trends which trendwatching.com predicts will have a global impact on marketers in 2011.

1.Random acts of kindness: Consumers’ cravings for realness, for the human touch, ensure that everything from brands randomly picking up the tab to sending a surprise gift will be one of the most effective ways to connect with (potential) customers in 2011, especially beleaguered consumers in North America, Europe and Japan.

trendwatching.com advises that the rapid spread of social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook among consumers gives brands previously unavailable insight into their moods, wants and locations, and also provides a new direct channel to deliver acts of kindness.

2.Urbanization: Urbanization remains one of the absolute mega trends for the coming decade, with about the global population currently living in urban areas. Urban consumers tend to be more daring, more liberal, more tolerant, more experienced, more prone to trying out new products and services. In emerging markets, these effects tend to be even more pronounced, with new arrivals finding themselves distanced from traditional social and familial structures, while constantly exposed to a wider range of alternatives.

3.Pricing Pandemonium: Mobile devices and social networks allow consumers to constantly receive targeted offers and discounts, even at the point of sale from a rival brand, as well as join interest groups. Brands should target consumers with offers and features such as instant mobile coupons and discounts, online group discounts, flash sales, and dynamic pricing based on real-time supply and demand.

4.Made for China/Emerging Economies: In 2011, expect an increasing number of ‘Western’ brands to launch new products or even new brands dedicated to consumers in emerging markets. Growth in consumer spending in emerging markets far outpaces consumer spending in developed markets, and Western brands are favored more than local brands in emerging markets. Western brands including Levi-Strauss, Apple and BMW have already capitalized on this trend.

5.Online Status Symbols: In 2011, trendwatching.com recommends that brands supply customers with any kind of symbol, virtual or ‘real world,’ that helps them display to peers their online contributions, interestingness, creations or popularity. This includes personalized social networking memorabilia as well as location-based games and contests which award virtual or real-world prizes.

6.’Wellthy:’ Growing numbers of consumers will expect health products and services in 2011 to prevent misery if not improve their quality of life, rather than merely treating illnesses and ailments. Products such as mobile health monitoring devices, as well as online health apps and health-dedicated social networks, will serve the multichannel wellness needs of consumers.

7.‘Twin-sumers’ and ‘Social-lites:’ Both of these types of online consumers identified by trendwatching.com are critical to spreading positive word-of-mouth recommendations. Twin-sumers are consumers with similar consumer patterns, likes and dislikes, and who are hence valuable sources for recommendations on what to buy and experience, while social-lites are consumers who consistently broadcast information to a wide range of associates online.

8.Emerging Generosity: This trend is about brands and wealthy individuals from emerging markets (especially China) who will increasingly be expected to give, donate, care and sympathize, as opposed to just sell and take. And not just in their home countries, but on a global scale. It’s a profound cultural change and a consumer demand that their counterparts in mature markets have had a few years to getting used to.

9.Planned Spontaneity: With lifestyles having become fragmented, with dense urban environments offering consumers any number of instantly available options, and with cell /smartphones having created a generation who have little experience of making (or sticking to) rigid plans, 2011 will see what trendwatching.com calls full-on “planned spontaneity.”

Brands can expect to see consumers in 2011 rushing to sign up to services (the planned part) that allow for endless and almost effortless mass mingling with friends, family, colleagues or strangers (the spontaneity part). A developing segment of this trend is consumers signing up for mobile services that passively and constantly broadcast their location.

10.Eco-Superior: When it comes to ‘green consumption’, brands should expect a rise in “eco-superior” products; products that are not only eco-friendly, but superior to polluting incumbents in every possible way. Trendwatching.com says brands should think of a combination of eco-friendly yet superior functionality, superior design, and/or superior savings.

11:Owner-less: Fractional ownership and lifestyle leasing business models have re-emerged, with services such as car-sharing and public bike programs enjoying success around the globe. For many consumers, access is better than ownership.

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Tomorrow’s Social Networking, Today’s Teens

Ninety-three percent of teens ages 12 to 17 go online, 75% of them own a cell phone, and 66% say they text. In fact, 58% of 12-year-olds now have mobiles, compared to 18% just five years ago.

Teens prefer reading news online to Twitter (guardian.co.uk)
Blogging not so big with teenagers anymore (vator.tv)

Teens and young adults shirk blogs and spurn Twitter (nationalpost.com)

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2010: Some Trends & Predictions

Trendwatching – Top 10 Consumer Trends for 2010

Companies seeking to reach out to consumers this year need to prove they are good corporate citizens and also need to tailor their products, services and messaging to an audience that is constantly online, according to consumer insights firm trendwatching.com.
While Web 2.0 brought the world interactive information sharing, interoperability, user-centered design and collaboration, software applications provider ICON believes that the next generation of the web, or “Web 3.0″ promises more recommendations, free services, intelligent (semantic) searches, and information that’s no longer random data, but tailored, highly intuitive and delivered in real time. As 2009 draws to a close, and in an effort to heighten awareness about Web 3.0, Gege Gatt, the founder and director of Malta-based ICON recently identified some broad trends that are in tune with Web 3.0. According to Gatt, these trends are…
Sienna Farris, Director of Social Media at Strawberry Frog, spoke with AdWeek about 5 key social media implications that brands will need to respond to in 2010. Recognizing that predictions don’t hold a candle against the fast pace at which technology changes and renders them dated, these are more of a call to action and awareness, and less of a definite prediction.

eMarketer – 7 Predictions for 2010
It’s that time of year again—the season for looking back, reflecting on what transpired over the course of the year, and simultaneously looking forward, to formulate thoughts, and perhaps some hope, for what the coming year will bring.

As 2009 draws to a close, the Web’s attention turns to the year ahead. What can we expect of the online realm in 2010? While Web innovation is unpredictable, some clear trends are becoming apparent. Expect the following 10 themes to define the Web next year:
JWT – Trends that will influence 2010
JWT has done a year-end forecast for the past several years and has just released their thoughts on what 2010 will bring. Here’s a glance at the 10 trends they believe will shape this next year.
Nicola Davies – 2010 predictions
Nicola Davies prognosticates

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    Top (& Bottom) Tens: Names, Industries

    Like the internet phenoms they trumpeted, Internet company names of the last decade have been, by turns, wildly inventive, deeply troubled, breathtakingly silly, serviceable (if dull)—and, occasionally, brilliant. Having christened their share of Internet phenoms, the good folks at Catchword decided to looked back to identify the 10 biggest dot-com naming trends—and their best and worst examples.
    A report this month from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that department stores, newspaper publishing and the postal service are among the top 10 industries in the US headed for extinction, while management, scientific and technical consulting, employment services, full-service restaurants and a range of healthcare-related service industries will experience the most wage and salary employment growth by 2018.
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    Top 10s

    Getting people to interact with others and upload content to a community-driven site enough may sound easy, but engagement doesn’t happen automatically. It takes time and work, and much of the right formula is deduced through trial and error. Here are 10 tips for increasing user engagement that work for news community web sites, but can apply to all types of online user-engagement communities.
    For the first time YouTube are sharing theri official Most Watched lists and some of the fastest-rising search terms on YouTube. “Some moments were big (President Obama’s inauguration), some small (a Minnesota wedding party erupts into dance), some expected (“New Moon”), some surprising (Susan Boyle) — but all of them inspired, entertained and connected millions of people around the world via YouTube.”
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