Wunderman Thompson Intelligence has released its “The Future 100” report that tracks emerging consumer behaviour. “The Future 100” helps readers prepare for emerging consumer behaviour with 100 original trend predictions from the Innovation Group. Split into 10 categories, each trend delivers a digestible snapshot of movements so far, while clearly explaining why brands and marketers should pay attention.”
The report, although comprehensive, is succinct and offers practical insights into the shape of businesses during the next decade and beyond. “From complex cocktails and digital spas, to subscription insurance and scientific expeditions, “The Future 100” predicts 2020 will usher in an era that’s realistic yet imaginative at the same time, leveraged by tech innovation and a redefined experience for shoppers on the high street. The report is packed with insights and fresh takes on the year ahead and beyond,” says the report.
Emma Chiu, Global Director of Wunderman Thompson Intelligence, says of the report: “A real cultural change has taken place, with purpose and transparency leading customer loyalty, while imagination is trumping data for consumer appeal. ‘The Future 100’ is a way of keeping up with the big shifts and smaller fast-moving trends, offering marketers an opportunity to get ahead.”
Chiu, in her introduction, further says: “What’s in store for 2020? Ethically motivated consumers have created a new value system for brands, one that protects consumers, preserves culture and provides hope.” On the other hand, “Companies are also noting the positive health implications of human connectivity, addressing the continuing population and lifespan rises with products and services to build meaningful connections.”
Data — and the way it has been used or abused — have always been critical. “Data is under the microscope and this is affecting all industries, with the trustworthiness of a brand now tied to the way it uses consumer data and how transparent its terms and conditions are. Rules and regulations are slowly being implemented to protect consumers, and brands are racing to ensure they are using personal data responsibly,” Chiu notes.
The 10 trend segments covered in the report are: Culture, Tech & Innovation, Travel & Hospitality, Brands & Marketing, Food & Drink, Beauty, Retail, Luxury, Health and Finance.
SOME OF THE 2020 HIGHLIGHTS
Optimistic Futures: Political, economic, and environmental uncertainties have left consumers feeling anxious. From Pantone’s fierce Flame Scarlet red shade for spring/summer 2020 to Lego’s challenge to “rebuild the world”, progressive companies are trying to usher in “a realistic and optimistic outlook”.
The Privacy Era: Once seen as a tool to help consumers, data collection has since become or come to be viewed as “underhanded and unethical”, with consumers at the receiving end amidst instances of frequent and severe data breaches. The 2019 initiatives marked the first steps towards restoring consumer faith and the idea that “consumers can control their own data”, which is likely to become a clear possibility.
Climate Positive Brands: As climate concerns continue to make headlines, brands are beginning to focus on “real, sustainable business plans and carbon-neutral policies” and are looking to ensure they are transparent about their responsibilities. This will not only build trust but also earn customer loyalty.
Untabooing In The East: A significant shift in “openness around traditional taboos and gender straitjackets” across the Asian continent is ushering in a fresh approach to the market. Traditional attitudes to mental health, sexual health, and gender are changing, not least supported by technology and hastening economic development.
New Beauty Playgrounds: The increasingly trending “experiential shopping” is in for today’s beauty consumers, who still prefer to try out and buy cosmetics in store. Identifying the trend, beauty brands are building a near-real “playground of experiences and reimagining the beauty counter as a destination” where consumers can spend loads of time playing and buying.
Subscription Goes East: Subscriptions no longer apply to news, gyms, or music. The ecosystem for, what is being described as a “subscribed life” has reached its peak in Japan, where one can now subscribe to everything — from bar drinks to hair and beauty treatments, work wear and even high-end Lexus cars.
Elevated Airports: From Singapore’s Jewel Changi, which is home to the world’s tallest indoor waterfall, to Beijing’s Daxing International Airport crafted like a starfish by the late Zaha Hadid, airports are going beyond being mere transit stations to becoming unique cultural destinations in their own right.
About Wunderman Thompson Intelligence:
Wunderman Thompson Intelligence is Wunderman Thompson’s, futurism, research, and innovation unit. It charts emerging and future global trends, consumer change and innovation patterns—translating these into insight for brands. It offers a suite of consultancy services, including bespoke research, presentations, cobranded reports and workshops. It is also active in innovation, partnering with brands to activate future trends within their framework and execute new products and concepts.