Trend spotting and trend setting are key qualities that elevate and differentiate leading edge brands in the marketplace. Any PR pro worth their salt knows that by the time a trend transitions to the mainstream, you’re already falling behind the game.
TrendHunter is the world’s foremost authority on trends, headquartered right here in Toronto with more than 20 million page views a month, and an international client roster of top brands that would make any agency owner drool. Always in the know, TrendHunter uses artificial intelligence, massive amounts of big data, and good old-fashioned human researchers to identify and study emerging industry trends. We are SO proud to have them as a client.
Always ahead of the curve, TrendHunter has compiled an impressive list of predictions that offers an early look at trends that are set to dominate the consumer landscape in the coming years. Here are Three TOP Trends our SO PR Team believes will dramatically influence the business of public relations, marketing, and branding looking forward.
"Is this Real Content?"
In an era of digital exploitation and fake news, the increased popularity of deepfake technology has the potential to accelerate these issues. “Deepfake Technology” is a machine learning technique that superimposes smart technology on people’s image to create highly realistic, but fake videos. There are growing fears as to how this technology will continue to impact social and political issues. It is essential that consumers are educated on the possibilities, especially since brands are also starting to use the technology.
How will brands and agencies be affected?
Brands and their agencies, all early adopters and stewards of digital media, must address the gaps and vulnerabilities of the online world — where there’s an undeniable lack of accountability and adequate screening processes. Consumers are growing ever more informed and skeptical, so prepare yourself for some tough questioning. Trust, but always double-check your sources. Harness the power of machine-learning to properly personalize your messaging and develop fresh concepts that address consumers’ real-world issues, opportunities, and concerns.
Trend: Sustainability, Got Milk?
“Is It Good for the Planet?”
With a growing global movement demanding action on climate change, addressing the public’s concerns for the planet is essential. Within the fashion industry, sustainability trends feature incredible displays of engineering, where design marries technology to shape the future of fashion – while protecting our planet. For example, LA-based apparel company Mi Terro are using properties derived from milk’s natural chemistry to create textiles that cater to upcycling and effectively change the way we think about textiles. From drop waist dresses to dropping food waste, milk-made fashion may be the sustainable, low-carbon answer fashion houses have been looking for.
How will brands and agencies be affected?
The shift towards conscious living and reduced emissions is here. Consider implementing small, concrete changes to the way your brand or clients interact with the ecosystem. Whether you’re promoting eco-friendly bathroom tissue, or eliminating plastic straws, showcase your brand’s progress as an eco-warrior, doing what you can where you can, and keeping garbage out of the can.
Trend: Active Silence
“Do You Need A Minute? (or Ten?)”
In a social world flooded with viral advertising, influencer partnerships, hyper-targeted campaigns, and immersive experiential activations, consumers are developing the need for quiet time. As a society, we have prioritized the flow of information over the stream of consciousness – or rather, conscientiousness. Meditation practices, yoga, and other silent activities have grown more and more popular. Active silence may look different to everyone, yet the need for it is the same.
How brands and agencies will be affected:
Consider the way your target audience engages with your brand. Is she on the subway? Will he 'like' that social post? Would they appreciate a moment to think before reacting? Why not simplify your message, or create a real or virtual experience that speaks to mindfulness, peace, and tranquility. It’s DEF worth a try. Ommmmmm.
Our TOP 3 Trends Marketers Need to Know centre on ground-breaking technology, cultural shifts towards more sustainable business practices, and the growing demand for mindfulness. TrendHunter’s comprehensive research tells us that consumers are already engaging with these concepts on their own. It’s up to us, the brand marketers to catch up, and recognize the power that fake news, sustainability, and personal well-being will have in shaping brand perception and trust in the future.
What have we missed? Have you spotted trends that will rock the world? Please give us your feedback.
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