Trends come and go, but these 6 trends started taking hold in 2014 and aren’t going anywhere soon.
- Instant and inclusive gratification.
While iPhone’s Siri has some flaws, the concept of Siri is what consumers are after. The idea of a concierge that is everywhere we go and always at the ready to answer questions from “what was that one movie?” to “what’s the best restaurant within 5 miles?” is now an expectation. Mobile devices have allowed that expectation to become a reality. Patience has become a thing of the past – not just in how long it takes to get answers, but also in how complete and informative the answer is. The answer to restaurants within 5 miles needs to also include ratings and reviews of those restaurants.
- The need for speed.
As Internet and mobile connectivity speeds continue to improve so, too, has the expectation for quicker delivery of goods. Mobile shopping is on the rise and retailers like Amazon are rewarding subscribed customers with free 2-day delivery. File sharing websites are allowing for almost instant sharing of large files around the world.
- Values-based buying.
Marketers are beginning to understand the attachment today’s consumers have to their values. In fact, values are now a notable part of how consumers measure value and they’re willing to publicly support brands that are in line with the image they want to represent. The story behind the brand is becoming as important as the brand.
- The decline of trendy.
The recession and the millennial mindset has led to a greater appreciation in experiences and a decreased appreciation in the collection of possessions. Buying what’s trendy doesn’t align with this shift since it requires consumers buy more, more often. Rather, consumers are looking for timeless possessions and a story that ties their possessions to an experience. Don’t be confused, though. Consumers want timeless in a timely manner (see #2).
- Environmental consciousness.
Consumers leading this trend are passionate and, therefore, vocal about companies who do – or don’t – support environmental initiatives. And, consumers who are less concerned on this topic aren’t going to discourage companies making environmentally smart decisions like reducing their carbon footprint. In other words, companies can only win by looking for ways to be more environmentally conscious.
- The desire for self-service.
Many factors are driving this trend. Consumers are becoming more tech savvy, making waiting for someone else to do something they could do quicker difficult. Additionally, consumers want 24/7 service to match their 24/7 lifestyles and connectivity.
While millennials initially drove many of these trends, they’ve now reached the masses including Gen Xers and Boomers. We’re just beginning to see the influence that millennials have, not only on older generations, but also younger. Watch millennial trends and you’ll be one step ahead of what’s to come.
With contributions by Lori Kruger