Industry Leaders Look to Future at Euro RSCG Panel on "Trends for 2011.5 and Beyond"
NEW YORK, June 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- From the demise of Osama Bin Laden to the disaster in Japan, 2011 has been full of surprises—and we're only halfway through. What's in store for the rest of the year?
Renowned trendspotter Marian Salzman , CEO of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, North America, turned her forecasting eye to the latter half of 2011 at a breakfast presentation today. Following her remarks, Salzman was joined by Jeff Chu , articles editor, Fast Company, and Ed Saunders , group marketing director, Google Creative Lab, in a roundtable discussion moderated by Jeff Brooks , CEO of Euro RSCG New York. The event took place at the agency's headquarters in New York City.
"We are living in uncertain and ever-changing times," Salzman said, "and we're seeing the natural reaction to that uncertainty take two forms: anxiety over potential impending disasters, whether natural, political, or economic, and a desire to simplify our aesthetic and 'go local' in a digital, thoroughly interconnected way."
Among the trends discussed:
- Mother Earth Needs Valium: From tornadoes to tsunamis, heat waves to earthquakes, the weather's getting weirder and natural disasters of massive proportions are on the rise—as is our anxiety at where and how Mother Nature will strike next.
- Tobacco, Trans Fats…Cell Phones? Established science and the government once soothed consumers jittery over the health risks of cigarettes and hydrogenated oils—despite, as we now know, both carrying lethal health risks. That uncertainty is now coalescing around cell phone radiation and a possible link to brain tumors. Will science prove wary consumers right?
- Water, the Next Oil: Water, water, everywhere…but not for long. As our rivers, reservoirs, and seas dry up, life's basic necessities—drinking, growing food—are becoming harder to meet. Savvy companies will adopt a motto of "no business like flow business," appealing to conscientious consumers with water-efficient products.
- What's Not Online-able Is Doomed: Seems like just yesterday we all were buying LPs—but as technology speeds forward, the physical world is becoming obsolete. Movies, music, media, and even friendships are moving to the cloud, and anyone left behind (see: the recording industry) will have a hard time catching up.
- The New Social: Antisocial: We update our statuses while walking down the street and check our Facebook feeds to learn what our friends are up to—while we are out with our friends. Online socializing steals more and more of our attention away from IRL (in real life) interactions. Just how "social" are we, anyway?
- The Brain and Homo Sapiens 2.0: "n" is the new "e" (nBoosters, nHancers, nNutrients, nGames…) as we begin to look at everything from a neuro-perspective. With better tools than ever before to map and measure the workings of our brains and ever more radically different technologies and behaviors reshaping them, we're getting smarter about the care and feeding of our minds.
- Hyperlocal Is the New Global: To paraphrase Mark Zuckerberg , sometimes people care more about the dead squirrel in the yard than the dead people on the other side of the planet. Callous, but true: Hyper-local equals spot-on relevance. We've already seen companies such as Groupon, Patch, Foursquare, and Gowalla tap this trend to great success, and as long as consumers are loco for local the business opportunities will continue to grow.
- Brutal Honesty: For years we lived with a "medals for all" mentality: a guaranteed "good job" and participation trophy for everybody. But as Americans face stiff competition from rising economic superpowers India and China, we're beginning to wake up and smell the coffee: Tiger Mom parenting and a tell-it-like-it-is approach will toughen up our students and workers, and the cold, brutal truth will trump PC sensitivity.
- Beached White Males: The recession has taken its toll on well-educated, once-affluent white men. They're losing their jobs, their high salaries, and their top-of-the-totem-pole status in American society and the workplace. Brands will reach out to this demographic to show them the love they're seeking.
- More Real than Real: In the real world most of us can't fly a fighter jet and none of us can interact with fantasy creatures. In the real world we might not even speak to most of our Facebook friends. As online subsumes offline and engagement dominates interaction, the simulated and virtual become more real than the world in which we really live.
- Bankrupt-and-Broke Chic: By the end of 2010, a million homeowners in the U.S. had seen their property repossessed, and 23.1 percent of all homeowners were underwater (in negative equity). Surface-level wealth is no longer such an attractive aspiration. Americans will instead embrace gritty chic and comeback stories of the broke and bankrupt.
- New Traditions: "Tradition" is no longer synonymous with "time honored." In the warp speed of the digital world, traditions are formed and embraced in just years or even months.
For more information on Euro RSCG's forward-looking research into trends, please visit eurorscg.com and prosumer-report.com/blog.
About Euro RSCG Worldwide
Euro RSCG Worldwide is a leading integrated marketing communications agency and was the first agency to be named Global Agency of the Year by both Advertising Age and Campaign in the same year. Euro RSCG is made up of 233 offices in 75 countries and provides advertising, marketing, corporate communications and digital and social media solutions to clients including Air France, Charles Schwab, Citigroup, Danone Group, IBM, Kraft Foods, Lacoste, L'Oréal, Merck, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Reckitt Benckiser, sanofi-aventis and Volvo. Euro RSCG Worldwide is the largest unit of Havas, a world leader in communications (Euronext: HAV.PA) (Paris: HAV.PA).
Global Communications Manager
Euro RSCG Worldwide
T +1 212.886.2018
SOURCE Euro RSCG Worldwide
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