Mell was one of a whole hatful of d.fferent bods who attended the IPA’s On Trend, Off Road Workshop hosted here at e>erything d.fferent on Thursday. Here’s what she thought.
I signed up for the trend workshop and really had no idea what to expect. Trends have historically meant either something I was massively behind on or completely unaware of.
Reader, I am not trendy.
However, it turned out that the workshop actually just boiled our weird, complex reality down into a handful of manageable, useable ideas. I can get on board with that.
Damian Lord, senior insight executive at the IPA, took us through the decade so far. If you’re curious, it’s as grim and strange as you remember.
What did I learn?
Damian then talked us through some trends that have emerged in the aftermath of such a turbulent half-decade.
I didn’t recognize all of the trends, or necessarily agree with all of the conclusions reached in our group discussions. The trends weren’t all relevant to me and I could think of counter examples for many of the viewpoints demonstrated.
I still got a lot out of the day. A perfect transcription of reality would have taken a lot longer than two hours, and as a framework to get us thinking about how the last five years have affected our clients and consumers, the workshop was a total success.
For example, we know that the economic downturn had a huge effect on businesses and people, but that’s reflected in behaviours and business impact in a million different ways. This is where trends like “hardwired maximizing” tell us a lot. People want more for their money, and it’s no longer limited to low earners. It’s a fundamental shift.
And it’s not just the money situation that’s changed since the start of the decade. The tech landscape is almost unrecognisable, as is the relationship between brands and consumers is now a weird balancing act that means how and where they interact is changing constantly.
The constant change and uncertainty is easier to get to grips with now that we’ve been given a look at the ideas behind behaviours, a perfect application of insight.