Trendspotting #5

As ever our Ideas and Imagination team have been keeping their eyes peeled, reporting back on the latest goings on and what’s influencing and inspiring them, allowing us to see what’s big right now, and what’s about to take the world by storm. Here are the top trends which have made an impression on our team so far in 2018…

New year, New attitude

It’s not unusual to start the year wanting to make a change – typical resolutions may include ditching the booze, dropping a few pounds, or stopping smoking. Rather than giving something up, we’ve found our team have been striving for more positive change this year. The focus is on becoming vegetarian rather than cutting out meat, dedicating time to something they love, or spending time on something worthwhile.

For young people today it’s all about making positive change, and about what you are giving yourself rather than what you’re giving up. Whether it’s focusing on self-care, taking up a new hobby, or clearing clutter, it’s in a bid to cleanse mind, body and wardrobe. Take a leaf from our team’s book and make change which is nourishing, not punishing.

 

Brand Authenticity – Championing Good Causes

It’s 2018 and youth audiences are more socially and politically aware than they ever have been – and a whole lot more vocal about it too. Gone are the days when organisations could just promote their brand or campaign using some nice visuals and an engaging copyline. Now they must find new ways to fight for attention and spark meaningful conversations with their audiences.

 

Plastic Non-Fantastic

In recent years the move away from plastic has really gained momentum, and this week the Devon town of Ashburton joined Surfers Against Sewage’s 16-town initiative to go completely plastic-free. With many people giving up this man-made material for lent, living a plastic-free life is fast becoming the latest free-from trend. Documentaries like Plastic Ocean help to highlight how plastic can do more harm than good, while global initiatives to clean up the beaches and rid the sea of plastic are persuading people to find an alternative.

Saltwater Brewery’s edible six pack rings and Vegware’s plant-based packaging show that there are viable alternatives, and a petition to charge 5p on single-use plastic straws echoes the carrier bag charge introduced in 2015.

Feeling less than fantastic about plastic? Sign the plastic straw petition.

 

The Real Rise of Digital Currency

In a world that is continually making digital developments, where do we draw the line? Self-serve, Alexa, Apple Pay – it seems there’s now a digital service for every aspect of our lives. We’re living in a digital world, but does that make our experiences less real? It can be harder to tell where virtual ends and digital begins. Online banking is well-established (and, more importantly, trusted) but now, with the likes of Bitcoin, Ripple and Ethereum on the rise, digital currency is in the spotlight, and also in question. This isn’t a virtual stock market however, and with real equity on the line, are we thinking twice about putting our (digital) money where our mouths are?

 

Celebrity Bumps

What is it that gets the world so hooked on celebrity pregnancies? After 9 months of speculation, Kylie Jenner’s ‘private’ pregnancy has been confirmed with the birth of Stormi Jenner. Ironic perhaps that the discreet pregnancy she strived for has been so surrounded in media attention throughout, and has culminated in the most liked image on Instagram… Ever. It’s not just Kylie who’s been making an entrance into motherhood, with Beyonce’s twin announcement, and Cristiano Ronaldo’s fourth child going like-for-like on Instagram.