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The Trend Commandments

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Trend-watching is a perennial buzzword for brands and retailers, but rarely is its full power harnessed successfully. This presentation for the 14th Annual Shopper Insights in Action conference …

Trend-watching is a perennial buzzword for brands and retailers, but rarely is its full power harnessed successfully. This presentation for the 14th Annual Shopper Insights in Action conference outlines the "trend commandments" to follow for success in identifying and taking advantage of industry trends.

- Jen Grant, SVP, Director of Brand Planning, 22squared (@jengrsnap1, @22squared, @Shopper360, #Shopper360)
- David Yeend, VP, Planning Director, 22squared (@davidyeend)

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  • 1. The Trend Commandments squared Jen Grant, SVP/Director of Brand Planning | Instagram: @jengrsnap David Yeend, VP/Planning Director | Twitter: @davidyeend
  • 2. What isn’t a trend? THINGS THAT ARE COOL, “TRENDY” OR HIPI III II IV A TRENDING TOPIC ON SOCIAL MEDIA ESOTERIC FACTOIDS THAT MAKE YOU SOUND REALLY SMART AN OBSERVATION MADE AT ONE DISCRETE MOMENT IN TIME
  • 3. trendnoun 2Trend (n.) ‘trend A general direction of change; a way of behaving, proceeding, etc., that is developing and becoming more common To show a tendency; a prevailing inclination or line of development Merriam-Webster “Trend” 2014.
  • 4. SOME MORE STELLAR PREDICTIONS FROM THE RECENT PAST “The internet in 1996 will catastrophically collapse.” - Robert Metcalfe, co-inventor of Ethernet, 3com founder, in 1995 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Metcalfe#Incorrect_predictions http://paleofuture.gizmodo.com/the-50-biggest-websites-of-2010-as-predicted-in-2000-1445142253 http://www.nytimes.com/2000/02/20/business/business-10-stocks-for-2010-buy-and-hold-picks-from-top-investors.html http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2009/12/cracked-cloudy-or-clear-the-crystal-ball-report.html http://www.livescience.com/38876-10-worst-tech-predictions-of-all-time.html
  • 5. SOME MORE STELLAR PREDICTIONS FROM THE RECENT PAST “'Smellyvision' ... chemicals into our TVs so we can enjoy the aromas." - The People newspaper, London, in 2000 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Metcalfe#Incorrect_predictions http://paleofuture.gizmodo.com/the-50-biggest-websites-of-2010-as-predicted-in-2000-1445142253 http://www.nytimes.com/2000/02/20/business/business-10-stocks-for-2010-buy-and-hold-picks-from-top-investors.html http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2009/12/cracked-cloudy-or-clear-the-crystal-ball-report.html http://www.livescience.com/38876-10-worst-tech-predictions-of-all-time.html
  • 6. SOME MORE STELLAR PREDICTIONS FROM THE RECENT PAST “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share.” - Steve Ballmer, in 2007 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Metcalfe#Incorrect_predictions http://paleofuture.gizmodo.com/the-50-biggest-websites-of-2010-as-predicted-in-2000-1445142253 http://www.nytimes.com/2000/02/20/business/business-10-stocks-for-2010-buy-and-hold-picks-from-top-investors.html http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2009/12/cracked-cloudy-or-clear-the-crystal-ball-report.html http://www.livescience.com/38876-10-worst-tech-predictions-of-all-time.html
  • 7. TREND-WATCHING IS ONLY AS USEFUL AS YOUR WILLINGNESS TO BE ACCOUNTABLE TO IT.
  • 8. INGREDIENTS FOR TREND-WATCHING SUCCESS 1 liberal helping of PATIENCE 3 cups of ADAPTABILITY 4 spoonfuls of INSIGHT Dash of HUMILITY And above all, the passage of TIME
  • 9. Explain(why?) What are the reasons thispattern is occurring? How does it impact ourbusiness? Should we adapt to it? How? III Observe (what?) Start with an observation. Or, better yet, a business question. I Evaluate (how?) Do data points converge? Do we see a consistent pattern over time? Can we test our theory? II How Thou Shalt Trend Watch:-
  • 10. Trend Watching Toolkit- Observe (what?) Start with an observation. Or, better yet, a business question. I • ONE-TIME SURVEYS • SHOPPER DATA • TREND REPORTS W/O CONTEXT • INDUSTRY REVIEWS • SOCIAL CONTENT • IN-STORE OBSERVATION • “SOME BLOGGER IN BROOKLYN”
  • 11. Trend Watching Toolkit- Do data points converge? Do we see a consistent pattern over time? Can we test our theory? Evaluate (how?) II • TRACKERS • SYNDICATED DATA (SIMMONS, MRI, &c.) • REPEATED SURVEYS • SECONDARY REPORTS WITH CONTEXT • YOY BUSINESS DATA (SALES, TRAFFIC, CRM, MERCHANT INFO) • SOCIAL LISTENING Qualitative for insight, quantitative for scale.
  • 12. Trend Watching Toolkit- What are the reasons this pattern is occurring? How does it impact our business? Should we adapt to it? How? Explain (why?) III • EXPLORATORY QUAL • CROSS-FUNCTIONAL BRAINSTORMS • TEST INITIATIVES • DATA TRIANGULATION
  • 13. Let’s Practice
  • 14. I Observe II Evaluate III Explain “I didn’t see many kids in the store last weekend. What’s up with that?” - Your CEO “Our product mix is less appealing to kids / parents?” 2010 2011 2012 2013 40% 47% Kids In The HH “Our campaign message appeals to kids / parents less?” “Our store experience is off- putting to shop with children?” (“Sure, but overall sales are up! So what are we complaining about?”) SOURCE: Simmons Fall 12-month study 2010 / 2011 / 2012 / 2013
  • 15. I Observe II Evaluate III Explain “Mobile commerce is driving eCommerce.” - Industry Report “Tablet sales are putting more mCom devices in the world?” “More eCom sites are becoming mobile-friendly?” “People are getting more comfortable with mCom security?” SOURCE: eMarketer 2014 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 $13.57 $24.78 $41.68 $56.72 $75.00 $96.81 $113.57 7.0% 11.0% 16.0% 19.0% 22.0% 25.0% 17.3% US Retail mCommerce Sales, 2011- 2017 billions, and % of retail eCommerce sales
  • 16. I Observe II Evaluate III Explain “I heard at some conference that digital coupons are the future of retail.” “Digital targeting makes offers more relevant than ever?” “Real-time optimization makes digital perform better on the fly?” “Postal workers are sabotaging us?” 2010 2011 2012 2013 0.2 0.26 Via Web/Email 0.23 2010 2011 2012 2013 0.54 0.61 Via Mail 0.575 *SOURCE: Simmons Fall 12-month study 2010 / 2011 / 2012 / 2013 ... “Mail” includes newspaper inserts, magazine inserts, and all “DM”
  • 17. Observe (what?) I Explain (why?) III Evaluate (how?) II
  • 18. How To Act On Trends (After all .... a trend is only as valuable as the action that follows it.) Dedicate team and time to trend-watching Proactively set aside budget to evaluate and optimize Don’t be afraid to change course Make it an ongoing priority Educate internal stakeholders (and pick their brains) Learn from your shopper data and your merchants Rinse and repeat (a virtuous cycle)
  • 19. So...What Are The Trend Commandments? Thou shalt not point to a cool thing and call it a trend. Thou shalt not spot “trends” in one moment alone. Thou shalt have the patience to observe and evaluate how a trend develops. Thou shalt not proclaim a trend without considering its implications. Thou shalt build organizational support and understanding. Thou shalt use thy data and shoppers to identify trends proactively. Thou shalt be flexible enough to adapt to trends. Thou shalt not get discouraged if a trend doesn’t pan out as expected. Thou shalt make trend- watching an ongoing habit. Thou shalt act on the trends that impact your business.
  • 20. Thank You. squared www.22squared.com @22squared Jen Grant, SVP/Director of Brand Planning Instagram: @jengrsnap David Yeend, VP/Planning Director Twitter: @davidyeend

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