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Deciphering Consumer Trends and Their Impact on the Outdoor Industry


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Consumer trendspotting presentation given by Havas PR CEO, Marian Salzman, on August 4, 2011 to the Outdoor Industry Association

Consumer trendspotting presentation given by Havas PR CEO, Marian Salzman, on August 4, 2011 to the Outdoor Industry Association

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  • 1. Deciphering Consumer Trends Deciphering Consumer Trends And Their Impact on the Outdoor Industry Marian Salzman Outdoor Industry Association August 4, 2011 @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 2. Why Trends? Why do we look at trends when creating actionable and insightful strategies for big brands? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 3. Why Trends? Why do we look at trends when creating actionable and insightful strategies for big brands? •To identify the driving forces behind today and the future and plan for long-term success. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 4. Why Trends? Why do we look at trends when creating actionable and insightful strategies for big brands? •To identify the driving forces behind today and the future and plan for long-term success. •To discover unexpected opportunities that can help transform brands and businesses. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 5. Why Trends? Why do we look at trends when creating actionable and insightful strategies for big brands? •To identify the driving forces behind today and the future and plan for long-term success. •To discover unexpected opportunities that can help transform brands and businesses. •To manage into change by giving insight into the drivers of key business, consumer and social trends. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 6. Learning to Spot Trends social momentum It means tracking people companies radical breakthroughs economies brands @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 7. Spotting trends is big business for people in many industries who need to be thinking ahead, for themselves and their clients. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 8. And, really, isn’t that everyone today? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 9. 11.5 Macro Trends for 2020 (and How They Mean Business for Outdoor-Involved Businesses) @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 10. 1 Mother Earth .Needs Valium; We Need Reassurance @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 11. Outdoor activity is perceived as dangerous by some (i.e. Moms) who see #OIBIZ marketing featuring “extremes” @LarryPluimer @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 12. 1. Mother Earth Needs Valium; We Need Reassurance • With financial and employment catastrophes a constant worry at home, the great outdoors offers the prospect of relief—or does it? • Thoreau’s idyllic American outdoor vision now seems like a naïve fantasy. • Katrina screamed “massive headache,” and we’ve been watching Mother Earth raging round the world ever since (Haiti, Japan, etc.). • What’s next? The San Andreas tipping budget-stricken California over the edge? The Yellowstone Supervolcano blowing the finale to end all finales? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 13. 1. Mother Earth Needs Valium; We Need Reassurance • The more time people spend indoors, the riskier the outdoors seems—all those natural hazards, not to mention the prospect of 127 hours in a crevice. • Forget big disasters; there’s poison ivy, grizzlies, snakes, killer bees, bison, Lyme disease—plus careless drivers, clueless hunters, etc., etc. • Maybe the answer is to get properly equipped for all outdoor eventualities, but that’s expensive. • Maybe it’s to seek out carefully managed, tame outdoor experiences (“soft rugged”), but doesn’t that defeat the point? • The industry thinks about outdoor participation daily; how do you juxtapose “soft rugged” against “skills needed” and create an outdoor industry future that fits “authentic” enthusiasts and everyone else? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 14. What Trend No. 1 Means for the Outdoor Industry: The task: Get Americans off their butts and outside–more motivated and less fearful. How? Smart consumer segmentation; inclusive, clear brand positioning; and compelling communication. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 15. The perceived stereotypes are no more; there is a large urban contingent to #OIBIZ now. It’s not just about being in the mountains. @clinard @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 16. #mamaneedspills @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 17. 2 @ erwwpr The Great .Escape? Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 18. 2. The Great Escape? • Today, being outdoors doesn’t mean being out of contact. Ski slopes and hiking trails—even Mount Everest—can now get cell service. Just what consumers want, right? • Are we truly getting away from it all to improve our health and de-stress only to be engaging in the very behavior that made us want to unplug? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 19. 2. The Great Escape? • And in terms of health, people now wonder about the emotional and psychological risks of being permanently reachable. • Mobile connectivity has gone from handy convenience (remember pagers?) to business tool to something approaching an addiction. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 20. What Trend No. 2 Means for the Outdoor Industry: We need to talk amongst ourselves: How much do we want to include connectivity into equipment design when consumers might rebel and choose total escape? On the other hand, do we want to be discouraging connectivity? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 21. #noanswer @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 22. 3 @ erwwpr Water: .The Next Oil Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 23. 3. Water: The Next Oil • People have been talking about this for decades, but it will soon come true—and we’re not talking bottled water, which already costs as much as $10 a gallon. • Drier places in the world (Australia, the Middle East, the American Southwest) have long lived with drought and squabbled over water resources for the basics of life. • Waterways are as much a part of deep American mythology as Broadway—and more deeply sustaining in the long run. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 24. 3. Water: The Next Oil • Modern consumption, hygiene habits and population growth are draining reservoirs, rivers and groundwater faster than a bathtub with the plug pulled. • Another problem: The less time people spend outdoors, the more they forget that water doesn’t just come out of a faucet (and, yes, the Internet isn’t in your computer, either). • So the more time people spend outdoors, the more likely they are to appreciate water as a sacred resource. It’s all about sustainability. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 25. What Trend No. 3 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Savvy companies will tap into conscientious consumers’ deep (and possibly unconscious) well of yearning for water with products that save, respect and celebrate water. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 26. #nobusinesslikeflowbusiness @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 27. 4 @ erwwpr What’s Not .Online-able Is Doomed Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 28. My essential item would be my iPhone. Outdoor doesn’t mean cut-off. #oibiz @Capibaro @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 29. 4. What’s Not Onlineable Is Doomed • 1980s: CDs made LPs obsolete, then MP3 music through the Internet started killing CDs (and the old-style music industry). • 1990s: DVDs started replacing VHS; now, DVDs face pressure from Tivo-style DVRs and on-demand Internetdelivery services. • Early 2000s: Digital cameras hit consumer markets; in 2005, Kodak’s digital products and services overtook its film product sales. • Today: Printed books, magazines and newspapers are selling less; in February 2011, e-book sales overtook print book sales by 202 percent month-over-month. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 30. 4. What’s Not Onlineable Is Doomed • The yin: Consumers might have their doubts about technology (see Trend 2). The yang: Its benefits get more compelling with every passing month. • Indoors, people can do all the fact-finding they need: outdoor activities, locations, costs, user comments and reviews, equipment needed and where to buy it, etc. • Outdoors, a mobile device can give directions, track progress, find stores, take and upload photos, post to social media, send texts, make phone calls. (No cell coverage? Load up music, videos, podcasts, books, maps, news and reference materials ahead of time.) @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 31. For running, walking and cycling @runkeeper is a winner - great app at a great price, great (albeit short) brand story #oibiz @Stuarte @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 32. What Trend No. 4 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Brands or products that have cool online elements will beat those that don’t. They need online smarts to deliver (digitally or otherwise) even where there’s no signal. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 33. #getonorgohome @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 34. 5 The New Social: .Antisocial (aka Getting Away from It All) @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 35. Do you prefer to enjoy the outdoors in a large group, or solo? #oibiz @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 36. If looking for solitude & peace, then perhaps alone. If for gen rec & fun then w/ group like my family @davepetri @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 37. 5. The New Social: Antisocial (aka Getting Away from It All) • Even if we don’t like the name, we all love social media in one form or another. But sometimes its paradoxes are just plain ridiculous—or tragic. • People don’t smoke anymore when nervous in a social setting; they check their FB page or Twitter feed on their mobile device. • Some people even do it while walking, shopping, fishing, jogging, cycling…oblivious to the people around them—until they bump into them. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 38. 5. The New Social: Antisocial (aka Getting Away from It All) • The “new social” often interrupts physical interactions with people—attention flits from face-to-face conversation to the online action. • Fifty-nine percent of online adults use at least one social networking site. Are there benefits with connection? • It’s a one-way trend of more technology. Another 10 years of smart phones and tablets (iPad 13?) will make it even more compelling for consumers to interact socially through tech. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 39. What Trend No. 5 Means for the Outdoor Industry: With social media on mobile devices, consumers can have the best of both worlds: doing activities outside and being able to connect as much or as little as they want (sharing experiences, favorite trails, pictures, bragging rights and more). @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 40. #socialsecurity @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 41. 6 The Brain and Homo .Sapiens 2.0 @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 42. 6. The Brain and Homo Sapiens 2.0 • The brain—the final frontier—has 100 billion neurons, each with 1,000 to 10,000 synapses and trillions of connections. • Neuroscience is the new rock ’n’ roll, the new media darling, looking into brains with high-tech scanners and revealing the workings of everything from addiction to zoophobia. • It holds out the promise of enhancing memory and creativity, plus offering better treatment for illnesses and delaying the brain’s aging with supplements, drugs and devices. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 43. 6. The Brain and Homo Sapiens 2.0 • We now know that our brains are shaped—literally—by what we experience. For millennia, the sights, sounds and feelings of the outdoors have shaped brains. • Now we’re increasingly experiencing interactive technology mediated through screens. • We have the scientific instruments to see how the technical tools we’re using are changing our brains; we have a box seat for the emergence of Homo sapiens 2.0. “Perhaps not since early man first discovered how to use a tool has the human brain been affected so quickly and so dramatically.” —UCLA neuroscientist Gary Small on modern technology @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 44. What Trend No. 6 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Watch as n (for “neuro”) gets applied to brain products and services: nBoosters, nHancers, nGames, nGagement. The outdoor industry needs to be an important shaper of healthy brains: It would be sad for Homo sapiens 2.0 if brains’ environment of the future is nDoors. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 45. #brainsgetsmart @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 46. 7 Hyperlocal Is .the New Global– Indoors and Out @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 47. There are certain products that should require interaction. Proper technical boot fitting can’t be done over the web. #OIBIZ - @clinard @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 48. 7. Hyperlocal Is the New Global–Indoors and Out • It’s interesting to know what’s happening in other parts of the world, but it’s really interesting—and useful—to know what’s happening right on your doorstep. Virtually guaranteed relevance. • When hot or cold weather comes unexpectedly early, smart online stores might flag relevant promotions—and figure out how to deliver the goods within hours. Plus, buying locally helps the local economy and supports the community. No contest. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 49. 7. Hyperlocal Is the New Global–Indoors and Out • All the hot new online services are either about where you live or work or where you are right now with your mobile device so that they can deliver news, information and deals that likely matter to you. • Hyperlocal media such as Patch is more than just the traditional local newspaper or broadcasting delivered online, although Patch’s model involves journalism and bloggers (and CSR); it’s a real-time, interactive connection within and between local communities. • Hyperlocal means being able to get together on-the-fly picnics and softball games in the local park, or arrange impromptu bike rides with real flesh-and-blood people. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 50. What Trend No. 7 Means for the Outdoor Industry: With the Internet, businesses can track consumer choices and adjust offers to match. Hyperlocal media makes them even more relevant to consumers and their communities as they go about their activities indoors and out. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 51. #locoforlocal @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 52. 8 @ erwwpr Brutal Honesty/ .Rugged Love Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 53. 8. Brutal Honesty/ Rugged Love • Years of playing nicely together led to an “everyone gets a medal” mentality, with every action earning “Great job!” • Political correctness has prompted endless mental contortions to avoid causing offense. Being honestychallenged might be the most widespread condition of our times. • “Awesome” is killing us. Sitting indoors staring at screens is making Americans soft and pudgy—armchair athletes, lounger pundits, the indoor version of the Marines (aka Wii Warriors). @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 54. 8. Brutal Honesty/ Rugged Love • Whether laziness, habit or fear of the wide world outside, the brutally honest truth is that America is losing the rugged edge and frontier spirit that made it great. We risk becoming a nation of sedentary, pudgy, pasty-faced softies who leave the tough stuff to an elite few. • As world citizens, especially Americans, try to deal with the challenges of China and India, they will look for ways to toughen up and will increasingly value tell-it-like-it-is honesty. • Consumers are loving the rugged that’s served up for them: Dial’s Camp Dirt sweepstakes and “Dirty Jobs” on Discovery are just two examples from outside the industry; there are dozens more from inside it. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 55. What Trend No. 8 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Millions of Americans could get huge benefits from stepping out of their centrally heated or air-conditioned comfort zone. The outdoor industry needs to practice rugged love to convince more Americans to develop a hands-on love of rugged. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 56. #justsayit @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 57. 9 Beached White Males .Seek New Habitats @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 58. 9. Beached White Males Seek New Habitats • Despite what typical Hollywood movies have shown, the reality of life for many American men has been more William H. Macy than Clint Eastwood. • After the recession of the early 1990s, the movie Falling Down portrayed an average Caucasian American male raging against downsizing, immigrants, crime, an anti-male legal system and commercial hype. Things have not gotten better. • The angry white man (AWM) has been an increasingly influential figure in America (think Joe the Plumber), riled by affirmative action, the rise of women and the decline in blue-collar occupations. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 59. 9. Beached White Males Seek New Habitats • Now, the Great Recession has birthed what Newsweek called Beached White Males. Better educated than AWMs, they became used to living the dream—but now are surplus to the needs of a straitened economy. • Tough times are ahead: The nation’s finances are shot, educated women are ever more influential in the workforce, Hispanics are growing in number and America is losing its No. 1 status. • What can BWMs do to get some of the respect they used to enjoy—particularly those who earn (or earned) their living doing jobs involving lots of sitting indoors and pushing pixels? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 60. What Trend No. 9 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Go west! (Or at least go outside.) The great American outdoors–and heritage brands that reflect it–can refresh the souls and stiffen the sinews of the nation’s BWMs. For outdoor industry marketers, here’s the positioning: soft core vs. hard core; ironic vs. serious. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 61. “How do you define outdoor recreation?” Mass retailers make no distinction bt hunting/ fishing and outdoor rec. Why do we? #oibiz @LarryPluimer @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 62. #getout @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 63. 10 @ erwwpr More Real .than Real Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 64. 50% of all innovation processes will be gamified by 2015 - Gamification is transforming business. - Gabe Zichermann #SB11 @SustainBrands @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 65. 10. More Real than Real • Lots of things from real life can be done in computer simulation, which can save time, money and lives. Even in the dark ages of computer graphics, U.S. Marines and airline pilots did it. • With CGI and 3-D, gamemakers and moviemakers are creating experiences more vivid, more stimulating and more engrossing than almost anything in the real world. • Millions of civilians immerse themselves in hyperrealistic computer games for hours on end. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 66. 10. More Real than Real • It’s a good idea for consumers to get many thrills in simulation rather than IRL (in real life), from high-speed car chases to illicit sex. • As computing power increases and tech companies refine offerings, consumers will increasingly find ordinary life experiences less “real” than mediated virtual ones. • But some virtual experiences can still whet consumers’ appetites for the real thing: the feel of a warm sun, the smell of freshly cut grass, the gurgle of water rushing over rapids. • And companies will want to include gaming as part of employee training. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 67. What Trend No. 10 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Virtual is here to stay, so the outdoor industry must figure out ways to use programs and apps as stepping-stones to create desire for the real outdoors and the products that go with it. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 68. #virtualnecessity @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 69. 11 @ erwwpr Bankrupt + Broke .= Gritty Chic Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 70. 11. Bankrupt + Broke = Gritty Chic • Until a couple of years ago, ordinary Americans could taste a little of the high life with a home equity loan and a smart juggling of credit cards. • But at the end of 2010, 11.1 million U.S. households (23.1 percent of homeowners) were in negative equity, with no prospects of the housing market picking up soon. • Things have bounced back for the top 1 percent of Americans (who take in almost a quarter of the nation’s income and own around 40 percent of its wealth), but the remaining 99 percent aren’t in such great shape. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 71. 11. Bankrupt + Broke = Gritty Chic • If it’s any consolation to the 99 percent, the shine of the 1 percent is much less bright than before the financial meltdown. They’ve lost their chic. • Expect Americans’ ingenuity and love of the comeback to reinvent a gritty chic by/for the battling bankrupt and broke. • But at what price for the outdoor industry? What is the consumer tolerance for higher prices when they have less money to spend? @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 72. Here at CiloGear, I find that really well designed and built function turns into interesting good fashion. #oibiz - @cilogear @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 73. Think simpler, aim to create sense of accessibility & show how 2 stay w/in reasonable budget, dispel myth of how $$$ #oibiz is @BryanKuhn @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 74. What Trend No. 11 Means for the Outdoor Industry: Speak authentically and honestly to the condition of people who have a lot less spending power than they used to–but still have self-respect, hope, dreams and hobbies–while keeping yourself in business. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 75. #pushandpull @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 76. 11.5 New Traditions for the Making and Taking @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 77. 11.5 New Traditions for the Making and Taking • Everybody likes traditions (royal wedding, anyone?), but who wants to wait around for years for an enjoyable one-off to mature into a tradition that we can also look forward to? • Fortunately, modern life and interactive technologies distort the fabric of space and time. • Anything that has happened three years running is well on the way to feeling like a tradition. No wonder SXSW (founded in 1987) and even Lebowski Fest (founded in 2002) seem to have been there forever. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 78. 11.5 New Traditions for the Making and Taking • With the echo chamber of interactive multichannel technology, any event that has traction hits multiple touch points and creates numerous cross-references, making it feel familiar very quickly. • As interactivity and the pace of life accelerate, there will be plenty of scope for people to create a whole calendar of new traditions to anticipate. • Marathons have become a fixture across the U.S. and Canada, running from three on New Year’s Day to the Last Chance marathon on Dec. 31; triathlon participation is up more than 10 percent and adventure racing up 18+ percent over last year, according to OIA. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 79. What Trend No. 11.5 Means for the Outdoor Industry: There’s an appetite for annual events that stretch legs, but not everybody is up for long distances. Fortunately, there are alternatives. Take the Dutch tradition of Four Day marches, which gets communities walking their local area for several hours on consecutive evenings–a winning mix of local, community and outdoor. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 80. The only entry requirement is positive disposition. Enthusiasm is a better factor than “fitness.” Why isolate your audience? #OIBIZ @clinard @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 81. #practice=perfect @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 82. What It All Means • Everything is changing faster, more furiously and sometimes with less purpose than ever. • Sustainability is key. • The $1 million question: How much technology do consumers want in their outdoor experience? •A big challenge and opportunity for the outdoor industry is to remind Americans that not all the interesting stuff in life happens through a screen. Engaging in real-life outdoors can be pretty immersive, too. • And the industry needs to be open to letting more people in the “club.” @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting
  • 83. Thank you. @ erwwpr Marian Salzman Trendspotting