Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

TMW Unlimited Viewpoint 2017 Trends Piece

143 views

Published on

Oversaw the creation of, and contributed to TMW Unlimited's second annual Strategy Department document 'Viewpoint'. A collection of thought pieces covering a range of important topics relevant to us as marketeers and our clients as brand owners. It observes trends, analyses what it means and recommends actions to fully capitalise on them. This year we explored the themes of 1) Cultural Pluralism 2) Diversity within Advertising 3) Retail Innovation 4) Automation revolution 5) Gen Z and Luxury and 6) Social Live Streaming.

Published in: Marketing
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

TMW Unlimited Viewpoint 2017 Trends Piece

  1. 1. 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Start >
  2. 2. What a year 2016 was! We’ve witnessed seismic shifts across political, cultural and technological landscapes. So we wanted to share our views on what this all means for brands and marketers, across six key areas. 2 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  3. 3. 2016 was a year that shook up expectations and defied predictions. We now have to get used to living with uncertainty, a state that requires cool heads and agility. More than ever, we need to think ahead, understand and plan, whilst retaining our ability to move fast and adapt to change. I hope 2017 Viewpoint will help, by looking at the trends and opportunities that we think will matter to marketers this year. In these essays we revisit some of last year’s themes. Automation has moved more swiftly to centre-stage than we expected – bringing new opportunities for marketing, brands and agencies, as well as nascent challenges for broader society. Automation is already shaping the retail sector, where we envisage a polarised future landscape, driven by our desires for convenience and enriched experiences. We review how brands are beginning to respond imaginatively and empathetically to the challenges of diversity. We also cover some exciting new themes. We look at how live streaming is poised to take over our social channels and what this means for branded content. We suggest that Gen Z will change our understanding of what luxury will mean in the future. And we dive into how brands can connect deeply with consumers in a world of cultural pluralism. I hope you find our perspectives fresh and thought-provoking. Kate Wheaton Director of Strategy 3 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  4. 4. Contents Meet the team 05 The growing challenge of cultural pluralism 06 Representation of diversity within advertising 07 Retail innovation 08 Gen Z & the demise of luxury 10 Social is dead. Long live social. 11 About TMW Unlimited 12 Welcome to the automation revolution 09 4 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  5. 5. Patrick Cavanagh-Butler Junior Planner TMW Unlimited Dan Bowers Planning Director TMW Unlimited Anna Foster Data Director TMW Unlimited Michael Browne Planner TMW Unlimited Andrew Robinson Planning Director TMW Unlimited Fred Brinton Planner TMW Unlimited Darryl Delacroix Consulting Partner Navigate Unlimited Susie Clark Managing Director Things Unlimited Rob Meiklejohn Planner TMW Unlimited Victoria White Senior Planner TMW Unlimited Richard Colvile Planner TMW Unlimited Esme Noble Planner TMW Unlimited Jennifer Cownie Senior Planner TMW Unlimited Simon Butcher Planner TMW Unlimited Adam Knight Head of Planning TMW Unlimited Nick Tusler Managing Partner Navigate Unlimited Alexandra Goldstein Senior Social Media Manager Things Unlimited Kate Wheaton Director of Strategy TMW Unlimited Matt Wiseman Planning Director TMW Unlimited Meet the team... Here’s everybody that contributed to one or more of the following thought pieces. A real cross-section from our Planning and Data Strategy departments, as well as people from Things Unlimited, our social first agency brand, and Navigate Unlimited, our marketing technology consultancy. 5 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  6. 6. Areas of impact: + Brand Strategy + Social Strategy + FMCG and how do we engage a community that can on first sight appear completely baffling and alien? DIGITAL CONNECTS PEOPLE LIKE NEVER BEFORE Digital has facilitated greater connection between like-minded people. Connections are no longer bound by geography or time. People can seek out others with like-minded interests, bridging the physical boundaries that have traditionally defined whether cultures have flourished or failed. This new reality creates huge scale in different passion points, even in areas that on the surface may appear niche. This is no more true than the meteoric rise of eSports. What started with teenagers in bedrooms discussing the best gaming strategies has spawned a multi-million dollar entertainment market, with professional gaming teams battling in front of full stadiums of fans for multi-million dollar prizes. 32 million people around the world tuned in online to watch the League of Legends World Final in 2015. This phenomenal growth has happened with a very limited penetration in the ‘mainstream’ consciousness. But this isn’t just a ‘large audience’; this is a thriving cultural community in its own right. The eSports space is defined by a large number of tribes, each grouped around key gaming titles, and within each tribe there is an almost limitless number of sub-tribes. The eSports culture has developed, from an outsider’s perspective, a dizzying array of stars, personalities and influential figures, with a plethora of stories, myths and legends that shape that community’s perceptions, with a shared experience communicated in an almost impenetrable language. The simplistic title of ‘gaming’ does not do justice to the rich cultural world that exists within. Wherever there is a large captive audience, there is an opportunity for brands, and this year we have seen progressive brands who understand the power of fragmented cultural opportunities taking the first steps into this space. Red Bull have opened an eSports channel, Samsung have sponsored a team, and Coke Zero have sponsored viewing areas. But the challenge for these brands, and others as they enter the space, is how to connect authentically with a large, passionate, specialist audience in a way that is believable, emotive, and part of the community. seekers. Each group has a different motivation, and a different cultural expression of their passion which needs to be understood to authentically operate in this community. Some communities require different touch points to be reached authentically. This is something Adidas are really pushing forward. For example, when launching their D Rose Jump Store, they placed adverts in the local chicken shops of Hackney and advertised on local pirate radio. They’re now building on this approach by pushing into dark social, using WhatsApp as a social channel to build connections with hard to reach consumers. Particular visual aesthetics are important to form authentic connections with consumers. For example, Haul videos have a very particular communication style. Haul videos are short films where girls share their recent purchases from shopping trips. Despite being made by disparate people usually on their own, the community has organically developed its own aesthetic: a pastel pallet, script typefaces, quick jump cuts, and shallow depth of field are the hall marks of the haul world. To live in this space, brands need to ensure they capture this popular aesthetic. HOW CAN BRANDS BUILD CULTURAL CONNECTIONS IN THIS FRAGMENTED LANDSCAPE? To connect with cultural communities, brands need to really understand and analyse the culture before jumping in. In particular, there are four elements which are key to connecting with a community: • Landscape: what are the groups and sub-groups within a particular cultural community? What unites them and how are they different? • Actors: who is influential in each community? What is their identity and what do they represent? • Rituals: what are the common behaviours within a community? What are the fables that act as common currency amongst members? • Language and aesthetic: how do members of the community communicate with each other? What is the common slang language? What is the dominant visual style? Once the community has been fully understood, only then is it possible to formulate your own brand narrative which plays to this community, utilising their language, codes and aesthetics in an appropriate way, and taking advantage of the most suitable media opportunities to best reach this community. BIGGER BRAND IMPACT LIES OUTSIDE OF THE MAINSTREAM The rise of fragmented cultural communities is starting to challenge the hegemony of mainstream culture. As people spend more time in different cultural communities, large-scale cultural moments hold less sway. Future success lies in creating connections in cultural spaces outside of the mainstream. The best brands will be malleable: able to fit within a range of subcultural communities, but flexible enough to mirror and match that community. Brands that adopt this model will have more impact with consumers. By being part of the community, they will create greater affinity with consumers, and this affinity will drive purchases in our world of abundant choice. Most of us can think back to our teenage years when the gaps between different cultural groups were chasmic. Some people literally wore their cultural allegiance on their sleeve. But cultural affiliation went beyond what you wore and the music you listened to: language, attitude, behaviour, ritual, ideologies, political allegiance; every aspect of your life could be dedicated to fitting in as part of that tribe. It was a major investment in time and money. But finding belonging through cultural identity is changing. Digital is forming new cultural communities around what were previously niche interests – and it’s doing so at scale. It is also allowing people to form multiple cultural identities, simultaneously creating a new, more complicated picture of cultural affiliation. You don’t have to invest time and money curating an image in the real world when your avatar can do it for you. This subcultural affiliation is no longer the preserve of the teenager; these identity trends span every age and demographic. This is presenting new opportunities for brands to drive greater relevance and affinity with consumers. But in a more complicated, transient and nuanced world, it also presents challenges: which opportunities are the right ones The growing challenge of cultural pluralism. Brands looking to create authentic narratives with consumers need to seek cultural diversification. WHAT CONSTITUTES A SUBCULTURE IS CHANGING Digital has reduced the barrier to exploring different aspects of identity. Rather than having to fully commit to a cultural identity, digital lets people simultaneously exist within different cultural communities. In this world, we can no longer pigeon-hole people into generic archetypes. We need to get away from overly simplistic caricatures such as a ‘worried mum’ or ‘millennial’. Thinking in terms of cultural communities can help us because these images are defined and constructed by the consumer themselves through their active participation in a community. Some of these communities can at first sight seem downright bizarre. Auto-sensory meridian response (ASMR) is a tingly feeling that some people experience when exposed to certain sound triggers, such as whispering or soft brushing noises. Digital has connected people who experience this sensation, allowing them to share their experiences and also create content that triggers the feeling. This has led to a large community forming around this topic, with 100,000 members on Reddit and the most popular ASMR Youtuber, Gentle Whisperer, generating over 250 million views. Dove, the Mars chocolate brand, created an ASMR video for its China market, to try and connect with this hugely popular subculture. Pepsi have also created Instagram content heroing their softly fizzing drink as a way to try and connect with this subculture. THESE CULTURAL COMMUNITIES ARE HARD TO PENETRATE Much like eSports, at first glance, the world of baking seems fairly straight-forward, but this masks a complex web of subcultural groups. There are bakers who bake to master classics, gluten-free bakers, bakers who bake just to perfect a visual aesthetic, clean-living bakers, life-style bakers, show-stopping obsessives, minimalists, and innovation 6 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  7. 7. In last year’s Viewpoint we spoke about how advertising and brands need to go beyond stereotypical depictions of diversity and move towards catering for it with the products they produce. Whilst we haven’t achieved that utopian vision just yet, we have started to see a few green shoots appear, reassuring us that we’re heading in the right direction. And whilst there’s still a lot more to do, centres of excellence (e.g. Channel 4 and Unilever) are now starting to lay out the behaviour for other brands to adopt. Last year, our ‘Diversity in Advertising’ thought piece depicted diversity through mixed gender, body shape and ethnicity, but some of it tended towards the stereotypical and anachronistic. What you could easily term the rainbow-washing phase of diversity advertising. But this year we’ve seen a small but definite shift towards the depiction of diversity through positive roles and representations – we’ll share some examples of this later – which we believe is the next stepping stone in the evolution of diversity in advertising. A SUPER-HUMAN EFFORT The Paralympics advertising, as always, fuelled the debate about representation in advertising. Channel 4’s ‘We’re the Super Humans’ TVC gained praise for striking the balance between depicting its stars’ epic sporting endeavours and everyday activities. Its very existence also helped to highlight the dramatic under representation of disabled people in advertising. Scarily, it featured more disabled people in a single commercial than had ever appeared accumulatively in advertising before. THE LIGHTER SIDE OF DIVERSITY The Malteasers ads, which won £1 million of free advertising from Channel 4 as part of a competition to encourage brands to champion diversity and disability, although highly praised, did raise some interesting debates and discussion points. The three ads demonstrating a ‘lighter side’ of disability, were rather risqué insomuch as they each featured disabled actors explaining to friends an awkward situation that had occurred to them. Whilst being enjoyed and applauded by the broader public for their inclusivity and sense of humour, some questioned the underlying sense they were conveying. In every scenario the protagonist’s disability is the crux of the joke. This has had an adverse effect on a small set of members within the disabled community, uncomfortable with the fact their disability was central to the gag. Is this indicative of yet more insensitive depictions of diversity in advertising, or is it a case of whatever you do, you’ll always end up upsetting a certain minority? REAL WOMEN DOING REAL THINGS H&M should also be recognised and celebrated for its Autumn/ Winter TVC which featured as wide a ranging cast of strong female characters as you could hope for. In short, it featured a black woman with natural hair, women with shaved heads, a muscular woman, wobbly bits wobbling, a thin woman eating French fries without any sense of guilt, armpit hair, a septuagenarian, an ethnically ambiguous, high-powered female business executive, a transgender woman, lesbians and so on. The types of women you might encounter on the tube or high street. And the reason this was so arresting? Because we are so unused to seeing real femininity in advertising, as opposed to the femininity we are told to believe is real – white, perfect figure, perfect hair and make-up. So for now reality is the new fiction in advertising, but in time we hope that reality will be just that. ROLES, DEPICTION AND STEREOTYPES Unilever has also independently recognised the very real need for change in this space too, and has committed to remove sexist stereotypes from all of its brands’ advertising. This being driven by the shocking findings of its own survey, where it discovered that just 2% of ads depict intelligent women, 3% show women in managerial, leadership or professional roles, and 40% of women don’t identify with the characters they see on screen or in print. And further analysis demonstrated that significant gains in impact, likeability and preference could be achieved by rectifying some of these failures. So look out for more positive, intelligent, professional depictions of women coming out of the Unilever stable moving forwards. COME ONE, COME ALL, IT’S CHRISTMAS TIME And taking a snapshot of the biggest advertising peak of the year – the Christmas ads – we see yet more reassuring movement. Sainsbury’s stop gap epic features a wide range of characters – intended to represent the diverse nature of modern Britain – including a same sex couple complete with baby. House of Fraser, although revisiting last year’s ‘music and street dance’ theme, has decided to better reflect its customer base with older (yet still as funky) characters central to the story. M&S turn their focus to Mrs Clause, a mature lady delivering a wonderfully caring gesture whilst keeping Mr Clause in the dark. And finally, John Lewis – to some THE Christmas ad of the year – featured the infamous Buster the dog and an all-black cast, representing the typical British family, which has been warmly received by all. TO 2017, AND BEYOND Whilst these pieces of work have all done a brilliant job at featuring a diverse range of ages, ethnicities, abilities, sexual orientations, and in doing so normalised a much wider range of talented people who help sell things to us, we believe there is still work to be done. We theorise that the next shift in diversity in advertising will be a move towards ads that truly represent the behaviours and passions of the group they feature, and not just the generalised stereotypes of the past and to a certain extent present. Furthermore, if we recognise that the peaks of engagement created by the Paralympics in 2012 and 2016 drove a real reframing of disability in the eyes of the general public, really turbo-charging the breaking down of taboos around this area, then what could those peaks be for gender, age, LGBT and BAME equality? Who will step forward and force us to rethink our attitudes in these spaces? So if we could urge our brand owning and marketing colleagues to take away one thing, it would be to consider what peaks they can create and which area of diversity they can help break down the barriers to. Gender, disability age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation – there’s a long list to choose from. But beware, just doing it simply isn’t enough. There are a plethora of examples of bad advertising trying to do good things in this space. In short, it’s hard to make good advertising, let alone good advertising that does good too. So whichever area of focus you choose, whatever business challenges you need to address, work with your agencies and make sure you get to bloody great work. Because otherwise it’ll fade into the background of brand noise, pass unnoticed and fail twice – once for your brand, and once for the cause of diversity. Representation of diversity within advertising. What progress has been made and what’s the next step for brands? TABOO NO MORE Some of what we saw in 2016 would have once been deemed truly shocking. In 1974, TV’s first ever (post-watershed) lesbian kiss was broadcast (Girl, BBC2) only after the station controller made an on-air announcement. It was deemed so controversial it was aired only once. And just a short 23 years ago, Brookside repeated that pre-watershed to both huge support and complaint. So to 2016 and we have seen a much broader representation of sexual identities through Match.com and Trivago advertising campaigns. Whilst that was happening, Channel 4’s First Dates has been effectively normalising LGBT and disability dating. It feels like we’ve made huge leaps forward of late, but there is still so much more to do. Even within the fashion industry – a historical flashpoint for diversity – we’ve seen enlightened brands make headway. The style and fashion platform Refinery 29 going as far as creating a whole new portfolio of stock imagery featuring plus size women – currently shown in only 2% of advertising images despite making up 67% of American women. The platform believes that enabling access to these kinds of images will encourage advertisers to more accurately mirror the society they are trying to engage. Areas of impact: + Advertising strategy + Branded messaging + Communications and content planning 7 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  8. 8. It’s 2037 and I’ve run out of milk, washing powder and food. All essentials which I need back in my kitchen pretty quickly. So, I ask Alexa if she can order replacements. I trust Alexa to make choices for me, she’s normally spot on, almost as if she knows me better than myself. Which brands will she pick? The ones I know and love of course. So I order through her and it all arrives an hour later in an Amazon branded box. Another great, time-saving job from Alexa who never seems to let me down. HOW THINGS HAVE CHANGED Products now sit behind AI assistant walls, they decide what we should get now. And apparently that’s done through some sort of live bidding system to get me the best deal. I tell Alexa what I want and she instantaneously goes out to find the perfect products for me, finding out who wants to bid for my order to give me the best price, fastest. And I’ve got my preferred delivery-bot company who takes care of all my delivery needs. HOW THE HELL DID WE GET HERE? So, this all sounds a bit farfetched, but we are certainly sitting on the precipice of big change. Could this all actually happen in the next 20 years? Well, think just how far we’ve come in the last 20 – in ‘96 it was all about CDs and the Palm Pilot. No one had heard of Google and we sent less than one text a month. So now you’re on board, let’s map out the logical steps to our 2037 scenario above. We’ve already had the impact of the 2008 crash flipping the high street on its head and with Brexit on the horizon, we expect there to be real economic disruption all over again. Retail innovation. INEVITABLE CHANGE Despite this, inevitably the face of the high street had to change as shoppers shifted towards digital. It started an irreversible move towards a focus on delivering experiences and branded engagement in lieu of retail – from transactional to ‘brandactional’ spaces. It gradually became a place to meet, socialise, browse and experience rather than shop. THE OUTCOME The outcome of all this is that retail brands have been placed on a slippery slope that eventually sees them hidden behind automation platforms such as Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Siri. The algorithms driving these AI agents start to make decisions for us based on what they think we want, or more scarily the types of relationships (financial and otherwise) that they have with their supplier brands. B2C brands are forced to behave just like B2B brands, with a complex web of resellers and distributors between them and their end customers. And we were all quite happy with these changes. Cultural shifts such as the increasing age demographic and the rise in urban living meant that we all demanded shopping experiences which suited these new needs. And it suited the way our behaviour has changed – our need for instant gratification for example, was fulfilled by 24 hour access and under the hour fulfilment – something the high street could never provide. WHAT NOW? Back to today, what does it mean for us as brands, marketeers and retailers in 2017? If this is the future what should we be doing to prepare right now? Well, for now, we think it’s still all about establishing and maintaining strong relationships between customers and brands. Driving real salience, preference and mental availability, so when that moment of truth arrives your brand is both front of mind and desirable. But in a world where the choosing of brands and retailers will become sub contracted out to Alexa and her ilk, it’ll be vital to demonstrate you’re worth a place in a shopper’s ever short-cutting life. The building up of loyalty now will help in wiring those much desired behaviours going forward, so that you’re suddenly the default when decisions don’t have to be made by you anymore. Loyalty will quickly evolve and start to take on, we believe, different guises. Solving problems and improving shopping experiences will be highly prized. As will brands that can demonstrate excellent and frictionless service. But the real shift could come from brands who really focus on returning to delivering unrivalled product and consumption experiences, potentially even tailored to the individual using the rich data that the likes of Alexa and future connected brand platfoms will enable. As now, brands and retailers who continue to innovate and adapt will survive and thrive, others won’t. We believe the speed that businesses fail or succeed will continue to increase in this unforgiving but massively rewarding new world of data, defaults and delegation. So, become the natural choice for a shopper (whether or not that’s via AI) and you’ve got a relationship to look forward to. Become a surviving stalwart, a genuine high street beacon offering serendipity and experience that simply can’t be replicated online (well not yet). Or swing completely the other way and focus on getting your product into a shopper’s hands with a little help from Alexa. Having got my essentials sorted I decide to head out to the high street. It’s a friend’s birthday and I want to choose her a present – I can’t ask Alexa to do everything. Most shops are online now. Stores are for brands to romance us with free coffee, to meet friends and be surrounded by stuff we can buy and have delivered home even before we get there. I have a look round a couple of experience centres (what we used to call shops) and grab a coffee while I decide what to buy. Having chosen the gift I ask Alexa to have it delivered home today, in time for the party this evening. I still like doing a bit of actual shopping (not everything has changed!) and I can do that at the retail survivors – the real artisanal stalwarts – you know, the hyper luxury/ hyper local shops still standing and so far, have proved irreplaceable. Real experiences and products of unmatched quality haven’t yet been replaced by technology. I head to the bakery, have a chat with the lovely baker I’ve known for absolute years, and choose a delicious handmade cake for tonight. I get home to prepare for the evening ahead and decide that I really don’t have anything to wear – I definitely need something new and fast. I grab my VR glasses and sit down for a bit of a browse. Ten minutes later I’ve chosen a dress, offered my details to endorse the brand for the standard future discount and it’s with me in 30 minutes – evening saved! Areas of impact: + Omni-channel retail + Brand experience + Customer loyalty What will retail look like in 20 years’ time? As inflation rises in response to this, brands become less important with more choices driven by price. And vitally, this price hunting manifests itself most dramatically online, where the best deals are always to be had. As we all hunted for better deals, our online shopping habits became our default choice. This was supported by a fundamental redesign of the last mile. With the delivery industry revolutionised, we now have our own personally-selected delivery company working for us, not the sender, and drones reliably delivering to us wherever we are. THE STEADY MARCH OF AUTOMATION Automation drove the adoption and normalisation of chatbots delivering customer service support. This enabled us to self-serve information and advice, killing off yet another reason to visit the high street – face-to-face expertise. VR and AR became another nail in the coffin. Now mature enough to enable more natural shopping behaviours away from store, having to go to the high street to look at the chair or pair of trainers you wanted to buy became completely unnecessary. There was a temporary shot in the arm for retail with the long awaited arrival of connected platforms, when payment tech finally joined the dots to enable fluid omni-channel experiences for the masses. This drove mass personalisation across all platforms, including in store with real time pricing and personalised offers – giving a reason for shoppers to visit a store rather than go online. 8 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  9. 9. Areas of impact: + Marketing Automation + Artificial Intelligence + Creativity In the past, the word automation conjured images of the herculean power of heavy machinery on construction sites or the dazzling speed of factory production lines. This efficient machinery saved billions of dollars in labour, energy and materials, as well as enabling the creation of extraordinary buildings and products alike. Automation today, however, has taken on an altogether different meaning. Digital processing power is growing fast and Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) is becoming a reality. It’s feasible to envision a world where machines could perform any intellectual, or even creative, task that a human can. This might sound far fetched, but when you consider where we are starting from it quickly becomes believable. After all, the world is becoming more automated every day. From the rapid adoption of contactless and mobile payments in the UK, to the gradual adoption of Tesla’s driverless cars in the US. Nike have recently even released the self-lacing trainers first imagined in Back To The Future Part 2. Our lives are becoming more and more frictionless. But is the uniquely human talent and ability to think and be creative really under threat? Is the communications and advertising industry going the same way as a factory production line, destined to be fulfilled by robots? ARTIFICIAL CREATIVITY There are already some emerging examples of automated creativity. One came about when the bank ING applied their innovative spirit to the sponsorship of Dutch art and culture. They literally taught a machine to think, act and paint like Rembrandt. Over two years, using 3D scanners, a deep-learning algorithm and facial recognition software, they analysed 346 paintings in order to re-create his unique style, which they printed using a 3D printer that uses paint based ink. An impressive use of technology admittedly, but it is clearly imitating creativity rather than originating creativity. Automated creativity is even infiltrating advertising agencies. Dentsu in Japan recently hired the world’s first artificial creative director (AI-CD). A decade of award-winning work was uploaded to AI-CD, and rather worryingly, it applies algorithms to help set a creative direction based on the client brief. In Hollywood, Sunspring was the first completely A.I. penned short film. Using a general text-recognition learning algorithm, they fed the machine with two decade’s worth of science fiction screenplays as its inspiration. The A.I. picked up on the commonalities of screenplay formats, but the resulting movie seriously lacked consistency and a compelling narrative. Whilst these examples represent tremendous leaps in creative artificial intelligence, human involvement is much needed, and in some cases sorely missed. The truth is, the output of machines alone isn’t good enough. Robots don’t have the ability to freely associate in the same way humans do, meaning they simply don’t have the same capacity for imagination. UNLOCKING IMAGINATION We believe the real automation tipping point for creativity and imagination will come when the technology moves from fulfilling a minor role to a majority role in the labour market, thus creating space for a new wave of imagination to flourish. Consider the often unsung but enormous impact of the introduction of the washing machine and other household appliances. Which, by vastly reducing the work involved in carrying out household chores, allowed women to enter the labour market and virtually abolished professions like domestic service. The current rapid adoption of automation and its projected impact on the labour market shares a number of key characteristics with the advent of the washing machine – and as such holds similar potential. The first being a significant reduction in the amount of time it takes to fulfill a given task and the second being the innate desire to imagine a new reality to put that time to use. It’s both the lack of time and repetitive low cognitive tasks that are the enemy of imagination and creativity. Automation removes these barriers. Elon Musk, founder of Tesla, echoes this sentiment by saying ‘people will have time to do other things and more complex things, more interesting things’. Musk is a shining example of what’s possible when automation grants you the luxury of time. So, while the possibilities of automation are exciting – it is the opportunities to imagine granted by the gift of time which become really fascinating. A NEW DAWN OF IMAGINATION So when will this ‘tipping point’ happen and how might it manifest itself? According to Rice University professor, Moshe Vardi, ‘automation will claim 50% of all our jobs in the next 30 years’. And whilst that might be so, it’s unlikely that it will replace many jobs in their entirety, but rather that a percentage will become automated. If Vardi is right, both client and agency businesses will be faced with the conundrum of either reducing the number of employees, reducing the number of hours work or redirecting employees spare capacity on new revenue generating activities. In reality, we will see a combination of all these scenarios, which will require people to imagine completely new roles for themselves and imagine fresh ways of creating value with their newly acquired ‘free’ time. This is the moment that will signal a new dawn of human imagination, or to put it another way – if knowledge was the key asset of the 20th century, then imagination will be the key asset of the 21st century. We don’t think so. Instead we believe the advent of automation will create a new landscape where imagination and creativity will flourish. MARKETING AUTOMATION The biggest driver of change in the industry right now is marketing automation. It’s becoming easier to harness huge swathes of behavioural data to fuel automated ‘real-time’ decision-making. This enables marketers to get ever closer to the panacea of right customer, right message, right time and right channel. Advancing A.I. capabilities can vastly improve customer experience management, by making instant decisions based on data, and assisting the design and execution of customer interactions. Capitalising on this potential isn’t just reserved for big brands with sophisticated marketing technology platforms. Take Fuzzy.ai for example, a software company that makes A.I. more widely accessible and easy to use. Their system takes your knowledge and intuition about your business and converts it into an algorithm that improves automatically, helping you to make better decisions. The established players like IBM are making this a commercial priority; in 2017 they will incorporate Watson (their A.I. algorithm) into their marketing cloud software. Watson will allow users to instantly harness intelligence from data in their marketing platform by using a simple conversational ‘Chatbot’ style interface. Within this platform they’ll be able to carry out complex, skilled tasks that are currently carried out by technical marketing experts. It is clear technology developments like these will demand far less human intervention, but they won’t function independently. The technology will still be dependent on the human mind for strategic thinking and creativity. Or will it…? Welcome to the automation revolution. An exciting new era that’s propelled by automation but defined by imagination. IT’S ALREADY HAPPENING There are already a whole host of instances where automation is completely redefining the human experience of the world. One of the most significant changes to the human experience brought about by automation is the way in which we discover information. Google have been using machine learning for years to guide people through cyberspace in the most seamless and relevant way possible. Amazon have been perfecting their purchase experience to make it as frictionless as possible – recently releasing the Amazon Echo which has taken it one step further, simply requiring you to ask a machine to order whatever it is you desire. In other categories, automation is completely redefining the incumbent reality, from algorithms making new medical discoveries, controlling autonomous cars, to those interpreting human conversations like customer service Chatbots or even Google’s AI Assistant. In all three cases, automation is carving out our new reality and therefore influencing the way we think, experience and imagine the world. So let us think about automation in terms of the possible, let’s imagine a new era and then create it. 9 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  10. 10. Areas of impact: + Youth + Luxury + Behavioural economics The way that consumers perceive luxury products is in flux. And it’s Gen Z (the under 20s) driving it. Sure, few among us were able to afford traditional high-end luxury in our teenage years. But this young generation are the first who may never be able to and, crucially, may never particularly want to. That has big implications. Young consumers are increasingly attributing high value to brands offering pragmatism, shared or borrowed ownership, and inclusivity. Luxury brands have traditionally stood for the exact opposite – polished refinement, treasured ownership and exclusivity. It’s time to reappraise how we’re engaging this generation before they enter the heartland of high-end brands’ target age ranges. Because the way to pre-empt it is not just about peppering creative with heart-eyes emojis. It could be as fundamental as reformulating a business model. At any given time, your inbox probably contains several unread emails offering advice on how to market to Gen Z, covering everything from financial services to handbags. They talk about the importance of ‘being authentic’, of recognising the importance of friends, and ‘prioritising positive brand experience’, as if these are things that the rest of us couldn’t possibly want. Generalisations across an age demographic aren’t particularly helpful at the best of times, and these well-meaning observations could probably be attributed to attitudinal shifts occurring across consumers as a whole. We need to park the generalities, unless they’re rooted in truth directly attributable to Gen Z alone. However, there are four specific economic and socio-psychological reasons why today’s teens’ perception of value and luxury is different from any generation prior. These four drivers, importantly, seem to be evidenced across the age group, and are unique to that age group. 1. THE SATURATION OF LUXURY BRANDS AMONG THEIR PARENTS Once upon a time, being fat was a mark of affluence. Why? Because food wasn’t readily available in large quantities unless you had money. Now that calorific food is inexpensive and abundant, being overweight is no longer a signifier of wealth. The perceived value of traditional luxury goods is arguably following a similar trajectory. The parents of today’s middle-class teens were probably the first generation to be able to buy into luxury brands in some way en masse. An Apple device. Chanel glasses. A YSL scent. For today’s teens looking on, the cache of owning luxury products in their traditional guise is no longer as strong. 2. THEIR OWN ECONOMIC HARDSHIP This post-recession generation are the first in recent history who expect to be financially worse off than their parents. They’re staring down the barrel of an estimated £44K debt if they want to get the degree that was virtually free for their parents and less than half the price for their older siblings. This generation has many more significant financial barriers on their horizon. And they’re acutely aware of them. Many feel they won’t ever pay off their student debt, and around half have given up on ever owning a house. In these circumstances, it’s hard to see many Gen Z-ers having the spare cash to spend on non-essential investments, even if they did see the value in it. 3. THEIR CONTROLLED, RISK-AVERSE OUTLOOK Gen Z can’t afford to make rash decisions – both literally and metaphorically. In addition to their financial constraints, teens are demonstrating a fundamental attitudinal shift in what constitutes ‘the good life’. The bad news for luxury brands is that it couldn’t be further away from the brash, heart-driven decision-making that luxury brands thrive on. They are now spending more on coffee than clubbing. Over a quarter of those who are of drinking-age don’t drink alcohol at all. With the economy stacked against them, they report being more career-focused at a younger age than any preceding generation. It points to a generational mind-set that is remarkably clear-sighted; they are increasingly sober, serious, ambitious and careful. For luxury marques built on spontaneity and indulgence, they are soon going to find themselves at odds with the next cohort of consumers entering their target audience. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR BRANDS? Given those four interrelated factors, it’s hardly surprising that we’re left with some pretty major implications for Gen Z’s future relationship with luxury brands. Crucially, though, these aren’t socio-psychological conditions that they’ll ‘grow out of’. This looks like engrained-world-view stuff that they will retain as they enter luxury brands’ traditional target age brackets. Instead of looking to the older generation to understand what the younger generation will become, we need to be looking at this audience to understand what the future is going to be like. That’s an important and sizeable challenge for marketers to get to grips with – and here’s where we start. PRAGMATISM Start communicating how you will rationally improve your consumer as a person – or diversify into products that do. As luxury brands prepare for Gen Z entering their target age range, they will need to do more than flutter their eyelashes to attract them. Convincing an audience that their purchase is not a self-indulgence or a frivolous treat, but instead something that they can rationalise into a narrative of responsible self-improvement, will be vital. Premium food brands have been among the first off the mark, increasingly explicitly communicating around the rational function they offer – whether it’s energy-providing or gut-protecting. How this ‘justifiable self- improvement’ narrative can be woven across high-end technology, automotive, fashion or entertainment verticals, for example, represents the harder challenge. INCLUSIVITY Start relinquishing control of your luxury product to consumers. With Gen Z unlikely to be placing much stock in the come-hither allure of luxury marques, it will be increasingly incumbent upon those brands to reach out and involve consumers. For a luxury world that is used to acting intentionally aloof and standoffish, that’s a daunting prospect. Ralph Lauren are showing that relinquishing product control isn’t antithetical to high-end credentials with their in-store and online personalisation bars, allowing consumers to remix their logo and products. With other fashion houses making their catwalks immediately shop-able, Mr Porter setting up shop on Apple TV and Tesla bringing premium car dealerships to shopping malls, these luxury brands are also loosening their once-tight grip on where their products are bought. If Gen Z don’t place as high stock in traditional luxury as previous generations, this level of accessibility will need to become the norm. BORROWED OWNERSHIP Start offering luxury as a service rather than an owned product. Tech start-up Makercase are pioneering a ‘deliverable retail in a box’ solution which allows consumers to access high-end products for a short period of time, rather than committing to owning them in the conventional sense. The high-end fashion industry, meanwhile, is pondering its response to the rise of a host of services like Rent The Runway, offering short-term access to ordinarily unaffordable clothing. One response from fashion labels is to make a select few pieces available in hotel room wardrobes for guests to rent for the day – a kind of mini-bar for high-end clothing. In the automotive industry, BMW are leading the way with their well-documented ‘On Demand’ service. By starting to reformulate their business models, these brands are preparing for a generation of consumers who will be less able, and less willing, to commit to expensive, conventional ownership. 4. THEIR ASPIRATION TO TANGIBLE SELF-IMPROVEMENT, NOT SELF-AGGRANDISEMENT Today’s teens are considerably more health conscious than their elders. When they do open their wallets, it’s for things that will have a tangible, positive impact on their wellbeing. Recent Nielsen data found that a higher percentage of Gen Z-ers were ‘very willing’ to pay a premium for healthy food than any other age group, despite being cash-strapped. In a world in which they have less control and financial clout than those before them, Gen Z are focusing on things they can be masters of, like their own health and wellbeing. Luxury and aspiration go hand-in-hand. But tomorrow’s luxury consumers aren’t aspiring to make a statement or be revered. Instead they’re aspiring to tangible self-improvement. That’s something that few luxury brands are currently offering. Gen Z & the demise of luxury. How are teens changing our understanding of what the luxury brand of the future will be? 10 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  11. 11. Areas of impact: + Social content planning + Influencer and partnership strategy + Newsjacking and responsive content Social is dead. Long live social. The growth of live video streaming. According to Facebook, the future of social media is video. This summer, they claimed that text would be obsolete on the social network in five years’ time. Online streaming has overtaken broadcast television viewing in the US, and trend watchers increasingly delight in mind-bending statistics about how much film content we are creating (300 hours uploaded to YouTube every minute, though by the time you read this it’ll surely be more). It’s no surprise, then, that live video streaming is the topic of the moment. Facebook’s own offering is Live, which allows users to beam their hopes, dreams, fears, and dining experiences directly into other people’s feeds, as they happen. It follows in the footsteps of Meerkat and Periscope, and is succeeded in turn by the YouTube live-stream button for mobile and Twitter’s live TV app. With so many digital leviathans piling into live streaming, are we witnessing the birth of a new era, a move from ‘always on’ to ‘on right now’ – or could this be a case of the emperor’s new clothes? THE CASE FOR LIVE It’s easy to see why platforms have jumped on the live streaming bandwagon. For Facebook, Live offers a fresh way to interact on a platform that now feels so familiar it risks becoming stale. The platform built its reputation on being an innovative challenger, but has been eclipsed by the likes of Snapchat, which has greater cachet with young audiences. Zuckerberg himself has spoken of the raw and visceral qualities of the format, arguing that it is ‘freeing people to be themselves’. And there is objective truth in this on a psychological level. Human beings like to be in the know: we derive social status from being the first to bring new information into our networks. The Internet has been making the world smaller and communications faster for more than 20 years, creating new opportunities to communicate with others and define our own identities. What began with webcams of coffee pots and evolved into the lifecasters of the mid-90s has now become mainstream behavior. It isn’t enough just to be able to make a pithy comment about current affairs or The Great British Bake Off – you have to strike while the iron is hot, and you have to do it before anyone else does. The ability to live stream high quality video directly from your phone thus clearly represents a new phase for users – although whether the platforms are able to keep up with demand remains to be seen. The once widely-adopted Vine brought a new language for video to the mainstream, but failed to evolve with its audience and breathed its last breath in 2016. Facebook is more optimistic, and has shared some impressive engagement metrics: comment levels, for example, are apparently ten times higher on live broadcasts than they are on regular videos (although cynics might not find this surprising, given that the feature is designed to encourage comments, and the algorithm privileges Live content). Still, such is Facebook’s confidence in its newest product that promoted Live content is already considered a given and pilot tests for disruptive ads, which would appear a few minutes into a broadcast, are heavily rumoured. REVOLUTION, NOT EVOLUTION But for brands, the big question remains: how significant a change does the growth of live social really represent to the way they need to market themselves? The answer, if you strip away the media attention and platform investment is probably ‘less than you’d think’. Historically, the companies whose performances in social have been most fêted have always been those which act fast. In digital marketing we talk about being ‘agile’ and ‘reactive’, a few years ago, ‘newsjacking’ was the phrase du jour – indeed, what was the Oreo Super Bowl moment if not live social? The technology might be more sophisticated, but the recipe for success in social remains the same: make yourself part of what interests your audience, and have something entertaining or useful to say. Looked at from this angle, live social isn’t quite as groundbreaking as it might first appear. Instead, it’s a natural extension of the human behaviours (and business investments) that have made these platforms the powerhouses that they are today. A WATERSHED MOMENT The real issue for brands is risk. Live content amplifies both the potential benefits and the potential pitfalls of playing social media. Done well, it could put you at the bleeding edge of pop culture, making you famous and driving return on investment. But done badly, it could be an expensive flop – or worse, a reputational risk. So it’s surely no coincidence that, at the same time that we see live content growing, we also see all of the major platforms encouraging brands to rethink their approaches to social. Organic presences are being strongly discouraged, particularly by Snapchat, which not only doesn’t require a profile in order to advertise, but actively discourages brands from creating one. Meanwhile Facebook et al position themselves as innovative advertising channels, talking about immersive formats, relevant content, and tailored targeting, rather than engagement and community-building. Perhaps then, this is less of a brave new world for marketing, and more a process of natural self-selection. For some industries, companies, and categories, livestreaming video not only makes sense, it’s also crucial to their continued success. Just as mainstream media outlets are changing their approach to reporting breaking news in order to try to compete with the tireless firehose Twitter, for some businesses this is an adapt-or-perish moment. And for brands that already command high levels of consumer engagement (entertainment, music, and sports, not to mention celebrities) it’s a chance to circumvent traditional – and more expensive – ways of reaching audiences, or to beat the old media businesses at their own game. WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD? Continued investment and innovation by the big social media platforms looks set to continue into 2017. Twitter’s self-proclaimed role as the place to find out ‘what’s happening now’ clearly hints at ambitions to integrate with broadcast television, and the recent acquisition of NFL screening rights suggests that vision can become a successful reality. Indeed the whole area of live sports looks set to be a highly contested battleground in the near future with tech companies rushing to carve out a niche. Facebook cautiously entered the arena in 2016, penning a deal to stream pre-Olympic US basketball games. YouTube is showing its hand too: it’s signed a deal to live stream the next UEFA Champions League finals, and is rumoured to be launching Unplugged, a live TV service, in the near future. So far, few brands are truly excelling in the live social arena but, for some, it might be possible to dip a toe in the fast-moving waters through collaboration with superfans and celebrities. Audiences grant more latitude to individuals than to even the most loved brands; influencer marketing could be an opportunity for some to affordably test live content through others before expensively committing to a new way of working. And with all of this movement, the trend towards live social could presage the ultimate integration of broadcast TV with social media – something that would, without doubt, change the face of media and marketing forever. ARE YOU IN? (YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE IN) There can be no doubt that live streaming in social will continue to attract interest and experimentation by platforms and users throughout 2017. But when it comes to brands, the future is less clear, and the potential implications far greater, because of what it means for the way they approach creative work. Earlier this year, users were criticised for uploading pre-recorded videos to Facebook Live platform and defended themselves by claiming that their content ‘was recorded live, even if not broadcast live’. While you’d be forgiven for thinking that the commenters believed other videos were filmed in the astral plane or the Upside Down, what this really reveals is that when we say ‘live’ we mean something very different – we mean ‘un-edited, unfiltered, and imperfect’. These new technologies are reducing the lag before publication: we can’t double-check our content before we push it out into the world. And that’s where brands and people are different. Ordinary social users don’t plan their posts months in advance; they don’t go through complex sign off processes involving legal regulations, claims, values, target audiences and message testing; and, most importantly, their reputations don’t suffer in the same way if their production values aren’t high enough. The most important thing, therefore, for brands to remember about live social as they move into 2017 is that, if they’re going to be bold and release content which hasn’t been finessed, they need to be very sure that it’ll offer real value to viewers. And, if it can’t, perhaps the bravest (and wisest) thing they can do is to stay out of the fray. 11 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  12. 12. Data & Insight, Strategy & Planning, and Creative & Content Strategy sit at the heart of all of what we do. We also have specialist teams in Customer Experience Management including CRM/CVM, Technology & Project Management, Social & Influencer Marketing, Paid Media & Distribution, Labs & Creative Innovation and Production. These extensive capabilities have made us one of the UK’s most awarded agencies for insightful, data-led creativity. Our recent wins include a highly prestigious Silver Cannes Lions, D&AD Impact Award, Gold IPM Award, Data Storytelling Award, and Grand Prix at both the Digital Impact Awards and Social Buzz Awards. INTELLIGENT INFLUENCE Emotion is at the heart of decision making. People feel, then they do, then they think. So we create influential ideas and experiences that unlock the power of how people feel through a unique approach we call ‘Intelligent Influence’. Using insight and data, Intelligent Influence helps our clients create stronger and more meaningful long-term relationships with their consumers. INTERNATIONAL REACH We have an agency network in 25 countries worldwide through our partnership with Serviceplan Unlimited and work with some of the biggest brands in the world delivering campaigns with global relevancy. UNLIMITED THINKING We are part of the Unlimited Group, a group brand offer that can provide additional specialisms and expertise. Together, we can deliver Unlimited Thinking through our group agencies and provide fully integrated solutions. Covering the full spectrum of marketing communications, our focus is on intelligent insight, memorable creative and results that drive long term value for clients. Creating the world’s most influential ideas and experiences With three decades in the business, TMW Unlimited is the leading customer engagement agency in the UK today. 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action.12 Next slide >< Previous
  13. 13. CATEGORY NAME: CATEGORY NUMBER(S): CAMPAIGN NAME: BRAND: Let your print imagination run wild with innovation and insight Want to digitally print onto more surfaces? Or use 3D printing to rapidly create new parts or prototypes? With cost-effective solutions for one-off short runs, we’ll help you explore exciting new revenue opportunities in the manufacturing and industrial sectors. Come and see us in Hall 8a and find out how we can help you #UNLEASHPRINT. #UNLEASHPRINT 40697_CA_Drupa_Ads_330x240.indd 3 06/05/2016 15:58 Turn print possibilities into business opportunities Print should be about exploring bold ideas that will grow your business. It should be about experimenting with new techniques that will see you expand into new markets. Most importantly, it should be about saying ‘yes’ more often, to more of your customers. So if you want to #UNLEASHPRINT within your business, we have the expertise and forward-facing technology to help make it happen. Come and see us in Hall 8a and find out how we can help you #UNLEASHPRINT. #UNLEASHPRINT It’s time to 40697_CA_Drupa_DPS_330x480_V4.indd 1 09/05/2016 10:03 Direct mail Website: #UNLEASHPRINT hub page Online display: Banners Press ads BEST USE OF CREATIVE #UNLEASHPRINT 5 CANON CAMPAIGN NAME: BRAND: AGENCY: Social: Short videos #UNLEASHPRINT CANON 7 156) CRESTON UNLIMITED Magazine cover wrap PR activity Video campaign: #UNLEASHPRINT challenges Video content: Sales presenter CAMPAIGN NAME: BRAND: AGENCY: Social: Short videos #UNLEASHPRINT CANON 156) CRESTON UNLIMITED Magazine cover wrap PR activity Video campaign: #UNLEASHPRINT challenges Video content: Sales presenter Some recent work Client Canon Campaign #UNLEASHPRINT An impactful, fully integrated B2B campaign that celebrates the incredible potential of today’s print industry in order to engage and inspire Canon’s commercial print audiences. Driven by the knowledge that companies who rely on print for business are ‘survivors’ in a space that’s seen some tricky times, the campaign galvanises businesses to deliver even bolder ideas and new techniques using Canon printers. #UNLEASHPRINT was developed for social, experiential, online, press and out of home. Client Lynx Campaign Men In Progress To make Lynx relevant to young men in 2016 who want to present themselves well but aren’t concerned purely with the pursuit of girls, we created a digital campaign called ‘Men In Progress’. Featuring a series of nine short films seeded across social platforms, the campaign is designed to challenge perceptions of the modern man and reinstate the brand as a barometer of what it is to be a man living in the UK today. The beautifully shot, raw and authentic pieces of content feature dozens of guys talking candidly about a range of topics - from the last time they cried through to how they feel about their body and what masculinity means to them. 13 2017 Viewpoint Trend: Impact: Action. Next slide >< Previous
  14. 14. To talk to us about our Viewpoint, or to get our opinion on a sticky brief you’re dealing with, contact Richard Marshall, our Group CEO. rmarshall@tmwunlimited.com +44 (0)7802 814921 +44 (0)20 7349 4036 www.tmwunlimited.com Contact < Previous

×