News: Experience vs Consumption

Here at Trend Bible, we’ve been talking about the importance of the experience for quite some time. We noticed a shift in consumer mindset at the beginning of the housing collapse in the USA in 2007, and since then we’ve been monitoring a new social mood which relies less on consuming (but not for ‘green’ reasons) and more on what experience a product can bring. This new shift has had some fundamental implications, most of which have been exagerated due to the recession, such as the activity of ‘shopping’ as a pastime is in decline, as we start to think about how else to spend our time. The challenge for retailers as we start to emerge from the recession is going to be  encouraging people to go back to the shops, when they’ve been spending time learning new crafts, educating themselves, spending quality time with loved ones and even finding new hobbies. The rise in visitors to art galleries, museums and at farmers markets in the UK is evidence of this shift towards a change in leisure activities. See our Autumn Winter 2011 trend forecast for more in the effects of this social trend.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “News: Experience vs Consumption

  1. Is this such a bad thing? Experiences develop ideas which can stimulate future developments. Experiences can also create need for products. I have to agree with you the experience of a product is crucial but I’m interested to learn about the rise in activity related products vs. stand alone products such as the Xbox, etc.

  2. trendbible

    Yes that is true, experience can prompt un-met needs which in turn generates opportunity. Even the concept of the computer game, and indeed the focus of the gaming industry (since you mention Xbox), is about multi-user interaction, many new games are being aimed at the family instead of just younger gamers, so that in itself is about creating a shared experience.

    The challege for our clients (blue chip retailers and corporate brands in the UK and USA) is trying to think beyond comodities and create products that have uniqueness and personality, that allow for interaction and personalisation.

    We’ve seen some lovely examples of brands emulating this; hand-thrown vases with the makers’ thumb print imprinted in the base- for example- really give that ‘made for me’ sensation.

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