GO WITH THE FLOW
Fluidity is a state of dynamic, organic change combined with a sense of continuity: A flow from original sources into new movements or directions; from past to present and future, as well as a merging or diverging of streams – whether experiences, ideas or phenomena.
It’s a term that has gained momentum as an expression of ‘non-traditional’ gender identities, but as a concept represents so much more, the general and widespread dissolution of boundaries.
Trends in themselves are fluid by nature. They are rarely isolated; often linking, overlapping and/or influencing each other, emerging as ever-shifting patterns from a web of diverse influences over time. They may be Mega, Macro or Micro (Globe Trend Spotter, 2017): Mega trends flow into macro trends; from these branches emerge micro trends. Some fade away (‘fads’), others evolve into new ones. Our report last year highlighted four ‘Macro’ trends: Communitas, The Fourth Wall, Empathy and Symbiosis. This year we study new movements flowing from those branches.
It’s always uncertain about peering into the future, but one certainty is very little will be static, and most aspects of life will be FLUID.
The state of dynamic, change combined with a sense of continuity.
Life is fluid, so in some ways, it’s counter-intuitive that our deep need for pattern and apparent order has dominated most of our lives. Now we live in times where dramatic changes in socio-economic, environmental, attitudinal and technological parameters are empowering a new boldness in challenging ‘accepted’ structures wherever they are found. A new fluidity of business models, flexibility in the way spaces are used and a general acceptance of the change.
The movement of power & knowledge.
Much like Communitas this trend shows consumer appreciation of brands rethinking their place in communities and consumer lives. Decentralisation as a concept is built on the basis of fluid movement from one realm to another, it is the movement of power, knowledge, time and resources. It is the key to flexibility and exploration. Brands are using their tools not only to create agile working models for their internal operations but also as a means to explore new avenues to support their purpose and generate new business, as a playground for new offerings.
Break free from societal pressures.
Going beyond support and inclusivity, Empathy Trend, brands must now cater to a loud, unhindered and completely self-accepting, unapologetic consumer. This is the person who wants brands to embrace them as fluid beings of diverse race, gender identification, cultural and social backgrounds. No longer confined to pigeonholes, people expect brands to stand by them as they vocalise matters that are important to them. Understanding this unapologetic stance will enable brands to create deeper bonds with their customers creating a sense of pride, loyalty and feeling heard… As one TikToker explained, “peeling off the constraints of society.”
The flow between urbanisation and nature.
This trend is a clear evolution of our Symbiosis trend, which saw consumers demanding a more balanced coexistence with nature. Rewilding is a flow between urbanisation and natural living. It’s not leaving a modern life in favour of a rural existence but exploring a balance of the two. People are experiencing disassociation because of their growing separation from nature, their true beings are in search of ways to allow a more nature-led life within their current circumstances. Rewilding spans across actions like restoring forests, seed bombs in small plots of earth in urban spaces or switching from veganism to an “ancestral” animal-based diet.
A fresh outlook on inclusion.
Last year brands explored Empathy with their consumers, this need for greater inclusivity has morphed into a more egalitarian arena for brands to move into.
Adults of all ages are generally shopping at the same stores, from tweens to grandparents, everyone is catching up with tech trends and social media. Though there may be generational differences in enjoying the latest trending music or internet meme; consumer-focused generational data is losing its power.
Looking at their consumer base from a wider perspective can help brands grow their business not only for the current environment but also create brand loyalty for the evolving customers of the future.
For the full report, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org