The future is inevitable, meaning that brands must continuously adapt and move forward to thrive. The 4th industrial revolution has caused a rapid increase in data sharing, competition, as well as consumer voice. The consumer sphere has drastically changed since the rise of mass media and communication, which means that the way they choose to accept the marketing message has changed with it.
Joining trends have become the focus of many marketing campaigns- especially in social sharing. This creates equity in the short run- having the length determined by the popularity of the fad or trend. Businesses and brands need to apply a longer-term focus, which means that approaches should be focused on mega trends and consumer movement rather than momentarily focused fads.
The economy, urbanisation, technology, and social conditions have influenced consumer behaviour, which has opened many new consumer channels. These changes will continue to influence and shape a completely new type of consumer sphere- drastically influencing the households of 2030.
AI will rule the world
Artificial intelligence has already played a major part in consumerism. However, AI won’t just be able to identify the individual consumer preferences, but also understand consumer emotions and moods. The AI will be able to adapt to the tone of voice, body language, wording, and facial expression of the consumer. This will help brands understand and adapt to their consumers’ wants and needs much easier. AI will be used online as well as in brick-and-mortar stores. AI brings the benefits of providing brand empathy for each brand touch-point with the AI. Studies have shown that millennials, the generation who will have the most purchasing power, prefer an emotional connection with a brand. Utilising AI will help persuade the consumer that the brand understands them– incorporating a human element to the brand.
This will play a significant role in the service industry. The brand touch-points will be regulated, and the emotionality of employees will be taken from the equation, but the challenge for brands will be to keep the integration well-balanced.
The transparent Supply Chain
Sustainability has greatly influenced the consumer choices when it comes to choosing final products. This will be escalated further by the need for providing a transparent supply chain– from the sources used, to the supply chain design. Consumers will drive this process from start to finish. Manufacturers and brands will be charged with sharing those details, as well as be able to use this as a competitive advantage. False information will be discredited by blockchain- which will also cause the escalation of transparency.
The Omni-Channel Approach
Omni-channel has played a massive part in the experience of brick-and-mortar stores, but technological advances will see this approach escalate in the future. Retailers will be able to turn their shops into an experience, where they will use interactive displays, holograms, and virtual reality to build custom made experience for customers.
It will Forever be the Human Touch
No matter how advanced technology will become, consumers will still want the human touch. Customers are people, and they will always want that extra human experience. If a brand wants to fully provide a stand out consumer experience, they should focus on the perfect integration between human and technology.
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