1. 2023 will be more consumer-centric than ever - With 2023’s cost of living crisis and growing environmental, political, and privacy concerns (to list a few), brands more than ever need to understand what their customers want to compete with the over-saturated, hyper-competitive market.
Those brands that take an interest in what people view as essential this year and have their consumers at the heart of the decision-making will be rewarded with consumer loyalty as they prove they are here to support their customers. This has already been seen with brands pushing new iterations of mindful media and engaging, immersive and rewarding experiences across physical and digital platforms, which also links to another upcoming predicted trend that brands will play a more tangible role in the lives of their customers.
2. Demographics are out, communities are in - Traditional grouping methods, such as age or gender, are outdated, meaning brands/businesses can no longer use this data to understand their consumer base.
Instead, the move towards understanding an individual based on their hobbies, interests, attitudes and online communities is helping brands better understand who their customer is. Brands will rely on this information to apprehend what their consumers want from them, not everyone wants their favourite brand to push them into the metaverse. This community lead research will help drive the pre-existing personalisation macro trend.
3. Brands truly engaging in social activism - Consumers are becoming increasingly mindful of their purchasing decisions due to growing sustainability concerns and the cost of living crisis. The result is that brands will use purpose-driven campaigns and engage in social activism (think Patagonia announcing nature as their new shareholder) to prove their alignment with customers' values.
4. The decentralisation of beauty and fashion - Gen Z has turned the fashion and beauty industry in its head as they continue favouring experimentation and self-expression. This unapologetic attitude towards radical self-care and expressing individualism is not only due to extend into different sectors but will also be an exciting challenge for brands to keep up with.
5. Prioritising accessible and inclusive design - Brands are predicted to demonstrate their commitment to inclusion and accessibility, which has been lacking compared to the recent embrace of diversity by brands and businesses. According to Laura Swinton, one in six people worldwide is estimated to have a disability, resulting in around 1.3 billion people's needs not being designed for or acknowledged, which, hopefully, brands will change in 2023.