I don’t trust you!

I don’t trust you!

Your customers might not be telling you this but it is in the back of their minds: I don’t trust you!

We are living in a moment where we don’t trust media or brands. We believe or are lead to believe media is fake, companies betray us. Consumers feel ostracized and misunderstood. So you as a brand need to be thinking how to move forward and prove your trustworthiness to consumers.

Our environment is changing, our behavior is changing and our emotions are taking the forefront. As a marketer of your own business, you need to understand and adapt if you want to thrive.

Emotion is the new currency. You market to emotions. All the time.

Yes, people are angry and divided. They feel empowered to say what they feel even when it is a little bit too much. What do you do as a brand? You don’t want people talking bad about your business but you need to give them voice in a positive way. You allow them to participate!

People are looking for compassion, safety and privacy. How many people put a tape over their computer camera because they don’t want to lose their sense of privacy? I know my desktop does not have a camera either, just in case.

Because our level of trust is so low we are blocking cameras, news, e-mails. The younger the generation the worse it gets. Generation Z for example is really averse in sharing any personal data (even when they might get a 20% off coupon). So what will happen with those lead generation pages?

The approach will change drastically. Meaning and purpose will have to be there if they are to share anything with you.

So what is a brand to do? Understand what people want and give it to them. For example, people want to be respected, believed and heard. So having to walk a whole store to find one overworked employee to ask a question, does not work. Watching a video where the expert is telling them what to do, without their input does not work either.

You need to understand that if a customer came to you, he/she did it although he/she would rather be home, despite of day to day struggles, work etc. You should understand and respect that and give them the most personable and special experience. If you are just trying to sell them something, you are going to lose them.

Did I say they’d rather stay home? It is a safe place we trust. Now we just need to make it self-sufficient. Robots, technologies, machines that talk to us and make us fee special, delivery of goods (Why do I even need to go to a supermarket)? All these products and services are on the rise. As well as services that give us instant access to what we want: Netflix, Spotify, Curiousmondo.

Consumer now relate better with small. Small or local brands. Even if you are a big company, you can market as a personal brand with real people, with hobbies and purpose. Small gives us a perspective of control and in a moment where society is evolving, something that makes us all uncomfortable, we seek control and reach. The sense of small gives us that. If you look in the restaurant industry- portions are getting smaller too.

When we get out of our home, we want to do things in groups. Because we need human connection and validation and because the enormous amount of time we spend in social media is making us really bored. Companies that cater to this need are growing like Plantnite that partners with restaurants and bars. But going out in a group also means doing something together like spinning, knitting, making or cosplay.

 

You can say culture is the new media and if you empower culture with your customers you will be in the winning end. People don’t want to be advertised to but they do want to be reached. That is why you need to talk about them and their emotions and needs not about your product or service. You need to market to them in their groups, neighborhoods and social circles.

It does take more work but it works better than any ad out there, lasts longer and most of all increases the level of trust in your company.

The age of anxiety and your business

As a society we are stressed like never before.

We are stressed all the time.

You could say it is because we live in an unstable World, there are threats everywhere or we are just angry on how divided we are at the moment.

All part of the issue but we also need to take accountability and see that as a culture we chose to “Live Hard and Play Hard” to a point we cannot sustain this naturally anymore.

While this reality may stress us even more, it is on the other side promoting a new way of thinking and creating new businesses to help us manage this new phase.

The Centers for Disease Control predicts that by 2020, stress will be the most disabling condition Americans face, second to only heart disease.

We are all stressed but Millennials are known as being the most stressed out generation.

There is a bright side in the future of our anxiety!

I’ll show you some of new opportunities out there and maybe some will help you to innovate in your business.

Ahead of us is a spike in products to turbocharge the human body. Nootropics are an example design for this. They are a mixture of natural ingredients and lab-derived supplements. Also known as smart drugs which now have a following.

Scientists are also working on manufacturing new memories.

You have probably seen on TV about Rage Rooms. You pay a fee and throw things at the wall.

Many apps are showing in this segment like Headspace where you have meditation on the go with over 1 million downloads. Others like Mindsurf allows you to share feelings.

Saunas are bringing Infra red heat and custom soundtrack. These saunas are popping up in New York, LA and London, with the price ranging from $45-$55 for a half-hour bake.

Kava tea is known as the liquid Xanax. Drinking numbs your tonque and make you chill. They go from $13 to $25 a bowl.

Sensory deprivation has become a hyper-extreme alternative to meditation. So Pods are back to free you from distractions for 60 minutes.  Inside a small room or human-size clam called a pod, there is no sound and no light, just 1000 pounds of Epsom salt water and you. All for $99.

Spas with Cryotherapy Chamber are also popping up. I need to try this one because it is said they burn 800 plus calories in 180 seconds. Just $90 for a session.

Alternative options are a big trend too. Consumers are increasingly turning to gentler, more natural forms of healing.

Aromatheraphy and essential oils in general are in an all time high especially through multi-level marketing companies since they foster people to try the oil. There is even an e-cigarrete style device for personal aromatherapy called Monq.

Yoga, Reki, acupuncture are also seeing a revival.

Pay attention that solutions blending technology and natural components are the ones that tend to be more successful. Partly because Millennials are attracted to blended solutions.

Now it is time to think how your business could help people feel less stressed. From creating a new product to becoming a sleep meditation coach, there are many opportunities out there. Even bedtime stories for grown-ups’ – Sleep Stories – that aim to induce sleep by using a combination of “soothing words, music and sound-effects”.

When you need some support figuring out how to navigate this new World or create innovation, we are here. We have consult hundreds of businesses over the years and we are your pair of fresh eyes. Call us at 801-680-7220 or write to buzz@buzzbooster.com

 

Small is the new great!

When we hear the phrase “Let’s make America Great Again”, some of us feel pumped with optimism of what is about to come while others, like me, shiver in the face of what it will become.

No matter where you stand in this picture, if we agree or not, we must all agree that the phrase in itself is extremely appealing. Brings a sense of nostalgia when we want the comfort from the past. We all do because we all live in a moment where there are too many options of everything, change is scary to the brain and although we want change, we still don’t like it. When we go back to the past, we feel safe because we know how to navigate it, we find comfort.

I wrote another post just about this nostalgia trend but in this post I’d like to show you another layer, yet a bigger trend that’s happening.

Small is the new great!

We all want small now. As people we are shrinking our networks, we are shrinking our channels. Think about how you get your news today, how many TV channels do you watch – if you still do it at all ( I watch the news, other than that, it is Netflix most of the time). How many people do you talk to in one day? How many sites other than Facebook and Amazon have you visited in the last week?

Now, I could write a whole article about the dark side of having a small funnel of information that will cause more divisiveness, cultural ignorance, me vs you mentality, and less acceptance of diversity, but I’ll focus on the bigger trend and its impact in your business.

We don’t trust big anymore. Since the great recession we have learned that big does not mean better and that it cannot be trusted.

How does this translate to your business? Look at companies like Coke struggling to stay relevant while artisanal beverages of all types rise to the top. We want real, local, small. We find comfort in real, local, small.

There is a huge revival of handmade, driven by Millennials. Their love for unique and hand-crafted. Because the noise is too big in digital, because we all become just an avatar, because taking 10 minutes to get the perfect selfie is still meaningless at the end and it is digital, and intangible. We value what hands can make. Look at all the maker spaces and creator spaces popping everywhere. Look at businesses like my other business Curious Mondo. When classes are about making us reach 27 countries and a lot of engagement. Look at businesses like Painting With a Twist, Plantnite, etc where the core is to make something while interacting with strangers. Real people in front of you (topic of my next article).

When you look at companies like Etsy – where global artisans sell their goods – they went from $175,000 in sales in 2006 to $2.4 billion in 2015

20% of all Kickstarter campaigns are in the artisanal category that have raised over $100 million in funding.

When you look at restaurants, what is working? Local, farm to table, small-batch.

How can you benefit from this trend? In order to gain consumers trust, brands need to seem smaller. Their story, about us page, customer service, the things they do to promote themselves need to have SMALL in mind.

Need to be relevant to smaller, more specific groups. Do you participate in Facebook groups? You will see that the ones focusing on very specific topics have tremendous engagement. Do you have a group on Facebook? Can you highlight local? Can you get people together to make something?

About Shahar

Shahar is a neuromarketer fascinated with trends and how brands can benefit from them. With her daughter Nashlah they run BuzzBooster marketing that provides consulting for small businesses. They also run Curious Mondo that provides an innovative way in adult learning.

Consumer Trends in 2017 and How Your Business Can Benefit

Here we are in 2017. Have we figured out how to reach a consumer that pays attention to us and takes action or is everything still the same?

A great way to improve how you market your business is to keep an eye in what is going on in the market, how people are reacting and how you can use this information to market better.

First let’s take a look at the consumer we have in front of us. This consumer is overloaded with information to the point that any decision becomes an issue. Too many options of everything. Level of trust with companies is in an all time low.

A confused brain freezes and that is exactly what is happening to people.

So you might consider not offering too many options when you are selling and focus on giving advice to why your service would be the wise decision.

Consumers are extremely anxious, angry even with a lot of unanswered questions. They now find comfort in simplicity and are looking for balance.  The megatrend of health and wellness will continue to propagate. Consumers are becoming aware and actively seeking natural options. Markets and apps related to meditation and aromatherapy will keep growing. The yoga industry alone is a 10 billion dollar industry.

When you are marketing, simplify, use things people are familiar with and feel safe.

The brain likes simple.

We don’t want more information. We want to experience and be part of the experience. Which means businesses need to find ways to incorporate consumer input and provide unique experiences.

In a consumer World of material abundance, the experiences people choose become part of their identities.

Even though physical experiences matter more than virtual experiences, the latter will exponentially grow this year.

We want our peeps! More and more we want to belong to groups similar to our values and interests. We want input from them so we don’t have to filter more information. And when in a group, we want to take action and change things.

Can you create channels where you congregate people interest in the same topic you cover and get their input?

The Nostalgia wave Trend

A few days before Christmas I went to a bookstore and was impressed that most products highlighted at the front were mostly from the past. Yo-yos and books about yo-yos, old games, Ancient games etc.

Anyone knows that products get re-launched from time to time but we are seeing a major revival of products from the past. Why is that happening?

One might argue it is due to the large number of baby boomers. That is partially true. In an age where anxiety and frustration is high in the population, where people in a mall start running when they hear a noise, already thinking that some type of attack might be happening,when we spend more time feeding fear than feeling empowered, we as a society seek comfort in the past, in things to which we had an emotional connection and a time when we felt safe. A place and time were we knew how to navigate. The brain re-lives those moments and that empower us to move forward, to keep going.

It also validates our social identity and reinforce our values and the value we put into things.

I call this trend Nostalgia Wave

But this trend is not exclusive to baby boomers. It reaches millennials as well.

You can find evidence in the sheer number of vinyl records sold in 2016. A 28 year high. A industry that brought $416 million in sales. A vinyl record today is not something cheap either. During my teenager years I could get one for $10 bucks. Now, on average an album costs $40.

New vinyl records are released every day not only from old bands like the Monkees but from new artists like Justin Bieber.

Why, with all the technology available and clear sound would people go buy vinyl labels? When you can hear music from any device anywhere, you choose a media that needs a physical player? Because now we live in an age where most things are filtered in social media, where you add a selfie smiling and having fun when you are really feeling frustrated and bored. You do that and know others do too. Where do you anchor what is real? You listen to a vinyl record and they are not perfect. You can relate to that and lets face it, it makes it unique. Records have hisses and cracks, they are raw and this generation longs for real, for flaws. These records add texture to the experience.

Everything we have access today seems to be free and shareable. With a record you have a tactile experience. You can smell, open the wrapper, choose and turn to the side you want. It is a total different and real experience.

You can have a million songs in your device but that is not the same as collecting them. With vinyl records, you are a collector. Collecting is part of our nature. We like to collect what we value.

Then there is the spectacular revival of instant cameras during 2016 Christmas. Bought by Millennials like no other gear. They are not as expensive as they used to be and no, you don’t have to shake the paper for the photo to appear.

Why are Millennials so attracted to these cameras?

Because you can touch. Yes, touch and keep. Here is the tactile experience this generation longs for all the time. In this digital age, everything is somewhere, in some device or cloud. Sometimes is hard to find, sometimes it seems like it doesn’t belong to us as individuals. A printed photo is a very special moment that you want to keep and show. All other moments can go on your phone. Not the special ones, shared with special ones and that you can touch, feel and put in a special place.

This is just like before if you are a boomer but it is a new feeling if you are a Millennial and it is a good feeling. A very special memory, captured in an instant with a paper proof to keep. You can touch, look and feel that moment with your hands.

The nostalgia wave will be here for a while. Because it create peace, lowers anxiety, puts us in a safe place and give some of us a new experience.

Businesses that understand this trend can incorporate some of these aspects and give the consumer a different experience.

TVs will boost podcast in 2017

In 2017, television networks will play a vital role in helping their viewers get wise to podcasts. In part, this will be through networks creating more companion podcasts. From exclusive interviews to insider commentary, b-roll audio to subseries storylines, podcasts will ensure fans get their fix across reality, drama and current affairs.

Podcasting is the zeitgeist of 2017. Multiple series’ inspired by the medium are about to hit our screens, giving broadcasters an established format and ready-made audiences, while delivering podcasters greater reach and awareness. Fox 21 is adapting “Serial,” which will follow the making of a podcast as it explores a case, as well as developing a “This American Life” project. ABC is recreating “Startup,” starring and directed by Zach Braff, a podcast that follows the creation of podcast company Gimlet Media. “Lore,” the winner of iTunes’ Best of 2015 award, which focuses on dark historical tales, is also set for Amazon, backed by the producers of “The Walking Dead.”

The proliferation of connected cars across Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is another key and unstoppable factor driving podcast discovery. Podcasts will go into hyperdrive with more than 200 models to carry the technology in the next 12 months. Platforms like Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa will further boost take-up, breaking down barriers between discovery and play.

Upward Mobility Can Be Hazardous to Your Health

A study of hundreds of low-income American youths shows that at age 19, those who had been rated as diligent and academically successful were less healthy than peers who had been labeled aggressive, difficult, and isolated, a team led by Gregory E. Miller of Northwestern University writes in The New York Times. Highly motivated people from low-income backgrounds often feel tremendous internal pressure to succeed, but behaving diligently all the time may leave them feeling exhausted and sapped of willpower, and they may let their health fall by the wayside, the researchers say.

SOURCE: Can Upward Mobility Cost You Your Health?