Trend forecasting means predicting trends lots in advance, based on the research on consumers future buying habits, tastes, changes.
It’s a long process involving different professionals, to give a brand the directions for developing new products, that will encounter the needs and taste of the future consumers.
Trendspotting it’s crucial for brands because makes them see trends before they happen and get ahead of competitors by taking advantage of opportunities before others and by finding the right strategies – that’s why is so useful for brands.
The process involves different steps and professionals. In this post I’m telling you more about how does it work, also by sharing part of a trend research we recently delivered.
How does it work?
step 1 / Briefing
Every trend consulting start with the briefing. We do a call with the client and share a questionnaire asking for specific questions, regarding the goal which the client would like to reach, current and past projects/collections/products, demographics, competitors, style.
In this case I’m sharing, the client asked for a trend forecast specific to the ceramic tile industry (from the design standpoint) for the upcoming two years.
step 2 / Research
Every trend consulting develop then into an extensive team research which involves many different industries, from the lifestyle, fashion, design&interiors, consumers’ habits, together with an analysis of competitors.
The research involves different sources, starting from other websites and trend platform, to social media (Instagram and TikTok), fairs and events past visits, magazines, with he aim of identifying the main macro trends leading the trend research.
step 3 / Trends definition
Once identified what is really relevant , it’s time to filter the research and structure it. This is the most difficult part of the work, that is about filtering the macro trends into trend drivers, that are basically the reasons behind the trends that our clients are looking for in our consultings.
In fact, each trend driver is then developed into a series of specifications – such as colors, materials, shapes, finishes – that together will give the client the exact guidelines to apply that trends in the future. So that, each trend is identified because of some bigger reasons involving consumers’ tastes, habits, way of living – and is also defined into a precise series of specifications.
step 4 / Development
To explain the trends to the client in a clear and visual way, we develop then a digital Trendbook : this phase is developed in a team which includes a further research, copywriting and graphic design. In particular, each macro trend, trend driver and CMF specification is then explained in words and visuals, including relevant samples from the industry, inspirational samples and moodboards.
step 4 / Outcome
The final deliver in fact is a digital Trendbook to be used by the product development and the communication teams, both as guidelines for future collections/products developments and for marketing and storytelling. Each client Trendbook is unique, custom-created according to the briefing, and its a concentrated of useful insights, inspirations, strategies.
In this case, in particular we delivered a Trendbook of 310 pages, including three key macro trends with lifestyle analysis, together with 9 industry trend drivers each one including color+pattern themes & color specifications, finishes+material specifications & relevant samples, form+shapes specifications & relevant samples. At the end, we also give the key action points and a time together with the client and his team, to reply to questions and discuss together about the research.
Trend consulting in collab with SOMAstudiomilano, Maria Pigatto, Leticia Coelho
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