After the floodtide of prosperity

24 January 2011 at 9:17 am Leave a comment

Andrew Curry writes:

Our chairman, J Walker Smith, was one of the experts invited to contribute by Marketing to its ‘Forward Thinking‘ essays this year. His theme: that we’ve reached the end of “the floodtide of prosperity”, which is changing consumer behaviour, and that marketing will have to follow suit.

But, as he writes in his contribution, this is about more than just the aftermath of the financial crisis:

Three major cycles are coming to a close nowadays, only one of which is economic. One is technological; one is demographic. All three are opening onto something new in the face of unprecedented resource constraints. … Based on where we see these three dynamics headed, the macro consumer trend to watch will be the emergence of lifestyles reflecting an overarching outlook of ingenuity.

And this is made more necessary by the emerging environmental constraints we face, which include a whole range of scarcities – from water to fish to timber – as well as climate change. The result is that we’re moving into a new world in which the new consumer assets are ‘vigilance’ and ‘resourcefulness’.

Consumers are being forced back onto their own skills and smartness. There are no ready answers about what to do in a world in which economic risk is top of mind, technological engagement is ubiquitous, generational priorities are upended, and resource limits necessitate temperance.

All of the ‘Forward Thinking’ essays can be found here.

Entry filed under: consumers, economic downturn, trends. Tags: , .

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The Futures Company was created through the merger of Henley Centre HeadlightVision and Yankelovich in 2008. This is the blog of the new company - but the former posts from the former Henley Centre Headlightvision blog still can be found here.

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