The Rise Of Smart Tech At CES 2018

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketing

At the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show, smart tech and artificial intelligence was adopted by some unexpected industries. These are the three big ones to watch this year...

The annual Consumer Electronics Show wrapped up in Las Vegas last week and—as always—the event was chock full of new, innovative, and sometimes over-the-top new technologies from small startups and big brands alike. And while the past two years were largely dominated by cars, VR, and drones, this year was awash in smart assistants, TVs, and, well yes, cars again—but this time they’re self-driving. As Yahoo!’s technology editor pointed out, this year lacked “a go-to product that managed to separate itself from the incredibly crowded pack of devices and services on display at the show.” Instead, he wrote, “every company seemed to introduce their own version of a similar device.” But there was one unifying theme to the whole show: artificial intelligence. “It’s the year of A.I. and conversational interfaces,” an analyst for Forrester Research, told the New York Times. Indeed, every product seemed to be Alexa-connected or otherwise “smart,” creating some interesting trends in markets old and new. Here’s our roundup how artificial intelligence is being adopted by three major industries this year:

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketing

1. Personalized Beauty

The future of beauty has arrived, and it’s personal. Jumping on the trend of Customization Nation, CES was full of high-tech products that promised to do away with the one-size-fits-all ethos of the beauty industry’s past and appeal to young consumers for whom personalization is an expectation. Neutrogena released an iPhone-connected face scanner, which analyzes your skin’s health to recommend a personalized daily regimen, and Paris-based Romy showcased a skincare formulator that takes your daily…

 
 

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“I eat [Pizza Hut] least two times per month; it's one of my favorite places to go to eat pizza.”—Male, 35, VA

More Millennials are asking for cash wedding registries, and it’s bad news for stores like Bed Bath & Beyond and Williams Sonoma. Increasingly, young couples are asking guests to contribute towards their nest egg, travel, or anything they feel like buying themselves. Companies like Zola and Honeypot have boomed in popularity, offering a personalized platform for their cash registries. However, their success with wedding registries is taking “a key customer acquisition tool” away from home décor stores. (Insider)

The beauty industry is catering to Customization Nation, as more companies crop up to blend unique beauty products for each customer. But can the trend scale? Truly personalized products, like the ones offered by hair care start-up Function of Beauty and makeup company Bite Beauty, take time and resources. But companies that offer base products with just a personalized element or two could be the future of the industry. And big-name brands are getting their feet wet too: Lancôme and CoverGirl have both offered custom-made foundations. (Glossy)

Nordstrom is taking risks to survive retail’s big shifts. Instead of shuttering stores, they’re opening experimental retail locations, revamping their department stores, and making their mark in Manhattan with their first store openings. The long-standing brand also bought ecommerce site HauteLook and the subscription service Trunk Club. So far, their risk-taking hasn’t proved to be a boon to their bottom line—but only time will tell. (WSJ)

Hollister is teaming up with AwesomenessTV to reach Gen Z with a YouTube series. “The Carpe Life” will be a part of a broader campaign, which includes influencer marketingand appeals to young consumers’ love for active, adventurous lifestyles. "The Carpe Life" follows Hollister's first YouTube series, “This is Summer” which “boosted key brand metrics by double digits,” adding on to their overall positive impact on Abercrombie & Fitch’s rising bottom line. (Marketing Dive)

Netflix is switching its strategy, putting less money into “prestige films” for the Post-TV Gen. Instead, they’re churning out more direct-to-video releases. Last year, they bought ten titles at Sundance while this year they had none. While they continue to create original content like the recent The Cloverfield Paradox, they’re betting on less-than-award-worthy films to maintain their hold on Millennial viewers. (The Atlantic)

“Basically if I found out any brand was supporting causes I do not support and actively oppose, I will avoid buying their products.”—Female, 27, CA

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