Ypulse’s Predictions for 2018

The Ypulse team’s forecast for what 2018 might hold in media, marketing, entertainment, technology, and more... 

We’ve told you what some other experts are predicting for the next 12 months, now here are the Ypulse team’s thoughts on the trends in retail, marketing, and beyond that brands should be prepared for this year:

RETAIL/FASHION

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketingTHE SHOWROOM ERA

Last year, we predicted that retail would shift to more select experiences, then watched as Experiencification in brick-and-mortar became the priority and the trend of shrinking retail footprints spread. In the coming year, these trends will continue and converge, resulting in a new era of showroom mentality for retailers. Brands will continue to create innovative pop-ups (already a major marketing trend) to experiment with new ways to show off their wares. More online-only brands will debut and expand their brick-and-mortar, but will follow the Glossier playbook—creating select in-person retail experiences that are non-traditional and highly Instagrammable. Ideas like retail hotels will gain traction, especially for home décor stores, to put products in a positive and appealing context. Meanwhile, historically larger stores will be forced to downsize to appeal to young consumers who don’t want a sprawling maze of choices, but to interact with products in a manageable, fun way—and have it all delivered to them later. (As we’re already seeing with experiments from Ikea and Nordstrom.)

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketingHOME SWEET HOME DECOR

Millennials’ delayed home ownership—and their resistance to accumulating belongings the same way that Boomers did—has taken its toll on unprepared brands. But in 2018 we expect to see a pivot, as more Millennials enter the homeownership market, and retailers realize that while they might not have full houses to decorate just yet,…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “It's free to walk to work and I get some exercise in.”—Female, 26, NY

Niche beauty brands have blurred gender lines at their core—can large cosmetics companies play catch up without seeming “disingenuous”? Milk Makeup and Fluide have built their brands on being inclusive, but larger brands sometimes strike consumers as hopping on the band wagon when they try to do the same—especially since they created so many of the gender norms they’re now rallying against. The best way for them to get in on the trend? Start by making their hiring process more inclusive both “behind the lens” and in front of it. (Fast Company)

Starbucks thinks the “health and wellness” trend is to blame for declining Frappuccino sales. Despite marketing efforts like the Unicorn Frappuccino, syrupy drink sales are down 3% from last year. However, rivals like McDonald’s and Dunkin' Donuts could be stealing sugary beverage sales from the coffee giant, meaning young consumers’ penchant for healthification isn't necessarily the culprit. In fact, McDonalds recently debuted two new frozen drinks that earning praising on Twitter. (NYPFox News)

Apple is getting into kids’ content, teaming up with Sesame Workshop for a slate of original shows. Live-action, animated, and puppet-based series will be included in the programming, but Sesame Street itself is not part of the deal. There are no details yet on where Apple will release the shows, meaning they could either shop them to another platform or debut them on their own streaming platform. Considering that Apple has several original program deals in the works, they could be looking to bulk up their own bid in the streaming wars. (Kidscreen)

Twitter and Tumblr posts are getting a new lease on life—as screenshots on Instagram. While young users of Twitter and Tumblr have declined, Ypulse’s Social Media Trackerfound that over half of 13-35-year-olds use Instagram daily. Instagram is the preferred place to post memes, despite many accounts creating their content elsewhere. Why do they switch platforms to post? Instagram’s Discover tab allows faster browsing than Twitter, while Instagram images are displayed in full rather than being cut off, like they are on Twitter. (The Verge)

Eggo sales are down in between seasons of Stranger Things. Yes, the sci-fi series has that much influence on the frozen waffle’s revenue. One Eggo executive explains that they “quickly leveraged the [resulting] consumer engagement” from the show, and it paid off: sales jumped 14% in the fourth quarter of 2017 and 9.4% for the first four months of 2018. However, fewer people are binging the Gen Z & Millennial favorite these days, so Kellogg’s frozen pancakes, waffles, and French toast sales have slowed to just 1.3% year-over-year. (CNN)

Quote of the Day: “I fell in love with trance music.”—Male, 23, NY

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