• Pixel Team

Trends: the key to inform your future decisions 🔑

What are trends? 🤔

Trends are a manifestation among people, in behavior, attitude or expectation - of a fundamental human need, want or desire. — Henry Mason, David Mattin, Maxwell Luthy, Delia Dumitrescu, Trend Driven Innovation, 2015

Trends are our compasses that, based on evidence, indicate where things are going and, based on that, allow us to make informed future decisions.

Hold on, how is a trend defined?

  • A change in people’s needs, interests, attitudes, and forms of behavior.

  • It is a response to changes in the context: social, economic, political factors, etc.

  • It remains for a certain time.

  • It can be manifested in different ways.

🚨 Be careful, this does not mean that all changes are indicative of a trend.

Trends: the key to inform your future decisions

Depending on the field we are talking about, the word “trend” can acquire different meanings:


📈 In economics and statistics, a trend is a decrease or increase in numbers that change the direction of a curve.


👬 In sociology, a trend is a process of change in society.


🤳 For digital marketing, trends are an indication of the rapid increase in engagement on a particular topic on social media.


👗 In fashion, trends are changes in style or changes in designs.



Trend vs. Fad

Do not get confused! ⚠️ A fad is not a trend. According to the Cambridge Dictionary, a fad is "a style, activity or interest that becomes popular for a short period of time". This means that fads are short stories that revolve around a new and innovative product, for example, challenges in social networks!



What types of trends can we observe? 🔭

According to Henrik Vejlgaard (2008), we can find three different types of trends that differ in geographical scale and time of impact: megatrend, macrotrend and microtrend.


Visualization of the 3 types of trends. Mega: global impact, long-term; Macro: large scale, 5-10 years; Micro: small scale, 3-5 years.

Megatrend

Global changes in politics, economy, technology, or culture that affect the whole (or almost all) of society and have an impact for longer than 10 years. An example of a megatrend is the New Normal: around the world, people's behavior has changed, and that influences how we interact, work, etc.


Macrotrend

They arise responding to megatrends. These are changes that can manifest in different regions depending on the context and that have an impact of 5 to 10 years. An example is the increase in online purchases observed in several countries as a result of the lockdown during the pandemic.


Microtrend

It is a trend with a shorter impact, from 3 to 5 years, reflecting changes in specific innovations in a specific place. The adoption of online supermarket apps in some cities during the pandemic is a good example of this.


🚨 Keep in mind that the adoption of these changes is accelerating due to the pandemic and technology.


Examples of trends 📣

Let's dig a little deeper into the examples of different types of trends thinking about something we all know: the current situation of New Normality.

The New Normal is a global change that is here to stay, at least for the next 10 years, so it is megatrend.

Due to this situation we are all experiencing, remote work has increased in many parts of the world. This new way of working will continue to have an impact on the behaviors and expectations of society for 5 years or more, which is why it is considered a macrotrend.

On the other hand, more and more remote workers in fields such as UX / UI Design, UX Research, etc., had to quickly adopt collaborative work tools, like Miro. In fact, in a few years Miro went from 1,5 million users to more than 25 million. This is a microtrend!


Example of types of trends. The impact of the restrictions and rules of the global pandemic (megatrend), led the majority of employees to work remotely and to find new forms of online collaboration (macro-trend), thus adopting more online collaboration tools (micro-trend).

How to identify trends? 👀

Perhaps all this information is leading you to think that trends 'predict' the future, just like magic crystal balls. ⁣🚫 Big mistake!

Let's clarify one thing: trends are based on adequate research actions that allow us to look ahead in an informed way, they are not the result of magic or any “spider-sense”.

To make informed predictions about what will happen in the future, you must first look at the past and then understand the present to detect changes in people's emerging needs and expectations (that is, our beloved trends).

Conduct proper research, follow this formula, and you will know how a trend is "calculated"!


Researching trends is about looking at the past and understanding the present, to inform our future decisions.

What do we achieve by detecting trends? 🤓

If you are still wondering what the value of detecting trends is, let us tell you about all the advantages of reporting future scenarios:

  • Identify the needs, desires, and expectations of people.

  • Detect possible improvements in services or products.

  • Anticipate areas of opportunity and possible risks.

  • Develop innovations that solve emerging problems.

  • Use them as a guide to make informed decisions.

And above all, they allow us to create a positive impact for people! 🎯


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