While the world may seem stagnated by gridlocked governments and economic uncertainty, the truth is that we live in an era of constant change. Across the globe, citizens and brands are stepping up to make things happen through innovation, collaboration and perseverance. In 2014, Ford will launch close to 20 new products worldwide, a marvel given that it once took five years to bring a new product to market, but now takes only 36 months.
This accelerated pace is part of a broader sustained explosion in technology and innovation worldwide. Notably, this new era of rapid change demands a corresponding mindfulness of the precious resources we too often take for granted: our time, our health, our population and our planet. Out of a world of hyper-stimulation, a culture of reflection is emerging, driving us to reexamine what matters most.
The second edition of Ford’s annual publication on micro trends, Looking Further with Ford, examines the drivers of change and the complex response of consumers worldwide. The marketplace is inundated with disruptive technology, such that even dramatic innovations are now viewed as commonplace. At the same time, consumers are increasingly drawn to the way things were, driving demand for nostalgia-based products and services. As we seek more meaningful connections, the middle-man is being squeezed out of the products and services we buy—and where, when and how we use social media is being reconsidered.
This collection of 10 micro trends reflects our view of the attitudes that will alter consumer dynamics across the globe in 2014 and beyond. Here you will find subtle and not-so-subtle shifts from our 2013 trends, as well as inherent tensions that are emblematic of the connectivity and complexity that make this world spin.
As you read this, we hope you will spot your own tensions and find your own spin on each trend.