10 consumer trends for 2011

J Walker Smith
The Futures Company

Marketers will need big, bold ideas to stand out in the turbulent economic and social environment of 2011, predicts J Walker Smith of The Futures Company

The year to come promises to be a big year – not only because big things are unfolding, but because marketers need for big things to happen. So marketers will be doing everything possible to create something big, which brings us to the global consumer trends that The Futures Company foresees in 2011.


1 As marketers muddled through the recession and the beginnings of the recovery, they minimised their losses and, in some cases, created new growth by taking out costs. With top lines stagnant or declining, bottom lines were protected by adjusting expenses. The boom years had bloated operations, so there was fat to trim. But now, having taken out almost all available costs and facing reluctant consumers – many of whom bore the brunt of those cost reductions through job losses – there is no more slack. Top-line growth is the imperative for 2011. Marketers need big hits and dramatic splashes to juice demand and jumpstart top line momentum. 2011 will be the year in which marketers pull out all the stops. This will mean creating excitement among consumers sceptical of the impulsive spending that put many of them in debt. To reinvigorate interest, marketers will be forced to innovate forms and formats.