While the pace of change wrought by technology has kept marketers struggling to keep up with increasingly empowered consumers, consumers themselves are feeling somewhat exhausted and resentful of technology’s impact on their lives.
According to a new report from JWTIntelligence, a top trend for 2014 is what the unit dubs “rage against the machine,” or an increasing fear and resentment of “what’s been lost in our embrace of unprecedented change.” Consumers will place a higher value on “all things human,” according to the report.
Related to that rage is Big Data’s essentially putting an end to anonymity, the report concludes. And consumers are expected to push back and even grow paranoid about technological intrusions on privacy.
Also expect a backlash against technology’s proclivity for shortening attention spans. Consumers are trying to focus more on the moment and attempting to shut out many of the distractions they are constantly confronted with.
The report also predicts that entertainment, narratives and brand experiences will become “more immersive” to better engage consumers. And there will be a shift to “visual vocabulary” that relies on photos, video and other imagery that will to a large degree supplant text.
We’re also entering an era of impatience with an on-demand, always-on age, per the report. The consumer has an expectation of speed and ease for all experiences.
“In this year's trend report, we see how consumers are both welcoming and resisting technology's growing omnipresence in our lives,” JWT said. “For many, technology serves as a gateway to opportunity and an enabler of hyper-efficient lifestyles, but those who are most immersed are starting to question its effect on their lives and their privacy. One result is that more people are trying to find a balance and lead more mindful, in-the-moment lives.”
JWT's "10 Trends for 2014" is the result of quantitative, qualitative and desk research conducted throughout the year. It includes input from nearly 70 JWT planners and researchers across more than two dozen markets and interviews with various experts and influencers across sectors including technology, health and wellness, media and academia.
More on JWT’s 2014 Trend Report can be found here.