How to succeed?
Speak sincerely, in short, bold snippets of content.
All this net gain for real people’s gatherings on the Web, SoMe and mobiles describes how, more and more, individuals will be newsmakers. The rule of thumb is to talk up what you care about. That will, in turn, make online matches that much more meaningful.
And “meaningful” is serious business next year.
In 2010, hyperlocalization—people valuing their five-to-10-mile radius where familiar relationships form—was a buzzword I cited in my annual report. In 2011, there’s going to be a lot more of this seeking and probing for deep meaning as we ask ourselves which of our jobs, activities and hobbies feel soul-satisfying.
Our answers will prioritize self-reliance. Respect accrues to brands that can talk to the hands, as the can-do spirit resurges not just in ever-burgeoning DIY movements (in everything from e-publishing to motorcycle maintenance) but also in trends such as urban farming in blighted U.S. cities and time-banking in countries from the U.K. to Canada to Israel to South Korea.
It used to be that success was measured in stuff.
But now big money is as suspect as Bernie Madoff, and the old perks that separated us at worth won’t match up to the emo bling (that’s emotional bling) that people are craving. Friends who show up for friends will make for powerful sympathetic markets who want sincere pitches, not plastic perks, in 2011.
Among those who are going to have to make special adjustments?
Men, no longer masters of all they survey, will need to adapt to being depicted either as stay-at-homemakers or sex objects for working women. And this gender bender will be matched by both genders’ suspicions of unseen systems, as all of us ask: Who’s really in control?
We know millennials are rising both in tech-savvy workplaces and as consumers. But despite (or because of?) having helicopter parents, many lack the thick skins to deal with the reality of being (metaphorically) tossed out of airplanes and asked to land on their feet. Boot-camp entrepreneurs who can toughen them will see pots of gold next year.
And where goes maximal strength, so comes the rise of minitrends, which next year will include new pools of African consumers and small-scale solar energy.
Don’t forget that 2011 marks a new decade. We’ll still be carrying the economic burdens of the past 10 years (it’ll be that long since 9/11, as we’ll solemnly remember next September), but recession scars will reveal the healing tissue of a real network fabric.
Marian Salzman is president of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, North America. Named one of the world’s top five trendspotters, Salzman is best known for launching metrosexual mania in 2003, but she also created several other buzzes, including “the rise of singletons,” “It’s America Online,” Europe’s cyberspoon, globesity and “sleep is the new sex.” Author or co-author of 15 books, including Next Now and The Future of Men, she currently blogs on the Huffington Post, for the World Future Society, and at eurorscgpr.com and eurorscgsocial.com.