Monday, 7 January 2013


Sam Goldwyn said “it’s hard to predict especially when it comes to the future” which he probably thought was witty but it’s true. Some seem contradictory but opposites co-exist.
Here are mine based on trends I see:

A small rebellion

1. Save is the rave – in this austerity age people will go to Aldi and chasing bargains will be a weekend sport. Brasserie Zedel, off Piccadilly Circus, offering excellent brasserie two courses for £8.95 will be restaurant of the year.

2. Getting out for very little – good news for Museums, National Trust and discount tickets but terrible news for Alton Towers, Wheels and Sea Life centres.

3. Stuffocation – new word coined by author James Wallman predicting a switch from gadgets to experiences which is why days-out will beat computer games in 2013.

4. Touchy, feely, smelly – what Selfridges do but most forget. The smell, touch, sights and the drama of a great shop allowing shopping for the fun of it. Premium retailers take note. Pile it low sell it sexily.

5. Fasting – the 5:2 movement is in all the papers now. Eat for 5 days then fast (500 calories) for two. It’ll strengthen our immunity systems, our irritability and our wallets. Here’s the Doctor who invented it. Slim isn’t he?

6. Slowing – the year of the slow cooker….9 hour stews with cheap cuts of meat that melt in your mouth using negligible energy …a house suffused with lovely cooking smells all day.

7. You can do it! – Sewing, cooking, knitting, mending, painting, digging and grouting. (Man in white van eat your heart out.) We’re all Jamie Olivers and Laurence Llewelyn-Bowens now.

8. Keep it in the family – I talked to a private equity investor who said “we love family businesses. They have values and pride in reputation and have tons of unexploited profit potential.” In tough times work with those you trust.

9. Challengers try harder – Malcolm Gladwell at whose feet we all worship has a new book coming out – “David and Goliath”. Romancing the underdog provides a great story. Now we are all underdogs we can pick up our sling and have a pot. Terrible time to be the Goliath Coffee Bar. Here’s how Avis did it.

10. Grey-day hey-day– older people are working out how to enjoy life. Some are working way past retirement age and dressing young - Strawberry fields forever. It’s a big untapped market but young marketers hate the wrinklies.

11. Luxury smuxury – impervious to recession, they say. No signs but watch for a magnifying glass being applied to poor quality under luxury labels and watch the wrath of the well-heeled explode this year. Luxury is not a zeitgeist word anymore.

12. No you can’t – the public sector and political correctness are in for a shocking assault because their attitudes are too expensive to sustain. What a fascinating time to be a Civil Servant.

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