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September 2017
DeCode Download

Our DeVries Global cultural decoders are hard at work uncovering bleeding edge trends and happenings in the cultural ether that you should know about.

Each month we’ll recap the top trends, presenting implications and opportunities for your business with plenty of examples of them “in the wild” to explore. Get ready to be inspired!

D-I-Buy: Bespoke Beauty

The popularity of DIY beauty and customized beauty solutions, combined with consumers’ desire for control and transparency, has inspired brands to bring back of house to the forefront of their marketing communications. Brands are now offering exclusive access to hands-on product creation opportunities and in turn, offering a peek behind the curtain into what makes their products unique and special.

77% of consumers have chosen, recommended, or paid more for a brand that provides a personalized service or experience (Forrester). Treating consumers like co-creators offers the control they crave while cultivating overall brand loyalty.

Examples We Love

st ives mixing bar
St. Ives Mixing Bar

bite beauty lip lab
The Bite Beauty Lip Lab

function of beauty
Function of Beauty

Implications & Opportunities

  • What makes your product unique? Identify a process or an ingredient that sets your product apart and concept an idea that lets your consumers experience it firsthand.
  • Think outside the traditional brand event. If budget won’t allow for a long-term pop-up or brick-and-mortar model, could you create a similar hands-on experience for a media event?
  • If a consumer facing experience isn’t possible, is there a digital experience you can execute? Creating an experience for a small group of influencers that is broadcasted via social media or a VR experience could also inspire consumers.

"Googlify" Your Brand

With the advent of smartphones and digitalization of the world, there’s a growing need to organize the flow of information people encounter every day. The human brain can only process a limited amount of information before overloading. As a result, brands are shifting towards minimalist designs in their packaging, promotion, and processes to help lessen your anxiety, rather than add to it.

Examples We Love

Google (the “mother” of minimalist branding)


pop suki
Pop & Suki

Implications & Opportunities

  • Less is always more. Brands should look for ways communicate more simply, and make all consumer touch points as seamless and streamlined as possible.
  • Consumers are inundated with news, information and marketing at every turn. So, they’re increasingly embracing brands that help them cut through the clutter and provide a simpler way of doing things, from making a purchase to completing daily tasks.
  • Consider simplifying your internal processes as well. For example, how much time and data/memory would it save you to receive performance reports via infographic or a microsite you can quickly scroll through, vs. a clunky Powerpoint presentation?

The Rise of Digital Fitness

Gyms have been on the decline for the past decade, caving under the growing pressure from Millennials who are seeking “on-demand” and personalized workouts. Boutique studios have partially answered the need for a more individual experience, but consumers are still demanding more.

Enter “digitalized fitness.” A growing trend of cost-effective, convenient, and accessible workouts that allow busy consumers to get their sweat on, wherever and whenever. Why choose a gym when you can opt for live-streamed classes, audio personal trainers and workout apps?

Examples We Love

Peloton’s $2K cycling bike with livestream classes built-in

kayla itsines
Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide (BBG), smartphone/tablet workout apps

Aaptiv’s audio workouts

Implications & Opportunities

  • Think mobile first and expand your offerings to meet the new need for “on-demand” workouts or consider partnering with an “on-demand” service to reach a targeted audience.
  • Consider new advertising and influencer partnership opportunities outside of the location-centric studios, such as partnering with an “on-demand” brand to offer exclusive discounts and prizes after a number of sessions.

The Subscribed Life

Consumers are seeking ways to interact with products and brands without commitment. Brands have responded with free shipping, discounted trial size items or “first pair free” offers that entice trial, but give consumer’s final choice before adopting a brand.

Brands have leveraged subscriptions to maximize a consumer’s lifetime value, but the newest iteration of this model is taking off in luxury. The lack of commitment now extends to exclusive shoes, jewelry, clothing, watches and even cars. In fact, the average American already has 10 elective subscriptions and 87% of millennials have at least 1 subscription service (API).

Examples We Love

st ives mixing bar
Book by Cadillac

st ives mixing bar
Eleven James

st ives mixing bar

Implications & Opportunities

  • The opportunity to expand beyond your current user base into a new demo, even one once deemed unattainable, may now be possible via a subscription-based mode or program.
  • How can we expand on a subscription offering to create exclusive opportunities or product offerings for subscribers?