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How Businesses Can Benefit From Trends Beyond Their Primary Industry

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Marija Milasevic Bio

Markets are changing rapidly. Understanding trends that are most important to your industry should be a key priority.

At the same time, it is also essential to identify and act on trends beyond primary industries to access new opportunities and horizons. Here is a quick breakdown of what businesses can gain from widening their industry focus.

1. Share one vision with partners

Having a holistic understanding of consumer behaviour and market trends beyond the narrow core of a company’s business is vital for stakeholders to forge mutually beneficial goals. Successful partnerships are based on many things; however, sticking to a common goal remains the most important.

Engagements in the form of webinars, expert discussions and workshops are effective platforms for shared learning where partners can challenge each other, develop new skills and ideas based on a common vision and purpose.

Global companies like Google, Mastercard, Visa, Nestlé have already started adopting this approach by hosting official market intelligence events for their partners and stakeholders on a regular basis.

2. Understand blurring lines between industries

Industries are evolving and increasingly overlapping, making it more important than ever for businesses to have a 360 view of markets.

For example, there is no longer a clear difference between foodservice and grocery retailers as most channels are becoming ‘meal fulfilment centres’. Other fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) industries are following the same trend, creating blurred lines between categories, such as snacking and dietary supplements. Soft drinks giants like Coca-Cola and PepsiCo are entering the alcoholic drinks category, while beer brewers are developing hard soda and spirits.

In terms of pricing, hard lines between mass market and luxury are disappearing and demand for affordable luxury goods is growing.

Ultimately, watching trends in adjacent spaces can help businesses identify opportunities in new industries and product segments. Having the full market picture allows businesses to have a more comprehensive understanding of consumer behaviour and how it will evolve.

3. Learn from trendsetters

When we think about companies like Apple, Google and Amazon, we don’t usually associate them with just one industry. Instead, key areas like strategy, consumers, marketing and innovations come to mind.

Most organisations are being shaped by emerging trends in politics, economics, consumer behaviour and competitors; this is where market leaders become essential.

Trendsetters provide direction not only for specific industries but for the whole market. For example, cashierless automated Amazon Go stores disrupted retailing and impacted the majority of FMCG categories. Third-party delivery companies also seized a gap in the foodservice industry during the COVID-19 outbreak by providing consumers with more accessibility. Delivery coverage is expanding from foodservice to non-food products categories, as seen in industries like beauty and pet care.

The decision to implement such changes is of course up to individual companies but staying informed about market leaders puts businesses in a stronger position to innovate and stand out.

4. Stay ahead of disruption

Some trends originate in one industry and then expand into others, while others can influence the entire FMCG market.

Digital Seniors and The Metaverse Movement are just two trends from our Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2022 set to reshape how consumers think, shop and interact with goods through digitisation.

48% of professionals indicated that COVID-19 accelerated their company's digital transformation by 1-2 years, and 25% said by 3-5 years.

Source: Euromonitor International Voice of the Industry: Digital Survey, fielded November 2021

Most, if not all, businesses are now embracing digital transformation. The challenge for businesses remains the speed of transformation. Investing the time in understanding trends, and more importantly in a holistic manner, is therefore essential to staying competitive.

Market research is not new to business communities. However, knowing how to use it to look beyond core portfolios can help better plan for the future.

Passport Plus is a new service that connects you directly to our experts for tailored thought leadership to help answer your questions through the lens of your business.

Through interactive presentations, expert consultations or workshops, we help you better understand what our insights means for you and what next steps to take as a team or larger business unit. Connect with us to learn more.

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