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How to Approach Consumer Trends and Future-Proof Your Business

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Consumer trends are evolving quicker than ever before, driven by shifts in socioeconomic, environmental and technological factors. Consumers have easy access to vast amounts of information through online platforms and marketplaces, which are becoming more integrated into consumers’ everyday lives.

Over half (58%) of global consumers saying they browse online almost every day, as of 2022

Source: Euromonitor International

This abundance of information and high level of online engagement is empowering consumers to make more informed decisions aligned to their changing values and priorities. As a result, brands can easily become irrelevant as quickly as they become relevant.

So how can companies better prepare for consumers' changing priorities over the long term?

This is particularly challenging given the speed at which innovation happens in today's environment. Online platforms have opened consumers up to endless products, services and business models to explore and engage with.

33% of global consumers have turned to TikTok for information about a brand, company, or products and services, as of 2023, with the app having only appeared in the wider global market in 2016

Source: Euromonitor International

Companies understand the importance of online interaction to stay relevant in today’s fast-moving markets, with 54% of businesses saying digital engagement as a trend has influenced their internal commerce development over the past year, .

However, what many companies struggle to do is future-proof their business beyond reacting to today’s consumer needs. To be a successful leader in innovation requires companies to take a step back and assess key macro factors influencing consumer values and priorities, how that is changing their behaviour, and what the impact will be on their business over time.

Euromonitor's trend activation framework allows for brands to take a more holistic approach to consumer trends

  • Drivers and Megatrends: Using Euromonitor International’s trend activation framework, the first step is to assess the macro factors (the drivers) that are disrupting or could disrupt consumer behaviour globally. For example, we see that Generation Alpha (over 25% of the global population by 2030) is coming of age and will soon be responsible for making their own purchases, which will impact brands globally. They are generally more digitally native and will likely be heavily influenced by technology and digital platforms and marketplaces.
  • Industry Trends: It is then important to explore and better understand how these drivers and megatrends impact the categories your business plays in. Following the example of Generation Alpha, think about how they might be purchasing the products or services that your business offers. Also, their preferences might shift based on the products they are exposed to online.
  • Manifestation and Inspiration: , it is important to seek out inspiring examples of how this might be playing out in the industry or market of focus today. Examples help shape the future of the trend, witnessing successes and failures in real time to better prepare

Drivers of Megatrends
Answering critical business questions using our trend activation framework

We help clients to understand future changes in consumer behaviour that impact their categories by leaning into our trend activation framework to:

  • Identify the drivers of change that could affect consumers’ habits and behaviours in the future and impact the client's business, such as changing values or population change.
  • Select the most pertinent Megatrends that relate to their categories and markets.
  • Explore the trends in more detail to understand how changes are appearing in the client’s markets today and helping them outline where opportunities lie.
  • Demonstrate, through examples, what companies and adjacent industries are doing today to meet consumer needs, what new product innovation are they investing in, new business models or marketing campaigns.

We help our clients take a more robust and proactive approach to consumer trends for them to make lasting strategy decisions well beyond responses to fast-paced trend cycles witnessed today. It will ensure they, as a brand, remain relevant to consumers as their needs and behaviours shift over the long term.

To learn more about Euromonitor’s Megatrends Framework or our Innovation consulting capabilities, read our white paper on Megatrends or visit our consulting page for information on how to work with us.


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