How to Identify a Fad VS a Trend
The duration of a trend is determined by a number of factors, including:
So let's imagine that we've identified some dawning trends, uncovered some uncertainties and some disruptors. We can use a series of graphs to help us plot the potential success of a trend and then make a more informed decision about it.
Differentiation - there are some industries where differentiation is crucial and others where being too different can be a death knell, for example - the legal industry.
Differentiation is important because people become bored easily and therefore it can become an effective strategy to grab someones attention.
When we think about a new trend, it grabs our attention and gets us starting to think differently about something and gets us talking. Simply put when assessing an emerging trend ask yourself "Is this unique or really different to what currently exists?" "Is this truly unique or is it simply a predictable evolution or improvement of something that already exists?" "Is this product/ service remarkable i.e.. does it give me something to remark about?"
You might consider asking:
Superiority - here we want to assess how well the potential product or service trend compares to a close comparative offering. You might consider asking:
Newness - how long the trending products or services have been in the market. You might consider asking:
Performance - how well the trending products or services perform in relation to customer/ user expectation. You might consider asking:
Community - how the user/ customer community interacts and uses the new product or service.
Communities can play a big part in the success of a product, and part of this can sometimes be made up by the "why'. For example "this trending product/ service exists for the cause of making life easier for single mums". Having a cause creates bigger community participation and trend duration. Ask:
Aesthetics - how timeless the design of the product or service experience may be. Looks can play a huge part in trend longevity. Questions worth asking include:
Ground Breaking - is this a total revolution or a simple evolution. Consider asking:
Market category - did the product or service create a new market category. Consider asking:
Now that we have a number of criteria and question to assess a trend we can use a polar bar chart to plot the impact of this trend to help in our decisions making.
To keep things simple consider using a scale of 0 to 10.
For example, for differentiation on a scale of 0 to 10, how remarkable and unique is the trending product/ service? If it's not even remarkable you might give it a score of 2 and then plot it on the polar bar chart. Repeat the activity for all the other criteria and you have your trend analysis chart.
We'd love to hear how you go with this, please ping us a message to let us know about your success.
Thanks for reading.
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