It’s 2019! What’s New for This Year?
What will this last “teen year” hold, and are you ready for the 20s? You better be… Because the times are a-changing! Some of the latest consumer trends include products that will adapt to facilitate the constant use of technology to create a seamless blend between Device and Experience. Each year, Robinson Creative releases its look at the upcoming advances. We’ve ranked some of the most anticipated trends that will be expected and welcomed.
1. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI)
AI has been around for a while, but it continues to gain momentum as new techniques are formulated. There are fears that many will be out of a job as automation improves but there will also be an increase in employment opportunities as technology progresses. Trained AI and machine learning professionals are currently in short supply, so now is the time to jump onboard and prepare to meet the need as more businesses turn to AI. Strong math and computer skills are a necessity.
The most widely implemented form of AI are chatbots, which help brands to improve customer service while keeping a lid on budgets. Chatbots are quicker than humans in giving any data-related answers and taking requests. They have humor and personalities and offer personalized service to any customer in need, any time. Chatbots can be integrated with a website, an application, and even with a social media platform. They also gather customer information that can later be used to better tailor marketing strategies.
3. VOICE SEARCH
Voice search differs from the typical desktop or mobile search. When you open Google on your browser and type in your search query, you’ll see hundreds of pages of search results. It’s not that hard to be one of them. But when you ask Siri a question, it will give you just a few results. Many times, only one. If your website is one of them, the click-through-rate can potentially be much higher. But it needs to be there in the first place. Therefore, tailoring your SEO strategy for voice search is crucial.
4. INFLUENCER MARKETING
YouTubers are the best example of people who market products and businesses to viewers. Any time you see a sponsored video by anyone with hundreds of thousands of subscribers, you’re watching someone who’s considered an influencer. They’re people we feel we can trust and that goes a long way in a market where customers are hesitant to trust big companies.
5. USER-GENERATED CONTENT
User-generated content is content created by unpaid fans of businesses that can then be used to promote their products. It can come in the form of photos, videos, or memes. Doing this is an extremely useful way of getting the customers involved with the business strategy.
Video continues to be the dominant medium in social media. Instagram Stories, YouTube, and Facebook Live are major platforms where you can build a presence and connect with others. Generation Z also likes Houseparty, which utilizes group chats. By making their presence known on all these video platforms, social media marketers will have a unique advantage because video platforms make it easier to offer personalized customer experiences.
7. AI COMING TO YOUR CAR
The rise of AI has been seen pretty much everywhere, but nowhere more than with smartphones and tablets. You’ll find that AI helpers are getting a little closer to being integrated with every aspect of your life. Every single major automaker has announced a partnership with one of the main AI assistant companies.
8. DRIVERLESS CARS
The emergence of driverless cars and other self-automated machines have already narrowed the gap between human and machine. This trend has impacted the relationship that humans have with machines by taking away the power from the user and putting the device in control.
9. GREATER ELECTRIFICATION
Another trend that has marked 2018, and will become even more pronounced in 2019, is the rise of automobile electrification. This is particularly noticeable with high-end European imports, where most brands have at least one Electric Vehicle (EV) on the market today, as well as one or more hybrids, or are at least in the concept design stages. Other examples include the rising diversity of hybrids on the market, including a growing number of plug-in hybrids, as well as other configurations. Not convinced that EVs and plug-in hybrids are the diesel engines of tomorrow? Look at the number of electric charging stations being installed all across the US by Tesla, as well as others. New Motion (Shell’s recent acquisition) is doing the same thing throughout Europe.
10. FOLDABLE PHONES
Forget the iPhone X Plus! Demand for larger but convenient personal devices is far-reaching and transforming the entertainment experience. Samsung and Huawei each plan to offer a phone that can be folded to fit in your pocket yet expands to a comfortable size for reading and watching videos. Samsung’s will run 3 apps on the screen at the same time and has a 7.3” screen. The Huawei version opens to a full 8” screen. Some reports predict that the initial releases will be a bit chunky but the technology for a more streamlined product is on its way. Apple plans to have their version available by 2020.