2018 TRENDS: THE EXPERIENCE
We are hardwired to want trends, but what's going to happen in 2018? Let me give you the inside scoop on one of the major trends that I think is going to be happening, and more importantly, should your brand do it or not do it? This one is always a brand do, so just FYI.
We are hardwired to want trends.
This has to deal with the trend of experiences. You can even see it right now when you have Groupon doing ads about the experience.
Experiences are something we are absolutely hard-wired for because it taps the entire aspect of who we are as human beings.
Experiences tap the biology because it taps our senses. You have new memories in your environment, which makes your subconscious mind go off of its normal pattern, and you feel alive and awake because you really are. All your senses are alive and awake trying to understand what's going on. What is this new situation at hand?
Experiences also tie to our stories, psychologically as well as societally. The truth is that we all have subconscious stories that are playing in the background, and they're running our lives. Some of these stories are created through society, this could be movies, this could be books, this could be fairytales, this could be social trends regionally, where you grew up at. But also, we have our own stories that came about from relationships, or our own personal expectations of life or what life should be, or what industry should be.
As a brand, we need to create experiences that tap the biology, but also tap the psychology. Sometimes that's proving the story right, and sometimes it's helping our audience see the negativity in their story, and recreate it in to a positive way.
Because again, this is a relationship.
Relationships are long-haul creations, and we're hardwired for relationships.
We want to make sure that we make our brand as most experientially as possible.
How can we do that?
No matter what you do, if it's an online business where you never actually meet the person, or if it's offline and you actually have a tangible element, we can all add our senses into it. That could be the way we write our copy that we use more adjectives, and we use more verbs in our copy, that will actually help engage the senses more. So, yes, describe, describe, describe. If I tell you hot apple pie sitting on grandma's kitchen window on a sunny summer day, you instantly begin to create that thought, what that image looks like in your head.
It could be related to your grandmother's kitchen. It could be something that you remember from a movie or a TV show, or what you would want your grandmother's kitchen to have looked like, with a hot apple pie sitting in the window on a lovely summer day.
Even if your deliverables isn’t tangible, talk to the bigger story of what your audience wants, who they want to be, and really where do they want to go.
The more senses you engage, the bigger memory you're actually creating for your audience, and the bigger memory you're creating, the more top of mind you'll be, the more top of mind you'll be, the more they'll be thinking about you. Which is what we want, in our relationships as well as in our brands.
When it comes to creating experiences, all you have to do is really work with their stories.
To understand the stories that are really running your audience by just understanding, when were they in their teens? Look at how old your audience is. Most people have that statistical information about their target audience, and then look back and say, "When they were in the ages between 16 and 21, the time that society is most influential in our brain, what were the top movies? What were the top TV shows going on then?" Because that is going to tell you exactly what they kind of are really wanting to experience. What was the topics or thought around your industry then?
No matter what your industry is, go do that research. So yes, I'm giving you a reason to go binge on Netflix, basically.
What you're going to find is, though they may not consciously ever tell you that was their favorite TV show, or that was their favorite movie, the truth is that those underlying story themes are in their heads, so you can use that to your advantage. Reference it. You know, call out, "I know what you're thinking. I know you're expecting me to show up in that 1980s big broad shoulder suit, just like you saw on LA Law. But, I'm really more of a down to earth lawyer. I'm not all about high ticket, high price, you know, having the big guy win. I'm here for the little guy," kind of thing.
When you speak to these stories, you reactivate the memories they have that you're referencing, which creates bigger bundle branch, bigger memory.
But you also, giving them an experience as well because they're thinking back to that time, what was around them at that time, the enjoyment that they had at that time, and more importantly, you're giving them that experience today, as well. So it's a pretty cool thing.
So yes, use the biology, use the senses, use the environment around somebody, to your brand's advantage, and use the stories to your brand's advantage.
Use the biology, senses, environment, and stories to your brand’s and audience’s advantage.
Humans are built for experiences.
Create them and add them to your brand. It is a trend that every single brand should be doing, because guess what? This isn't a trend. This is actually just really, really, smart branding.
Okay, we have two more trends to discuss that are going to be huge in 2018, so join me back here and I will deep dive into another one.