Monthly Archives: March 2013

The Guardian : Babies : the latest fashion accessory

27 : 03 : 2013

LS:N Global editor, Lucie Greene speaks to The Guardian’s Lauren Cochrane on Sharenting – a term from this season’s trend briefing Generation I macro-trend. She says ‘Editors, designers and executives talking about their own babies, and featuring them in campaigns, helps them connect with women.’

Read the full article here

News3.0: The Future of News

26 : 03 : 2013

Earlier this year News International commissioned our Consultancy team to identify trends surrounding the future of news. The resulting research and analysis was reported by Marketing Week and is now informing a broad spectrum of activity at News International under the News3.0 initiative.

The initial project immersed 100 of the media industry’s brightest in the four core trends, and helped their understanding and engagement by bringing the trends to life through an installation and workshop. The workshop sessions conveyed how each of the different trends applied to the media world, and proposed ways to engage audiences in our multi-faceted future.

Our research and analysis is one of several strands fuelling News3.0, a new face-to-face consumer engagement project ‘designed to identify and foster innovation within and outside of News International’, in the words of Mike Darcey, News International’s CEO. Additional activity to date under the News3.0 platform includes:

: Staging a News3.0 pop-up café and hosting events to debate and interact with some of the most pertinent issues facing the future of news and advertising, such as the impact of technology on the future of newspaper consumption, production and advertising

: Participating in OpenCo and discussing how a large, established corporation can still be innovative and open to change.

News3.0 is providing a platform for a fresh approach to news publishing. Abba Newbery, director of advertising strategy at News International, says: ‘One of the things we need to be much better at in the newspaper industry is to think of ourselves in the context of the whole world of news and entertainment rather than the world of newspapers.’

For more on our research and innovation services, please email Tom Savigar.

Introducing Laura Fry, The Future Laboratory’s Consumer Insight Consultant

25 : 03 : 2013

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Q: Describe your role at The Future Laboratory

I lead global insight projects, most of which are large-scale qualitative pieces. Basically, I get to do one of my favourite things in the world, to find out why. It involves designing tailored research solutions for brands that want to make the future happen. I then implement them with our team of talented researchers in a way that engages consumers in creative, meaningful ways. Every project is different and requires getting under the skin of businesses and brands, and the lifestyle and needs of consumers and cultures around the world. What I love about my work is that every day I leave the office having learned another incredible thing about the world in which we live.

Q: What road led you into the strategy and consumer line of work?

I have always been a geography geek, from a very young age. I used to love maps and, thanks to a wonderful geography teacher, I quickly learned there is a lot more to the subject than glaciers and rivers. At university I thrived when given the opportunity to research a topic of my choice. I chose something close to my heart: the emotional and psychological impact of rural to urban migration among students, mainly because I wanted to explore some of my own experiences and make sense of them. That was my first real experience of social and cultural research and I was hooked. I continued researching in the academic world until I felt it was time to apply what I had learned about people, places and cultures to businesses and brands.

Q: Where did you work before The Future Laboratory?

I spent three years at GfK, working as a qualitative specialist in its Technology division. I previously cut my teeth as a commercial researcher in a small PR research and communications agency, Loudhouse. At GfK I ran international research projects and programmes for global technology brands in areas of innovation and NPD, brand and customer experience, loyalty and brand strategy.

Q: What was your first job?

I worked during the summers at high school with my dad. He is a dry stone waller, a skilled craftsman who spends his days on mountain tops building walls and land boundaries using very traditional, labour-intensive methods. My dad never paid well, but at least we had long lunch breaks together.

Q: When you are not at work, where are you most likely to be?

Doing something triathlon-related: swimming, cycling, running or in the gym.

Q: What is your favourite part of London?

The South Bank. I love the 60s architecture, the opportunity to see some incredible, free performances at the National Film Theatre and Festival Hall, people-watching, wandering around and reminding myself of that incredible skyline.

Q: What are you reading at the moment?

Who Owns the Future? by Jaron Lanier

Q: Given that we are talking about Re-enlightenment at the moment, do you think it is possible that you will visit space in your lifetime? And would you want to?

Yes, I think it will be possible in my lifetime. I think we will see some interesting challenges and debates emerge around this area: the ethics of exploration and inhabitation of space, the need for alternative spaces and places for our growing population, and the geopolitical implications of spreading our societies and cultures into space. I would love to see space and to be able to see some of the things that have fascinated me when watching Sir Patrick Moore as a child and now, Brian Cox.

The Guardian : this season’s glossary already hitting the press

21 : 03 : 2013

‘What will the next ten years look like? Off the back of our Spring/Summer 2013 Trend Briefing, The Guardian help spread the good word by profiling a number of our buzzwords for the season.

Read the full article here and get down with ‘Sharents’, ‘Child Technology Officers’, ‘Screenagers’, ‘Pretail’, Space-vertising and Bio-facture.

David Bowie is

This week LS:N Global visual editor, Jo Tulej battled against the media scrum at the V&A Museum to see the preview of the David Bowie is exhibition.

The first international retrospective of the career of David Bowie traces Bowie’s first steps towards his musical career, setting the scene during his adolescent years and the performers who influenced him. It then moves on to portray his amazing music, film and theatre career.

When you enter the exhibition you are given a pair of headphones that you wear throughout. Walking around you are stimulated with songs, voiceovers and clips that fade in and out to match whatever you happen to be looking at, like magic.

Every stage of Bowie’s life in the show is curated in a highly creative way, each totally different from the next. From letterbox peepholes, to giant stadium-type projections and a multitude of jazzy outfits in between, you can’t help but get swept away in the stardust of it all.

The exhibition is a moving and inspiring depiction of one of the greatest pop stars of all time. The design by 59 Productions and Real Studios with support from Gucci and Sennheiser is a thoughtful, imaginative tribute to the visionary Bowie. We’re just hoping they release more tickets soon!

David Bowie is

This week LS:N Global visual editor, Jo Tulej battled against the media scrum at the V&A Museum to see the preview of the David Bowie is exhibition.

The first international retrospective of the career of David Bowie traces Bowie’s first steps towards his musical career, setting the scene during his adolescent years and the performers who influenced him. It then moves on to portray his amazing music, film and theatre career.

When you enter the exhibition you are given a pair of headphones that you wear throughout. Walking around you are stimulated with songs, voiceovers and clips that fade in and out to match whatever you happen to be looking at, like magic.

Every stage of Bowie’s life in the show is curated in a highly creative way, each totally different from the next. From letterbox peepholes, to giant stadium-type projections and a multitude of jazzy outfits in between, you can’t help but get swept away in the stardust of it all.

The exhibition is a moving and inspiring depiction of one of the greatest pop stars of all time. The design by 59 Productions and Real Studios with support from Gucci and Sennheiser is a thoughtful, imaginative tribute to the visionary Bowie. We’re just hoping they release more tickets soon!

Life inside the lab: Thoughts from a graduate trainee

12 : 03 : 2013

Hello, I’m Victoria, the second graduate trainee at The Future Laboratory.

I have been at the Elder Street offices in Spitalfields since October 2012, after graduating in Fashion Marketing from The University of Northumbria.

As part of the year-long trainee scheme I will be working my way round the company, experiencing each department (reception, LS:N Global, The Future Laboratory consultancy team and sales & marketing) in bite-sized, three-month chunks. I’m learning each department’s ways and processes – and loving every minute.

My first three months saw me working along side James Witt, where I experienced setting up for events, lunches and meetings, helping to run reception and coordinate the logistics of our events. One of the highlights was working on the Consumer Futures Forum where LS:N Global’s own consumer insight experts joined industry leaders in marketing, advertising and retail design for an intensive look at what’s new and next in consumer thinking. Working with Joanna Tulej LSN’s visual editor I helped to source vintage cake stands and exciting new flavors of macaroons and chocolates to curate a fantastical display for our guests. It’s safe to say that our guests left full of knowledge and cake.

I’m currently residing in LS:N Global the online news and consumer insight network. Day to day I research and pitch ideas for LS:N Global’s Seed and Insight sections, learning from the rest of the team about how and where to find the best and most relevant ideas.

I am also working on some bigger features on the network, visualising in-depth and visually driven case studies in the Innovate section, discovering the most inventive projects, brands and talented studios in Australia for a country-specific market report, and researching the most exciting shops and experiences for a client who has commissioned a bespoke retail brief.

In three weeks I will move to The Future Laboratory to work with the consultancy team to create bespoke trends for a range of exciting clients. I’m excited to see how they help clients to develop, drive and manage strategies that embrace consumer change

I will continue to write about it here, so look out for updates.

Great Coverage Down Under

03 : 03 : 2013

Chris, Martin and Katie spent the whole of February in Australia presenting our Co-commerce Revolution Trend Briefing in Melbourne and Sydney, as well as hosting LS:N Global Network Evening events in both cities. To top it all off, with the help of our Australian associate Robert Buckingham and our good friends at Right Angle Studio, the team pulled off a sell-out Retail and Consumer Futures Forum in Melbourne too. Through it all they found time to speak to the press – and here is a selection of the coverage from the Australian media.

Chris spoke about what trend forecasting is in this quick Q&A with Milk Bar magazine, including ‘how he responds to people who think it’s all a big wank’.

The Sydney Morning Herald spoke to Chris about how apps will dominate retail.

We even featured on the airwaves. Listen to Chris’s ABC Radio National podcast on The New Sublimity.

The Age covered The New Sublimity too.

Marketing magazine spoke to Martin about blending reality with fantasy and the rise of ‘hoboism’.

Chris and Martin chatted to Broadsheet about what it means to be a trend forecaster.

The Australian said ‘It’s always easy to spot people who have been to a Future Laboratory briefing because they are warmed with a new season’s worth of buzz phrases. Expect to hear plenty of executives sprouting about faction marketing’.

Still want more good reads? Check out this blog post for Desktop magazine by ex-LS:N Global editor James Wallman – a good read on why trend forecasting is crucial to business.

Thanks to our new friends in Oz for all their support. We look forward to seeing you again next summer.