다소 늦은 감은 있지만... 유로모니터에서 발표한 2017 Top 10 Global Consumer Trends입니다.


Top 10 Global Consumer Trends for 2017

1. Ageing: A changing narrative
2. Consumers in training
3. Extraordinary
4. Faster shopping
5. Get real: The allure of authenticity

6. Identity in flux

7. Personalise it

9. Privacy and security

10. Wellness as status symbol




In 2017, almost a quarter of everyone on the planet will be over the age of 50, a record
number. These consumers are transforming what it means to be older in terms
of lifestyle and are more demanding in their consumption needs, creating what is
increasingly referred to as the “Longevity economy”. Anxious as well as inspired
by ageing, they are keen consumers of a long list of health and beauty products and
fashion-forward options and are receptive to tech developments. “Midorexia” is
a tongue-in-cheek label for the middle-aged and older consumer who acts younger
than their years. However, this label highlights the shifting status and expectations
of a demographic whose members are living and working for longer and prioritising
wellness while challenging the typical age-appropriate behaviour of older people.


A bigger consumer voice

It is being suggested brands focus less on millennials and more on customers over
the age of 50. According to AARP, a US lobby group for seniors, the annual economic
activity of the longevity market in the US is worth US$7.6 trillion, “The growing
population over 50 represents both a transformative force by itself and a net
asset — a fast-growing contingent of active, productive people who are
working longer and taking the economy in new directions”, AARP’s “The Longevity
Economy” declares.


In an autumn 2016 New York Times article, “The Hottest Start-Up Market?
Baby Boomers”, Constance Gustke outlines a flourishing start-up scene, creating innovation

for the longevity economy at popular events like the “Silicon Valley Boomer Venture Summit”

and by Aging 2.0, a San Francisco platform accelerating innovation to improve the lives of

older adults around the world.


Disrupting ageing: “Midorexia” and more


Website “High 50”, with a tagline “Age has its benefits”, looks at the spectrum of
lifestyle interests of this segment which could equally apply to younger consumers:
Home, beauty, dating, fitness, food, health, life, money, startup and travel. A late
2016 feature on this website celebrates “age disrupters”, declaring, “Enough. It’s time
to change the story about ageing. It’s time to change the stuff around us. It’s time to look at
the bigger picture, too, and demand what we want — from our car, our home, our workplace,
our doctor, our communities and more”. Age disruptors featured include punk singer Cyndi
Lauper and Geffrey Pank, a Chinese cookery YouTube star with a million followers. This feature is

inspired by the recent book “Disrupt Aging: A Bold New Path to Living Your Best Life at Every Age”

by Jo Ann Jenkins, focusing on health, wealth and self. This book is lauded by figures like Joseph
F. Coughlin, director of MIT’s Technology Age Lab, Arianna Huffington and Facebook’s
Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg.


The visibility of older role models in fashion campaigns continues in 2017, as creative
directors such as Gucci’s Alessandro Michele recognise that teen Instagram stars may
not impact a wider demographic. He picked theatre doyenne, Vanessa Redgrave, 79, for
Gucci’s current Cruise ad campaign. In an industry known for celebrating youth, some
see this as a shift. Mainstream celebrities like actress Renee Zellweger have been
outspoken about the demeaning “body shaming” of older people in the public eye. The
first London 50+ Fashion Week in 2016 saw models Daphne Selfe (87) and Marie
Helvin (63) lead the catwalk. The main impetus for the show, organised by mail order
retailer JD William, was research showing a majority of older women polled felt
ignored by the high street. Angela Spindler, CEO of JD Williams’ parent company N
Brown, told The Telegraph, “Our findings show women over fifty want to be
represented by the media. They want beautiful aspirational fashion imagery; they want
someone in their age and shape they can relate to”. Hollywood actor, Kurt Russell, 65,
stares confidently from the October 2016 cover of men’s style magazine GQ in double
denim. Style-aware older women grace the sequel to Ari Seth Cohen’s new style bible,
“Advanced Style: Older and Wiser”. Wang Deshun, a muscular 80-year-old actor,
catwalk model and DJ takes obvious joy in subverting China’s image of what it means
to be old, in a country where early retirement is standard.


“Midorexia” is a label for middle-aged and older consumers who suddenly dare to act
younger than their years, embarking on rigorous triathlons (called “young sports” in
Latin America) or keen to borrow their offspring’s clothing. Shane Watson, writing in
the UK’s Daily Mail in 2016 observes, “Those in the grip of Midorexia think … they look
amazing — in the dungarees or the plaits or the thigh boots”. Mr. Watson believes the
“blame” rests on a host of improved consumer props, including better hair dye, fitness
trackers and diets they can rely on as confidence-boosters.


Ageing and working

At the 2016 Rio Olympics, much was made of the participation of former gold medallist
Oksana Chusovitina from Uzbekistan. In her forties, Chusovitina took part in her
seventh Olympics, competing against athletes whose average age was 20. She plans to
be part of the 2020 Tokyo Games. The model Nicola Griffin was scouted in a bank
queue; various modelling shoots followed, and she became the oldest ever Sports
Illustrated swimsuit issue model in 2016 in her late 50s. “I have had wonderful feedback
from normal ladies, who are saying this is a breakthrough”, she says. “They think,
‘great, I am not invisible any more. I too can look good — 56, 66, 76, it doesn’t matter’”.


For many 50+ consumers, of course, work is a necessity, and they face the challenge
of adapting to new tasks and skills. In countries like Singapore, with a tradition of
multigenerational living but also costly, fast-paced modern lifestyles, demographic
shifts see families with working parents supporting their kids but also ageing parents.
To ease the burden, more “retirement age” parents feel compelled to work.


Entrepreneur and author, Seth Godin, insists that continuing education and learning
new skills and workflows are vital to ensure older consumers remain relevant both
professionally and socially. A trend seeing a rise in the middle-aged intern supports
this. Marc Freedman is the CEO of San-Francisco-based Encore. His NGO pairs
experienced corporate retirees with work in the non-profit sector. According to Carol
Fishman Cohen, who runs Boston-based iRelaunch helping the middle aged start a
new career, “Some of the biggest and most prestigious companies in the world now
run re-entry internship programmes [for older people]”. Among them are US banks
Goldman Sachs and MetLife and UK accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.
UK bank Barclays offers “Bolder Apprenticeships” for prospective employees aged up
to 65.


New ageing solutions


A cluster of books and research studies published in the last year reveal a focus on
different ways of living and consuming to suit our longer, healthier lives. “New Aging:
Live Smarter Now to Live Better Forever”, from architect Matthias Hollwich, aims
to help readers think how they can start preparing earlier on in life to stay in their
communities. “New aging” also entails cooperation from professionals; “A retailer
could be inspired to have a store redesigned to work for older people or an HR
manager could get inspired to be less ageist”, he believes.


In “The 100-year Life: Living and working in an age of longevity”, London Business
School professors Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott emphasise that the
education-work-retirement model most consumers have been raised on is crumbling.
Multiple careers and new education, living and financial planning strategies are needed
to create a fulfilling longer life in which intangible assets, like family and friends, are
key. It calls on consumers, governments and brands to help make a longer life more
inspiring. “Aging and the Digital Life Course” is edited by two anthropologists working for
Intel, David Prendergast and Chiara Garattini, and highlights the ability of tech to improve
the ageing experience as well as new forms of community, retail, healthcare, learning and

Michael Hodin heads the Global Coalition on Aging, a think tank on ageing policy and
strategy aimed at reshaping how global leaders plan for 21st century demographic shifts

to get commerce engaged with new consumer needs. The coalition works with businesses

across industry sectors with common strategic interests in ageing populations. Technology

is an obvious opportunity. Keen to help older consumers take better care of themselves

in their own homes, a long list of robotic and artificial-intelligence-derived technologies

will be commercially available in the near future, including smart pendants that track falls.

Dr. Naira Hovakimyan of the University of Illinois is even designing small drones to perform
simple household chores like retrieving items from another room.





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