culture & trends
Our team of culture and trend experts work closely with our primary researchers. It can involve adding context to findings, spotting trends, proposing new research opportunities for our long-term communities, or acting as specialist consultants on ad hoc projects. The team bring into focus the wider influences on consumer decisions and help to design research that is future facing. This ensures that all of the research conducted at Join the Dots goes beyond asking the obvious, to delivering genuinely fresh insights and identifying powerful commercial opportunities for our clients.
By curating market intelligence, consulting with our network of experts, and carrying out our own research projects, our Culture & Trends team ensure that we are always on top of the trends that really matter to our clients and their business.
happiness & trends
Working across sectors with a vast array of primary and secondary research, our Culture & Trends team have developed a unique model for understanding emerging consumer needs. Our Happiness Trends model is grounded in the psychology of happiness and supported by primary research with The University of Manchester Business School. The model provides us with a unique insight into the consumer mind set and allows our Culture & Trends team to keep researchers and clients on top of changing consumer needs, so that brands are able to spot opportunities to make consumers happy. Find why happiness matters here.
Although certain human needs are almost universal, the ways in which we express, attain and fulfil those needs is culturally specific. Understanding culture is a key aspect of understanding a person’s route to happiness. As such, we use a network of guides across the world to provide a cultural lens to examine consumers – a lens which highlights the subtle differences in the way people around the world have come to interpret drivers, flourish and achieve enhanced wellbeing. This lens has been essential in allowing us to derive genuine insights for our clients. Find out more about cultural happiness here.
By observing over 40,000 consumers and exploring our happiness trends across 30 online research communities, we have seen that not all trends are equal. Some are ‘bigger’, that is, the need is felt by more consumers, whilst others are smaller and more emerging.
Each trend has a unique demographic and sector profile, depending on the consumer groups who most align themselves to that trend and the market sectors in which the trend is most prevalent. In recognition of this, we have recently quantified and profiled our happiness trends for the first time. In doing so we identified ‘Considered Pleasures’ – the desire for justifiable feel-good purchases – as an emerging consumer trend.
‘Considered Pleasures’ is linked to the Positive Emotions driver, which recognises that having a positive outlook can genuinely make for a happier life. With Brexit on the horizon, consumers are reigning in their spending, but it’s unlikely we’ll retreat back into full recessionary behaviour. Rather than buying value ranges, consumers are looking to invest their limited means more wisely on long-lasting items of a good quality, or indulgences that elevate the everyday and provide a sense of pleasure.
There are real opportunities for brands that can help us balance our desire to escape in feel-good purchases, with our practical need for quality and longevity. Find out how brands are already tapping into this trend at Illume Stories.