Your daily mix of foresight & futures

You can scour the Internet in search of the latest consumer trends and cultural shifts, or you can let us do it for you. T&T provides a daily snapshot of the world’s most intriguing happenings and what they mean for the marketplace tomorrow.

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To learn more about The Futures Company’s Health & Wellness MONITOR, contact Christine Baskin.

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12/11/2014

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Want to learn more about Millennial trends? Email the editor.

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11/04/2014

young and restless

Geographical analytics firm Esri fuses marketing data with Census data in their Tapestry Segmentation Project, revealing the predominant consumer segments in each zip code of the U.S. I looked up my own zip code here in Durham, N.C., and was unsurprised to find that 19% of us fall into the “Young and Restless” segment—a group of single Millennials who are willing to move for work and can’t do without their cell phones. You got me, Esri!

Let’s see how Esri would categorize TFC’s North American offices:

Chapel Hill 27517: 32% Exurbanites
Chicago 60654: 83% Metro Renters
New York City 10010: 56% Laptops & Lattes

Yep, sounds like us! Find out what segments live in your zip code here.

Shameless sales plug: MindBase is TFC’s national attitudinal segmentation. It can tell you what segments your customers fall into, and whether high or low concentrations of each segment are responsible for under-performing store locations or lackluster direct mail results. Learn more here.

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10/22/2014

dasein

Martin Heidegger’s theory of Being-in-the-world is great for understanding how human beings (Daseins) relate to each other and to the world around them. Heidegger believes that most of a human being’s sense of self, what they do and how they live, comes from the outside—from history, culture, tradition, and the other Daseins that surround them (this is an inauthentic existence). The Dasein is thrown into this pre-made world at birth and is continuously confronted by possibilities that directly depend upon the historical moment the Dasein finds themself in. Each moment is not isolated, but instead carries the past (quietly) into the present. For example, a certain tradition will get passed down into the present in such a way that it seems self-evident instead of what it actually is, a man-made entity with distinct origins.

Takeaways:

  1. Ethnographic work: Understanding Being-in-the-world is important for enriching our understanding of human interactions and motivations. Each human is a product of their specific environment/culture (to a depth they may not realize), while also being engaged in a constant struggle against their environment in order to achieve authenticity. This is why, in order to understand your consumer, you need to look qualitatively at their entire existence, realizing their specific historical moment (i.e., culture), while also creating products and experiences that allow each individual consumer to separate themself from the inauthentic and be unique, individual, and authentic. A company’s ability to deliver on this is becoming more and more important, with many consumers viewing the attainment of authenticity as a right; 56% of global consumers agree that nowadays we are free to shape our identities and transform ourselves in whatever way we want (2014 Global MONITOR). The 2014 Global Energies “Identity” section is a great resource to delve further into this idea.
  2. Past, Present, and Future: For Heidegger, the future takes priority over the present and the past (for the Dasein is always faced with possibilities); however, the past is always in the picture as well. His theory on how the past underlines the present means that the traditions of the past are often imperceptible in the present, and therefore can be overlooked and/or incompletely teased out. Perhaps this is why The Futures Company’s approach feels so intuitive. We bring the past into the present by marrying our extensive quantitative data repositories (which allow us not only to remember how the past was created, but also to see how it feeds into the present) with our qualitative fieldwork (which allows us to dig holistically into the historical moments of consumers), while always remaining future-minded, considering all possibilities.

To Learn More:
Heidegger, Martin. 1962. Being and Time. New York: Harper & Row Publishers.
Dreyfus, Hubert L. 1991. Being-in-the-World: A Commentary on Heidegger’s Being and Time, Division 1. Massachusetts: MIT Press.

Link: caae.phil.cmu.edu

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10/16/2014

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