Liquorish Ink has kicked the year off with the launch of their innovative Trends division, called Trend Tracker. Through Trend Tracker, brands can stop relying fully on Global Trends, which may not be relevant in an African context, and instead identify bespoke, local trends for their industries.
As a company that focuses on building sustainable brands that possess the endurance and flexibility to meet both current and future needs, Liquorish Ink places strategy at the heart of their operations. Crucial to any strategy is accurate, relevant trends tracking. Knowing what market and business trends affect your industry provides vital insights into formulating a strategy that will propel you towards opportunities and steer you away from negative and wasteful initiatives.
Says Leigh-Anne Acquisito, CEO of Liquorish Ink, “The reality is that brands need local, bespoke trend data to help them focus on strategically navigating current and new business environments so that they can build better, more resilient, and more sustainable brand relationships with their clients and the environments within which they operate.”
Unique, locally informed trend data.
Trend data is only as useful as it is relevant to your industry and audience. It’s no longer enough to rely on Global Trends alone. This data is typically too generalised and inapplicable to be of specific use in Africa and South Africa. Instead, local companies need to look to locally produced reports that are germane and unique to their country and industry. This is precisely what Trend Tracker supplies.
Trend Tracker focuses on identifying key trends from across the African continent and delivering significant insights to help companies redefine the markets they operate in, embrace new ideas, and grow.
“Teams operating in Kenya as well as South Africa diligently track trends and create reports around the specific needs of their clients, allowing companies and brands to examine the implications of their strategic choices, create new experiences, and open doors to opportunity for themselves,” says Acquisto.
What’s trending in your neck of the woods.
Liquorish Ink has already created a variety of reports on local industries, including communications and technology, consumer and retail, fashion and beauty, and food and fragrance. These have been made available to download for free here https://lnkd.in/gnm7iYYThrough bespoke trend data we can see precisely what is in favour with consumers, where the next steps could be, and what could prevent growth from taking place. In the communications and technology industry in South Africa, for instance, video has become increasingly popular and is the number one content format consumed on the Internet, mostly through Facebook and YouTube. According to Trend Tracker reports, augmented and virtual reality, which have previously been slow in developing their appeal, are now the next step.
Consumers are starting to favour augmented reality as no headset is required and users can use a smartphone, increasing the popularity of games like Pokémon Go. Innovative tech companies looking for where to focus their efforts and how to strategically design their brand for the future need to be aware that in this country, the cost of data is a real concern that could limit uptake and hinder this trend from going mainstream.
Says Acquisto, “The reality is that data costs are to tech companies interested in virtual and augmented reality what running with weights on are to an Olympic athlete and insights like these will help tech companies determine who their audience is, how best to reach them, and how to innovate products and experiences that suit our current online connection availability.”
Looking to the consumer and retail industry in South Africa, Trend Tracker reports indicate that in 2018, customers are seeking and prioritising meaningful interactions in much the same way that they did in 2017. Given the increased access to information, especially through the rise in popularity of the smartphone in South Africa, consumers can easily verify how brands behave externally and internally, how their products are sourced and made, and how they treat their employees.
That’s why it is now, more than ever, important for brands to genuinely meet customers’ expectations of transparency and honesty brands in order to reap significant rewards.
Design for the future.
“This is an exciting time for marketers and brands looking to take advantage of accurate, relevant trend data and design a future that is sustainable,” says Acquisto.
While acknowledging that the best instincts play a crucial role in making business and strategic decisions, predicting future opportunities and avenues of innovation in your industry requires a complement of tailored data, highlighting the more salient trends to your market.