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Media Planning & Buying Archive

Why Most Trends Don’t Matter (And 15 New 2014 Trends That Do!)

If you believe the typical trend declarations for 2014 – this is going to be the year of big data, wearable devices, and ubiquitous tablets. These are the facts we have heard over the past two months presented as big insights for the coming year. There are only a few problems with these so called trends, and others like them:

  • Problem 1: NO OBJECTIVITY – If you sell hammers, declaring 2014 the “year of hammers” isn’t just self serving, it’s probably plain wrong. Great trends should take an unbiased look across industries to describe an idea that really matters.
  • Problem 2: NO CREATIVITY – Trends need to do more than repeat common knowledge. For example, saying that “more people will buy tablets in 2014” is obvious—and useless. Instead, great trends should describe the world in fresh ways you haven’t heard before.
  • Problem 3: NO PROOF – Sharing a trend with-out specific examples is like declaring your- self a musician by simply buying a guitar. Great trends are only important when there are real life examples and stories that illustrate how it is actually happening in the world.
  • Problem 4: NO APPLICATION – Even when a trend seems to make sense, the place that many trend articles stop is at trend “spotting.” In contrast, great trends should be paired with real advice on how to them to impact your business.

For the past four years, I have spent a bulk of every year gathering information to curate into an annual trend report that aims to solve each of these problems by taking an unbiased creative and proven look at the trends that will matter in each year … and pair them with some real advice and action guides for how to actually use them. The first three editions of this report have been viewed and shared online more than half a million times.

Today I’m officially publishing the 4th Edition of this report – The 2014 Non-Obvious Trend Report. Embedded below is a 139 page sneak peek of the full report with many of the insights, stories and descriptions of 15 trends that will matter in the coming year. The report shares my approach to “trend curation” versus trend spotting – and brings together nearly a year’s worth of research into a single book.

I hope you enjoy this preview of the full report – and it inspires you to download the full report which is available as an ebook for just $4.99 on Amazon right now. As a companion to the report, I have also launched a trend site that compiles all the previous editions of the report and details about several other “15 Trend” books that are now available. After reading them, if you are interested in joining my reviewer list to get early access to my 2015 Trend Report later this year, as well as several other bonus pieces of content – you can sign up for that below as well.

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How LinkedIn, YouTube & Others Could Finally Cure Stupidity Online

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The greatest collection of human stupidity ever amassed sits on the Internet … and you probably encounter it every day. When you go online today, there is some great content – and a deluge of bad, useless or otherwise idiotic content. It is common knowledge that content creation online is exploding and that much of it is not very good….Read More >>

7 Ways To Get Marketing Agencies To Work Together In a Mega-Agency World

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Today two of the biggest communications holding companies, Omnicom and Publicis, announced they will be merging to form the world’s largest advertising company. For anyone familiar with the common in-fighting among agencies for limited client budgets, one of the immediate concerns will be the challenges that these new found partners in this “merger of equals” will face in the coming…Read More >>

15 Big Brand Lessons From The 2013 Corporate Social Media Summit

There are all kinds of ways to judge the quality of a conference. Some people look at the venue, or the number of attendees. Other look at the list of speakers, or the keynote presenters. Across the dozens of events I attend every year, I have seen or used almost all of these metrics myself. But yesterday I discovered a…Read More >>

Culpa Marketing: How To Win By Publicizing Screw Ups

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There is nothing more powerful than a genuine heartfelt apology. At least, that’s what JCPenney is hoping based on a new ad the brand just released today featuring an apology to customers for recent changes and a promise to start listening more: The ad is a marked departure from the Apple-style “we’ll tell you what you really want” strategy employed…Read More >>

The Alignment Gap, Concierge Marketing And The Future Of Agencies

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Summary: The story of why I decided to start the world’s first true “Concierge Marketing” service for large and mid-size brands. It all started because I knew the one thing I didn’t want to do. About three months ago I left my role at one of the biggest marketing agencies in the world and the only thing I knew for…Read More >>

The 2012 Influential Marketing Book Award Winners

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The books on your shelf say something about you. That’s why most of us have books that we put on our shelves over the past year which we haven’t quite had a chance to read yet – but still display as a declaration of what we believe. As an author, I usually make it fully through at least 30 books…Read More >>

How To Spot A Trend: 7 Social Media Trends That Matter In 2013

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There has been a single pink folder on my desk since January 15th of this year. That day matters to me for two reasons – first because its my birthday, and second because it’s the day when I start an empty folder with the intention of collecting ideas for my year end trend report. Then throughout the year, I steadily…Read More >>

How To Miss A Huge Social Media Opportunity

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As a creative marketing guy, I love a good idea. In fact, I’ve spent many hours sitting in conference rooms brainstorming with teammates to come up with them. So when I first saw Verizon Wireless’ big new campaign called Share America – I was instantly engaged. It is a great concept involving an up and coming band (Hot Chelle Rae),…Read More >>

How the Power of Fear Helped Revolution Become a Breakout TV Show

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If there is one thing that the media industry proves year after year, it’s that it is dangerous to get attached to a new TV show. Every year audience favourites get cancelled by unforgiving network executives making decisions on short term ratings instead of long term potential. They use existing popular shows to lead into the new shows and make…Read More >>