Emerging trends are coming at us quickly, and brands are fast to one-up each other as the stakes are high. Some brands are even innovating ahead of the consumer curve to set the pace for tomorrow’s trends. How do they know which direction to go? Are they just guessing or do they have some intel everyone else isn’t aware of? Consumer and market intelligence pulls back the curtain to reveal insight informing these major moves.
In this piece, we’ll explore:
- How to identify new trends
- Consumers’ love affair with tech
- Winning and losing first mover experiments
And here are some technology stats to keep in mind:
- By the end of 2021, global technology is predicted to worth five trillion dollars
- The global AI market is expected to reach $89.8 billion
- There are 1.35 million tech startups currently
Emerging Tech Trend Identification
Tech innovation is progressing at a lightning speed. By the end of 2021, it’s predicted that global technology will reach five trillion dollars, representing a 4.2% growth rate.
Keeping up with emerging trends in tech has been the name of the game for brands for the longest time. However, as 2020 so vividly taught us, keep up just isn’t good enough. Now you have to be ahead of the game.
And this is likely what prompted Samsung to launch their 110 inch plasma TV with a remote that’s rechargeable by sunlight, indoor light or USB. And it may also have been behind their push to introduce the TV ‘Frame’ series that can rotate between landscape and portrait mode. And if you think that’s crazy, LG would like you to hold their beer:
Their new OLED TVs can be used as a restaurant partition to display food items, or video while customers wait. It can also be installed into a bed frame, where the push of a button causes it to rise from the footboard, so you can lounge in comfort while binge watching all your favorite shows.
How do they do they come up with these ideas? With a little bit of advanced artificial intelligence magic to pinpoint emerging market insights, of course!
Using market intelligence, we’ve searched tech gadgets to see what’s currently trending. Below, we see smart technology being mentioned in blogs, news articles and papers. Topics range from smart home to wearable smart devices.
Once we’ve decided which clusters we are interested in, we use a scatter plot to compare them and locate emerging trends in the space. Anything in the top right corner would be our leading technology, with a high published count (news articles) and a high social engagement (by potential consumers).
To be ahead of the curve though, if we look around, we see articles with a lower published count but a high social engagement. This means that consumers are taking notice of something that hasn’t quite matured in the space yet:
Getting attention is Amazon’s new Sidewalk Network, which is a mesh network that extends your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connection range by up to a mile. It does this by turning your smart devices such as Echo speakers into bridge tools. This gives internet-connected devices, including your home security camera a real boost. And the more smart-tech enabled you have gadgets join in, the bigger the bandwidth.
This article has only 7 published counts, yet its engagement counts are in the thousands and it’s viewed positively, which is critical. It feels like a future winner, doesn’t it? We can find out! And it’s essential to do so. You can have a great product or idea, but if consumer sentiment isn’t behind it, you risk losing everything.
Monitoring Consumer Love for Emerging Tech Gadget Trends
The global AI market is expected to reach $89.8 billion and this speaks to our love for advanced technology. Telling Alexa to play Aretha Franklin while you do the dishes makes the mundane much more enjoyable. And it’s human nature to forget that others may not share your sentiments. And that’s where social listening comes in.
Reading mood would be a great tool to have for everyday interactions with people. We aren’t there yet, but we do have technology to read the mood for consumers posting online about anything from the weather to their favorite band, or why they don’t like tootsie rolls.
Below, we have a timeline showing consumer mood over the past three months in connection with emerging tech devices. And there’s a lot of trust, anticipation and joy surrounding the topic:
And further social media analysis allows us to view these emotions in many different ways. When you look at Attributes, which shows key positive and negative terms mentioned most in our analysis, we see a wide variety of technology-centered conversations ready to explore:
Lots of potential to explore there. And we can see the day, week and hour people are primarily posting about this topic – and where:
So, we could quickly know when and where to engage with our target audience, as well as which emerging tech topics are meaningful to them. All of this is valuable insight to help narrow down emerging tech trends we may hope to pursue, particularly if we’re pursuing them ahead of everyone else . . .
First Movers May Win the Game
With 1.35 million tech startups to compete with, every edge counts. There have been some amazing first movers in the technology game, but we’ve seen those that were sure winners that suddenly lost their edge – like Blackberry. They were first movers in their category, selling 50 million devices in 2011. But they didn’t adapt fast enough and died.
More recently Quibi became a part of this crowd as well. This streaming service offered video shorts or “Quick Bites. Big Stories.” Ten-minute-long shows designed for viewing on your cell phone. There seemed to be a lot of promise. And then the pandemic happened and Quibi wasn’t able to move fast enough to stay alive.
Could the founder have seen this coming?
The pandemic? Probably not, but with leading social listening, he may have been able to pivot faster and meet the demands of fickle consumers.
Social listening reveals emotions expressed over the past year surrounding Quibi, and it looks pretty green. But sometimes things aren’t always what they seem. Selecting Quibi’s failure offers clues, but ultimately it just wasn’t able to move fast enough.
Could they still be alive today somehow? Probably. Everything online is moving to video. But that’s an analysis for another day.
Emerging technology will continue on. We’re guessing some incredible smart home technology is on the horizon, as that market is expected to reach an estimated $112.8 billion by 2024. Sentiment monitoring for fluctuations in consumer needs, wants and dream lists will be critical to companies wanting to get out ahead and stay alive.
Is the roll-out screen map in our header image too soon, for example? We’ll see! It might be timed just right, based on how fast tech is accelerating. Or it may pave the way for a better tech to replace it. We’ll see if we all have one rolled up in our back pockets this time next year!
But for now, taking a step into the future is as simple as reaching out for a demo. We have advanced AI technology fueling our social listening capabilities. If you want to be first, that’s fine – but make sure the market is at least starting to move with you before you travel too far ahead of the pack!