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16 digital trends for 2016 by Swedish digital agency FrojdAgency This report sums up what we think will be the key digital trends in 2016 when it comes to #tech #business #culture & #communication. As always, the future is already here, and we have focused on 16 things that we believe will hit it big in the coming year. So if you haven’t started developing in the direction of this report, you'd better start now. Enjoy! Pic: Quirkbot
Digital trends on diﬀerent levels Macro trends Digital solutions & services Enabling technology frojd.se @FrojdAgency
1. Technology that sharpens your senses Pic: Moveast
1. Technology that sharpens your senses Sensors allow our gadgets to pick up on and register things happening in the physical world around them, such as movement, location, light, sound and temperature. The technology has become Read more: http://www.apple.com/ researchkit/ http://www.wired.co.uk/ news/archive/2015-09/07/ google-project-tangohands-on http://www.idtechex.com/ research/reports/wearablesensors-2015-2025-marketforecasts-technologiesplayers-000431.asp frojd.se @FrojdAgency less expensive, more accessible, and combined with smart algorithms an enabler of a number of other emerging macro trends, like wearables, internet of things and the sharing economy. The idea of ’a quantified self’ or ‘lifelogging’ has in the last few years become a hot topic, with the purpose to measure and collect data from various aspects of your daily life. The technology has now become reliable enough that the products and services being created can make a real diﬀerence to for example individuals’ health.
2. Controlling your personal data Pic: Jay Wennington
Controlling your personal data 2. User data is one of the most valuable assets to many digital services, and people are beginning to realise that it is important to understand how their personal data is being used and shared with others. Google lets you see exactly what information they saved based on your search history and places visited, e-health services can give you full access and ownership over your test results and health reports, and we are even starting to see services that oﬀer Read more: http:// www.theguardian.com/ commentisfree/2015/dec/ 06/algorithm-writers-shouldhave-code-of-conduct frojd.se @FrojdAgency an opportunity for individuals to negotiate a price for their personal data directly with companies that want to buy it. However, in a world where Facebook knows their users on such a detailed level that they can manipulate our mood, the question is if we want to share our personal data with anyone at all?
3. Helpful software robots Pic: Vasile Cotovanu
3. Helpful software robots Artificial and beneficial intelligence? We have been starting to see a rising army of software robots whose sole task it is to make our dayto-day lives easier. In reality they are obviously not truly intelligent; they lack self awareness and would never pass a Turing test. However, Read more: https://x.ai/ http:// googleresearch.blogspot.co. uk/2015/11/computerrespond-to-this-email.html http:// www.gobutlernow.com/ https://medium.com/swlh/ no-ui-is-the-new-uiab3f7ecec6b3#.djgnyfbue frojd.se @FrojdAgency they are able to quickly help us find and utilise data and services in the cloud. Apple’s Siri is an example of the type of AI-assistants that people in general find more annoying than helpful; there is a challenge for them to interpret language correctly, and the tasks they are able to perform are pretty limited. This is why we now see an increasing number of more specialised services, which are limited to a defined contextual problem; for example booking meetings, making travel arrangements, ordering food, or finding specific information.
4. Brand VS service Pic: Kaboom Pics
4. Brand VS service What is traditional brand building actually worth in our new digital world? On the one hand we see examples of strong brands who lose market shares on a playing field where customers are going for the player who oﬀers the service that creates the most value. One the other hand, software technology is easy to copy and when a number Read more: http:// www.fastcompany.com/ 3002034/no-filter-howinstagram-causedhipstamatic-lose-focus-andgamble-social frojd.se @FrojdAgency of companies oﬀer similar digital services a credible brand becomes extremely important. Nonetheless, we see that the user experience equals the brand experience in this era – so if you want to avoid being perceived as slow, boring and impersonal, your digital user interface should reflect that. Make sure to put that in your budget.
5. Virtual reality = enhanced storytelling Pic: Back to the future
5. Virtual reality means enhanced storytelling We have not yet arrived in the futuristic future where we are able to fully live in a virtual reality. However, by using relatively simple means such as 360 video and Google Cardboard glasses we can Read more: https://news.vice.com/ article/chris-milk-spikejonze-and-vice-news-bringthe-first-ever-virtual-realitynewscast-to-sundance http://www.oyster.com/ beach/hotels/slideshows/ 360-degree-views-of-the-10most-beautiful-beaches-inthe-world/slide1/ https://play.google.com/ store/apps/details? id=com.google.android.star droid frojd.se @FrojdAgency now enjoy filmed experienced really close up and with a high level of involvement. Augmented reality is all about “enhancing” the world around us by adding information as an additional layer on top of the reality, which follows you when you look around. A good example of this is when you look through the Sky Map app and are able to see the star constellations and planets drawn across the sky. This allows you to create a truly impressive experience and add new dimensions to your story telling.
6. Making sense of the channel chaos Pic: PewDiePie
Making sense of the channel chaos 6. We need media channels to communicate through and the digital era has brought a total transformation to what kind of channels are available, who owns them och who you should pay to communicate through them. Our analysis is that a sense of something being “live” is the key to linear tv getting acceptable ratings. We also believe in increased communication in digital sub-culture channels where the power that bloggers, YouTube stars and podcast profiles possess is growing rapidly (for example, online retailer Nelly.com recently refocused their entire marketing budget to social media). Additionally, Read more: https:// instantarticles.fb.com/ http://hbl.fi/nyheter/ 2015-09-18/771044/ikeastartar-tv-serie frojd.se @FrojdAgency companies and organisations are starting to build their own channels where they oﬀer exclusive formats to their followers – a good example of this is IKEA’s ‘Vad gafflar ni om?’. If you had to stop buying traditional marketing tomorrow, what would you do instead?
7. Media consumption on new terms Pic: Gilles Lambert
Media consumption on new terms 7. It is difficult to define what it means to consume media today. And it is even more tricky to distinguish channels from each other in the same way that we used to. Which screen is secondary? What should be classed as radio? Facebook has become the go-to-source for both news and entertainment and ad-blockers and content-blockers give consumers the option to ignore what they deem as irrelevant, forcing publishers to explore new business models – some actually moving towards depth and quality rather than speed and clickbaiting. Critical thinking may have become a rarity in the digital age, but people are Read more: http://www.poynter.org/ news/mediawire/386510/ the-talk-of-the-web-how-thenew-yorker-grew-its-digitalaudience-by-focusing-onquality/ frojd.se @FrojdAgency increasingly coming to the conclusion that it’s better to be late to the party rather than being wrong. As communicators we need to adapt the format for the new generation of media consumers; how do you make your storytelling “snappable”?
8. Advertising goes digital business development Pic: Björn Borg
8. Advertising goes digital business development A few years ago we saw an inflation in advertising apps, i.e. companies wrapping their creative campaigns in mobile applications, for no real reason. In 2016 we predict that advertising yet again will Read more: https://itunes.apple.com/us/ app/sprinter-by-bjorn-borg/ id1032309043?mt=8 http:// thefashioninsider.com/ 2015/09/07/bjorn-borglaunches-free-fitnesssprinter-application/ http:// www.digitaltrends.com/ wearables/catstagramwearable-for-cats/ frojd.se @FrojdAgency be disguised, but this time as actual services – such as Björn Borg’s Sprinter and Whiskas’ Catstacam. And it makes us a bit worried. If these eﬀorts do not include a long term plan the end result could be self-condemned apps with disappointed users, and a low return on investment. Great services require focus, financial investment, a product owner, and continuous development. And, it is too bad if exciting business development would be botched by campaignfocused marketing departments.
9. Instant status tools Pic: James Pritchett
9. Instant status tools Status is today less about showing what you own, and more about showing who you are, what you actually do, and what your passions are. That is why we love services that lower the threshold and make it super easy to show what you are all about in social media. Good Read more: https:// www.kickstarter.com/ projects/sqdr/hexo-yourautonomous-aerial-camera frojd.se @FrojdAgency examples of this are Instagram, which transformed us all into life logging professional photographers, and the Kickstarter financed drone HEXO+ that follows you around filming you doing stunts. Who do your consumers and users want to be? And more importantly, how can you help them?
10. Help people change Pic: Dingzeyu Li
10. Help people change The winds of change are blowing. 2016 will be the year when consumers become even more obsessed with personal development and self realisation connected to food, health, exercise, lifestyle and life-balance. The brands and services that will help them reach this higher purpose – gamification style – will win their hearts, minds and social media updates. Notable examples are the mindfulness app Headspace, simpler services http://techcrunch.com/ 2015/09/21/meditationstartup-headspaceraised-30-million-to-helpyou-be-more-mindful/ such as ICUKOO which allows you to donate money to charity every time you snooze, or why not the Swedish retail giant ICA giving discounts on shopping to customers who demonstrated physical activity via the app Hälsorabatt. How can your company http://www.ica.se/appar/icahalsorabatt/ help people become the person that they want to be? Read more: frojd.se @FrojdAgency
11. Technology platform as a competitive advantage Pic: Lawrence Monk
11. Technology platform as a competitive advantage The technology stack you choose to build your digital service on, and how you input and output data, is vital when it comes to being able to scale, change things quickly, and optimizing across all units. So, you should choose your technology platform carefully. A startup would never build its core service on a CMS such as Wordpress or Read more: http://codingvc.com/whichtechnologies-do-startupsuse-an-exploration-ofangellist-data https://coderfactory.com/ posts/top-15-sites-built-withruby-on-rails frojd.se @FrojdAgency EPiServer, and neither should you as a corporate brand. The web services of the future are built on APIs and frameworks such as Python/Django (Pinterest, Disqus, Prezi, Instagram), Ruby on Rails (Twitter, Soundcloud, AirBnb), Node.js (Uber, Medium) or .Net MVC. Is your IT department up to speed on this?
12. Frictionless or total mess Pic: Tinkerbrad
12. Frictionless or total mess One out of four online purchases are made on mobile devices. Add a small drop of friction and the user experience as well as conversion rate will drastically decrease. Speed trumps “design” on the purpose-focused web, and today it is possible to adapt the experience to the context in other ways than just adapting to the size of the screen. For example, sensing if the user has a slow internet connection, and serving compressed content that loads faster creates true responsivity. It is also getting even more Read more: http://www.howdesign.com/ resources-education/ responsive-design-bestpractices/ frojd.se @FrojdAgency important to use location services to find relevant information based on geographical position; up to 40% of all Google searches are local, looking for something close by! For people to be able to find what they are looking for fast can be crucial to your business.
13. A circular mindset Pic: Zeronaut.be
13. A circular mindset The circular economy is an extremely hot topic right now. It is all about developing business models and services from a renting-, borrowing- or recycling perspective – sustainable and cost-efficient as they remove unnecessary middlemen. In the meeting of the internet of things and the sharing economy we find disrupters such as Uber and Car2Go as well as simpler services like Umbrella Here. Read more: http:// www.theguardian.com/ sustainable-business/10things-need-to-knowcircular-economy http://trendwatching.com/ trends/10-trends-for-2015/ #slide-17 http://umbrellahere.com/ frojd.se @FrojdAgency A side track connected to the same trend is collective ownership, where we see variations of crowdfunding, crowd equity and crowd lending. In 2016 we will start sharing everything – knowledge, things and money. How can your business start working circular? How can you reduce ownership?
14. Sustainability from the inside ouy Pic: Hossein Alipour
14. Sustainability from the inside out CSR is big business and no longer a side function or something that you can fake your way around, or pay your way out of through strategic sponsorship deals. This means that you need to start from the inside out, putting your internal company culture in the spotlight. We change jobs more often today than we did 20 years ago, but in order to get people to stay because they like their employer, and to attract new talent, companies need to be brave and take a long term view on both development and creating a healthy work/life balance Read more: http://time.com/4120828/ spotify-parental-leavepolicy/ http:// www.japantimes.co.jp/news/ 2015/08/20/business/ corporate-business/fastretailing-to-debut-four-dayworkweeks-at-uniqlooutlets/ frojd.se @FrojdAgency for employees. Social awareness is one of the most exalted qualities of our time, and a key to a good reputation and better business. Paragons are Spotify who have introduced parental leave globally, and the Swedish PR firm Westanders who arrange executive company culture courses in “being nice”.
15. The secret sauce of startups goes mainstream Pic: Startup Stockphotos
15. The secret sauce of startups goes mainstream We get to meet an increasing number of companies saying that they want to become more like startups. Which basically means that they want to start working smarter. So how do you go about making the change? More than anything it’s about changing processes and Read more: http://theleanstartup.com/ http://www.zachtyler.com/ startup-frameworks/ http:// toolbox.hyperisland.com/ http://startupstash.com/ https://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/ Minimum_viable_product frojd.se @FrojdAgency culture, and creating a new mindset that has to be shared with everyone in the organization. But there are also tons of clever tools and models which the startup evangelists have created, curated and refined – for you to start using right away! Start by googling and read more about these topics: Lean startup methodology, design sprint by Google, Customer life, AARRR metrics, Prototyping and Minimum viable product. And last but not least, realise that in your organisation it must be allowed, and even encouraged, to fail.
16. Hack your business – starting now! Pic: Marius Klapatauskas
16. Hack your business – starting now! We know that you have heard this before, but have you actually ever done it? In 2016 everything will be “hacked” and questioned – from business models and marketing departments to internal processes and Monday meetings. Spend some time thinking about who and what players could disrupt your business model – and more Read more: http://singularityhub.com/ 2015/03/02/disruptingyourself/ http:// www.businessmodelgenerat ion.com/canvas/bmc https://hbr.org/2015/01/thebest-digital-businessmodels-put-evolutionbefore-revolution frojd.se @FrojdAgency importantly: why don’t you take that position instead? If you think that your product or service is too complex to sell online we promise you that the problem is not the internet. All manner of things are being sold, borrowed, rented and consumed via online channels as you read this, across B2B as well as B2C. So, stop going to breakfast seminars and be horrified to hear about what Uber is doing to the taxi industry, and start realising that soon this will be your problem. Start doing something about it. Now.
Summary – 16 digital trends for 2016 1. Technology that sharpens your senses 2. Controlling your personal data 3. Helpful software robots 4. Brand VS service 5. Virtual reality = enhanced storytelling 6. Making sense of the channel chaos 7. Media consumption on new terms 8. Advertising goes digital business development 9. Instant status tools 10. Help people change 11. Technology platform as a competitive advantage 12. Frictionless or total mess 13. A circular mindset 14. Sustainability from the inside out 15. The secret sauce of startups goes mainstream 16. Hack your business – starting now! frojd.se @FrojdAgency
Co-creators of this report Anna Gullstrand Lisa Walder Nils Persson Therese Filipsson Per Gårdehall Karin Bäcklund Managing Director & Digital strategist at Fröjd Interactive Creative Analyst at Aftonbladet Global Digital Business Manager at VisitSweden Digital project Manager at O'Learys Trademark Project Manager Digital Communications at Swedish Institute Digital Strategist at Springtime @AnnaGullstrand @walder @KarinBacklund @gardehall Petronella Turesson Lovisa Madås Head of Digital Business Digital Strategist & Development at LRF Concept Developer at Media Fröjd Interactive @lovisamadas @petroninja + the Fröjd Agency team Extra thanx to our AD intern Paul Niño for finding all the great photos! frojd.se @FrojdAgency
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