May 10, 2012

Now or Never

One of the most challenging things we encounter is actually living in the present and enjoying the moments that really matter, right now. We are constantly asking ourselves “what’s next” and as a result, we miss out on these special moments. We’ve discussed many times before how life has become increasingly overwhelming as we are constantly bombarded by distractions and noise via both on and offline platforms. We need to slow down, appreciate what's going on around us, and learn to live in real time because there really is no better time than now.

Life is about moments – moments that bring us happiness, success, insight, etc. How are you taking advantage of these moments? According to one of our favorite blogs, Life Without Pants, “Life is about progress. It’s about looking at today – the now – and embracing that this moment is THE moment.” As we live, learn, and experience we grow, and with this growth, we are one step closer to finding inner peace and our own version of so-called happiness. What is meaningful to you? Go after it today before these moments are no longer there.

video via msnNOW

No one understands this better than the Millenial Generation. We’ve discussed who they are before in our blog, Generation Why Not?and their “anything is possible,” NOW mentality is catching on. Looking at the digital realm and such sites as msnNOW and NowFashion online platforms are beginning to understand how to make it easier to keep up with what is going on in the present, by filtering and offering information on what people are collectively interested in, whether it be via social media outlets, posting fashion photos in real time, or following the latest runway shows. Basically it saves us a step (or two or three) by condensing all this information and identifying what people are really talking about at this very moment.

photo via Design Magazine

Yesterday, we had the opportunity to attend the conference, "Trends in Digital Media: E-tail and Retail," which discussed how the lines between online and offline are blurring so quickly and how consumers are looking for an equally satisfactory experience between all channels whether it be through social media, mobile shopping, e-commerce, or in-store. So how are companies applying these present-minded values to their business models? Overall, the entire industry from small to large corporations to brick and mortar stores to online based retailers are all in a frenzy. However, with decreased overhead costs and a mass collection of data, online companies have a much greater advantage, ultimately challenging brick and mortar retailers to catch up.

photo via Poshmark

As many twenty somethings remain financially burdened primarily by education debt, key retailers like Aeropostale, Urban Outfitters, and Gap are feeling the hit with them. While Gen Y doesn't have a lot of excess spending income, they do value the experience of shopping and have been raised in an environment of sharing via clothing swaps, bidding on Ebay, and trading on Craigslist. They value fashion, but within their means to do so. Poshmark, an app for the iPhone was released in December that hosts real time fashion shopping events, which is not only a fun way to get new stuff but combines fashion and social curation into a personalized experience.

photo via Uniqlo

Not to mention, consumers are just more visual and aware because of the universal access the web offers by always giving the tech savvy consumer the choice of channel, both on and offline. They need to be able to see things – how clothes are worn, displayed, and marketed – becomes increasingly important for retailers to differentiate themselves. Uniqlo is a great example with their simple and straightforward advertisements that display their merchandise bold and clear for customers to identify. 

video via youtube

In general, a major interest in street style blogging is changing the way we look at fashion. Jimmy Choo has caught on by teaming up with photographer, Eddie Newton to introduce a new site, Choo 24:7, where everyone from amateurs to professionals can upload their street wear shots and shop similar looks via the site as well. In our blog, Changing The Channel, we introduced Gap's significant effort to save themselves by reaching out to Millenials by incorporating social media and featuring bloggers into their Spring campaign. Furthermore, the retailer has plans to integrate the site into a mobile format, which will eventually allow in-store shoppers to scan a garment and see how it was styled by someone featured on the platform. In theory, Gap has created a personalized online lookbook and style guide that inspires shoppers to purchase their merchandise by combining in-store browsing with online platforms in real time at the point of purchase.  

As a reaction to this growing desire to live in the present and know what is going on, companies are nonetheless looking to combine the on and offline worlds to produce unique and authentic experiences.For instance, a new mobile Apple Store app was just released that allows customers to research, customize, and buy products as well as track purchases, make reservations, and request help to satisfy all their tech needs while on the go. 

This is the future. It will be a continued challenge to live in the now and decide when to disconnect and live in the moment. As experiences become the driving force in how we shop and interact, we want to change the old way of doing things and we are. As our focus shifts to what is going on now, we will have better insight into the future. Life is short. Enjoy today, find your happy place, and you will create a better tomorrow.

1 comment:

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