Need to Know
13 : 07 : 18

The Future Laboratory explores the need for wellness accreditation, Nike launches child-specific performance sneakers, Blockchain technology proves product authenticity.

The Future Laboratory unveils Certified Wellness

Bio-tracker installation, Health and Wellness Forum, The Future Laboratory

London – On 12 July, The Future Laboratory hosted its Health & Wellness Futures Forum at its Spitalfields HQ. The one-day event revealed the rising trends within the sector including Wellness Architecture and Extreme Therapies, as well as The Future Laboratory’s new in-depth macrotrend, Certified Wellness.

To bring the macrotrend to life, The Future Laboratory created a speculative platform that enabled guests to explore the future of democratised data ownership, where consumers, not pharmaceutical companies, are in charge of their health data and how it’s used. Guests had the opportunity to sell their ‘data’ in exchange for hypothetical benefits such as wellness brand partnerships and exclusive product rewards.

To discover the emerging trends and consumer insights that are shaping health and wellness, download our new report here.

Nike rethinks performance footwear for kids

Nike Future Series Nike Future Series
Nike Future Series Nike Future Series
Nike Future Series Nike Future Series

Global – The sports brand's latest range has been designed with young athletes in mind.

By understanding the biomechanics of children against adults, Nike has created a series of performance shoes suited to the movements and preferences of younger basketball players and runners. Developed by the Nike Sport Research Lab, the Future Series of trainers will allow room for growth and movement in the forefoot of the shoe, accommodating the body as it develops. The surface of the trainer is likened to a puppy paw, which has a softer surface to provide cushioning, while surrounded by firmer ‘skin’ for traction and stability.

For more on how brands are shifting their focus to the needs and likings of younger customers, explore our Childrenswear market here.

Blockchain technology validates luxury goods

China – E-commerce platform Secoo is exploring the use of blockchain technology to provide assurance of authenticity in the sales of luxury goods.

While luxury consumers are more confident making purchases online, there remains a growing awareness and risk of buying counterfeit goods or inauthentic materials. In response, Secoo is using blockchain to prove the authenticity of merchandise and build trust among its Chinese consumers.

After a purchase is approved, each item is offered a unique identification code with its details stored on the blockchain alongside other anti-counterfeiting information. Through the brand’s app, the buyer can access records and details relating to particular products.

While the technology is currently only available for a select number of items, the company has plans to roll out more uses of blockchain across its product line. To explore other uses of blockchain in the luxury goods market, take a look at the Crypto-affluence micro trend.

Gift Giving campaign by Igansi Monreal for Gucci Gift Giving campaign by Igansi Monreal for Gucci

Nuud launches a cream deodorant

Nuud, The Netherlands Nuud, The Netherlands

The Netherlands – Nuud is a beauty start-up that offers a natural deodorant with a novel application method.

Although the application of skin products is inherently ritualistic, the brand is exploring different approaches to test both the longevity and quality of its product. Instead of a spray or roller, Nuud is applied to the skin as a cream that is designed to last between three and seven days.

As deodorant is a staple product used around the world, the brand identified an opportunity to reduce its impact on the environment, developing sustainable packaging that includes a sugarcane tube and 100% biodegradable cardboard wrap. Its natural formula is free from aluminium salts, parabens, propellants and artificial fragrances and is described as ‘harmless on the skin’.

The beauty space is becoming increasingly driven by sensory applications that involve the wearer. For more, read the Mutli-sensory Beauty microtrend.

Older consumers are offended by ageing advertisements

Despite efforts from brands to eradicate the stigma often associated with ageing, a sizeable majority (68%) of those aged over 65 still believe advertisements stereotype people in their age bracket. The respondents to a recent survey from creative agency UM London noted the most ‘frustrating’ stereotype they witnessed was that older people are incompetent with technology.

LS:N Global has been tracking the rise of The Flat Age Society since 2014, with older consumers refusing to be defined by their age or perceived capabilities. As age becomes less about a number and more about a mindset, brands must continue to adopt a more inclusive and realistic attitude to celebrate people no matter their age.

Thought-starter: How can big banks remain relevant in the evolving financial sector?

Anne Boden, founder and CEO of Starling Bank, explains why traditional banks must scale down and embrace open APIs to remain relevant.

‘Open banking is really the term that UK companies have been using for the European PSD2 initiative. The Competition and Markets Authority did an investigation into current account banking and decided something had to be done to make it easier for customers to switch banks. They recommended that the nine largest personal and small business current account providers [known as the CMA9], implement open banking,’ Boden says.

‘[With open banking] I think the big banks have a lot to lose, because it makes the world a much more competitive place but fundamentally it’s a good idea. It means that customers can own their own data and use it to get better deals from financial institutions.’

With that in mind, Starling’s Marketplace offers a dedicated destination to browse all the various apps that are connected to Starling. All of the apps are connected using Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), a practical way of expanding a brand’s offerings in a way that is easy for customers to use.

Read the full interview here.

Starling Bank, UK Starling Bank, UK