News 01.09.2023

Need to Know

Uncovering how AI and algorithms foster emotional retail, Simar Deol’s Foresight Friday and why Britons want remote working to become a legal right.

Why are AI and algorithms a blessing for emotional retail?

Global – Innovative retailers are using technology to create intelligent and empathic journeys where every touchpoint is a learning opportunity. But what can all businesses learn from them? According to Martin Raymond, co-founder of The Future Laboratory, the true potential lies in merging e-commerce and social commerce for greater impact. ‘Social commerce has become a go-to shopping destination in its own right,’ he observes.

In the landscape of Emotional Intelligence, or EQ, Commerce, it's not just about the transaction but about the journey itself. Watch Martin’s brief overview of our EQ-Commerce macrotrend, which shows how innovative retailers are using technology such as artificial intelligence and natural language processing to provide hyper-personalised, empathic experiences for their consumers.

Find out more

LS:N Global members can access our EQ-Commerce macrotrend here, and it is also available for non-members to download from our shop. LS:N Global is the trends and consumer foresight platform that powers The Future Laboratory’s services, which include our highly regarded Strategy team who can help unpack the relevance of EQ-Commerce specifically for your business. So get in touch with us now to find out how we can help you make a better, more resilient future happen.

Foresight Friday: Simar Deol, foresight analyst

Victoria Ling for The Future Laboratory Victoria Ling for The Future Laboratory

Every Friday, The Future Laboratory team offer an end-of-week wrap-up of the topics, issues, ideas and virals we’re all talking about. This week, foresight analyst Simar Deol discusses a heart-warming AI innovation, a retro Chanel pop-up store and a nightmare fast fashion partnership.

: In the crowded marketplace of AI tools, very few feel deeply meaningful to me. That was until I came across Earth Species Project’s new work that will use AI to decode the language of whales. The non-profit organisation aims to eventually open human ears to how the entire animal kingdom communicates so we can take better care of it. One more reason to be AI-optimistic

: It has been a while since I’ve been lured into a pop-up shop for the sake of the experience, but Chanel’s Williamsburg pop-up diner has me in a chokehold. Pastel-coloured walls, vending machines, soft serves and takeaway gifts in a space reminiscent of Florence Pugh’s Don’t Worry Darling home? Sign me up.

: If you had to take two of fashion’s most problematic brands and partner them up in a dystopian our-Earth-is-burning sci-fi film, you’d probably pick Shein and Forever 21. Except, this isn’t a film; devastatingly, it is our reality.

Quote of the week

'A woman who doesn't wear perfume has no future'

Coco Chanel

Stat: Britons want working from home to become a legal right

Kii Inc, Japan Kii Inc, Japan

UK – If companies are divided on the topic of remote working, workers are much less so. New data suggests that the British workforce supports flexible working regardless of age, gender and social grade.

Research group YouGov has surveyed the workforce on their stance regarding hybrid working. The poll revealed that 71% of Britons support the idea of working from home becoming a legal right for those whose jobs can be done remotely. Only 21% of respondents are opposed to the idea, and even over-65s, who previously expressed scepticism about remote working, now largely support the idea.

The survey comes as the Labour Party is reportedly considering making flexible working a legal right for workers, and by extension, a legal obligation for employers. Although companies are not obliged to grant flexible working yet, it is to your business’s advantage to focus on fostering the work states in which work is done, rather than scrutinising the places where your staff choose to work from.

Strategic opportunity

Trusting your staff to know where they work most efficiently is both beneficial and crucial. Offering flexible working while also being attentive to what wellbeing-related perks employees want will help you retain and attract talent

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