In our modern world of 24-7 digital connectivity where social media is king, one of the world’s leading trend watchers believes that what we Brisbanites want most is in-real-life connections – and community clubs will be key.
Globally revered, New York-based trend expert Maxwell Luthy of TrendWatching is headed to Queensland for the first time to speak at the ‘Embrace Change Breakfast’ at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on March 28.
“I don’t say this lightly: Clubs can save the world,” Mr Luthy says. “The digital arena is a polarized and hard-to-navigate twilight zone today. The value of in-person interactions, a sense of belonging and connection to a local community is higher than ever before.”
“The last 24 months have demonstrated the limitations of the digital platforms we use. From fake news to polarization, the impact has reached every country.
“From Boston to Brisbane, from Mexico City to Manila, we’re seeing a lot of opportunity in rebuilding social connections through real world interaction,” Mr Luthy continues. “People are hungry for a sense of belonging, a sense that they don’t share cataclysmically opposing world views from their neighbours. This is an urgent challenge and a massive opportunity.”
As TrendWatching’s Director of Trends & Insights, Mr Luthy has worked closely with big-name international companies like Walt Disney Imagineering, McDonald’s, Spotify, American Express, Samsung and Intel, sharing his unparalleled knowledge of consumer trends, insights and innovation.
In his keynote presentation in Brisbane next month, “5 Trends to Supercharge Your Strategy Today”, Mr Luthy is not holding back on his worldly ideas for how Brisbanites can ensure they keep up with an ever- changing world.
“The wellness boom isn’t over,” he states. “Australian consumers aren’t going to throw away their activewear and give up their pursuit of better physical and mental health. What they will demand is easy and near-omnipresent access to peak wellbeing. Expect to see high-tech and low-tech solutions that embed wellness into physical spaces and products.”
Mr Luthy also believes that while technological advancements will see some job losses, there will be other roles that will never succumb to ‘the machine’.
“One popular take here is that jobs that involve simple physical work will be wiped out and that the creative roles and empathy-powered work will be safe in an era of sophisticated automation,” Mr Luthy says. “There’s truth in that, however, consumer demand will protect even the ‘simplest’ of jobs. Consider something as simple as beer or coffee. It’s easier than ever before to buy mass produced, automated output in either category. At the same time, you have thriving demand for artisanal options of both. And consumers pay a premium for them. In the future you’ll see a cross-industry dichotomy of delivering offerings produced in the fastest way possible, and the slowest, too.
“At TrendWatching, we’re an optimistic bunch. Look at the breakout two-billion-dollar success of Fortnite in 2018. An entire ecosystem – a new economy with new jobs, new products and new opportunities – emerged out of nowhere. It won’t be the last.”