06 : 10 : 23 : Weekly Debrief

need to know
product design
health & wellness
category - fashion
category - female futures
sector - food & drink
type - need to know
Need To Know
category - design
category - mobility
category - sustainability
sector - health & wellness
sector - youth

This week: The state of streetwear, Intrepid Travel and The Future Laboratory’s new report, brands are neglecting Gen X, spotting shrinkflation with Carrefour, Ritz-Carlton celebrates transformational travel, a vertical distillery in Edinburgh, and our latest macrotrend.

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6 October 2023

Author: The Future Laboratory

Image: Ritz-Carlton, US


Rare Humans, Austria

1. Markets : The State of Streetwear

Streetwear is undoubtedly big business. Since its popularisation in the 1990s, the laid-back style rooted in street culture, hip-hop and skateboarding has moved from subculture to the mainstream.

Streetwear’s cultural relevance is undeniable, underpinning trends in fashion and luxury to the extent that its fans began feeling that pure players were becoming too commercial, losing sight of their roots and day one communities.

‘I definitely think there’s a bit of an identity crisis in streetwear,’ Isabelle Jones, junior strategist at Highsnobiety, tells LS:N Global. US brand Supreme’s product drops, known to fly off the shelves in seconds, have started selling more slowly, while other landmark labels like Bape or Stüssy are reportedly losing ground.

Now, the cool compass is pointing in new directions and power dynamics are changing. If street-style connoisseurs are rebuking what feels like manufactured, commercially minded hype, what does the post-peak streetwear scene look like?

Read the full article on LS:N Global.

‘Streetwear’s business model can adapt to a culture that cares less about novelty with short lifecycles and cares a little bit more about sustainability.’
AI imagery by Intrepid Travel

2. Intrepid Travel and The Future Laboratory’s new report warns of travel extinction

Global – Adventure tour operator Intrepid Travel and The Future Laboratory have published a new report, A Sustainable Future for Travel, warning that travel as we know it could soon become extinct.

In the face of the climate crisis, the travel industry is at a crossroads – climate breakdown and tourism restrictions could curb the pursuit of wanderlust, while the optimistic outcome would be regenerative breakthroughs changing travel for the better.

Insights explore the possible remapping of popular tourism destinations, and calls for action from key players in the travel sector by showcasing the social, cultural and technological changes that can propel the industry forward in a positive direction through to 2040 and beyond.

Read the the full report here. If you would like to connect with our experts and learn more about our Commissioned Thought-Leadership, please reach out to us at hello@thefuturelaboratory.com.

Photography by Ketut Subiyanto

3. Stat: Stat: Brands are neglecting Gen X on social media

Global – According to a report published in September 2023 by media agency Wavemaker, influencer marketing campaigns largely ignore Gen X, despite 92% of 45–60-year-olds using social media every day.

The report, Finding the Gen X Factor, collated data showing that despite accounting for 31% of the global population, 28% of TikTok users and 27% of global spending, only 5% of brands are targeting Gen X using influencer marketing.

Wavemaker, a subsidiary of global media firm GroupM, also found that Gen X are more brand-loyal than their younger counterparts, but have unique needs, such as using platforms to continue parenting after their offspring have left home. Owing to a lack of research into the demographic, campaigns often fail to acknowledge this.

As Youth Culture Enters its Flat Age Era, and older women are finally getting the respect they deserve across the entertainment industry, brands need to shake off the archaic notion that only young people are engaged with social media. Not doing so risks missing out on a brand-loyal and relatively untapped market ripe for the picking.

4. Carrefour is helping consumers spot shrinkflation in France

France – Carrefour is cementing its position as a cost of living ally for consumers. The supermarket chain has rolled out shrinkflation labels in stores, warning shoppers of deceitful pricing and pressurising suppliers to quit the unethical practice.

Shrinkflation refers to reducing products’ size while charging the same or a higher price. As costs of raw materials started dropping but inflation is still high, suppliers have been widely using this pricing tactic to increase profit margins.

French supermarket chain Carrefour has been noticing dozens of such examples: Guigoz infant milk formula produced by Nestlé has been reduced in size from 900g to 830g, while PepsiCo’s Lipton Ice Tea bottles shrank from 1.5 to 1.25 litres. If these small but substantial changes can be hard to spot, Carrefour made them impossible to miss, with labels on shelves stating that volume or weight fell, effectively raising the price.

‘The aim in stigmatising these products is to be able to tell manufacturers to rethink their pricing policy,’ explains Stefen Bompais, director of client communications at Carrefour. This Retail-flation Response is a masterclass in loyalty-building, showing how to play the long game and be a part of the solution, instead of exacerbating the problem.

Photography by RF_studio
Ritz-Carlton, US

5. New Ritz-Carlton campaign celebrates transformational travel

Global – The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Co has announced a new international marketing campaign celebrating the transformational power of travel.

Created in collaboration with Team One agency, the Leave Better campaign invites guests to embark on a ‘powerful journey of self-discovery through thoughtfully tailored experiences and the genuine comfort and care offered by a stay at The Ritz-Carlton’.

With a central campaign question of ‘How will a stay leave you?’ and taglines such as ‘You Arrived a Bud. You Departed a Bloom’, the campaign suggests guests will check out of The Ritz-Carlton in a better state than when they checked in.

‘Through Leave Better, we invite travellers to journey with The Ritz-Carlton to places, moments and spaces that are marked by genuine care only we can deliver, and will encourage self-growth and discovery, staying with them long after they depart,’ said Jamie Kerr, senior director of global marketing at The Ritz-Carlton, in a company press release.

The campaign acknowledges growing consumer demand for experiences that extend to Before & After Travel. Anticipation and post-stay rejuvenation become tangible experience points that luxury travel companies can tap into to provide a holistically premium experience.

Port of Leith Distillery, UK

6. Port of Leith unveils vertical distillery on Edinburgh’s seafront

Scotland – Port of Leith whisky has marked its entry into the world of spirits with a distinctive twist – a vertical distillery spanning nine storeys that overlooks Edinburgh’s seafront. The brand, founded by friends Ian Stirling and Paddy Fletcher, both with a passion for whisky, celebrated the opening of its headquarters in the first week of October 2023.

Designed by Glasgow-based architects ThreeSixty, the building’s unique shape and size were driven by the limited site availability. Inside, visitors can explore the distillation process, including whisky stills, and enjoy drinks in the top-floor mezzanine bar boasting panoramic 360-degree views of the city and the sea.

The Port of Leith distillery is set to open to guests on 11 October 2023. As well as distillery tours, visitors can savour a tasting menu at the bar. Stirling and Fletcher’s vision is to bring innovation and excitement to Scotch whisky, offering a unique whisky experience to enthusiasts from around the world. The distillery is also a great example of a whisky-maker challenging the sector’s heritage, as revealed in Five Brands Rejuvenating Whisky.

7. Macrotrend Preview
Home States Futures : Residential Retail

With hybrid working becoming the new normal, global retail footfall in decline, and the evanescence of third spaces, there truly is no place like home for brands.

As our offices become more social, intimate and personal, our homes are becoming more collaborative, corporate, commercial and hybrid.
But our living spaces are also becoming the real battleground for brands – with consumers demanding new kinds of intimacy, service and regenerative practices, and brands delivering these through transformative experience and superlative service. 

Our Home States Futures macrotrend will highlight a new approach to viewing the home as an active and concentrated retail and lifestyle eco-system. It will become a hub that brands must target, woo and win over in precise and interconnected ways. To conquer this home-centric market, brands may appoint chief household officers and businesses will need to coordinate conversations, find synergies and create clear cross-selling strategies.

Join our in-house team, invited experts and global panellists at our Home States Futures online event on 19 October 2023 from 4:30pm to 5:30pm BST as we examine the future home – in terms of how we broker time, maximise wellbeing, re-assess usage, reduce waste, embrace data and develop new ways to side-hustle revenues from our sitting rooms.

Ketut Subiyanto

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