France – Louis Vuitton is bringing its 1854 travel trunk to the digital world with the launch of its new exclusive non-fungible token (NFT): the VIA Treasure Trunk. Only a few hundred of the digital tokens will be minted by the luxury brand, and each will retail for £33,500 ($41,940, €39,000). The experience will start in Web3 and continue onto the real world as the NFT trunks 'act as portals into the world of Louis Vuitton, revealing new, limited products and experiences through immersive drops which will be progressively launched at regular intervals throughout the year', according to the brand.
Owners must pay for additional digital keys to unlock new limited-edition products. Louis Vuitton told Forbes that each of the initial digital NFT Treasure Trunks and the purchased keys will come with a corresponding physical product with which they are twinned. The digital travel trunk is also a soul-bound (or non-transferable) token, meaning Louis Vuitton controls who gets to buy and own one for ever.
In Neo-wealth Wears, we previously analysed how similar luxury brands set their sights on the crypto elite, designing accessories that allow people to flaunt their riches offline.
Australia – The world’s largest outdoor advertising company, JCDecaux, has collaborated with The Future Laboratory to produce a foresight report that delves into understanding the values and needs of Gen Z in Australia.
One notable finding is that these digital natives are consistently rejecting the notion of online-only identities and actively seeking Out-of-Home experiences.
This rebellious demographic poses unique challenges for marketers as they join the workforce and start spending on goods and services. Their entry will have a significant impact on business, retail, technology, politics and culture. Their collective voice demands to be heard, and our report provides insights on how brands can understand their preferences and meet their needs.
The Gen Z: The IRL Opportunity report was launched on 13 June with a presentation at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. The event featured a panel of marketing and Gen Z experts discussing how this generation are altering the demographic landscape of Australia and beyond. You can download a copy here.
Germany – Sex toy specialist Womanizer has joined forces with premium bathroom and kitchen accessories manufacturer Hansgrohe to create Womanizer Wave, the world’s first shower head sex toy. With research from a 2019 study by QS Supplies showing that 28% of women masturbate in the shower, it seemed appropriate for Womanizer to create a shower device designed for pleasure. Retailing online for £99.99 ($125, €116) from the firm’s parent company Lovehoney, the sex toy embodies a new kind of Neo-collectivism where businesses combine their design know-how.
Both companies conducted nine research projects, 60 interviews and analysed 4,000 responses to questionnaires over three years while testing more than 100 samples in the process. The challenge was to create pressure modes to maximise the user’s pleasure (PleasureJet and PleasureWhirl) while being a regular shower head for normal showers (PowderRain). Eco-conscious consumers will appreciate that the device features EcoSmart technology that offers a 60% reduction in water consumption compared to traditional shower heads, without compromising on comfort.
In Sensory Sex Toys, we previously analysed how the world of phallic sex toys is ripe for disruption as sexual pleasure focuses on the user’s senses.
Denmark – The LEGO Group joined forces with renowned female football players Megan Rapinoe, Yuki Nagasato, Sam Kerr and Asisat Oshoala for its latest 899-piece set titled Icons of Play. Each footballer has been LEGO-fied into a mini-figure to alert to persisting gender biases in play. As part of the company's Play Unstoppable campaign, LEGO commissioned a study from the Geena Davis Institute on kids' approach to all types of play and activities. The research showed 82% of girls believe it’s OK for girls to play football and boys to practice ballet, compared to only 71% of boys.
'Women’s football is a powerful reminder of what girls can do when they break free from stereotypes – our four footballers are players at the top of the game,' said Julia Goldin, Chief Product and Marketing Officer, the LEGO Group. 'As strong women on and off the pitch, they are inspirations for girls everywhere to realise their potential.'
In our Edu-play-tion micro-trend report, we previously analysed similar brands elevating playtime with tools that combine digital and analogue learning helping parents of Generation Alpha turn into home educators and move away from stereotypes and prejudice.
UK – To celebrate World Infertility Awareness Month, British diagnostic tests and medical devices specialist Newfoundland has launched the fastest and most affordable home fertility test, available at Tesco and Amazon. Retailing for £12.49 ($15.70, €14.50), the test assesses low or normal sperm count levels with 98.2% accuracy in just five minutes.
In the comfort and intimacy of their own home, users will place a semen sample onto a test cassette via a pipette, similar to the Covid lateral flow test process. After a few minutes, results will be shown with two lines indicating a normal sperm count of 15m sperm per ml of semen or one line revealing a below-normal sperm count.
Ovulation tests for women will also be available, but the one dedicated to men’s fertility is defined as the cheapest on the market and will help debunk stigmas around male infertility. ‘We want to provide people with the opportunity and knowledge to know as much about their fertility health, as currently, it can take over a year of trying to conceive before the NHS begins testing your fertility,’ says Frederick Manduca, co-founder and managing director of Newfoundland. ‘Our new male fertility test will give men the opportunity to understand more about their fertility and seek the right medical advice if needed.’
As analysed in our Fertility Market: The New Cycle report, a candid new conversation is taking place about fertility and now includes male perspectives, LGBTQ+ families and a rising number of women who don’t want to have kids.
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