Elevating humanity & connection are key brand opportunities for 2024

Elevating humanity & connection are key brand opportunities for 2024

VML launches the 10 edition of ‘The Future 100: 2024’

Elevating humanity & connection

Mumbai: In a post Covid world that is being shaped by a bewildering amount of technology, people are craving authentic human connection more than ever before. The insight, from VML’s highly anticipated ‘The Future 100: 2024’ lays out 100 trends set to shape consumer spending over the next year.

For the very first time, the report mentions “Brand India”, as the country emerges as a new global powerhouse. India has cemented its position as an emerging global superpower by hosting the G20 summit in September 2023 and has underlined its credentials as a major player in the new space race with missions to the moon and sun.

Nvidia’s CEO Jensen Huang said, at a conference to announce a partnership with Reliance Industries and Tata Group, two of India’s largest conglomerates, the country will be “one of the largest AI markets in the world”. Bain & Co. predicts India’s domestic luxury market will “expand to 3.5 times today’s size by 2030,” as brands like Gucci, Cartier, and Louis Vuitton ramp up their Indian presence and get Indian actors as global brand ambassadors. The report says that this is “India’s moment”, and global brands, manufacturers, and consumers simply cannot ignore India as the domestic market and tech capabilities are growing at a turbo pace.

VML India CEO  Babita Baruah said, “While economic growth is an important marker of progress, the combination of talent, technology, and grassroot innovation is what is creating something much larger for India; a positive Zeitgeist that is making this more than a 'Moment' and converting this into a tectonic 'Movement'.

One that sees brands and businesses looking to reinvent the experiences and solutions that they deliver to an increasingly discerning, demanding but also rewarding generation of consumers. At its core is integration – blending intelligent content, personalised experiences, data, technology, commerce, and India’s famous emotive storytelling – to create richer and more rewarding experiences for consumers, brands, and businesses.”

The insight, from VML’s ‘The Future 100: 2024’ lays out 100 trends set to shape consumer spending over the next year. The report finds that consumers are in their slow living era, known as ‘The Great Deceleration’, slowing down their lifestyles and opting for a mindful approach to the year ahead. As humanity undergoes a paradigm shift with identity at the heart, advances in technology are ushering in a new reality and prompting people to question what it means to be human.

Globally, in this new paradigm of human connection, the most successful and fastest growing brands are connected brands, as people seek emotional engagement with the brands they buy from. Data collected exclusively for ‘The Future 100: 2024’ reveals 79 per cent of people believe ‘the role of a brand has changed over the past five years’, with the top three roles of brands to ‘make the world a better place’ (40 per cent); ‘improve people’s health and wellbeing’ (38 per cent); and ‘create a more positive and helpful future’ (32 per cent).

VML co-authors and global intelligence directors Emma Chiu and Marie Stafford said: “As 2024 unfolds, an intentional slowdown shifts the pace for people and businesses after years of rapid acceleration. Community and connection at scale are essential to 2024, with 67 per cent of people agreeing that community is more important than one individual and 76 per cent believe that technology helps bring people together. With most consumers looking for surprise, mystery, awe, and wonder in their lives, new experiences that engage a wide spectrum of emotions are in demand. A profound and enriching year awaits!”

This year marks the 10 year of the Future 100. To celebrate this milestone and bring the report to life, VML is set to launch F.L.I.C (Future. Learning. Interactive. Connected.), a fully interactive AI avatar that can answer real-time questions about the report. Using Epic Metahuman, VML created a photo-realistic face for F.L.I.C and chose longstanding technology partner Odyssey to stream this Unreal Engine 5 based-app to users. The proprietary technology, which is exclusive to Odyssey, creates virtual personifications to give a face to AI, and allows clients to access and interact with F.L.I.C directly through their web-browser. F.L.I.C will be live on 6 February 2024 to coincide with live Future 100: 2024 launch events in London and New York.

VML global chief marketing officer Naomi Troni commented: “The Future 100 is one of our most anticipated reports, and this year is no exception. With humans craving ‘passion and togetherness’ – particularly as we see AI becoming more and more mainstream – the time is right for brands to tap into this shift and use technology to connect with humans on a deeper level as they opt for a more mindful approach for the year ahead.”  

The Future 100 covers 10 sectors including Culture, Technology, Travel & Hospitality, Brands & Marketing, Food & Drink, Beauty, Retail, Luxury, Health, and Innovation. Also included for the 10 anniversary is original consumer data from surveys in nine different countries, and interviews with experts across various fields to give their takes on the past decade and what to look out for in 2024.

Download the report: https://www.vml.com/insight/the-future-100-2024