Trends are born amid socio-cultural changes. While the world is experiencing huge changes such as Covid-19, reopening, and Economic Downturn, Innocean has derived 5 keywords from this. The pandemic has now naturally permeated our lives, the indoor mask rules have been lifted, the end of social distancing has brought many changes, and people are trying to survive wisely even in the economic recession. Here are the trending keywords of the year created by them.
People are no longer as afraid of infectious diseases as they used to be. In addition, ‘non-face-to-face’ has permeated deeply into daily life, and online classes and work from home have become common. While it has caused a lot of confusion, that doesn’t mean the pandemic has brought only bad things to us. It presented a lifestyle that we could not even imagine, and provided an opportunity to discover new values in it. The Innocean Insight Strategy Headquarters has defined this phenomenon as the ‘second earth life’.
One of them is that as people spend less time socially and more, they have more time to look into themselves. For example, the MBTI personality test is going viral again, and platforms such as ‘Class 101’ have emerged where people can enjoy hobbies by themselves at an affordable cost. In addition, as offline meetings become online, the scope of human relationships centered on family, friends, and work is gradually expanding to relationships centered on interests and tastes that transcend gender, nationality, and occupation.
As our boundary narrowed, we spent more time in neighborhoods such as restaurants or parks near our homes than in the city center. This revealed the charm of local commercial districts and greatly increased second-hand trading platforms such as Carrot Market and Lightening Market.
In addition, although it was forced to prevent the spread of infection, work from home and workcation - a compound word of work and vacation - are emerging as one of the great alternatives to revitalize small cities that are in danger of extinction. Even though social distancing has been lifted, many IT companies are encouraging workation, and some local governments such as Busan, Gangwon, and Jeonnam are building workation infrastructure to attract workers.
It is true that ‘hot spots’ usually refer to specific neighborhoods such as Seongsu-dong or Samgakji, famous coffee shops, restaurants, and shopping malls. But these days, a new category called ‘pop-up store’ has been created in hot spots. Pop-up stores aren’t new, but they operate quite differently these days. It is no longer a space like a newsstand that distributes free samples for sales promotion, but has transformed into a space that provides a more fun and colorful experience centered on the values that the brand is aiming for.
Also, ‘Palisade House’ in Ikseon-dong, Seoul, ‘Simmons Grocery Store’ located in Cheongdam-dong and Haeundae, Busan, and ‘Dior Seongsu’ in Seongsu-dong are famous pop-up stores. Among them, Palisade House, which Hyundai Motor Company opened last year, offered new inspiration to visitors by creating an independent space where they could directly or indirectly experience the premium value of Palisade vehicles. Also, Simmons Grocery Store opens a digital art exhibition that shows the brand’s direction and sells goods. Dior Seongsu introduces limited edition products that can only be purchased there along with the new season collection.
These pop-up stores are seen as barometers of trends where you can experience firsthand how the world is changing and what is emerging. These pop-up stores also cater to the need for offline experiences that the pandemic has hampered. However, after a set period of time, these pop-up stores are no longer available. It’s like a mirage, and it has rare value like a limited edition product. That’s why over-eager customers wait a long time for those stores to open for experiences that only these places can offer.
Innocean expects more brands to open pop-up stores in the future, and the form of pop-up stores will diversify as digital connectivity is emphasized.
As luxury brands jump into the food and beverage (F&B) business, the world of gastronomy is expanding. Many luxury brands, such as Louis Vuitton and Gucci, operate gourmet restaurants and coffee shops. Instead of simply opening a famous coffee shop or restaurant franchise in the store, the brand directly participates in the operation, develops the menu, and reorganizes the space by interweaving BI and uniquely colored tableware, props, and products with the interior.
What’s interesting is that these luxury brand F&B stores are becoming playgrounds for the MZ generation who want to show off their taste while chasing the hip trend. Although the price range is quite high as it is a space for luxury brands, most stores are quickly being booked up. For example, the tables at Gucci Osteria da Massimo Bottura, an Italian restaurant opened by Gucci in Hannam-dong, Seoul in March 2022, received so much attention that reservations for the next month got booked up within 20 minutes of opening.
It is true that luxury brands have conducted conservative marketing focusing on VIP customers. However, with the lifting of social distancing, offline cultural spending has increased significantly, and luxury brands are attempting offline spaces that focus on maximizing the brand experience to increase contact with consumers of various generations.
From clothes, accessories, perfumes, furniture, props, and now expanded to gourmet food, these F&B stores not only provide new experiences, but also increase brand preference. As more luxury brands jump into the F&B business, from Gucci to Hermès, the themes and categories of gastronomic experiences will become more diversified.
It should be noted that not only self-improvement hobbies such as reading, studying, and exercising, but also the trivial aspects of daily life are all included in the god-like life routine. The goal is not to set and achieve grandiose plans such as ‘reading 100 books in a year’ or ‘getting a perfect score on the TOEIC,’ but to continue to do small things and lead a better life.
The essence of Living god-like life is to overcome helplessness or depression and gain strength to live by doing very small things in everyday life and gaining a sense of accomplishment through them. A true ‘god-like life’ is not trying to meet social standards, but focusing on your attitude towards life, considering living a happier day today as an improvement.
So far, we have looked at five trend keywords: ‘Second Earth Life’, ‘Pop Place’, ‘Discovering Gourmet’, ‘Living god-like life’ and ‘What For?’. According to the foreword of 〈Friendly trend gossips 2023〉, a book published by Innocean, “trends are not born in a single day, but permeate daily life and naturally emerge as a social phenomenon, so all outcomes can be meaningful milestones”. Those who build their own lifestyle based on trend insights will be able to spend a meaningful and brilliant 2023.
HMG Journal Operation Teamgroup@hyundai.com
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