June 30, 2008

Trendwatching.com on the "Free Love" trend: the War for Attention, and how the Net seems to drive pricing for 'content' towards zero Trendwatching just released a hot new report here. Some excerpts and comments: According to Trendwatching, the rise of FREE LOVE can be attributed to: "An all-out war for consumers' attention (make that saturated consumers), including various handout and sampling techniques. (*Gerd's comment: It's all about Attention now - Distribution is a given. Scarcity is dead. Friction is Fiction - well.... mostly!) The online world, with its amazing capacity to create, copy and distribute anything that's digital, with costs that are close to zero, forcing producers to come up with new business models/services, which are often purely ad-driven.(*Gerd's comment: I think a new kind of advertising - advertising 2.0 - will be crucial here, but I do think that's still 18-24 months off) The ever-decreasing cost of physical production makes it easier to offer more (nearly) free goods in the offline world too. In fact, many goods have actually become insanely cheap... The avalanche of free content created by attention-hungry members of GENERATION C. C2C marketplaces enabling consumers to swap instead of spend, making transactions cash-neutral. An emerging recycling culture. And all of the above fueling consumers' expectations to get online and offline stuff for free" I highly recommend reading Trendwatching's five manifestations of FREE LOVE: 'Any excuse to advertise', 'Courting saturated consumers', 'C2C', 'Swapping, not spending', and 'Less is more', which all incorporate one or more of the above drivers.

Gerd Leonhard

Keynote Speaker, Think-Tank Leader, Futurist, Author & Strategist, Idea Curator, some say Iconoclast | Heretic, CEO TheFuturesAgency, Visiting Prof FDC Brazil, Green Futurist

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