Landor's 2009 Trends Forecast: Market trends and
their impact on brands



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The troubled economy is on everyone's minds these days. It's affecting companies and consumers around the globe - and, by extension, brands. How will brands fare next year? Which will stand strong? Which will fail? And how will this impact our lives? Will we eat healthier foods, travel to India for medical treatment, choose more sustainable products? To find out, we interviewed 12 of Landor's experts on topics from consumer spending to real estatedevelopmenst in Dubai.

No one can predict the future, but 2009 is likely to be an eventful year in many ways. Here are a few of the trends we expect to see.

Allen Adamson on digital media
If there's any doubt in your mind that digital technology is critical to brand building just look at Barack Obama's campaign.The new president-elect use the web to engage the electorate and reach audiences where they were hanging out, whether on social media pages or Twitter, and so lowered the cost of building a brand. If 2008 saw an increase in the time and effort spent on digital technology, 2009 levels will be sky-high by comparison.
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Monica Au on post-Olympic China
China must maintain the momentum and goodwill generated by the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. The next major international event on Chinese soil will be the 2010 World Expo. Shanghai, the host city and other local governments are eager to outdo each other, relentlessly investing in infrastructure and architecture to signal progress and modernization to the outside world.
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Oliver Auroy on real estate development in Dubai
For years we in Dubai have heard, "Build, and they will come". But this could change in 2009. When the worldwide financial crisis hit the real estate market, investors started to have doubts. Dubai, which sprang from the desert to become the fastest-growing city in the world, built its success on high return for investment, thanks to favorable loan terms and the demands for real estate. You could get a mortgage, buy a property, and blindly trust a developer to deliver on his master plan - and then resell for twice as much. 
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Mich Bergesen on financial services
This year produced far more drama in the banking sector than we anticipated at the end of 2007, with the near collapse of the global financial system, the failure of several prominent firms and the intervention of governments around the world, many of whom have become reluctant part-owners of banks and insurance companies. We believe - and fervently hope - that the worst surprises are behind us and the strongest financial brands will survive.
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Martin Bishop on mergers and acquisitions
Merger and acquisition activity dropped sharply in 2008 and is likely to continue declining in 2009. Mergers and acquistions in 2007 totalled a record $4.4 trillion, according to Paul Parker of Barclays Capital. But the numbers for 2008 are expected to hit only $2.7 trillion - a drop of almost 40 percent - and some estimate no more than $2 trillion in M&A deals for 2009.
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Richard Brandt and Patricia Verdolino on product and package design
The economy is bringing about a shift in consumer and market behavior that will drive packaging trends in 2009 and beyond. The consumer brands that are agile enough to adapt will be better equipped to weather this downturn.
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Luke Mansfield on technology
Expect 2009 to herald the next generation of user-friendly technology. After years of emphasis on increased functionality and power, the focus shifted in 2008 to making technology more intuitive. Nintendo's Wii, Apple's iPod Touch, Sky+, and TiVo are all good examples of this. Expect more tech companies to follow suit.
To read more download the report here

Russ Meyer on sustainability
As consumers look to curtail spending, intense interest in green products and services will soften. We saw hints of this in the United States when we conducted the 2008 ImagePower® Green Brands Survey. I believe this trend will continue and even gain momentum globally as a consequence of the economic downturn.
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Susan Nelson on consumer spending
The level of concern and nervousness around spending that has emerged in the past few months is rare. We've seen brand growth toward "maastige" - prestige for the masses - reversed. Formerly healthy luxury brands are experiencing declines, and Walmart is the only retailer forecasting a strong holiday season. Compounding this situation is a growing consumer rage towards corporate bailouts, encouraging people to cling even tighter to their wallets. The catharsis that many are experiencing around a new government in Washington isn't translating into a willingness to spend. Consumers are emotional about both the realities of our current economy and the total uncertainty surrounding 2009.
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Lulu Raghavan on tourism in India
In spite of the recent attacks in Mumbai, we expect that India will continue to rise in esteem as a destination for medical tourism. People around the world will become increasingly aware of and drawn to India's top-notch doctors, personalized health care, and significantly lower costs for procedures from routine kidney transplants to in vitro fertilization. India's reputation as a spiritual hub and the home of highly revered philosophies such as Vedanta, ayurveda, and yoga will lure more tourists looking for a little piece of heaven in this overstressed world.
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Luc Speiser on healthy eating
Obesity is, and will probably remain, a key health issue. Consumers are more determined than ever to improve their health, yet obesity rates continue to rise.
To read more download the report here

Trevor Wade is director of digital marketing for Landor Associates and editor of Landor's trends forecast. Her most recent article "Satisfying consumers' desire for green," is available on Landor.com.


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Trevor Wade
Director of Digital Marketing, Landor Associates
Landor Associates, San Francisco
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