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10 Trends That Will Shape Our World in 2013

3 December, 2012


JWT report spotlights The Super Stress Era, Intelligent Objects and Going Private in Public, among other trends

NEW YORK — JWT, the world’s best-known marketing communications brand, has released its eighth annual forecast of key trends that will drive or significantly impact consumer mind-set and behavior in the year ahead.

According to the forecast, we’ll see everyday objects become smarter as technology gets embedded into everything from eyeglasses to socks to bikes, helping us to measure, navigate and augment the world. At the same time, our smartphones will become de facto fingerprints as they evolve into wallets, keys, health consultants and more—our identity all in one place. The forecast also puts a spotlight on health, with two separate trends examining the rising awareness around the impact of stress and happiness on well-being and how businesses are addressing it.

Other trends cited in the report include:

Everything Is Retail: Shopping is shifting from an activity that takes place in physical stores or online to a value exchange that can play out in multiple new and novel ways. Since almost anything can be a retail channel, thanks largely to mobile technology, brands must get increasingly creative in where and how they sell their goods.

Peer Power: As the peer-to-peer marketplace expands in size and scope—moving beyond goods to a wide range of services—it will increasingly upend major industries from hospitality and education to tourism and transportation.

Going Public in Private: In an era when living publicly is becoming the default, people are coming up with creative ways to carve out private spaces in their lives. Rather than rejecting today’s ubiquitous social media and sharing tools outright, we’re reaping all the benefits of maintaining a vibrant digital identity while gradually defining and managing a new notion of privacy for the 21st century.

“In our forecast of trends for the near future, new technology continues to take center stage, as we see major shifts tied to warp-speed developments in mobile, social and data technologies,” says Ann Mack, director of trendspotting for JWT. “Many of our trends reflect how businesses are driving, leveraging or counteracting technology’s omnipresence in our lives, and how consumers are responding to its pull.”

JWT’s “10 Trends for 2013” is the result of quantitative, qualitative and desk research conducted throughout the year and for this report. It includes input from nearly 70 JWT planners across more than two dozen markets and interviews with experts and influencers across sectors including technology, health and wellness, retail, media and academia.

"JWT recognizes the need to anticipate and actively participate in the changes that will fundamentally define the future of our business and our clients' businesses. Our annual trends forecast helps us to do just that," says Bob Jeffrey, Chairman and CEO, JWT Worldwide. "With our Worldmade outlook, we identify emerging global opportunities that we can leverage on behalf of our multinational roster of brands."

Among the trends JWT has forecast in past years: “Food as the New Eco-Issue” in 2012 (the environmental impact of our food choices is becoming a prominent concern); “De-Teching” in 2011 (more people logging off, at least temporarily, to get a break from technology); “Location-Based Everything” in 2010 (the explosion of location-based or -aware services that leverage data from mobile phones); “The Small Movement” in 2009 (the shift away from “bigger is better” in everything from homes to cars to stores); and “Radical Transparency” in 2008 (the “nothing to hide” ethos seen in some online behaviors).

The “10 Trends for 2013” report is available at

About JWT
JWT is the world’s best-known marketing communications brand. Headquartered in New York, JWT is a true global network with more than 200 offices in over 90 countries employing nearly 10,000 marketing professionals. JWT consistently ranks among the top agency networks in the world and continues a dominant presence in the industry by staying on the leading edge—from producing the first-ever TV commercial in 1939 to today, developing award-winning branded content. JWT embraces a “worldmade” philosophy, making things inspired by the world through blending technological innovation with international imagination. JWT has forged deep relationships with clients including Bayer, Bloomberg, Brand USA, Cadbury, Diageo, DTC, Ford, HSBC, Johnson & Johnson, Kellogg’s, Kimberly-Clark, Kraft, Macy’s, Nestlé, Nokia, Rolex, Royal Caribbean, Schick, Shell, Smirnoff, Unilever, Vodafone and many others. JWT’s parent company is WPP (NASDAQ: WPPGY). For more information, please visit and follow us @JWT_Worldwide.

About JWTIntelligence
JWTIntelligence is a center for provocative thinking that is a part of JWT. We make sense of the chaos in a world of hyper-abundant information and constant innovation—finding quality amid the quantity. We focus on identifying changes in the global zeitgeist so as to convert shifts into compelling opportunities for brands. We have done this on behalf of multinational clients across several categories including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, food, home and personal care. For more information, please visit and follow us @JWTIntelligence.


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