"I want to express the views and values of myself and my community, and have that uniqueness and creativity respected and celebrated"

Real Connections is rooted in previous trends of DIY, craftmanship and tradition, however the core focus has now shifted as priorities have changed.

Authenticity remains a key desire today, with the proliferation of fake news, concocted media personalities and exposed misdemeanours across the board. Just take the #metoo movement, which recently rocked the foundations of Hollywood and continues to cause shockwaves in the public and corporate worlds globally.

Our appreciation of physical involvement in product and process grows as a result of wanting to be closer to the things we consume; tales of happy farmers and age-old processes are no longer enough as technology allows us to enter new worlds, bringing new meaning to ‘origins’ and ‘craft’. We value the specialist knowledge we can acquire and the skills we can build via these new channels, within cultures that increasingly value connection over possession.

In this new paradigm, it becomes increasingly essential for brands to do one of two things: to live as people with human voices, drawing you into their world - or to strip right back to a functional offer which provides real value to consumers without distracting branding. Either way, honesty and single-mindedness are critical, as we look to products and services that know our needs and celebrate our uniqueness. As we realise the true potential of instant connectivity, the power increasingly lies with the small, even solo, players who can interact with consumers on a more personal level.


of consumers say that no retailer or service provider has ever communicated with them in a way that felt overly personalised

Accenture, 2018

What's driving this trend?

Multipolar World

Emerging and Developing markets’ GDPs are predicted to grow by 7.4% CAGR form 2018-2025, compared to 3.89% CAGR for developing countries.

Economic Empowerment of Women

In China, 55% of new internet businesses are founded by women.

Rise of Protectionism

The world’s top 60 economies have adopted more than 7,000 protectionist trade measures since the financial crisis of 2008.

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How likely do you think you are to be at risk from discrimination on the grounds of gender, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation etc?
“I am always looking for different cultural experiences and influences that will broaden my horizons“

What does a successful business look like in 2025?


With inspiration and innovation coming from a diverse range of identities and cultural influences, enabled by digital platforms


Products and services are designed for efficacy and use by all people, regardless of orientation, meaning that messages of inclusivity go beyond brand comms and packaging


Within markets rife with political and societal tension, food and drink brands have an opportunity to generate happiness and bring communities together