What are food trends?
Trends are long-term movements that bring about behavioural change in multiple disciplines, whereas fads or crazes are short-term fireworks which can later grow into trends.
Here's how not to confuse the two:
- Has long term opportunities which bring about behavioural change eg. Healthier eating
- Affects lots of different industries e.g increased mobile usage
- Gradual, long-term growth
- Can shape a brand’s marketing plan, vision, values or products
A FAD OR CRAZE
- Increases brand awareness and mental availability
- Demonstrate timely ‘on the pulse’ nature of brand e.g vegan meringues
- Attracts new audience
- Content dates quickly
WHY DOES IT MATTER?
Before a brand jumps on the bandwagon or tries to create reactive 'trend' content for something that is actually a fad, they should ask themselves three questions:
- Is this content truly relevant to your audience?
- Is it relevant to your brand and core values?
- What will you achieve?
If you're dealing with a craze, brands need to respond quickly before the next craze comes along and they look outdated. Consumers get over unicorn lattes very quickly.
However if consumer behaviour changes as part of a larger trend, then brands need to look at how they absorb these changes on a macro level. Can you reduce sugar in your product to address the health awareness trend? Can you make your product more accessible to meet the time-poor trend? Are you avoiding single-use plastic? Brands that fail to take notice and respond to this macro trends will soon feel the backlash.
Brands should have budget and resources set aside for long-term trend forecasting, and agile, immediate responses to a craze. But it has to be relevant, and it has to be real.