"Status Lifestyles" Deemed Top Trend of 2007

Trendwatching.com, an Amsterdam-based independent trend firm, has released its 2007 Trend Report. Here's a look at the top trend of 2007.

In the end, when dealing with (and selling to) people, everything always comes back to status. In a traditional consumer society, he or she who consumes the most, the best, the coolest, the most expensive, the scarcest, or the most popular goods, will typically also 'gain' the most status.

However, expect 2007 to be the year in which many brands realize (if not grudgingly accept) that the 'old', mass-era status symbols, from the Audi Q7 to the De Beers Radiance collection, are no longer every consumers' wet dream. After all, as mature consumer societies are increasingly dominated by (physical) abundance, by saturation, by experiences, by virtual worlds, by individualism, by participation, by feelings of guilt and concern about the side-effects of unbridled consumption, status is to be had in many more ways than leading a somewhat dated lifestyle centered on hoarding as many branded, luxury goods as possible.

So in 2007, keep an eye out for:


Attractive to consumers driven by experiences, by entertainment, by discovery, by fighting boredom, who increasingly live a transient lifestyle, freeing themselves from the hassles of permanent ownership and possessions.

We dubbed these consumers TRANSUMERS in our November 2006 briefing, and there will be many more of them in 2007. The implications? An obsession with the here and now, an ever-shorter satisfaction span, and a lust to collect as many experiences and stories as possible, is undermining the perceived value (and thus status) of fixed goods and services.


Especially for younger consumers, participation is the new consumption. For these creatives, status comes from finding an appreciative audience (in much the same way as brands operate). No wonder that it's becoming increasingly important to hone one's creative skills. Status symbols, make way for STATUS SKILLS? Please re-read our October 2006 briefing on this topic, which contains plenty of examples of brands already serving this new market. Oh, and here's a recent spotting that further illustrates the concept: Nespresso's AAA Campus. What's going to be your participation strategy for 2007?


In a post-material world, all that's left to covet is.... other people? From networking sites to buddy lists to meetup.org to a boom in members-only clubs, social status 2.0 is all about who you connect to and who wants to connect to you, tribal-style. CONNECTING LIFESTYLES is actually a subset of ONLINE LIFESTYLES, which encompasses everything from status gained from the number of views for one's photos on Flickr, the real estate one owns in Second Life, to the good looks (and outfit) of one's avatar. For hands-on ideas, check out our YOUNIVERSAL BRANDING briefing, or, if you own a copy of our 2007 Trend Report, re-read the section on UBER OTHERS.


With the environment finally on the agenda of most powers that be, and millions of consumers now actively trying to greenify their lives, status from leading an eco-responsible lifestyle is both more readily available, and increasing in value. A substantial subset of consumers is already bestowing recognition and praise on Prius drivers while scorning SUV owners, and this will only accelerate as design-minded and branding-savvy eco-firms push to the forefront in 2007 (for examples, check out Springwise's top 10 eco & sustainability ideas). Make it green, make it chic, make it effortless, make it visible, and don't hesitate to point out your competitor's polluting alternatives.