Design is a trend itself

khdesign from Offenbach hosts international design event
In early November khdesign of Germany, along with their international 
GDS partners from Asia and the USA presented a two-day design event hosted by Zukunftsinstitut Kelkheim at the Heyne-Factory in Offenbach. Titled Imagine: The Future of Your Brand, the event offered a global perspective on mega trends that will shape the world in the next decades. More than 30 experts from the field of marketing, product development, product management and design came together to discuss megatrends 
such as Globalization, Digitalization and Ageing.
Opening the program, Knut Hartmann, founder and CEO of khdesign, explained that, in addition to the megatrends that were identified, “Design 
is a trend itself,” he said.
Kasim Mohamed, consultant and speaker from the Zukunftsinstitut, agreed. Kasim presented six megatrends chosen by participants as topics to be discussed during the event. To meet the trend of Individualism, which manifests itself in many ways including extended families, single house-holds, diverse lifestyles and a change in religious and traditional values, “products as well as their packaging design are getting more and more personalized.” Another Megatrend, societal Ageing, shows how an older population can influence the market. “Elderly people tend to feel younger than people the same age did some years ago.” Therefore products that are labeled “for seniors“ are not well received.
Klaus Vogell, Excecutive Assistant Business Development at GS1 Germany, focused on how Megatrends affect the work of GS1 and how these trends can be both a challenge and an opportunity for worldwide cooperation.
Jennifer Tsai, CEO of Proad Identity from Taipei, spoke about recent developments in the Asian market, which show a trend towards more sustainability. Packaging, particularly, will use less material and bio-degradablility. She also spoke about the increase in smaller package sizes which are a reaction to the increasing number of single households.
From the United States, Christopher Bailey, founder and CEO of Bailey Brand Consulting, took a different approach. He focused on target groups especially “baby boomers,” the age group born between 1946 and 1964 and their increased buying power. Interestingly, Bailey noted that only ten to twenty percent of the marketing budgets spent by companies are used to attract consumers in this age group.
Day Two of the event was all about innovative brand building. Using the concepts of megatrends, marketing directors, designers, product managers and creative directors from a variety of countries and industries gave free rein to their creativity and developed some very innovative ideas for products that will help meet the demands of these megatrends. In the end the group voted for the three winning ideas. These ideas will be developed by the GDS partner agencies and presented at the next GDS Event in October 2011 in Taipei.