In New York’s 1930s most people found their life partner within walking distance of their childhood home. One-in-six found their partner in the same apartment block. That may seem remarkable but rarely do we go beyond the boundaries of our village. Humans have a tremendous desire for predictability. And as a system, this worked.
80 years later and along came the game changer. Swipe left or right, with just the scantiest of detail. Location still plays a role, but with more possibilities maybe it's easier now to be choosy. Why be concerned about relationships when it’s all about the connection? And, how much does it matter when there are alway more options to swipe tomorrow?
Consumer needs rarely change. But accessibility does - and at an astonishing rate. Technology and globalisation have brought everything closer. Intriguingly though, more choice doesn’t mean that we look closely at more options. It’s fast. 3-seconds to connect, 9 to engage and it’s game-on (or all-over) by 23- seconds.
This is one explanation for what is happening with media. Audiences are moving - attracted by new possibilities, trialling, testing and sometimes falling in love. But this isn’t a story of monogamy. It’s ok to stream and binge watch while still tuning in for The Voice and Masterchef.
Television continues to be the most influential of all media, although with little growth. TV remains the first choice for most people, accounting for 86.6% of all viewing. So it’s not going away anytime soon.
While the village may have changed shape, how to build marketplaces and brands hasn't. Brands are built in media and at the point of purchase. Media does now include digital but it's not enough to have a website and a few social media feeds. To succeed, brands must be seen in the right places and be fascinatingly enticing. Before you can influence people, you need to reach them.
So, if you were looking for a new LTR - would you try somewhere new or visit a favourite old haunt? (No need to say anything, we know… why wouldn’t you do both? Have your cake and eat it!)
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