Creativity Theory
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Creativity Theory
Inspiration and fuel for possible action, business & creation.
Curated by Bart Jenezon
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Scooped by Bart Jenezon!'s November 2012 Trend Briefing covering the consumer trend "PRESUMERS"'s November 2012 Trend Briefing covering the consumer trend "PRESUMERS" | Creativity Theory |

In today’s EXPECTATION ECONOMY, consumers want the best, they want it now and first, and they want real, human connection, too.
In fact, they demand all that. Thanks to crowdsourcing platforms and new manufacturing technologies that are finally tipping into the mainstream (and a cult of entrepreneurialism at large), consumers are increasingly PRESUMERS; able to satisfy those demands through engagement with products and services pre-launch*.

Whether it's all about the perfect product, or the excitement of being a passionate supporter, PRESUMERS love to get involved with, push, fund, and promote products and services before they are realized.

* Obviously consumer involvement in products and services pre-launch has been building for years. Think co-creation / CUSTOMER-MADE which is still an active trend. But a consumer engaging in co-creation is often looking to showcase his or her own design or marketing talent, while PRESUMERS are primarily about getting what they want – ideally a great product AND an amazing STATUS STORY – by getting involved early.

So why will PRESUMERS be more numerous, more relevant, more active, and more powerful in the coming years? Here are five drivers turning consumers into PRESUMERS:

More, faster, better, special, now

Consumers in developed economies face choice-saturation. Their response? Worshipping the cult of NEWISM, with its (legitimate) promise of newer, more, better, special, faster and so on.

The ultimate in NEWISM? Consuming in the future tense. No wonder PRESUMERS are coming together around pre-launch products or services they love: by helping to make a product become a reality through funding and feedbacking and supporting, they will be the first to have it – preferably with added perks – when it is finally realized. It doesn't get more 'newer' or 'FIRSTISM' than that.

Great story, great status

Status has always been THE driver deep at the heart of all consumer behavior. When PRESUMERS connect with a pre-launch product or service, and support that project towards launch, it makes for a great STATUS STORY to tell, tweet, post, and otherwise share.

So, PRESUMING puts consumers one step ahead: not only the status of having the right product, but also the status of having been involved pre-launch.

Come together, right now

STATUS STORIES are even more potent if they’re not simply about a great product or service, but about a broader movement or cause that the consumer believes in, providing a sense of belonging that goes beyond the thrill of possession.

Now, many PRESUMERS are passionate about the products they support, which is why Kickstarter (for example) can claim that a product idea is eight times more likely to be fully funded on Kickstarter than sold and successfully launched through a US corporation.

It also helps explain how US-based Razoo, an early crowdfunding platform focused on non-profits, announced in August 2012 that it had hit USD 100 million raised for projects it hosted on the site.

4. OFF = ON
Online is offline is online...

Consumers LOVE online because when it comes to online consumption, they can act (participate, talk, create, adjust) to get what they want. Now, they expect the same from 'offline' consumption.

The pre-launch engagement that defines PRESUMING facilitates that kind of dialogue. PRESUMERS don’t just pre-buy: they also buy into a two-way relationship in which they get to express their desires, and brands get valuable, early feedback.

And thanks to the 2012 Jumpstart our Business Startups (JOBS) Act – US legislation that eases several federal financial regulations, and for the first time allows unaccredited small investors / consumers to buy equity in startups – PRESUMERS in the US can in the near future purchase equity in the projects they support. That’s how quite a few PRESUMERS will actually become CUSTOWNERS, too. How big could this get? Well, if US citizens would invest one tenth of what they gamble each year, that would equate to USD 55 billion (Source: Fundable, September 2012) ;-) Other countries to follow soon?

Disrupted funding, making and selling

A platform for PRESUMERS has been building steadily in the biz world, thanks to the popularity of crowdfunding* and the MAKE IT YOURSELF movement, and to the cult of entrepreneurialism at large.

First, some crowdfunding stats:

By April 2012, there were 452 crowdfunding platforms operating globally, up from 100 in 2007 (Source: Massolution/The Economist, May 2012).
In 2009, crowdfunded platforms raised a total of USD 530 million. In 2011 that figure was USD 1.4 billion. This year, that’s on track to double to USD 2.8 billion (Source: Massolution/The Economist, May 2012).
Between launch in 2009 and February 2012, Kickstarter had no USD 1 million projects. Now, twelve projects have raised more than USD 1 million.

* Now, we need to talk INTENT here, too: while PRESUMERS is about brands/business stating their plans for new products and consumers responding, INTENT is about consumers stating their desires or purchasing intentions, and brands responding. You can think of INTENT and PRESUMERS as two sides of the same coin: brands and customers talking to each other before products and services are launched.

On to MAKE IT YOURSELF, and rampant entrepreneurialism: first of all, there's a new generation of small-time makers who are using technologies such as 3D printing to manufacture products, that just a few years ago, could only roll off factory lines.

The cost of an industrial printer has fallen dramatically, from around USD 800,000 in 1999, to around USD 15,000 today (Source: The Economist, September 2012). Home versions now cost around USD 1,000 (Source: The Economist, September 2012). Meanwhile, research firm Wohlers Associates says the market for 3D printed products is currently worth USD 1.3 billion a year; they estimate it will rise to USD 3.1 billion by 2016, and USD 5.2 billion by 2020. A sign of the times? In October leading 3D printing platform Shapeways – which provides 3D printing services to its community of designers and PRESUMERS – opened its Factory of the Future in Long Island City, New York. The 25,000 square foot site will host 30 to 50 3D printers, and will have capacity to print 3 to 5 million objects annually.

Add to this the by now countless number of online entrepreneurs and innovators (TEENPRENEURS anyone?), and you're looking at a true avalanche of small and big initiatives that will forever look for funding from 'the people', while appealing to those who want the chance to connect with a 'special' product before launch. Indeed, not only do makers allow PRESUMERS to connect with that special product, they let them tailor it to their individual specifications. How's that for the Long Tail of physical objects? ;-)

So who is PRESUMING?

As you’ll see in the examples below, PRESUMERS are drawn from all over the world and they’re passionate about all kinds of products and services.

But it’s still possible to draw up a bit of a profile, based on September 2012 data on Kickstarter users by Quantcast:

Kickstarter users are predominantly (62%) male.
50% are between 18 and 34, and 20% are between 34 to 44.
Almost half (48%) are college educated. That’s against 30.4% of Americans aged over 25 having a college degree (Source: US Census Bureau, February 2012).
45% earn more than USD 50,000 a year.
In other words, PRESUMERS are mainstream consumers. If a little better educated than usual ;-)

Remember, more consumers are becoming PRESUMERS every day: we'll keep tracking the evolution of the PRESUMER profile, and you should too!

Inspired by Trendwatching

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Five Rules to Create Great Content for Your Newsletter, Blog, and Social Media

Five Rules to Create Great Content for Your Newsletter, Blog, and Social Media | Creativity Theory |
Small business owners are normally pushed for time, wearing many different hats including CEO and tea-maker! So, although you know that you should be sending a newsletter, blogging, writing guest a...
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The 40 best free fonts for designers | Creative Bloq

The 40 best free fonts for designers | Creative Bloq | Creativity Theory |
Get your hands on the best free fonts, from retro inspired type to slap-you-in-the-face slab serifs!
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The Six Networking Secrets Of Silicon Valley's Superconnector - Forbes

The Six Networking Secrets Of Silicon Valley's Superconnector - Forbes | Creativity Theory |

If you don’t have a bit of the extrovert in you, some of these tips will be useless advice, and I’m with those of you who’d rather not splash their thoughts and opinions so publicly. Read ‘em and learn:

1. Talk about something besides your resume. We all get tired of giving—and hearing—the 30-second elevator pitch. At conferences, Pishevar deliberately avoids the standard questions. “You see it all the time: what do you do, what’s your career?” he says, “rather than having an authentic conversation about ‘Who are you?’ and ‘What do you believe in?’”

2. Care about something big. This one helps a lot with having something to talk about besides your resume. Last year Pishevar got on a plane with Sean Penn and went to Egypt to see the Arab Spring firsthand. He volunteers his time with charity: water, and has been to Rwanda and Ethiopia with Invisible Children.

Daniel Ek, founder of Spotify, told me that while on a trip to Brazil with several friends over New Year’s, Shervin was walking next to him while writing something on his iphone. “Three minutes later my phone vibrates and I got a notification about a Twitter message from Shervin,” Ek told me via e-mail. “Turns out he practically wrote an essay about the Arab Spring as we walked out of the bar. It’s fascinating that he was thinking about the Arab Spring whilst I mostly wanted to go to bed and sleep.”

Pishevar also really sees how his work connects to the big picture. “I do see technology as a liberating force,” he says. “I believe in entrepreneurship as a movement.”

3. Keep in touch. This one’s simple: Pishevar constantly Tweets, e-mails, and when in cities where his contacts live, lets them know makes time to see them in person. It’s pretty straightforward that regular contact keeps a relationship strong.

An analysis of Shervin's Tweets for the last week (Nov. 1-8), compared to other prominent tech Twitter users. Note that Shervin says "Thanks-Thank-Thank you" more than anyone else.

4. Relentless follow-up. When he doesn’t know someone and wants to, Pishevar just calls upon his friends. Travis Kalanick, founder of Uber, was doing its funding round late last year ands a lot of firms wanted in on the deal. I didn’t really know Shervin… [but] I was getting e-mails from him and intros from everybody he knows. What happened was I met with him because I had no choice.”

5. Cut loose. Nobody likes somebody who is perfect. So have a sense of humor. Be silly. “Shervin’s the kind of guy who shaves the name of his companies into his head,” points out Dan Rosensweig, president and CEO of Chegg. Another classic scene: Pishevar dancing with the kids at a Bay Area Boys and Girls Club fundraiser.

Shervin Pishevar@shervin
Your true net worth is your network of good that you have spread in your life. Never leave anything worse than you found it. Make it better.

6. Don’t compartmentalize your life. Pishevar shares personal information with just about everyone he meets. He told me that his daughter had her own tech invention, and that he was taking her to Fashion Week for her birthday, and he sent an e-mail when his nephew had an injury to his eye. He claims this kind of openness keeps life simpler. “If you’re managing three or four aspects of your life instead of one thing,” says Pishevar, “it makes life a lot more complex.”

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New-Juventus-Kit-11-12-Away.jpg (543x586 pixels)

New-Juventus-Kit-11-12-Away.jpg (543x586 pixels) | Creativity Theory |
Might buy Juventus alternate pink kit with Pirlo on back look sexy
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