Take a fascinating journey into the future as Stylus experts, alongside industry thought-leaders and commentators, unpack tomorrow’s trends and unearth bold new opportunities. Check back every Tuesday for new episodes.
Episode 34: How Soil Can Save the World
While it's not something that gets a great deal of attention, soil really does have the potential to halt the climate crisis. Christian Ward talks to farmer, coder and physicist Abby Rose, and Stylus' head of Food & Beverage, Travel & Hospitality Mandy Saven about the little-discussed key to our planet's survival, and what we can do as businesses and consumers to help.
Episode 33: Brands as Change Leaders: Decoded Future Panel
Companies who place purpose at the heart of their brand are reaping the rewards of loyal customers as well as piece of mind. In an inspiring panel recorded live from Decoded Future New York, Christian Ward talks to the brands leading the way in terms of sustainability and social impact - Ben & Jerry's, Airbnb, Patagonia and Vita Coco. They share their lessons learned and insights behind what it means to effect change.
Episode 32: The Supercharged Store: In-Conversation @ Decoded Future
A new type of omni-intelligent technology is bridging the gap between e-commerce and in-store shopping. In a conversation from Decoded Future New York, Stylus' head of Retail Katie Baron talks to co-founder and CEO of Neighborhood Goods Matt Alexander about the retailers powering immersive, seductive self-made shopping environments.
Episode 31: How E-Waste Will Create the Next Gold Rush
As natural resources run out the commercial opportunities of waste as a readily-available alternative are being unlocked by innovative businesses like Lylie's, which creates fine jewellery out of gold salvaged from e-waste. Christian Ward talks to founder Eliza Walter and Stylus contributing editor Sioban Imms about the realities of creating covetable products with a conscience, making things to be un-made and responsibility as an expectation.
Episode 30: Inclusivity Matters: How Brands Can Get It Right
How can brands generate authentic experiences for hyper-diverse audiences? Christian Ward discusses the important issues around inclusivity and connecting with Muslim women with Kate Johnson, Stylus' senior editor of Consumer Attitudes & Technology and Nafisa Bakkar, co-founder of Amaliah - a content platform dedicated to amplifying the voices of Muslim women.
Episode 29: Can Design Weeks Ever be Sustainable?
Coinciding with the global climate strike, London’s latest Design Festival referenced sustainability as one its key themes - but did its actions really measure up? Christian Ward talks to Stylus’ Senior Product Design editor Dewi Pinatih and designer, curator and editor of London Design Guide Max Fraser about the feasibility and future of design weeks in a time of climate crisis.
Episode 28: How Brands Can Keep Up with Online Culture
This week we take a look at the state of online culture and the trends that brands should be paying the most attention to, including meme mechanics, the gaming opportunity and trolling as an engagement strategy. Christian Ward talks to Chris McCrudden, senior planner at Edelman and Julia Errens, Stylus' Media & Marketing editor, about the ever-evolving cultural conversation and how brands can ever hope to keep up.
Episode 27: Why Artifice, Illusion and Personal Avatars Will Electrify Future Retail
How can brands tap into the consumer desire for artifice and illusion, and how does this desire marry with the pursuit of authenticity? Christian Ward talks to head of strategy at BBH Ben Shaw and Katie Baron, Stylus' head of Retail about the opportunities of immersive mixed realities, the rise of AI avatars and the symbiotic relationship between retail and gaming.
Episode 26: Scent for Wellbeing: Five Future Fragrance Trends
Thanks to leaps in neuroscience and cognitive understanding, scent is moving beyond the cosmetic to something that can augment our physical and mental health. Christian Ward talks to fragrance specialist Lizzie Ostrom (AKA Odette Toilette) and Stylus' senior Beauty editor Lisa Payne about the five trends set to change the face of fragrance.
Episode 25: The Future of Mixed-Reality
What will happen when digital content escapes the confines of the 2D screens of today and creates an interactive layer all around us? Christian Ward talks to spatial computing pioneer (and founder of argodesign) Mark Rolston, and Stylus' Consumer Attitudes and Technology senior editor Stephen Graves, about how brands can unlock the creativity needed for a world where every instance is an opportunity to connect with their consumer.
Episode 24: Beyond Body Positivity: Why Brands Need to Shape Inclusive Representation
The plus-size market is worth $21 billion globally – and yet most brands are still missing the mark when it comes to truly inclusive body representation. Christian Ward talks to author and editor Bethany Rutter and Stylus' Media & Marketing editor Julia Errens about the necessity of cultural exposure, who gets to have a narrative and how we can move from positivity to inclusivity.
Episode 23: How Gen Z Will Change Food Culture
Sober-curious, flexitarian, keto or vegan, Gen Z are pushing the boundaries as never before when it comes to their diets. Christian Ward talks to flavour consultant and Masterchef champion Steven Wallis and Stylus' head of Food, Beverage, Travel & Hospitality Mandy Saven about the impact this generation will have on the future of food, what brands can do to get ahead and what, exactly, is moon milk.
Episode 22: Why We Need to Talk About The Menopause
By 2020 more than 50 million US women will be 51 or older, the average age of the menopause, and yet this market remains underserved by mainstream brands – why? Christian Ward talks to founder of MegsMenopause, Meg Mathews and Lisa Payne, Stylus' senior Beauty editor about why all brands need to be aware of the needs and concerns of older consumers, and the opportunities for engagement in this traditionally underserved market.
Episode 21: Luxury For All: How Sharing will Shape the Future
How can luxury brands adapt to increasing consumer desire to rent rather than own products, and express their identities in more fluid and personalised ways? Stylus' Tessa Mansfield talks to Henrietta Thompson, co-founder of luxury design rental platform Harth, and Ella McDougal, Stylus' Product Design researcher about the practical need for temporary things, living more lightly and the end of ownership.
Episode 20: Fashion's Digital Future
Will we soon live in a world where people are willing to pay for clothes that only exist in digital form? Christian Ward talks to Kerry Murphy, founder of digital fashion house The Fabricant, and Lianne Piroddi, Stylus' assistant Fashion editor about virtual value, the notion of ownership and the reality of fashion's digital future.
Episode 19: Controversy, Craft and Crucibles of Innovation: Key Trends from Cannes Lions 2019
Now in its 66th year, the Cannes Lions festival of creativity brings together creatives and storytellers from across advertising and marketing for a week of thought-leadership and networking. Fresh from the festival, Stylus' Consumer Attitudes and Technology senior editor, Stephen Graves, and Havas Group's chief insights and analytics officer, Maria Garrido, talk to Christian Ward about the controversy surrounding this year's event, the growing responsibilities of the industry and what emerging markets can teach us about innovation.
Episode 18: How CBD Is Fuelling the Anxiety Economy
CBD has burst onto the consumer scene, promising to soothe nerves, erase insomnia and even improve your sex life – but what is it and how can brands harness its moment? Christian Ward talks to Stylus' US trends reporter and resident CBD expert, Emilia Morano-Williams, and Marisa Schwab, co-founder of CBD wellness brand The Chillery about the hype, the misconceptions and the opportunities of this much-discussed compound.
Episode 17: Is there a Future For Packaging?
Busy lifestyles, evolving shopping habits and consumer demand for sustainable solutions are throwing up countless challenges for packaging design. Christian Ward talks to luxury packaging consultant, Vincent Villeger, and Stylus' Product Design senior editor, Dewi Pinatih, about how brands can balance function, brand story and sustainability.
Episode 16: The Traveller's Guide to Sustainability: Decoded Future Panel
As demand for sustainable travel continues to snowball, travel and hospitality brands are creating inventive eco-concepts that offer guests increased flexibility and comfort. In a panel from Stylus' Decoded Future event in London, journalist Deborah Cicurel talks to Stylus' head of Food & Beverage, Travel & Hospitality, Mandy Saven, founder of Bouteco, Juliet Kinsman and Aaron Hocking, managing director EMEA of Intrepid Group about how brands can win in this space.
Episode 15: What Makes Brands and Broadcasters Friends With Benefits?
The co-mingling of retail and media is an essential sweet spot for brands right now. Christian Ward talks to broadcaster, journalist and producer of The Collector's House (Matches Fashion's podcast) Danielle Radojcin, and Stylus' head of Retail Katie Baron about how to harness tech's audio moment, the prestige of creating a cultural archive and finding your niche.
Episode 14: What Our Stuff Says About Us
In an age of 'peak stuff', can we become more mindful of our consumption by measuring the things that we touch? Christian Ward talks to author and ethnographer Paula Zuccotti and Stylus' Consumer Attitudes and Technology researcher Elspeth Taylor about looking beyond demographics to engage with consumers on a deeper level.
Episode 13: Extinction Rebellion: How to Harness the Momentum
A more responsible outlook is now imperative for business and consumers alike. Christian Ward talks to Sara Arnold, Extinction Rebellion coordinator and founder of Higher.Studio, and Stylus’ director of Consumer Product Emily Gordon-Smith about activism, the future of consumption and why we need unprecedented mobilisation to save the world.
Episode 12: How to Create Passionate Brand Ambassadors
Is there still value in engaging with influencers? Are the days of celeb-endorsements over? And how do you turn your own employees into effective advocates? Christian Ward gets the answers to these questions and more from branding expert Professor Jonathan Wilson and Stylus’ Media & Marketing editor Julia Errens.
Episode 11: Capturing Creative Magic: Key Trends from Milan Design Week
The leading event on the international design calendar, Milan Design Week is the biggest trade fair of its kind in the world. Christian Ward talks to festival regulars Caroline Jacob, CMF expert at Seymourpowell and Stylus’ senior Product Design editor Dewi Pinatih about the installations and brands that stood out this year, and how to create a truly memorable (and Instagramable) brand experience.
Episode 10: Why Brands Need to Put People First
In an age where many brands are disconnected from their customers, how can they win back that valuable connection? Christian Ward talks to author, speaker and head of innovation at Zenith Tom Goodwin – and our Media & Marketing editor Julia Errens – about the new metrics that matter, what advertising can learn from music, and why brands need to listen to their hearts.
Episode 9: How Indie Brands are Disrupting the Beauty Industry
The beauty landscape is being upended by the demands of a new generation of savvy consumers – we call them the Skintellectuals. Christian Ward talks to the co-founders of Be For Beauty Mark Curry and Colette Newberry, and Stylus’ senior Beauty editor Lisa Payne, about how to engage consumers in an era of information parity, and the lessons to take away from this fast industry in flux.
Episode 8: Beyond the Comfort Zone: Key Trends from SXSW
SXSW’s reputation as a barometer of tech culture has relevance for any brand, business or individual interested in the future of our digital lives. In this episode Christian Ward talks to festival regulars Neil Davidson CEO of HeyHuman, and Stylus’ Media & Marketing editor Julia Errens, about the key trends from this year.
Episode 7: Creating Designs for Life
How can we teach kids the skills they’ll need for jobs that don’t exist yet? Christian Ward talks to CEO of Tech Will Save Us Bethany Koby, and Stylus’ Product Design senior editor Dewi Pinatih, about the toys that are prepping Gen Alpha for their unknown future, and how thoughtful design can forge long-term relationships with products.
Episode 6: The Beauty of Self-Care
As the boundaries between health and beauty break down, brands and consumers will prioritise beauty from the inside out in 2019. Christian Ward talks to managing director of Rituals Penny Grivea, and Stylus’ senior Beauty editor Lisa Payne, about the rise of wellness and what's next for this booming sector.
Episode 5: Why Creatives are Quitting Our Cities
Rural areas, suburbs and exurbs are set to become the crucible for a new wave of creativity and development. Christian Ward talks to author and ethnographer Karen Rosenkranz, and Stylus’ Consumer Attitudes & Technology senior editor Stephen Graves, about the impact and opportunities of this creative migration.
Episode 4: Surviving the Publishing Apocalypse
How can books win the attention of today’s distracted consumer? Christian Ward talks to author and journalist Molly Flatt, and Stylus’ Media & Marketing editor Julia Errens, about the benefits of human curation and keeping things slow, the role for iteration in publishing, and books as a tailor-made panacea for our times.
Episode 3: Democratising Flavour
2019 will see the complexity of flavour enter the everyday sphere, moving further away from ‘foodie elitism’. Christian Ward talks to the Tate Museum’s head of coffee Thomas Haigh, and Stylus’ acting head of Food, Beverage & Hospitality Anna Masing, about democratisation and ethics at the table.
Episode 2: Why Physical Retail is Getting Real
2019 will be the year successful brands prove they have an eye on more than just a financial prize. Christian Ward talks to senior retail project director Craig White, and Stylus’ head of Retail Katie Baron, about collaboration, wildcard retail and what club culture can teach us about creating cutting-edge retail destinations.
Episode 1: How Fashion is Mainstreaming Sustainability
2019 will be the year that sustainability truly goes mainstream in the fashion industry. Christian Ward talks to author Tamsin Blanchard, and Stylus’ director of Consumer Product Emily Gordon-Smith, about who is driving the change, and how brands and retailers can keep apace.