Today’s business landscape is continuously changing, with the introduction of industry-disrupting companies, tech unicorns, and private equity giants dominating markets. These companies are testing the waters in new markets, and figuring out how to navigate consumer and industry trends. One consumer trend is an increased demand for privacy. In a world with constant targeted ads and data breaches, consumers are increasingly aware of how their data is being used. As a result, lawmakers have increased data protection regulations through the Federal Trade Commission to match consumer sentiment. Data mining is still a hot button issue, and lawmakers and consumers are watching to see the extent of how it is being used.
Perhaps the most apparent example of data mining is Alphabet’s plan to build a ‘smart city.’ Alphabet, the parent company of Google, wants to collect data in a Toronto neighborhood to optimize how the city functions. The data collected would include energy use, traffic patterns, and building usage. Many Toronto residents oppose this plan due to privacy concerns. Other companies, such as Apple, have taken extra steps to protect their customers’ data. One example is Apple’s restriction on third parties’ ability to collect data on Apple users. Apple’s secure network is one of its competitive advantages that helps them attract customers.
Another consumer trend is corporate social responsibility. Companies today rely on good deeds and giving back to the community in order to receive positive PR. There have been countless examples of this in 2019. Amazon is a great example, as they are spending $700 million to retrain many employees to work in fields such as logistics coordination and software engineering. This training will allow employees to move up in Amazon’s corporate ranks, as well as build the skills necessary to launch successful careers outside of Amazon. Lego is another company that has taken steps toward corporate social responsibility. The Danish company started to use plant-based plastics instead of regular plastic in an attempt to be more eco-friendly. Lego has also promised to protect their employees by following fair labor practices. These are just two companies that have learned the importance of CSR in today’s market.
As industry landscapes change, businesses must adjust accordingly. When it comes to privacy, firms are raising concerns among consumers and lawmakers, and we are likely to see increased regulation and more consumer skepticism as time goes on. On the other hand, many companies have learned that doing good deeds is an excellent way to help boost sales.
For more information on 2019 trends and patterns, check out the Entrepreneur article listed below: