Trends, they’re all around us from fashion, colours, design to technology and even behaviours.
We love them, when the latest new thing comes to market, early adopters jump in excited in the knowledge that they’re at the cutting edge, leaving everyone else lagging behind.
Whilst they can be useful to gain insight on what’s happening in the world, they also come with potential drawbacks.
You need to look no further than 2017 where seemingly every new website launched with colourful gradients and vector graphics inspired by Google’s Material Design.
Or in 2018 there's been a fundamental shift in the fashion industry where luxury brands have decided to remove any personality and create cookie cutter brand identities.
And this is a problem...
In today’s busy world of endless choice and little time, one of the most valuable roles design can play is to differentiate, stand out is king in helping businesses gain an advantage in the space they play.
We find going against the grain is uncomfortable, more often than not a design decision is driven by pre-existing visuals we’ve already seen and liked, removing the element of unknown.
But by adopting the latest must have look, you’re fundamentally limiting the shelf life of your brand, website or product. When the next trend cycle comes around, your new look is suddenly very last year, forcing you to reinvest just to keep pace.
Instead focus on being relevant to your customer base, for example a cool hipster style, no matter how in vogue it currently is won’t cut it when you’re working in a formal, conservative space.
Be brave, zig when others zag.