Trends & the long tail

For decades taste makers decided what we had access to and could like. During this top down retail and media driven process they gave us some great trends and sometimes even created crazes. But even when something was really amazing, they had to move on. Move on to the next thing that would generate the same fervor and newness that the previous thing did. Something new to sell and generate replacement revenue. So the TV shows would get cancelled and the supporting products would disappear from the shelves to make room for the next thing. It was reasons like this that Break Dancing and BMX bikes disappeared from my world far sooner than I would have liked them to.

The good news is that there is no longer a need to change our preferences. As a result I’ve found my way back into the old school BMX community. The so called taste makers no longer have control over distribution and promotion – we do. And this has some important implications for us as entrepreneurs, marketers and people. None more important than this over riding thought:

The timeline is long. Fads now have the potential to become enduring communities. Ideas and things that got lost along the way are being reinvented by the few who didn’t forget, and their communities are blossoming in this digital spring.

But most of all – we need to remember that a digital world allows everything become just a little more permanent.


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