Three Trends to Look For in 2024: Marc Wesseling – UltraSuperNew

We ask industry leaders to give us their take on what’s to come in the year ahead and reflect on the year that’s passed.

As the great Prince once sang, “I have seen the future, and it will be.”

With the New Year just passed, and another trip around the sun completed, it’s that time once again to take a peek into the future and offer up what we think it will be.

As part of an annual series, we asked industry leaders what they see coming in the year ahead while also looking at the year just passed.


 

Next up is Marc Wesseling, Co-Founder of UltraSuperNew, taking a look ahead, a look back, and at the fate of his New Year’s resolution for 2023.

Looking Ahead

What are three trends to look for in the coming year?

In the dynamic landscape of Japan three significant shifts that are shaping 2024: the global expansion of Japanese brands, a recalibration of advertising partnerships, and the increasing global influence of Japanese culture.

1. Global Expansion of Japanese Brands


 

With a shrinking population, a persistently low yen, and a global appreciation for Japanese quality products, Japanese brands and companies are setting their sights on international markets. The demographic challenges in Japan, including an aging population and declining birth rates, have prompted businesses to seek growth opportunities beyond domestic borders.

The appeal of Japanese products, known for their innovation, and commitment to quality, has garnered significant attention worldwide. From automobiles and electronics to fashion and cuisine, Japanese brands are leveraging their reputation for excellence to expand their global footprint. Also the richest man of Japan and founder of Uniqlo gave an inspiring interview in Time magazine advocating this movement to his Japanese peers,

2. Paradigm Shift in Advertising Partnerships

The Japanese advertising industry, traditionally dominated by network agencies is experiencing a notable shift in dynamics. Recent scandals including allegations of overcharging clients and ethical breaches, have led to a significant loss of trust.

Consequently, many government projects, including the prestigious Osaka 2025 World Expo, and numerous Japanese multinationals are now avoiding partnerships with these blacklisted agencies. Japanese companies are actively seeking alternative advertising communication partners that can provide transparency, ethical practices, and effective marketing strategies.

This shift not only reflects a demand for accountability but also opens up opportunities for newer, innovative agencies to emerge and redefine the advertising landscape in Japan. The industry is witnessing a recalibration, with a focus on building trust and fostering creative collaborations that align with the evolving values of Japanese businesses.

“With a shrinking population, a persistently low yen, and a global appreciation for Japanese quality products, Japanese brands and companies are setting their sights on international markets.”

3. Globalization of Japanese Culture

While Japanese pop culture has long been a global phenomenon, recent years have witnessed an increased interest in other facets of Japanese culture, including music, food and traditional arts. Riding on the coattails of the global popularity of Korean culture, Japan’s music scene is gaining recognition, and traditional arts such as tea ceremonies, food and Noh theater are finding new audiences worldwide.

Conclusion: Japan’s evolving landscape is marked by a strategic global expansion of its brands, a reshaping of the advertising industry, and an increasing global resonance of its cultural expressions. As Japan navigates demographic challenges and adapts to a changing global landscape, these trends showcase the nation’s ability to innovate, captivate, and leave a

Looking Back

Your favourite trend of 2023

The comeback of Metal & Punk music in reaction to the woke movement.

Your favourite campaign of 2023?

Travis Rice Longest Pillow Line for Quicksilver.

The snowboard season just started in Japan and I cannot watch enough of these kinds of videos after days of snowboarding.

What was your 2023 New Year’s Resolution and did you keep it?

To keep on running – almost daily and yes…I did it!


Check out our Three Trends series here.

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