trends

A Go-to for Researching the Chinese Travel Market

China Travel Trends.com

When I'm conducting my research, i.e. scampering on the interwebs, sometimes a bizologie-related site takes me to another page, and another, and then I've suddenly encountered a new entry-worthy resource.  For example, last week I wrote on Hospitality Net, and while delving in its Columns area to decide if it was worth mentioning (which indeed I did), I found an article that was so condensed as to have most likely stemmed from a larger report. Sure enough it ultimately linked back to China Travel Trends.com, which made my not-so-inner business researcher weak in the knees.  The publication is a child of parent institutions Dragon Trail, "the premier brand engagement firm focused on travel and tourism," and "COTRI (China Outbound Tourism Research Institute), the leading advisory and resource firm to assist travel and tourism organizations to cater to Chinese tourists" (About).

So what are the must-see spots on this website? The Homepage's Blog & its Popular Posts sub-section together identify news and market trends that may be especially useful for future-gazers.  But best of all, via the Resources tab you can access the freely downloadable Essential China Travel Trends Book- now in its second (Dragon) edition- which is a huge compendium of market intelligence on both the consumer psychologies of Chinese travelers, as well as the economic, cultural, and political forces impacting the market.  Definitely worth a visit!

Bookmark Futurity…

Futurity

…but be forewarned that it’s highly addictive.  In a nutshell Futurity.org's akin to the colorful see & be scene watering hole, the one with an amazing happy-hour special where all the hip people go to flaunt themselves.  Only the colorful characters are the top research universities in the US, UK, and Canada, and what’s being flaunted isn’t skin or fashion but research findings.  (Granted, some of those findings could theoretically be about skin or fashion, but I digress.) Now research findings may not immediately sound interesting to everyone, but with highly catchy titles, one-pager lengths, and summaries that aren’t painfully erudite, it’s easy to find yourself thinking, “I’ve got three minutes.  I’ll just click on one more link because I really want to know how they figured that out.”

Futurity breaks its research headlines into four categories: Earth & Environment, Health & Medicine, Science & Technology, and Society & Culture.  For business researchers, that last category may have the most draw, with tantalizing headlines like: Super food: Shoppers will pay 25% more, or Exports + R&D = competitive edge. The other categories though often highlight emergent technologies that have the potential to form the basis of for new or niche markets, so they are worth looking into as well.  Who knows?  If nothing else you may read a study that’s a nifty conversation starter for the next time you find yourself at your local see & be scene watering hole.

Megaregion Research

Megaregion_US

Megaregions are massive interconnected cities scattered throughout the United States, e.g. the Houston/Austin/Dallas Triangle, and the America 2050 initiative is putting them under the microscope (metaphorically speaking). Their about page says, “America 2050 is a national initiative to meet the infrastructure, economic development and environmental challenges of the nation as we prepare to add about 130 million additional Americans by the year 2050.”

If you’re doing business research- especially research concentrated around megaregions- then their site is a veritable goldmine of information.  America 2050 features free reports on topics ranging from energy & climate, high speed rail, broadband infrastructure, commuter patterns, etc.

Beyond the sheer concentration of data and analysis packed in America 2050's content, their maps are an excellent highlight.  The main maps page features many versions of the national-level megaregion concentrations, plus proposed passenger transit lines throughout the US.

Furthermore the incredibly detailed region-specific reports found in the Research tab have maps illustrating economic interrelationships among cities, e.g. wood products’ traffic concentrations within the Texas Triangle.

For those who want to keep abreast of the major economic, environmental, infrastructure and transportation trends that are shaping America’s most heavily populated and trafficked areas, this site is definitely one to bookmark.

Venture More Than A Guess

Money_Tree

Want to know which industry sandboxes the venture capital firms are playing in?  Then download a MoneyTree Report, a three-part match made in free-data heaven among PricewaterhouseCoopers, the National Venture Capital Association, and Thompson Reuters.  Every quarter Thompson Reuters surveys the VC institutions on their cash-for-equity investments in growing private companies, and then PricewaterhouseCoopers packages the data with a neat bow and puts it online for the enjoyment of all. You can download the most recent quarterly report which gives aggregate trends and analysis, and you can custom search historical data by factors including region, industry, financing sequence, etc.  If you want data from the current quarter at the company-name level, the site prompts you to cough up your information on a registration page, but that seems like a small investment when considering the potential for information return.

P.S.  It’s easy to overlook the News block at the bottom of the MoneyTree homepage, but it has a small selection of articles with exciting titles like, “US technology M&A insights 2011”.

Trendwatching's "Trend Briefing"

pepsi_social-vendingmachine_final

Trendwatching.com just released their "Trend Briefing" for July 2011. Lots of cool stuff on the list this year. Some of our favorites:

  • The Happy Apps--"a downloadable set of tools that allow you to experience mood-enhancing treatments through your iPhone or iPad. Included in the package are The Light Therapy Box, The Color Therapist, The Happy Sleep Toolbox, and the Help Yourself Happiness Guide"
  • RememberMe is a collaborative project between TOTeM (Tales of Things and Electronic Memory) and Oxfam, that infuses personal history into donated items by enabling people to attach stories using RFID tags.
  • Men are Useless sends essential grooming products to customers every month in the UK, while new-on-the-scene GlossyBox allows beauty-conscious women to sample luxury product miniatures.
  • PepsiCo has just introduced a ‘Social Vending Machine’; it gives consumers the option of gifting a drink to a friend, which they can redeem at participating machines with an SMS code.

IBISWorld Fatest Growing Industries

IBISWorld

Last Wednesday we covered the dying industries so I thought we would cover the fastest growing industries this week for balance (and it's a little cheerier). These 10 industries have been able to grow by leaps and bounds even during the recession and the forecast is for continued growth through 2016. Internet growth, environmental issues, cost cutting and evolving technology are the four main drivers. The only industry that really surprised me was Corrections Facilities, but apparently the growth is coming from privatization of these facilities. Top 10 Fastest Growing Industries:

  • Voice Over IP Providers
  • Wind Power
  • E-commerce and Online Auctions
  • Environmental Consulting
  • Biotechnology
  • Video Games
  • Solar Power
  • Third-Party Administrators & Insurance Claims Adjusters
  • Correctional Facilities
  • Internet Publishing and Broadcasting