Why it’s worthwhile for manufacturers to behave domestically

In an age of turmoil, brands are recognizing the advantages of a localized approach over a global one. Here, Ben Sillence, Strategy Director at Lewis Moberly, explores what this can mean for designers and creatives

We live in volatile times when events create a polarized world of utopian optimism and dystopian fear. For some, this is a great chance to reevaluate and reset themselves with hope for a better future. Others see the Covid-19 pandemic as a slide into a more troubling reality. We've seen a flurry of new brands emerge and a flurry of creative campaigns respond to these conflicting tensions.

Utopia sees a tendency towards hyperlocality, sustainability and “neohedonism” when we are looking for a meaningful connection and renewed engagement with nature. Dystopia, on the other hand, sees a retreat into the comfort of nostalgia, the desire to embrace the imperfect in a post-factual world, and the convergence of the physical and digital world.

What does this mean for design and brand experience?

Say what you want, but there hasn't been a major catalyst for change and innovation. We see a rapid acceleration in emergent behavior; a change in attitudes towards a better way of life and work that benefits everyone. Never has this been more evident than in our perception of community and the way brands enable human interaction on a hyperlocal level.

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