What’s trending in July 2024? Key trends and how brands should react

July 9, 2024

July 2024 is abuzz with fresh trends that are shaping consumer behavior and cultural dynamics. As brands navigate this dynamic landscape, it’s crucial to stay ahead of the curve. This month, we explore three major trends: the rise of quiet vacationing, the emergence of “brat summer,” and the resurgence of hanfu in Chinese fashion. Understanding these trends can help brands strategically position themselves to engage with their audience more effectively.

Quiet vacationing is a talking point as summer begins

Quiet vacationing trend July 2024

Hot on the heels of lazy girl jobs, quiet quitting, and workations comes another work-related phenomenon: quiet vacationing. This term describes remote-working employees secretly taking time off without notifying colleagues, maintaining the illusion of working by occasionally responding to emails or joining video calls.

A poll of US workers revealed that 28% had taken time off without informing their employer, a figure that rises to 37% among Millennials. With the northern hemisphere’s summer vacation season upon us, the term is gaining traction. Another survey found that 1 in 8 workers planned a quiet vacation this summer, and around half of American employees confessed to secretly taking time off around Independence Day celebrations in July.

The secrecy stems from pressures to appear constantly available and a stigma around taking paid time off (PTO). This creates an environment where unofficial getaways become a way to navigate workplace demands and still get the rest needed. The pandemic-driven shift to more flexible work arrangements has facilitated this trend, with nearly 1 in 3 workers globally valuing remote work for job satisfaction.

How brands should react:

  1. Facilitate effective remote working: brands can cater to Digital Nomads, even if they are vacationing incognito. Research shows that 15% of Millennials and Gen Z are interested in stores with co-working areas, rising to 22% among US Gen Z.
  2. Advocate for work-life balance: position your brand as an advocate for healthy work-life balance. Challenge toxic workplace cultures and encourage employees to take their legally entitled vacations without stigma.
  3. Leverage presence-free living: explore opportunities to support remote work and flexible schedules. This trend highlights a significant shift in how consumers balance personal and professional lives.

Move over Barbie – It’s time for a Brat summer

Brat summer trend July 2024

Following the cultural phenomenon of Barbiecore in 2023, 2024 is seeing the rise of “brat summer,” fueled by Charli XCX’s album “Brat” released in June. The album’s striking green cover and minimalist design have inspired fans to post memes and content on social media, with the hashtag #bratsummer garnering nearly 1 million posts on TikTok.

Described as grungy and trashy, the brat summer aesthetic is about embracing behaviors frowned upon by some, like smoking and staying out late, while not caring about others’ opinions. It represents a reclamation of the term “brat,” previously seen as an insult, and reflects a blend of luxury and trashy elements.

How brands should react:

  1. Embrace individual style: tap into the trend of Unapologetically Me by celebrating individualism and defiance of perfection. Highlight products that allow consumers to express their unique style.
  2. Leverage fan engagement: the marketing of Charli XCX’s album shows the power of authenticity and fan-driven content. Create opportunities for fan expression and creativity, using simple, adaptable design elements.
  3. Support nightlife and hedonism: consider whether this trend signals a resurgence in nightlife. Align your brand with the excitement and energy of this cultural movement, especially in sectors like fashion and entertainment.

Hanfu is hot in Chinese fashion

Hanfu fashion trend July 2024

In China, the ancient attire of the Han Chinese, hanfu, has surged in popularity. The style, characterized by traditional craftsmanship and culturally significant design elements, is part of the xinzhongshi (“new Chinese style”) trend. This movement reflects a desire among Chinese consumers for deeper cultural connections and products that embody their heritage.

How brands should react:

  1. Connect to Cultural Narratives: align your brand with culturally significant stories and historical narratives. Embrace the guochao (“national wave”) movement, emphasizing products that resonate with Chinese heritage.
  2. Highlight Craftsmanship and Authenticity: focus on quality and craftsmanship to appeal to consumers’ nationalist sentiments. Establish a reputation for authenticity and heritage in your products.
  3. Incorporate Local Allure: non-Chinese brands should root themselves in China’s cultural landscape. Create products that reflect local traditions and aesthetics to gain acceptance and loyalty in this market.

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Written by Content Team

The Content Team produces all the reports and articles that get published on our dynamic consumer trends intelligence platform, Collision. By tracking trends, monitoring signals of change across sectors and audiences, and working alongside our data team to digest and analyse our proprietary consumer research, they help leading global brands strengthen strategic relevance and gain a competitive edge.

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