How often do you enjoy silence - the stillness from the constant notification insanity of emails, texts and social media fixes? How about ditching your devices to focus on work and relationships?
Digital obsession is leading us to a tipping point where sleep eludes us and relationships sour. We stare at our screens mindlessly, dribble online for hours, a constant interruption that mars our attention spans and disrupts balances. Technology, intended to make life easier, is at a stance where news of Rupert Murdoch’s divorce and Kim Kardashian’s baby is disengaging us from the people and things that matter.
Time to shout, “Shun the screen". Adopting the new digital lifestyle, which involves putting yourself on a digital diet, is the new fad. It needn’t be ‘anti-technology’ or a painful ‘break-up’; cleanse your technology- spiced soul by pausing and striking the right balance between technology and life. As the trend catches on, users will increasingly choose to pursue activities that don’t involve constant towing the pull-to-refresh lever.
They will seek virtual escapism to regain balance and reconsider their lifestyle choices. Digital detox holidays where travelers choose destinations with no Internet access and no mobile signal, and health and wellness options where many opt for cocktails infused with ingredients such as root vegetables and fermented foods, are some of the ways consumers will make efforts to shift their lifestyle choices.
People recognize the downsides to being constantly connected. Increased stress levels, distraction, worries about social interaction, unease about privacy and general fear that we are not experiencing 'real life' are frequent concerns.
As consumers seek time off the grid, newer opportunities will emerge. Brands and businesses to hop on to the digital detox bandwagon to connect with them in a more meaningful way. Exploring themes of unreality, detachment and escapism when communicating with consumers could be a winner for brands and businesses. For instance, restaurants offering discounts to those who leave their devices at the door, and telecom brands going the ‘social message’ way through public pledge campaigns that encourage consumers to look up from their devices. Understanding consumer needs and crafting a strategy that aligns your brand to your consumers’ lifestyle will help crack this category.