5 signs of the Experience Economy revolution — from Barclaycard

5 signs of the Experience Economy revolution — from Barclaycard

Five signs of the experience economy revolution How Brits are picking experiences over stuff 14 Jun 2017 13:00 NOTE: This article is lifted from Barclaycard. Experiences as products. Paying for memories instead of things. That’s the experience economy, and it’s booming in the UK right now. A recent report from Barclaycard found that people are spending more on the experience economy than last year. While overall consumer spending was up by 2.8% year-on-year to May, spending on experiences is rising far faster – entertainment spending, for instance, rose by 12%. Today, people are increasingly investing in themselves, crafting their life and status through what they do, not what they own. The experience economy touches lives through technology, social trends and spending behaviour. Here are five signs that it’s even bigger than we might have thought. Show and share The economy of experiences loves the crowd, and so the rise of social media culture has nurtured it. People share their experiences digitally, connecting with others through the way they choose to live. Nearly 2 billion people worldwide use Facebook, the largest social network; with 1.2 billion people using the second largest, WhatsApp. So, the tools are already here. The tendency to ‘curate’ personal lives on social media means that people need a source of unique experiences that get a swift response from their network. This has led to a boom in companies that provide experiences, from event hospitality and gaming through to travel adventures. The companies providing such services are honing their products through constant testing and feedback from users, amplifying their own evolution – making for a faster pace of development...
The world changing magic of the experience revolution

The world changing magic of the experience revolution

The western world today has 3 major problems: the environment — caused by the incredible success of materialistic, consumerist capitalism the “happiness deficit” — the stress, anxiety and depression that go hand-in-hand with materialism inequality — the trickle-down effect, the idea that “rising tides raise all boats” isn’t true. Our materialistic, consumerist capitalist system has winners and losers. And that isn’t fair. How to solve these problems? I don’t believe in most solutions. They often seem to solve one of the problems while ignoring the others — or even making them worse. Consider: Business As Usual Oh dear. Not good for any of the three problems. Buy Nothing Day … and other ideas about some sort of huge reduction in consumerism. This would be great for the environment, and could also be good for happiness, but this would kill GDP and growth. And those things have been very useful for our current standards of living. A healthy GDP is good for healthcare: spare money to spend on life-saving and life-enhancing drugs and equipment! A healthy GDP is also good for  This would throw the proverbial baby out with bathwater. Techno-optimism The idea that technology will solve everything. This is put forward by people like Peter Diamandis, especially as outlined in his book Abundance. But while, again, this will solve the problems of the environment, it doesn’t have anything to say about the happiness deficit or inequality. The Circular Economy The idea of less waste, of using our resources more carefully, and creating a system that, rather than simply haul more out of the ground, keeps raw materials going round that system — is great for the environment. But it has nothing to say about happiness...
What’s stopping you being an experientialist?

What’s stopping you being an experientialist?

So you know experiences are better than material goods, you know there’s scientific proof… and yet, somehow, someway, you find yourself still in that old cage… hankering after That Shiny New Thing, and you can’t help wondering if people — including you! — will think you’ve made it, you’ve stepped up, you’re something special if you get That Thing. (I’ll admit it: I still get that feeling about having a Porsche.) The barriers between you and experientialism Since it’s clear that experiences lead to more happiness than things, I think it’s useful to understand what these barriers are, these annoying hang-over habits from a century of materialistic consumerism. (OK, so it may not have really taken hold of your country till the 70s or even 80s, but the seed was planted back in the 1920s — see Stuffocation the book for that story.) So I’ve been having a think, reading the scientific literature, talked with some psychologists — people like Tom Gilovich — and I think there are four key barriers stopping people from embracing experientialism. Habit Doh! Pretty obvious this. We’re creatures of habit. We have all those decades of materialistic consumer culture being ingrained into us. Materialistic consumer culture just is our culture. Advertising Just as our culture has been created by advertisers, the media, and government, so they have vested interests in our culture continuing. Change is not good for business, and possibly not good for the government’s tax receipts. Ease — material goods are less risky and require less imagination The magic with experiences is you never quite know what you’re going to get. The problem with experiences is you never quite know what you’re going...
UPDATED: The ultimate guide to less stuff, more experiences, and a happier life

UPDATED: The ultimate guide to less stuff, more experiences, and a happier life

Thank you everyone who sent me feedback on the online course I’m working on for The Idler. I received lots of messages — mostly of support! — but also making suggestions… So I’m now getting closer to the course title: “Stuff Stuffocation! The ultimate guide to less stuff, more experiences, and a happier life”. The course is going to look like this: The ultimate guide Your role here: listen Introduction to me, your host Outline of what you can expect from the course: you’ll learn practical tips to get rid of stuff, have more experiences and get more out of life you’ll hear fascinating interesting facts — about the world, and about you! While the insights are backed by science, this isn’t academic. You’ll have fun along the way Why it’s better with a friend you’re more likely to learn and make and see the changes you want it’s more fun Homework: find a friend to do the course with you Meet the Joneses Your role here: listen + homework Additional material: a document to download / link to a page containing useful pen portrait questions Community: share your pen portraits! #TheJoneses In which, you’ll: Discover something strange about other people — and yourself Homework: A warm-up activity where you’ll draw “pen portait” pictures of your pesky neighbours, those materialistic Joneses next door Then, we’ll draw pen portraits of a group of people called “experientialists” Facebook changed how we shake our tail feathers Your role here: listen This features lions, howler monkeys, birds of paradise, and humans Homework: observe and make a note of 3 people shaking their tail feathers Have you had enough of stuff? Your...
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