During the 22nd annual Transitions Academy, one of the most recognized educational events in the optical industry, Transitions Optical tapped into attending industry professionals with a survey to identify new and emerging trends in the optical business.

“Tomorrow Today: A Vision of What’s Next” offered a first-hand look at what industry professionals are experiencing with consumers and their businesses – from shorter attention spans and smart innovation to personalization and buying preferences. It also reinforced the importance of keeping up: revealing that 94 percent of industry professionals are interested in spotting trends to build their businesses, and 89 percent say eyewear is increasingly impacted by fashion fads and trends.

The survey asked for participant insights surrounding a variety of topics, including which trends professionals think are impacting their businesses the most, as well as predictions regarding what’s ahead for the industry. The results were presented at Transitions Academy during a Trendspotting Leadership Panel hosted by Marian Salzman, CEO, Havas PR North America and featured members of the Transitions leadership team, including Catherine Rauscher, global director, strategic business innovation.

Top Takeaways: Creating a Dialogue
The Trendspotting Leadership Panel encouraged the 900 attendees in the audience to embrace the trends presented, showcasing where their businesses are likely to head, and helped them to better spot trends in the future. One of the biggest takeaways that had attendees buzzing was: personalization is the new normal. Other learnings included:

• The desire for product customization is impacting healthcare and almost everything. Make it about me is the mantra for success.
• People are willing to pay more for technology that makes people’s lives easier; but they also want these solutions to be simple.
• People are using mobile devices more and more for everyday tasks, like booking health care appointments, routine shopping and real time research.
• Style and wellness are converging.
• The retail landscape is in a state of total reinvention.

“Trendspotting is one of the ways our brand is becoming ‘future ready’ and Transitions Academy was the perfect place to introduce the concept, as well as gather insights from our participants,” said Patience Cook, director, North America marketing. “The dialogue we started is just the beginning, and we encourage our industry partners to continue to pay attention to what’s happening around them and recognize what’s relevant to the industry during these fast-changing times. We hope attendees will continue to anticipate trends year-round, allowing them to rewrite the rules of the eyecare business.”

Survey Says: The Top Trends Identified
The trends gleaned from the “Tomorrow Today” survey synced up to this year’s Transitions Academy theme, “Future Ready,” as technology and screens were among the recurring findings.

• 94 percent of optical industry professionals think that more consumers today prefer to interact with a mobile device for everyday activities.
• 83 percent of optical industry professionals think we all suffer from shorter and shorter attention spans.
• 86 percent of optical industry professionals think people will increasingly demand personalized and customized products.
• 91 percent of optical industry professionals think today’s consumers are willing to pay more for technology that improves their lives or makes their lives easier.
• 65 percent of optical industry professionals think telemedicine is changing how people access all kinds of healthcare.

To download a booklet further detailing the “Tomorrow Today: A Vision of What’s Next” results, visit TransitionsPRO.com/Academy following the event.