At the core of Entrepreneurs' Organization (EO)'s mission is an unwavering commitment to helping entrepreneurs at every stage learn and grow to new levels of leadership. We asked some of our 14,000+ members worldwide what trends, opportunities or highlights they've identified in their industries for the coming year. Here's what they shared.
"In the events and experiential marketing industry, brands will be turning to live events to connect to customers more than ever before. Events will be more authentically curated and marketers will leverage live events as goldmines for customer data through innovative event marketing strategies."
? Amanda Ma, EO Los Angeles, Chief Experience Officer, Innovate Marketing Group
"My company sells luxury material and furnishings from Italy, which clients don't physically see before they're shipped. I foresee a decline in showroom sales and an increase in innovative ways to sell virtually. We developed an augmented reality software technology to show clients what their marble slab, table or sink will look like in their home. Our specialty cameras allow the client to see the material up close and even reveals details that can't be seen with the naked eye!"
? Anthony Davani, EO Portland, CEO, The Davani Group
"In the survival gear market, sales have dropped around 60 percent since Trump was elected--which is common when a Republican is in office. We expect a 20 percent increase in 2020 due to the political season. If Trump wins, our market will settle back down. If Trump loses, the survival market will enjoy a huge increase in sales."
? Byron Walker, EO Colorado, Founder and CEO, Survival Frog
"Some of the biggest trends we see happening in the salon industry are selfie/Instagram stations and desk-less front desks. We have Instagram stations at both of our locations--one is a handmade, pink floral wall, and the other is greenery with neon in the shape of our logo. Our desk-less front desk means that guests don't walk in and confront a barrier, but rather a welcoming start to an engaging experience."
? Chelle Neff, EO Austin, Founder and CEO, Urban Betty
"In the employee benefits space, we see out-of-pocket costs continuing to increase, new technologies to improve healthcare, continued conversation about Medicare For All, and creative ideas for employee benefit programs. We anticipate a positive year ahead because we solve some of these problems by helping employees control healthcare, navigate the system and become better consumers."
? Heidi Rasmussen, EO Dallas, Co-Founder and COO, freshbenies
"Venture capital has always accelerated innovation while creating transformative change. As we look forward, we're intrigued by the opportunities artificial intelligence (AI) offers, particularly as more and more Fortune 500 corporations look for ways to leverage AI. We've invested in AI startups focused on cybersecurity for government, robotics for picking strawberries, electronic medical records on mobile devices, drones that monitor solar farms, and high-performance computing for autonomous vehicles. Beginning in 2020, AI will enable robots to harvest food, smartphones to connect directly to doctors, and sensors to make driverless cars safer."
? Jack Crawford, EO Sacramento, Founding General Partner, Impact Venture Capital
"I foresee technology playing a significant role in the typically slow-to-adapt workers' comp industry. Partly due to Gen Z's entrance into the workforce, services are looking for ways to become more accessible to workers, supervisors, employers, and other stakeholders in workers' comp. This includes utilizing mobile apps and embracing an omnichannel approach. We've launched an app for injured workers to more easily contact us for triage and expanded our hotline into an omnichannel contact center so that workers can communicate in the way they're most comfortable--no matter their generation."
? Paul Binsfeld, EO Arizona, Founder and President, Company Nurse, LLC
"Customers' expectations of communication and fast delivery are at an all-time high. We are continuing to explore ways we can automate yet add a personal touch to enhance the overall customer journey and experience. Increased pressure from other industries continues to push us to be better. This can be challenging to implement, but it helps differentiate us from competitors."
? Tom Rauen, EO Iowa, Founder and CEO, EnvisionTees.com
"We see a trend of companies choosing experience-based retreats to promote team-building and organizational development. Companies are tired of hosting the same retreat year after year at a fancy hotel with rounds of golf. Employees yearn for more meaning and purpose at work, and companies need to offer more variety to stay competitive. We continue to attract clients that see the value in creating positive, lasting impact in the communities they serve."
? Ryan Shortill, EO San Diego, Founder and CEO, Positive Adventures
"I think 2020 represents a mental milestone. The number itself seems straight out of The Jetsons ! The shift is going to be significant. People are waking to the realization that simple is better--in diet, lifestyle and work ethos. The burnout recipe of constant overwork, over-stress, and overconsumption will be recognized as old thinking. We'll see a shift to the more natural, more organic. Companies that live these values will see more success than those that don't. I think we'll see a trend toward saying no--we don't have to serve everyone. We don't have to run at a breakneck pace. We don't have to be the next Amazon!"
? Russell Lundstrom, EO Colorado, Founder and Creator, myMarketingDNA