Archive: consumer trends

December 20th, 2011 | By Glen Hiemstra | Posted in Business & Economy | Comments Off

15 Minutes on Future Consumer Trends

Among my favorite companies is REI (Recreational Equipment Inc.). I’ve been invited to work with them now and then, and this video is a 15 minute excerpt of a keynote that I provided to one of their annual leadership conferences. In this video I discuss demographics and future consumer trends, especially as they relate to outdoor recreation and outdoor equipment. The lessons from the future about consumer trends are pretty universal for any enterprise.

Glen Hiemstra is a futurist, author, speaker, consultant, and Founder of To arrange for a speech, workshop or consultation contact

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February 18th, 2011 | By Catherine Otten | Posted in Art & Society, Innovation, Science & Tech | Comments Off

The Future of Music

SurraeonI recently had the opportunity to interview musician Amanda Ray about her experiences and goals. She is an impressive artist with a great outlook on the future of music and positive change. She has recently written Surraeon, a sci-fi story that is currently under development as a musical album and as a film.

The full interview can be found in our Article Archives. Here are some highlights from our interview:

8. From your point of view, what is the future of music?
I think the future of music is bright, but I don’t think there is a future for the music industry the way we knew it. Like everything, change is the only constant. And I feel like technology has given us a clean canvas in which to create our dreams. Without corporations telling you who to like and listen to, we will see who the real creative artists are. It can be very challenging, but artists are forced to get creative with how they sustain themselves with their music. It’s not about copies anymore, in this device addicted world, it’s about access! And although I can go on and on with predictions, it’s really everyone’s guess to what the future holds in music. With respect to the record industry and corporations, it’s been a VERY long time since artists have been able to create without a mold, without a formula and without expectations.

We’re living in a DIY industry now and I think it will spawn a new generation of artists who will not be bound by the traditions of the music industry, and will be free to create and market music in new ways. And I don’t think anyone will specialize in just one area, they will know and be a part of every aspect of their art. We will also see more fans involved with their favorite artist music. Online fundraising campaigns such as Kickstarter and Indie Go Go will inspire other companies to help artists raise funds for their projects. This will and is, cutting out the middle men and even more financial gate keepers such as grants. Any artist who’s even considered going down the grant road, understands how annoying and long the process is. Unfortunately, it still boils down to who you know, who likes you and if you fit into their mold or category. I also think that artists will start joining forces more in the future. Building websites that are genre specific or just several bands all on one site, selling access to music, concert videos and blogs.

9. How are you inspiring positive change through your music?
By creating honest, sincere music from the heart! Providing a window to an experience that we crave but are afraid to live. It’s not about creating a fake perfect utopian society but broadening our perception of where we see ourselves in 30 years. With thought provoking lyrics and moody cinematic music, it is my goal to create a soundtrack for our journey to perceiving a more favorable future.

[Note from Glen Hiemstra… I love this interview that Catherine did with Amanda Ray, musician, writer and artist. What caught our attention when she contacted us was her concept that images of the future matter, and that we lack positive images. That fits precisely with my approach to futuring. Check out the full interview, and Amanda’s work.]

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February 10th, 2011 | By Glen Hiemstra | Posted in Art & Society, Business & Economy, Environment & Energy, Innovation, Science & Tech | 1 Comment

Outlook 2011 Video

Here is our new video summarizing my Outlook 2011. I wrote the outlook at the beginning of the year and we posted the original on January 3. The written version with more detail, links to resources and a recap of how accurate our Outlook 2010 was can be found in our blog archives. After multiple requests we have decided to produce this video version, as we have done the last several years. Enjoy!

Glen Hiemstra is a futurist speaker, author, consultant, blogger, internet video host and Founder of To arrange for a speech contact

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January 19th, 2011 | By Glen Hiemstra | Posted in Space | 4 Comments

Space Tourism 2011

(Written with Catherine Otten)

The space experience race is on.

I have always wanted to go into space. It could happen sooner than we think. All I need is the money.

According to the Space Tourism Society, billionaires such as Paul Allen, Jeff Bezos, and Sir Richard Branson are spending hundreds of millions of dollars building space enterprise/tourism companies. Millions of government dollars are supporting these efforts as international competition for space business prestige and profit heats up. The U.S. federal government in particular is pushing the entry of private companies into the space launch business, intending soon to rely on private companies for most space access.

For those of you wanting to be a space tourist, or wanting to work in the business, the Space Tourism Society is hosting Space Tourism 2011 (ST11) on April 28, 2011. This international annual event will bring together leaders in many fields involved in building the space enterprise/tourism industry and creating the orbital lifestyle as well as new participants seeking business, marketing, and investment opportunities and exciting space careers.

Virgin Galactic
There are a number of companies already selling seats on their rocketplanes. You can read more about these on MSNBC and Popular Science.

Our favorites for personal access so far are Virgin Galactic‘s SpaceShipTwo and XCOR’s Lynx. Virgin Galactic is pricey, charging $200,000 per passenger, but they already have $30 billion in pre-bookings from over 200 people. SpaceShipTwo plans to take you on a 2.5 hour trip with 6 minutes of complete weightlessness. They are currently running tests and plan to start taking ticketed passengers in 2012 .

XCOR‘s Lynx rocketplane is planning commercial rides starting this year for only $95,000. It reaches 60 miles in 30 minutes and travelers achieve weightlessness during the 4 minute apogee. The Lynx has only 2 seats, so you get to sit shotgun next to the pilot every time. XCOR has established a commercial relationship with an entity named Space Experience Curacao (SXC). In November 2010 SXC linked up with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. KLM plans to offer vacation packages to Curacao (in the “Netherlands Antilles” in the Caribbean) and from there into space aboard an XCOR Lynx spaceship.

Both of the XCOR and Virgin Galactic rocketplanes currently launch from Mojave Spaceport in California, but Virgin will move eventually to their Spaceport America now being built in New Mexico and they also have plans for Sweden.

“Eventually there will be a price war,” according to Doug Graham, former spokesman for XCOR. “The market is going to decide if floating around demands a premium over a front row seat.” He may be comparing the XCOR seat next to the pilot to primary competitor Virgin Galactic, where passengers will sit in the cabin, but the same comment could easily be directed at the more complex and costly space tourism goal of placing people in orbit.

Space Adventures, based in Virginia, is the one company offering the true astronaut experience complete with training. Space Adventures flies private-pay passengers on Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the International Space Station, and for the trip they charge over $20 million. If you ask us, $20 million is steep, though you do get an extended stay in orbit.

However, if space hotel dreamers like Bigelow Aerospace succeed with their inflatable space station-like modules, cheaper accomodations in space may become available. Bigelow is currently testing its inflatable module Genesis II in orbit while the more advanced module called Sundancer is scheduled for launch and testing in 2014. NASA too is looking into adding a Bigelow module to the International Space Station.

Meanwhile, perhaps the most successful commercial space company to date, SpaceX, run by Elon Musk, became the first company to send a privately developed craft into orbit and retrieve the craft upon re-entry. Now they set their sites on the long-term goal of launching human crews into space. As SpaceX announced in a press release on January 17, 2011:

The Dragon spacecraft is scheduled to fly at least 11 more times and the Falcon 9 launch vehicle is scheduled to fly 17 times before the first Dragon crew flight. Given the extensive manifest of Falcon 9 and Dragon, the SpaceX system will mature before most other systems will be developed.

The inaugural flight of the Dragon spacecraft confirmed what we have always believed—the responsiveness and ingenuity of the private sector, combined with the guidance, support and insight of the US government, can deliver an American spaceflight program that is achievable, sustainable and affordable. The SpaceX team is excited about the new opportunities and challenges the New Year will bring.

To sum up, wider access to space, including for you and me if we have the money, is coming. Companies like Virgin Galactic, are already pre-selling seats. It is likely that they, and others, will succeed and through efficiency and competition bring down the prices. A few more years and it might be affordable for everyone.

[This post was updated on January 20, 2011 based on factchecking from XCOR. Please see their comment.]

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December 21st, 2010 | By Catherine Otten | Posted in Business & Economy | Comments Off

Glen Hiemstra Keynote for IHOP Annual Meeting

IHOP logoThis full-length speech video is a keynote that Glen did for the 50th Anniversary meeting of IHOP Franchise owners, held in 2008 in Hawaii. In this video Glen addresses long term future trends in the economy, technology, food service, demographics, and more.

This was one of Glen’s favorite events, not just because he always loved pancakes, but for two other reasons. First, anniversary events, particularly milestone anniversaries like 50 years, are a good time to look both backward and forward. Glen’s futurist mentor, Dr. Ed Lindaman, once said, “If you don’t go far enough back in memory, or far enough ahead in hope, your present will be impoverished.” Anniversary events are the perfect time to go back in memory and ahead in hope.

The other reason Glen loved this event was the chance to meet Julia Stewart, Chair and CEO of DineEquity, the corporate umbrella now for IHOP and Applebees restauarants. As Glen tells her in the video, she represents the leadership qualities discussed in Glen’s book, Turning the Future Into Revenue.

We hope you enjoy viewing Glen’s work and we will post other speeches soon. If you are interested in hiring Glen, you can learn more about what he does by reading our keynote speech page and our strategic planning page, or by contacting us for more information. To see what previous clients think of Glen, take a look at our client comments. Thanks for your interest!

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