“You tell a story by what you pay attention to.”

– Rohit Bhargava

Imagine you had the ability to forecast trends, predict the future and spot things others overlook. Now imagine how that could impact your business.

A man who can help you make that imagined picture a reality is here for this episode. He is none other than Rohit Bhargava, the Wall Street Journal best-selling author of Non-Obvious: How to Think Differently, Curate Trends and Predict The Future. He’s also the founder and CEO of the Influential Marketing Group (IMG), a consultancy formed to help brands and marketing leaders.

Today on Grow My Revenue Rohit talks about the biggest mistakes we make when trying to spot trends, the biggest trends he sees right now and five habits you can adopt to help you curate and identify trends others overlook.

Listen to this episode and discover:

  • How does Rohit define a trend?
  • What is Venmo and why is it important?
  • What is strategic downgrading and why should you care?
  • Are trends industry-specific or across the board?
  • What is the dessert spoon lesson?
  • And so much more…

Episode Overview

The first question Rohit answers is about what trends he’s seeing today. To start that discussion he defines what he sees as a trend and then shares several trends he’s tracking right now including strategic downgrading and virtual reality.

Strategic downgrading is when we prefer the simple tools over tools that have been infused with technology. A great example is vinyl records or 8-bit video games. There’s a trend towards people wanting to go back to the simple way to experience music: listening to albums on vinyl. Rohit says this happens because we want to enjoy the experience as it was without all the technology. That is strategic downgrading.

The other trend he’s been watching is virtual reality. That’s the hot ticket everyone is talking about right now. But he spots trends by looking at the non-obvious side of it (hence the book title), and in this case the trend he is watching is virtual empathy.

Virtual empathy is a non-obvious side of virtual reality. Virtual reality allows us to put ourselves in the shoes of others in a way we would never otherwise experience, like being a Syrian refugee. Empathy and compassion come from having an understanding of that person’s existence, even if that understanding stems from a virtual reality experience.

If you’re curious about how he found these two trends and so many others, he shares 5 habits you can adopt to make that happen on this episode. They are:

Be observant.
The first habit to adopt is to be more observant. Look at the world around you and notice what is going on. Pay special attention to the insignificant things, things others would normally overlook. By doing so you’ll pick up on trends others would also overlook.

Be curious.
Because everyone makes the suggestion to be more curious Rohit shares a specific trick he uses to be more curious. He goes into an airport bookstore when he’s traveling and he buys a magazine that is not geared towards him. It could be anything from a magazine about buying knives to teen girls’ fan magazines.

Be thoughtful.
His next habit he encourages you to adopt is to be thoughtful. Take time to think. You have some of your best ideas in the shower because you’re allowing yourself time to think. Rohit does this by collecting information over the course of the year, puts all of it in a folder and then reviews it at the end of that year.

Be fickle.
Rohit says to be fickle when cultivating the ability to see trends. He simply means when you have an idea, capture it and then move on. Don’t get stuck on one thing or you’ll miss other important potential trends.

Be elegant.
And finally adopt the habit of being elegant. Express the trends you see in beautiful and descriptive ways. When you’re explaining trends be descriptive yet memorable; be intentional with every word you use when talking about trends.

Also on this episode Rohit shares his biggest lesson learned and what it can teach all of us, as well as how he takes big picture trends and applies them within specific industries. Those lessons and so much more are available on today’s edition of Grow My Revenue.


Below are resources mentioned during the interview.

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If you enjoyed this session with Rohit Bhargava let him know by clicking on the link below to send him a quick message on LinkedIn or Twitter:

twitter Click here to thank Rohit Bhargava on Twitter
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What’s On Your Mind

As always, this episode provides inspiration, entertainment, and especially an actionable message that can drive remarkable results – and if you have any questions for a future episode, contact me.