2nd Set of Trends for 2024



Earlier in the month, we listed our top five predictions for AI, life sciences, social media and electric vehicles (available here). But we always identify additional sets of predictions, and that’s true for this year, too.

Before you get to our second set of predictions, here are a few predictions we’re not going to make:

  1. We know the 2024 elections, including candidates and controversial issues, will generate a lot of coverage but we’re not going to mention them here.
  2. We don’t have a prediction about the potential coverage trends for the Summer Olympics, partly because we think many Americans don’t even realize there’s going to be an Olympics this year. (It’s in Paris and starts July 26.)
  3. Though we wish them well, we don’t have any predictions about Taylor and her relationship with Travis. But we do expect that Taylor will continue to receive a lot of media attention.

The reason is that we focus on trends that have the potential to impact current or prospective clients.

Here’s are list of trends from last year that we expect to continue in 2024:

  1. Bitcoin will continue to generate media coverage. Over the last two years, practically every print issue of Forbes, Fortune, Businessweek, Wired, and Fast Company has included an article on the topic. That will continue in 2024. But there could start to be a backlash. A recent New York Times article highlighted the challenges governments like China and the U.S., face in tracking Bitcoin as wealth is transferred across borders; there could be more backlash stories like that this year, and we expect more articles that start questioning aspects of Bitcoin.
  2. Real estate sector will face problems, and receive significant coverage. Home prices will continue to climb, which is good news for current homeowners, who tend to be older – but bad news for renters, who tend to be young and can’t easily afford to purchase homes, especially with high mortgage rates. Meanwhile, commercial real estate, especially in cities affected by hybrid workforces, will have a tough year. Some cities will see a push to convert office buildings into apartments as a way to alleviate a housing shortage, reduce commercial inventory and resuscitate downtowns that Fortune described as “dead, dying or on life support across the U.S.”
  3. Workforce issues will continue to get attention. Some of the issues we anticipate receiving coverage this year include hybrid workforces, the cultural impact of employees working from the office two to three times a week (and implications for those downtown area businesses that rely on/support employees five days a week), minimum wage increase in some states, shortages, and layoffs. There were more layoffs in 2023 than in 2022, nationally in the tech sector, and locally around Boston, in the biotech sector.
  4. Consumers will feel the impact of anticipated rocket and semiconductor shortages. While the former may not seem to affect most Americans, commercial payloads are for satellites like Amazon Kuiper, a project that seeks to increase global broadband access by placing more than 3,200 satellites into low Earth orbit. The chip shortage affects cars, computers, and the growing range of smart or IoT-enabled household appliances that require computerization.
  5. Despite election ad revenue, traditional media – particularly local papers – face rocky times and an increase in news deserts. Historically, local newspapers have built a sense of community and trust but when local newspapers vanish, their communities become news deserts, because their “residents have significantly diminished access to important local news and information that feeds grassroots democracy” – which can have a negatively cascading impact on the local economy and the morale of the community. Many deserts are in poor or rural communities but many suburban communities are affected, too. (You can find out how your community is doing by clicking here.) According to Poynter, “Seemingly no medium or business model within the news industry has gone untouched by the cuts” in 2023, setting a record no one wants. We expect more layoffs in 2024, despite any bump from election ads.

Let us know if you have any comments.

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