Speaking of bubbles.
Or....when I'm talking about micro trends, I call them fads.
I got used to one fad taking the place of another fad, and on and on for years.
The first fad was the biggest;
Sports cards, 1984-1991. Replaced by,
Comics, 1991-1995, Replaced by,
Magic and non-sports, 1994 -1995. Replaced by,
Pogs, 1996, Replaced by
Beanie Babies, 1998-1999 Replaced by,
Pokemon, which maxed out Christmas, 2000. (These are approximate timelines and there was overlap, but you get the picture.)
Nothing. Nada. Not a fad to be seen.
I spent the first five years of the 00's waiting for the next fad. Never happened.
I can't explain the difference between good selling -- say, like boardgames, or the revival of D & D, or the miniature games, or many other things that have popped up -- and a 'fad.' It's a difference in degree and tone. I just know it when I see it.
I was able to take advantage of the pogs and beanie babies and Pokemon, the last three fads, but I'm not entirely sorry that I haven't had to deal with any fads since. Makes the business more stable and predictable.
Still....knowing what I know, I'm pretty sure I could maximize the next fad if it ever comes along.
I know that there have been fads since, but outside my bailiwick, (manga, for instance, probably sold best in the mass market) and probably much of it in the electronic realm.
But what I wanted to point out is that you can have a trend -- a pattern -- that lasts for 16 straight years, and then suddenly ends for the next 10 years....So no one can get it all right, and no amount of experience can prepare you for everything...
3 days ago