She tipped Osama bin Laden as one to watch and, on a less serious note, has flagged up trends like 'metrosexuals' and fortyfication'.

Now, in her latest book, Marian Salzman tells us what we can expect from the next three years. Women's Editor Sarah Foster reports.

MARIAN Salzman went shopping last weekend. She meant to see what she could buy, perhaps invest in something nice. Instead she only scribbled notes. "I can't go to the grocery store like you can," she insists. "For me it's interwoven into everything I do, and certainly it's interwoven with my work. I went to Gap on Saturday and instead of looking at the spring line in terms of what I wanted to buy, I ended up with three pages of notes."

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As executive vice-president of JWT, a large and powerful advertising agency, and having studied emerging trends for 20 years, she's now an expert in her field. Renowned for coining terms like 'wiggers' (white kids who want to be black) and waxing lyrical on the hybrid metrosexual (a modern breed of feminised man), when Marian speaks, the world takes notice. Ten years after writing Next, the book on trends which she co-authored with Ira Matathia, she's speaking again.

"Next came out in 1997 and it just seemed like, after ten years, we would be ready to make connections again," explains Marian, who's 46 and lives in Connecticut. "I think at every point in time there's a different sense of trends that are driving people and I think what we were trying to do is expose these trends."

As she makes clear, a lot has changed since her last book. "I would say that metrosexual has been upstaged by ubersexual - by men who are more anxious to be at the centre of male-driven relationships, going out to dinner with the guys, spending time with the guys, obviously reclaiming their masculinity," says Marian. "I think anti-social is the new social. People are having more and more casual relationships but fewer and fewer meaningful relationships. They're just not interested in deep relationships.

"Another trend is truthiness, or truth-like, so we are going to be less concerned about genuine truth. I think we are going to look to get through life with truths that are going to get us through the conversation."

If all this sounds decidedly grim, then Marian makes no apologies. Her job is simply to note patterns and make them marketable - no matter what those patterns are. Her remit covers both the weighty and the trivial, which she believes are interlinked, so men's sexuality, for example, has repercussions in the world. Her biggest fears are global warming - "I think the whole world is aware that we are at hope's edge in terms of the state of the planet" - and the terrorist threat. She says there's little chance of peace.

"There's no doubt in my mind, based on pattern recognition, that there will be terrorist tensions in European countries from 2007 to 2010," says Marian. "I think we need to be more worried about northern Europe than we are now. The places that I would be most worried about are, of course, London and Madrid but also Paris, Amsterdam and Copenhagen."

Marian and Ira's predictions

Pets are the new family fixture

As the family unit changes shape, with more couples opting not to have children and many more people living alone, pets have become a family fixture - and in some cases, are even referred to as the owner's "children". Three quarters of dog owners do literally consider their pets to be family members.

Home is the new office

Homes are becoming more adaptable to different needs and life purposes. And as more people work from home, the office is an increasingly important component. It's the most popular room being requested in new home designs.

Sleep is the new sex

We have talked in the media that "sleep is the new sex". Sleep has become the ultimate luxury, a fantasy and a secret indulgence. Human beings can survive longer without food than without sleep, but in our frenetic 24/7 lives, most of us are surviving on less sleep than we need. And when we want to sleep, we can't: more than half of us have trouble sleeping at least one night a week.

Smaller, greener, more efficient homes

Out with the McMansion and the sprawl of square footage and in with the efficient home that maximises space and resources.

Smaller cars

Along with smaller homes, we'll have smaller cars parked in the driveway - if there's a driveway at all. The benefits are the same: they're more efficient, benefiting both the owner and the environment.

Deliveries on demand

We can buy our groceries online now, but who wants to wait until tomorrow for that double chocolate chip ice cream when we have a craving right now? Watch for the next wave of cybershopping to include local dimensions that promise delivery within a relatively immediate time frame so that the accommodation of urgency is part of the shopper's pleasure.

Personalised diets

We're seeing a backlash against Atkins as people re-embrace healthy carbs and start to query any diet that suggests butter, cream and unlimited red meat are the smart way to eat. Beyond that, there's a growing belief that there's no such thing as a diet that's right for everyone. Personalisation - whether based on lifestyle, ethnicity, blood type or something else - will become an important component of diet programmes.


It's one of the ironies of modern life that cooking shows and books are so hugely popular when much of the time we eat on the move or settle down in front of the TV with a microwaved frozen dinner. The preparing, cooking, tasting and eating of food have become voyeuristic pleasures separated from physical reality and carried out by experts who go through the moves with practised ease. Not unlike pornography.

Single drink bars

These bars will pop up to promote various brands, serving only one spirit and organised around the experience of that drink and its mixers. They'll be short-lived but have serious talkability while they're on the scene.

New delicacies

Foods unfamiliar to everyday shoppers, like jicama from Mexico and Japanese sushi rice, will be front and centre in the gourmet groceries that spring up in newly developed urban areas. Here, trendy shoppers are also likely to visit tasting bars and attend cooking classes. The continent most likely to emerge as hot in such shops? Asia. Watch also for African specialities like injera, the soft Ethiopian bread that also serves as an eating utensil.

Media grazing

A little bit of this, a little bit of that. Think of tomorrow's media consumption as a meal at a tapas bar: a dozen small servings of magazines, TV, and internet sources, a jug of sangria and some play-by-play dialogue with companions.

"Zoning out" and "me time" as entertainment

With leisure time becoming so precious, zoning out has become a desired form of entertainment all of its own. Much of today's youth participate in "binge chilling". Entertainment now has as much to do with being switched off as it has with being switched on. Women, especially those in their 20s and 30s, consider their "me time" quite sacred.

* Next Now by Marian Salzman and Ira Matathia (Palgrave Macmillan, £15.99)