The Inn Crowd

Trend Spotters

What's hot and what's not.

By Karen Axelton

For business owners, knowing what's hot and what's not isn't just a matter of hip--it's a matter of survival. Here, three ways to stay on top of trends:

  • Let your fingers do the walking. Check business listings in your Yellow Pages to see which industries are growing. Categories crowded with new companies (such as "Cellular Telephones," for example) mean opportunity.
  • Take a 'stand. Once a month, scan the nearest newsstand to see what's new. Magazines are a good indicator of hot consumer markets: Recently launched Spanish-language versions of Glamour and People, for instance, reflect the growing clout of Latino consumers.
  • Verb it. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for nouns being turned into verbs; The Futurist magazine says such a transformation usually signals a rising trend. Access, network and parent--not to mentiontrend itself--are just a few nouveau verbs pointing the way to profit possibilities.
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This article was originally published in the February 1999 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: The Inn Crowd.

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