Our population currently faces four large-scale crises — all happening at the same time:
Without question, these crises have permanently altered the expectations people set for leaders, influencers and each other. Brands at a loss for how to design an experience that meets these new expectations need only understand one thing: people are desperate for something to feel good about. With that in mind, here are four changes impacting the brand experience.
As manufacturers struggle to get the materials they need to fill orders and distributors grapple with sparse inventories, customers have no choice but to take what they can get when they can get it. Case-in-point, hand sanitizer that reeks of tequila.
Furthermore, with unemployment still holding strong at 7.9% and the COVID death toll well over 200,000, circumstances have changed for many families, in some cases, dramatically. Shopping for price over preference is a means of survival that brands need to consider when adapting brand experiences for the year ahead. Rather than focusing on why something is worth the price, efforts should focus on how to make valuable resources more available and affordable.
Over 70% of consumers believe that brands with clout are morally obligated to address social injustices. Furthermore, in a recent survey conducted by GlobalWebIndex, 84% of customers expect brands to take some form of action in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. The new brand experience that consumers seek is one driven by activism. As such, organizations should brainstorm ways to use their platform to provide an avenue for consumers to impact positive change.
Money helps, but it cannot solve our problems as a society or a nation. While monetary donations are still viewed as a powerful gesture of goodwill and community support, consumers want effort at a local level. Here are just a few of the many unique examples of brands doing this successfully:
Above all else, consumers want experiences that help them feel safe. If brands are to create that experience, they need to understand the new emotional needs of the consumer, which include:
Ultimately, the most successful brands will be those who put just as much effort into delivering quality products or services as they do acting as great partners to their customers. To that end, it’s time that brands reframe their line of thinking. What new customer need is your brand failing to address and how can your product or service better align with the customer’s new normal?