2020 erupted into chaos. In 2021, we’ll transfer past the haze of disaster mode and begin to see the brand new patterns of financial, social, and cultural order which might be being solid within the warmth of present crises. Rampant politicization within the US and overseas together with ongoing financial uncertainty will irritate shopper fragmentation and create new strata of shopper division. Assuming that 2021 brings recurring waves of COVID-19 of various depth and an preliminary vaccine or therapy, we predict that buyers will:
- Diverge alongside a dividing line of concern and want. Emotion will play a key position in influencing shopper priorities, selections, and behaviors in 2021. Shoppers who concern for his or her bodily or monetary well being will preserve their energies; those that enter 2021 bodily and financially unscathed will channel their pent-up needs into experiential thrills that compensate for a yr of deprivation. Inside one week of Carnival Cruise Line asserting that service would resume, enthusiastic shoppers shattered pre-pandemic reserving benchmarks. And shoppers in Taipei are already buying tickets to take a seat in airplanes that go nowhere, only for the exhilaration of embarking on a visit. This implies CMOs should measure prospects’ bodily and monetary fears collectively to grasp consumer risk profiles, utilizing them to tell advertising content material and tone, product technique and forecasting, and buyer expertise priorities that drive enterprise again to the model.
- Put money into increasing and fortifying their properties. The concern of crowds will linger longer than the pandemic itself. Within the US, strained public college programs will push prosperous households to pay for personal options like in-home tutors and extra childcare; globally, rich city dad and mom working remotely will shift (at the very least briefly) to suburban and rural areas that provide more room for his or her household. Already, 41% of UK shoppers and 29% of US and French shoppers choose to be in rural areas due to the pandemic. These shoppers will put money into sooner web speeds and higher private expertise, whereas shoppers who can’t afford to entry academic options, work remotely, or repurpose their residing house will wrestle: Work and home roles will collapse, the web will type a lifeline, and mounting nervousness will stymie financial and social progress. CMOs ought to put together to tune advertising and product methods to shifting family wants.
- Reckon with rising world powers and the existential disaster of “Model USA.” Within the US, the place polarized politics dominate headlines, solely 38% of shoppers are assured about post-pandemic restoration. Different international locations are extra optimistic: 61% of metropolitan Chinese language on-line adults are assured about an financial rebound, which varieties the idea for a surge in spending and innovation in 2021. Worldwide tensions will now not be restricted to the financial sphere however will seep into shoppers’ social and cultural enviornment. As shoppers grow to be extremely delicate to manufacturers that enhance native well-being and affect nationwide pleasure, CMOs should decide if and the way their model ought to sign solidarity by means of its firm values.
The pressure of pendulating between concern and want, fulfilling family and work obligations directly, offsetting emotions of isolation, and navigating political and social unrest will drive shoppers to hunt out coping mechanisms in new types of consumption that promise a rush of consolation, management and happiness. Get extra element about how shoppers will reply to escalating tensions and uncover different shopper predictions by reading our report. As at all times, I invite your questions and discussions by way of Forrester inquiry.