Why consumers are focusing on value-based spending

consumer spending

Individuals want to support brands and companies that align with their independent values and beliefs. Recent events such as the pandemic have created new trends in retail and sales. Consumers want to help support local businesses and brands that align with their values. With people working from home, the need to go out with friends has lessened, meaning that consumers are spending less on average and focus on where their money is going and to whom.

A change of income means a shift in spending habits.

Many consumers are changing their focus to quality rather than quantity. Products made to last are better for the environment and for people’s wallets. With the pandemic, budgeting and only buying the necessities has become vital for many. Not spending on frivolous expenses like a $5 coffee or a $9 dress that won’t last long are no longer feasible or desirable.

Many want experiences instead of more stuff.

There is currently a push for minimalism that emphasizes creating experiences. Consumers want to have meaningful experiences and connections.

With more people working from home and spending leisure time outdoors, consumers want to feel connected from a distance. Products that are ethically and sustainably made that will not contribute to a large carbon footprint are appealing.

The 2020 EY Future Consumer Index found that 53% of consumers say that due to COVID-19, their values have changed.

The same study states that consumers will emphasize health and affordability more post-COVID-19. 30% of consumers want to live within their means, 26% value brands and products they view to be safe, and 17% would pay more for better products for the planet.

Consumers want to see action.

Consumers want to know that the brands they are supporting are taking steps to be transparent. PR and communication professionals should emphasize telling consumers about any actions that will improve their health and safety. If a brand is viewed as safe, taking steps to protect the environment and its employees, these measures should be posted publicly on social media. Consumers want to see changes being implemented and what the results of those changes are.

Humanize digital interactions.

Spending more time on technology such as our phones and social media, allows consumers to interact with brands they support directly. Digital shopping features such as buying online and picking up in-store are becoming part of the everyday shopping experience. Brands’ websites and social media channels are where potential customers are going to be deciding whether to make a purchase or not.

Emphasizing humanizing digital connections with virtual events, video content showcasing real shoppers and employees, and having an approachable online presence are all ways to humanize brands in the eyes of potential customers.

With social media, it is easy to access news and information. For instance, with people learning about the environmental and sociological impacts of product creation, more consumers want to ensure that they do not support unethical and dangerous living and working conditions for the workers who make those products.

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States. Ronn is the author of "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results with Game-Changing Public Relations."

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