The current speed of change in technology calls for brand experience makers’ attention to some big questions. Whom are we talking to? How do our consumers articulate their identities around emotions, causes, and communities? Why would they engage with brands, and what do they expect from them?
From an agency perspective, it is time to acknowledge the death of the classical globalised marketing brief. We are now faced with fluid consumer identities that require us to take a localised but long-term approach. The goal is to empower our client’s brands to take an active role in consumers’ lives, habits and journeys. This is why we’d like to take you through some of the key factors influencing global trends, identify and explore the key personas to watch, and share some inspiring cases by brands that are capturing the spirit of these exciting times.
The push and pull factors.
Being rebellious with one’s thoughts is the new cool. Consumers realise the gravity of the global situation but are actively seeking out the stories and facts that humans have created in helping our world. The feelings of joy and elation are pushing through the constant never-ending social and news feeds of doom and gloom. Why? Because progress is being made. We are aware of it and creating awareness around it.
Focusing on positivity is becoming more important than the product factors or USPs that make the sale.
The need to upgrade, self-motivate, or self-improve, has drained this persona to realise that they do not require further optimisation but rather a balance of what the have versus what they need. Self-improvement pollution has led to low self-esteem and a comparison culture. Allocating time for their requirements is a priority, and not how and where brands tell them to improve.
Being the calm eye of the storm of the yoga-like retreat in Bali for these consumers is a way to win the balance they so desire in their hearts. Through calming experiences, even in-store, a brand needs to bring them down to their balanced feet, rather than tell them why they are falling over.
Rooted in their communities and building new community belief structures, this persona is all about “us”, “we” and “our”. Local is the only way they see sustainable and meaningful growth, and without their neighbours, this is impossible for a fulfilled life. Time together creates more productivity than time alone. Fiercely protective and supportive, they strive to build localised utopias and sustainable lives that matter to us all.
Customer experiences are created by supporting localised commerce, and markets, resulting in the community benefitting from micro-investing. Helping build connections without an obligation will let brands set up wholesome experiences proactively nurtured by the community.
Despite the uncertainty of the world, this new persona is embracing ‘celebrationism’. This notion of constant joy and happiness is driving a hyper-connected pack of well-doers and well-wishers, participating in new customer experiences such as experiential dining, pop-up museums, festival culture and traditional amusement and entertainment.
Celebrating achievement is the focus, no matter how big or small. Customer experiences focused on pure emotions will float their dreams.
Research, benchmarking and tracking brand developments give us the relevance and differentiating factors to steer brand narratives through strategically positioning customer experiences.
As increased digital pressures elevate issues such as
loneliness and ‘selfie esteem’ into high-priority concerns, holistic wellness becomes increasingly important for all GENs. They crave moments of calm, and actively seek out brands that go out of their way to offer support in an emotionally complex world.
Sport England has shown this with its ‘This Girl Can’
campaign using advertising and marketing to push the right emotional triggers resulting actual drive in change of behaviour and routines. Beyond the digital they have pioneered female only sporting experience centres and hubs, where girls, moms and grandmothers can interact exchange and get moving toward a healthier life.
Younger consumer groups are not looking for one-offs with their favourite brands. They expect commitment not only to great customer service but also to sound principles and fair play. The best experiences are not just memorable, they are replicable, repeatable, and never lose their sparkle.
Should you be interested in finding out more about these or other topics, do get in touch with our editorial team.