Shoppers aren’t going back to “normal” so plan ahead
Many of the behaviors that people have adopted over the past few months will become habits, so brands, retailers and other businesses can stop waiting for things to go back to pre-COVID “normal.” Our CEO Rebecca Brooks writes about how to be proactive for the future when it comes to shopper behaviors in her latest article for Forbes: “Brands Must Meet Shoppers Where They Will Be Tomorrow.”
Changing behaviors have been overlaid with other massive shifts, not the least of which have been unrest and amplified conversations surrounding social justice issues. Combine everything together and our research shows that the “collective psyche” has been irrevocably transformed, with “46% of people experiencing high levels of anxiety about their family’s physical health, and 38% saying they feel more stressed across the board.”
Rebecca writes that businesses must be proactive in acknowledging this change in sentiment and habits, and find ways to “create meaningful experiences, powerful comfort and unwavering stability for customers.” She outlines a few key actions that brands can take such as prioritizing transparency and providing a steady flow of information to customers, including what is being done to address COVID and how a business is supporting its employees and community.
She also says that businesses can play a strong role in helping build consumer confidence in a time when people are anxious about nearly every aspect of their lives. “It’s up to brands and businesses to do everything possible to put audiences at ease in order to make purchase decisions easier.”
For retailers, physical changes to the space where shoppers are engaging with products (in-person or online) can help to create comfort and warmth. Stores will need to balance in-person experiences by fostering a welcoming atmosphere alongside increased attention to safety protocols that will address persistent worries about personal interactions.
She concludes with “The reality is that there will never be a return to exactly how we did things before COVID hit. Brands and businesses need to meet this moment: those who will win the recovery aren’t those planning for a return, but a renewal.”
For the complete article, visit: https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesagencycouncil/2021/03/03/brands-must-meet-shoppers-where-they-will-be-tomorrow/
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