There are three major disruptive elements in the ten trends below, and they, along with the others, will mark some of the major phenomena expected to affect consumer behavior over the coming months. Evolving demographic phenomena, macroeconomic impact and new technologies will all impact consumer decisions and change how we interact with brands. We live in a context of constant, rapid change, making it increasingly difficult to follow those currents that make it possible to successfully think ahead – but it is not impossible.
You will find below the 10 CONSUMER TRENDS 2020, we invite you to read the full report to learn more about it.
1. Consumers in crises
A decade ago, predicted this downturn in consumer habits, even after the crisis had passed. It is a fact that today’s consumers are financially limited, and that makes them more aware. They are demanding and critical, not only about what they buy, but also about the ways they live in general. The new post- (and not-so-post) crisis paradigm will continue to act like a vicious (or virtuous) cycle. In it, brands and consumers come together to consume increasingly less – and better.
Food is becoming a progressively important debate with a pandemic edge, not because of its scarcity but because of the many derivative factors. The food industry has faced in recent years growing pressure from public opinion around the world that affects all the dimensions of its value chain, as well as its own purpose.
In more developed societies, all these concerns have led to growing communities of people who love organic food, not to mention flexitarians, vegans, vegetarians, raw vegans, ovo-vegans… These groups, along with many others, will feed the conversation on a different vision of food, one with environmental, economic and geopolitical implications.
3. Forever young
The area expected to see the greatest growth is beauty and anti-aging products, especially those that include cannabidiol (CBD) in their formulas, as it has an antioxidant action that promises small miracles for the skin. In addition, plastic surgery is evolving, moving from anti-aging to well-aging. In this, the focus is on looking for symptoms of tiredness and stress. Undoubtedly, these trends offer a wide range of opportunities for companies that want to reach consumers increasingly obsessed with preserving youth at all costs.
“L’Oréal aims to move closer to consumers and become a Beauty Tech. We are living in an increasingly digital world, with changes are occurring at an ever-faster pace. In our Beauty universe, digital tools help us go beyond the product and provide increasingly personalized services to consumers.”
Patrick Sabatier, Communications and Institutional Relations Director (L’Oréal)
4. Brand Consumers
Technological advances, combined with savvier customers with better judgment, means consumers are now running their own experiences, using brands as tools to get what they want.
This capacity to influence product and service development, as facilitated by new and fast technologies, supply and delivery chains, social media channels and hyper-connectivity, consumers are also beginning to create their own entertainment content.
5. The era of prediction
The increasingly digital relationship between consumers and brands has led to much more empowered consumers. Now, they have a deep-rooted expectation that brands can and will identify and respond to what customers want. Facing the challenge of immediately satisfying new needs inevitably requires strategies that allow brands to predict and anticipate these future needs.
Predictive analysis uses science to predict what will happen tomorrow, anticipating everything from what customers will want to how the market will work and what the most important trends will be. Brands now have a unique opportunity to use these predictive techniques to anticipate the future and be the first to respond to rapidly changing and evolving consumer expectations.
6. Retail Reborn
Not so long ago, many of us spent much of our lives at the mall. Many malls continue to be profitable and prosper despite the increase in ecommerce. And of all the advantages of physical stores, the human factor plays a fundamental role.
In this respect, for some chains the concept of an intelligent store is more about “facilitating staff” than drastically reducing them, which is what many brands opt to do in order to cut costs. It seems that the challenge for retail success in the digital age is to make visiting a store a convenience, and what’s more, to go back to when stores were a destination.
“In recent years, there have been dizzying changes in the retail sector. This is due to a consumer who is more demanding and connected, prioritizing immediacy and access to different digital channels. Companies have needed to incorporate technologies that allow them to better understand their consumers, putting their experiences at the center of the whole business operation, but above all, moving their strategies toward omnicanality.”
Soledad Ponce, Senior Marketing Manager (Almacenes De Prati)
7. Post-generational Activism
From digital initiatives to scenic art and social commitments, consumers are turning to all forms of expression and public participation to spread the message about change and raise awareness. The current popularity and emphasis on activism have attracted more followers, with one of the reasons for this being the “aging” of social media. More older adults are participating as active users, making social activism not merely the terrain of the young and blurring the ages of those who take on a cause as their own.
Social activism is, for some senior citizens, an occupation that allows them to use their life experience, skills and knowledge for social and community wellbeing, providing opportunities to go beyond the occupations traditionally seen as appropriate for them.
8. A new calm
It is estimated that by late 2020, around 50 billion mobile devices will be connected around the world. Societies collective push to be increasingly connected, which appeals to factors like productivity and efficiency, has driven these same people to seek a “time out” from this overload of fast-paced information. Many are tacitly asking for an escape route from an information age characterized by the anxiety of social media.
In the case of brands, this same phenomenon gives rise to calm marketing. This no doubt suggests the start of a paradigm change that has been building up over the last several years, one in which the excess “noise” people are exposed to has led to a major leap in traditional marketing strategies. What we think of as “spam” will be increasingly notable among brands that cannot break away from that “noise,” as well as those that do not court consumer attention through entertainment, information and personalization (based on their interests rather than just their needs).
“Attracting consumer attention is increasingly complicated. It is key to adapt to their interests and understand their concerns to get as close to them as possible. As a token of that, we at Multiopticas launched ‘Screen Pollution’ to help society fight a real problem: Screen abuse. Our goal is to prevent possible negative consequences of this exposure on eye health and raise awareness.”
Javier Sanchez, Marketing Director (Multiópticas)
9. Human Search
The last barrier separating technology from people will fade away with voice and visual search, as these align with our innate ways of perceiving and communicating. The information most relevant to brands is that early adopters of voice and visual searches will see their benefits rise in 2021 by 30 percent over those who do not get on board. It The hackneyed saying that “every brand and institution needs to be able to find its own voice (and image)” has, ironically, become self-fulfilling. Now, it is literally a necessity.
10. Luxury Consumers
The purpose of luxury consumers will no longer be what used to come to mind when we thought about the hard-earned purchases of these kinds of items. This is not only thanks to the fight for democratization mentioned above, but also because of the need consumers in countries like China, with its emerging middle-class, feel to buy products by western brands.
This new consumer as someone who is informed, connected, sensitive to prices and interested in other buyers’ evaluations. They like to self-promote, live in search of instant gratification and are unconsciously safe.
Hugo Valdez Padilla
Jon Pérez Urbelz