By Amy Walters
As the world shut down and shifted priorities through the pandemic, so did quite a bit of market research efforts. Revenues became uncertain as supply chain issues pinched product availability and uncertain shopper patterns changed the way consumers buy goods and services. For our beverage alcohol clients, the pandemic’s halt in tourism led to far fewer feet through tasting room doors – fewer opportunities to forge critical personal connections. Some organizations were required to redistribute funds previously earmarked for market research toward simply keeping the lights on.
Two years later, the world is eyeing a light at the end of the tunnel with cautious optimism. Supply chains have eased. Consumers are venturing back into the world and doing so with gratitude and renewed priorities. According to a recent study by Accenture, “A full 50% of consumers say that the pandemic caused them to rethink their personal purpose and re-evaluate what’s important to them in life. Forty-two percent say the pandemic made them realize they need to focus on others more than themselves.”
Think about that from a brand’s perspective for a moment. Are you confident that consumers are perceiving or engaging with your category, your brand, your products the same way they did a couple years ago? If there is even a hint of doubt in your mind, then it is imperative you get ahead of these unknowns before your competition does.
You are presented today with a tremendous opportunity to evaluate where your brand currently stands in the minds of consumers. It is more important than ever to understand how you are perceived, relative to the competition. Armed with that knowledge, you will be empowered to deliver the branding, messaging, products, and packaging that will best resonate with consumers.
So where do you start? We’ve gathered a few ideas to get you thinking:
- First, get a read on how your target consumers’ consideration, purchase, and usage patterns have shifted over the past couple years. For example, will your brand be impacted by consumers’ newfound reliance on curbside pickup? If so, how do you make sure your brand remains top of mind when orders are placed online?
- Work out new messaging that reflects shifts in consumers’ values and perspectives.
- Rekindle previous trackers with a new benchmark wave and revise your questionnaire so it covers new purchase dynamics. Or kick off the tracker you never had but always needed.
- Test some packaging/labeling tweaks. You don’t necessarily need to make massive changes to present a refreshed image to consumers.
The Covid pandemic has unquestionably cemented itself in consumers’ psyches as one of the most defining periods of time in their lives. And the cost of your brand doing nothing is far greater than you think. Contact us today to discuss how to move forward with your research initiatives.