It’s 2014 and the majority of people are still feeling the pinch from the 2008 credit crunch and subsequent double-dip recession, despite reports on the news telling us that the economy is on the up.
With wages fixed and energy bills continuing to rise, more than ever, consumers are being very careful about how and where they spend their hard-earned money.
From a marketer and small business point of view, targeting the cautious, post-recession customer with a TV advertising campaign requires careful consideration.
Here then are some tips for successfully marketing your brand in these tough economic times.
Characteristics of the Post-Recession Consumer
The characteristics of the post-recession consumer according to Benoit Tranzer at Millward Brown are:
Cautious Spenders – After the credit crunch many people had to learn how to tighten their belts and budget their weekly and monthly spending very carefully in order to stay afloat. Impulse purchases became less commonplace and as a result many people started to appreciate that less really can be more.
Media Multitaskers – With the introduction of smart phones and tablets, TV producers and advertisers have had to learn how to compete with the ‘second screen’ and make their ads appeal in a world where the populace are bombarded with different media from the moment they wake up, right until they go to sleep.
No Brand-loyalty – A study by the Pew Research Centre in the United States found that 71% of Americans said that they have switched to less expensive brands or supermarket home brands as a result of the recession. Where once before consumers sought satisfaction and status from the brands they purchased, this trend has begun to fade out as consumers’ concept of ‘value’ has shifted.
Socially-conscious Shoppers – According to research from Nielsen, 66% of American consumers say they prefer to buy from a company that has implemented programs which give back to society, even if that means paying a premium.
Tips for Targeting the Post-recession Consumer
Although the post-recession consumer is still in some ways forced by their circumstances to make wiser purchasing decisions, they still desire products and services that add ‘value’ to their lives. In order to target these consumers, TV advertisers should consider the following strategies;
Appeal to Their Emotions
A technique that many charitable organisations favour in their direct response television (DRTV) advertising campaigns is to appeal to their target audiences emotions in order to get them to pick up the phone. They can be seen to use emotional storytelling techniques to make viewers feel sympathy. Charitable organisations also present their information in a problem/solution scenario, to make readers feel like their contribution makes an impact.
After scrimping and saving for so long, consumers enjoy feeling like they are getting some added value with their purchases, in the form of a reward. Portraying your product then as a well-deserved ‘treat’ will hopefully convince viewers to respond positively to your DRTV campaign.
Utilise the Second Screen
Many consumers are now in the habit of reading reviews and finding out more about their chosen purchases online before they buy. Brands should take advantage of this by not only mobile optimizing their websites etc… but also, for example, considering things like twitter hashtag campaigns, in order to make their ‘Calls to Action’ at the end of adverts appeal to the audience’s creativity and imagination.
If you have any more tips for TV advertising to the post-recession consumer, please leave a comment below.