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Meet the new consumers

What will influence the consumer of tomorrow’s purchases? What kind of brands and products will they be more attracted to? Every company, sustainable or not, is wondering about its market future consumption trends and how to respond to them. Among these trends, the rise of “conscious consumers” cannot be ignored. That’s why BBMG investigated and now publishes their results in a new report, “How New Consumers Will Revolutionize Brands and Scale Sustainability”. Here are their key findings and correlating illustrative graphics.

The economic crisis, a “moment of opportunity”?

According to {{LNK|BBMG|}}, the economic crisis seems to have created a “moment of opportunity” for sustainable brands and products: “A growing number of consumers are re-thinking their priorities by asking what really matters and creating new ways to do much more with much less”. New consumers will be part of what is called the “value generation”: pragmatism and sense of purpose will be their main drivers. Sustainable innovation and co-creativity will become the imperatives to interact with these consumers and respond to their needs.

“In the second decade of a new century, the marketplace has rarely seemed more uncertain – or more promising”. A decade that is promising indeed for those companies who emphasize sustainable consumption.

Meet the new consumers

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here is the explanation of what the new consumer will be:

This consumer will be twice more likely than others to:
• Adopt sustainable products or services
• Reward, punish or influence others based on company practices
• Blog, post, rate and review products or services

Its core values will be, among others, honesty, relationships and “doing good”; its purchase drivers quality (83%), health (80%), energy (78%) and packaging (73%), right before the value of price (72%).

Eric Ostern, from Unilever, is quoted: “Consumers who are voting with their dollars are creating the tipping point. Consumers are now shaping business rather than the other way around. Businesses that are tapped into the new consumers will be sustainable and [still] be standing 20 years from now”.

Takeaways for sustainable brands

In a second part, the report gives good tips for companies wanting to respond to those new consumers’ needs:

1. Deliver total value: “New consumers want it all […]: products that work well, last longer, cost less and, hopefully, do some good”
2. Paint a bigger picture: New consumers “extend the context of their decisions outward to include their community, nation, world and the planet”
3. Be their champion: “New consumers are taking control”
4. Make more out of less: “New consumers want simplicity and meaning”
5. Invite them in: “Participation is the new consumption”

If you want more details about these 5 recommendations and sustainable consumption in general, the full report is available for you to download at the end of this article. You can also attend the {{LNK|Sustainable Brands '11|}} conference in June. Besides, BBMG created a website to exchange about sustainable consumption: it is called {{LNK|The Collective|}}. Don’t hesitate to check it out!

But what about you? Do you already make decisions about consumption with sustainability in mind? Have you ever talked about an ethical brand or a company sustainable practice on any social media?

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