After years of economic austerity, are consumers set to loosen the purse strings a little in 2014? For marketers, it is important to plan ahead and to understand how consumers are likely behave in the coming year.
Many marketers spent a large proportion of 2013 planning ahead and analysing the data that they collected from consumers during the year. Whilst some of this data will allow marketers to develop strategies that can be personalised to consumers, one still has to pay close attention to the statistics and figures being debated within the industry. Many believe that consumer spending is about to make a dramatic increase, others are being a little more pessimistic.
What does the future hold?
Christmas 2013 saw a record amount of online shopping with as many as one in five purchases in December being made online. This increase has created an optimistic outlook for 2014 with consumers becoming more confident allowing marketers to regain their enthusiasm and rejoin the ideas world. However, whilst the UK economy may be recovering slowly, this is not necessarily going to be the case for the global economy as the Euro-zone continues to threaten the recovery.
There has been much debate over the exact figures. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has predicted a rise of as much as 2.4 % while Richard Nicholls, head of intelligence and economics at Future Foundation has predicted a mere 1.6 % increase in consumer spending.
The focus for 2014
In recent years, consumers have lost trust and confidence in many businesses and brands. Recent consumer surveys are still pointing towards consumers being hesitant in their spending. The main focus for marketers in 2014 has to be brand building, offering consumers something they can trust and believe in again. As a result of austerity, consumers are far more critical of special offers and promotions and marketers will need to find ways to promote their businesses in authentic ways.
It is going to be crucial for marketers to review the ‘big data’ they have collected and pay real attention to what consumers are saying to ensure they get their strategies right. According to research by the CIM, marketers across the UK are generally more positive now and more than a third of marketers questioned by the Confidence Monitor expect ‘an increase in spend in their marketing budgets for 2014’.
So things look like they’re on the up for marketers in 2014. It is fair to say that there finally looks like there may be a light at the end of the tunnel this year for consumers and marketers.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our marketing predictions for 2014, only time will tell if they come true! An article written by Baker Goodchild; be sure to visit our Twitter and Facebook social media profiles.
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