The new consumer power in a communication led world

Wed, Apr 27 2016

In the last few years, we have witnessed how technology development has influenced consumer behaviour and started to take more control. While ten years ago, traditional commercials dominated the media and appealed to the consumers’ emotions leading them to buy the products they were advertising, today’s scene is very different. There is more “x” in the equation now; more factors that we need to consider when we launch a campaign if we want to cause a real effect in our target markets.

As a company you might have had your target market identified for years, you know your public and you know the product/service that they want, but do you know how they want to be reached? Do you know the more effective ways to get your product to them? Because you can have a great idea, offer a revolutionary product or an amazing service, but if you don’t know how to properly deliver this to your audience, then it’s not going to work.

We need to realise that the communication industry has changed so much in the last years and keep changing so fast that sometimes it’s difficult to catch up. Consumers have more power now, thanks to the Internet, social media and the new technologies they have access to limitless amounts of information.

They can now:

  • compare really quickly if your product/service is better than your competitor’s;
  • ad-block you if the information they are receiving bothers them or isn’t too interesting;
  • find the best deals within seconds and they can complain out loud and be influential with their opinions online;
  • take advantage of technologies and control of the power; and
  • evaluate products and services more actively, they don’t need the brands to put the commercials out there because if they want something, they go and look for it. Besides, their purchasing behavior is smarter and more knowledgeable, they have more information about it, reviews etc. and they know how to look for more options.

This is another important point of the consumers’ behaviour evolution: the feedback.  The post-purchasing process has become more effective; shoppers evaluate products and services more actively, adding and removing choices from the market all the time, which influences other shoppers. This feedback pressures brands to deliver better products and a superior experience on an ongoing basis. We are starting to see how small and big companies are becoming more innovative and advertising themselves in more creative ways, they want to attract buyers giving them something different, not only in what they offer but also in how they do it. This kind of promotional action stays longer in consumers’ mind and it will “pop up” when they proceed to buy.

As brands we need to adapt constantly our businesses to the new changes that occur in the market, and as consumers we need to keep pushing the companies to offer as the best quality of products/services along with competitive prices because we have the power to move on with a simple “click”.

Author: Berenice Ruiz, Marketing and Communication Intern, Public Relations Institute of Australia.

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