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The Changing Consumer

What we, as human beings, need now has changed significantly from where we were three months ago. As lockdowns lift around the world, there are many personal decisions for consumers to make, which collectively will have huge implications for the economy.

People are adaptable and will soon adjust to “the new normal”, but the implications of this pandemic will be long-lasting. Consumer anxiety is likely to last for a considerable time. Brands need to find new ways to support and target these evolving and shifting consumer groups.

Many consumers will be desperate to return to what they perceive as ‘normal’, and will rush back into their former lifestyles as soon as possible. For some, reduced income or reassessed values will drastically change how decisions are made, and for many this period will have come as a reminder of the more simple pleasures in life, such as their homes, families and friends.

At BDA London we have identified five key post-pandemic consumer groups, which are outlined below. We first highlighted these five consumer groups in our webinar The New Normal: The Changing Consumer. The complete recording is available here.

Considered Consumer

The considered consumer has come to enjoy the simpler things in life through lockdown, and is seeking positive change as a result. Thriving off of a more balanced lifestyle, the considered consumer enjoys hobbies that offer a comforting sense of self-sufficiency such as baking, sewing or gardening. Key to the Considered Consumer are: Self-sufficiency, community, localism, sustainability, balance and frugality.

Bargain Hunter

The bargain hunter may have always shopped around for the best deal, or they may have shifted into this category due to economic insecurity and job losses. Reduced income globally will lead to a shift in buying behaviour, with people searching for the best, and often cheapest, solutions for their need. Key to The Bargain Hunter are: Basic needs, price, relevant deals, flexibility and security.

Forever Fearful

The worry and anxiety caused by the global pandemic is likely to continue until workplaces, retail and leisure are fully-reopened. It may in fact last long after life has returned to ‘normal’. Concerns for the environment and equality issues are strong for this group, and for some this will outweigh the fear of Covid. Key to the Forever Fearful consumer are: protection, future-proofing, trust, security, wellbeing, environment and equality.

The Maximalist

Optimistic, expressive and experimental, The Maximalist finds comfort and escapism in fashion, beauty and social experiences. This group are hopeful about future experiences, with novelty and excitement counted amongst their key drivers. Key to The Maximalist are: self-expression, identity, socialising, group experiences, travel and an optimistic outlook.

The Normalist

Accepting of the situation, The Normalist is most concerned with establishing balance. Simplicity, wellbeing and, to some degree, self-improvement are key. This level-headed and rational group will play it safe, buying less but better. Maximising in-home lifestyles, comfort dressing and products that support health and wellness in the home are key. Also key to The Normalist are: Routine, convenience, efficiency, wellbeing and balance.


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