Alcone Marketing Group – Consumer Lab

The Consumer Lab is the consumer insights and brand strategy group at Alcone Marketing Group, a consumer activation company.

Articles of interest for Wednesday, August 26, 2009

From this week’s Harris Poll: Four in Five Americans Made Cuts to Personal Spending Due to Economy http://tinyurl.com/ll6mtg

As the economy has suffered over the past year, one area where consumers have been impacted is in their spending. Four in five Americans (79%) say they have made cuts over the past year in their personal spending due to the economy. One-third (32%) have made a lot of cuts while almost half (47%) have made some cuts. Just one in five Americans (21%) have not made any cuts in their personal spending due to the economy.

 

From the Hartman Group: Spending Once, Giving Twice: A New Twist on an Old Practice http://tinyurl.com/m9brgm

Prepaid gift cards have seemingly become the perfect answer to the age-old question of “what to give” for any occasion. Created as an antidote to what some view as mindless consumption, charity gift cards take the ritual of giving and align it more closely with what is believed to be a more considered decision.

 

‘Recession Shoppers’ Pursue Value, Not Just Discounts http://tinyurl.com/l8nufa

Researchers have found that as economic duress presses down on wallets, online shoppers increasingly scour the internet for the best value on their purchases, not just low prices, MarketingVOX reports. In essence, “Value is the new black,” proclaims the study by Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates.

 

U.S. Consumers Feel Loyalty Reward Programs Not Relevant http://tinyurl.com/maykou

According to consumer survey research released by Direct Antidote, far too many mailings, emails and Facebook messages that companies send to their loyalty reward program members miss the mark. Only 32% of U.S. consumers rated reward program communications 8 or higher on a 1 to 10 scale for measuring relevancy to their personal needs, with 68% giving a score of 7 or below.

 

From Progressive Grocer: Fewer Consumers Can Afford to Buy Healthy Foods: Survey

According to a recent survey by Chicago-based food industry research firm Technomic, the recession is playing havoc with shoppers’ access to more nutritious foods. The survey found that while over half of consumers are more concerned about what they eat today vs. a year ago, 70 percent said that healthier foods are increasingly difficult to afford, 53 percent said they often buy less healthy foods because they’re cheaper, and 44 percent say their budgets keep them from eating healthier foods.

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Filed under: caused based marketing, economy, gift giving

Consumers Trade Down from Restaurants to Grocery Store Prepared Meals

Consumers Trade Down from Restaurants to Grocery Store Prepared Meals

In a recent Nielsen research report forecasting the upcoming
holiday season, consumers reported that practical gifts will
dominate shopping lists this year and food items and gift cards to
grocery stores will be big sellers.

Filed under: economy, food, gift giving, shopping

“Paper” or Plastic? Gift Cards and the Changing Face of Gifting

The Hartman Group, Inc. : HartBeat

Environmental issues may be forcing grocery stores and other retailers to rethink and replace one type of plastic (the plastic bag), while plastic of another kind, the prepaid gift card, is quickly supplanting “paper” as the gift of choice for a majority of American consumers.

The gift card market is a multi-billion dollar industry. Prepaid gift cards have seemingly become the perfect answer to the age-old question of “what to give” for any occasion. Extending beyond other old-fashioned forms (e.g., cash, checks, paper gift certificates) and morphing to include diverse categories (retail, phone, books, movies, music, debit/credit) gift card buying and giving continues to gain in popularity.

According to Gift Cards Purchase & Redemption, Pre-Holiday Outlook 2008, a report by The Hartman Group, Inc. and A National Research Network (NRN), nearly three-quarters of Americans have either purchased or received a gift card over the past year. Gift cards change how consumers shop for any number of gift-giving occasions, the most important of which is the holiday shopping season.

Filed under: gift giving, holidays

Father’s Day Lament: ‘No Mon, No Fun, Your Son’

] Fewer consumers–70% versus 77% last year–plan to buy one or more
gifts this Father’s Day. Furthermore, they’ll spend $115 on average, or 8% less
than in 2007, according to the 2008 installment of an annual survey conducted
by Brand Keys. This year, so few reported planning to buy dad a computer that
this item didn’t even make the list.

~A

MediaPost Publications – Father’s Day Lament: ‘No Mon, No Fun, Your Son’ – 05/29/2008

The sinking economy affected Mother’s Day spending a bit, and it looks like it’s going to hurt fathers even more.

Fewer consumers–70% versus 77% last year–plan to buy one or more gifts this Father’s Day.

Filed under: Consumer, economy, gift giving, holidays

Shoppers Plan To Cut Back On Mom’s Big Day

One exception to the new conservatism is jewelry. While the NRF poll
found that fewer shoppers overall will buy mama some bling (29.7% versus 32.8%
last year), they’ll spend much more when they do. Overall, these shoppers
expect to spend $2.7 billion, compared to $2.1 billion last year.

~A


MediaPost Publications – Shoppers Plan To Cut Back On Mom’s Big Day – 04/23/2008

Looks like that Mother’s Day bouquet may be a little less lavish this year. A new survey from the National Retail Federation (NRF) finds that consumers, while still planning on buying gifts for Mom, will tone it down a little. Consumers say they plan to spend an average of $138.63 this year, down 51 cents from last year. Total consumer spending is expected to reach $15.8 billion.

Filed under: Consumer, economy, gift giving, Moms

Scrooge, Cupid Hook Up As Recession Bites Romance

Only 61% of men plan to buy a card, for example, compared with 69% last year,
and only 40% will buy candy, compared with 44% last year. Flowers and
perfume–also V-Day standbys–both came in flat, at 49% and 6%, respectively. A
few smaller categories registered slight gains, including fine jewelry (12%,
compared with 10% from last year), lingerie (8%, compared to 6% from last year),
and clothing, up to 7% from 5% last year.

~A

MediaPost Publications – Scrooge, Cupid Hook Up As Recession Bites Romance – 02/11/2008
A NEW SURVEY SHOWS THAT while many retailers are hoping Valentine’s Day might provide a much-needed sales spark, consumer spending may well be more frugal than passionate.

While men say they are planning to spend a little more than last year —$95 compared to $92 in 2007–women are cutting back, and say they intend to plan to spend just $67, compared with $74 last year, reports TNS Retail Forward, a consulting group in Columbus, Ohio.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Filed under: Chocolate, Consumer, Fragrance, gift giving, holidays

Major Retailers Feel the Squeeze From Consumers

Once seemingly invincible marquee chains like Coach, Starbucks and
Abercrombie & Fitch are settling for ho-hum growth this winter.

~A

Major Retailers Feel the Squeeze From Consumers – New York Times
As the nation’s merchants began poring — or weeping — over holiday sales receipts Wednesday, a surprising pattern emerged: even brands that for years have inspired the undying devotion of shoppers felt the pinch of tightening wallets.

Once seemingly invincible marquee chains like Coach, Target, Starbucks and Abercrombie & Fitch are settling for ho-hum growth this winter, after surpassing even the most rosy expectations season after season.

Though they sell very different products, at very different prices,
these companies all shared the same bragging rights. Their customers
considered them indispensable, even expressions of who they were.

But in this turbulent economy, the indispensable is becoming disposable.

Filed under: clothing, Consumer, gift giving, holidays, luxury, shopping, trends

Holiday Shoppers Greened Up Their Act, Survey Finds

When consumers had the opportunity, they purchased gifts to fit their social
conscience,” says KPMG. “The ‘green quotient’ and a product’s country of origin
have become important concerns for shoppers, due mainly to recent publicity on
the environment and manufacturing issues in emerging markets.

~A

MediaPost Publications – Holiday Shoppers Greened Up Their Act, Survey Finds – 12/27/2007
BELIEVE IT OR NOT, THE economy wasn’t the only thing on shoppers’ minds this holiday. Concerns about planet Earth and global manufacturing also influenced where consumers shopped for holiday gifts this season, reports KPMG in its annual National Shopping Behavior Survey.

To be sure, the economic issues that have kept prognosticators up at night were also a major factor, with only 30% of those polled planning to increase holiday spending (compared with an average of 36% in the three prior annual surveys.)

Filed under: eco-friendly, environment, gift giving, holidays, trends

Study: More Men Than Women Put Off Holiday Shopping

More dawdling signals that consumers are worried
about money or that they’re holding out for price cuts. And so far, the
average person is delaying shopping compared with last year, but not by
much. The NRF reports that the average person has completed 52.6% of
holiday shopping, compared to 53.1% at this time last year.

~A

MediaPost Publications – Study: More Men Than Women Put Off Holiday Shopping – 12/20/2007
MEN PROCRASTINATE. REALLY! IN WHAT will surely come as a bolt from the blue to many people, men are procrastinators, especially when it comes to toughing it out with the holiday throngs at the local mall.

In a survey of shoppers about their holiday shopping plans, the National Retail Federation (NRF) finds that 19.4% of all men hadn’t even started shopping as of Dec. 11. The same was true of 13.7% of women, and 17.6% all young adults, ages 18 to 24. And a total of 25 million consumers say they have completely wrapped up all their holiday shopping, which should make for more parking places for the 35 million who have not yet begun to shop.

Filed under: gift giving, holidays, Men, shopping

Boomers discover that it’s easy being green

In a Christmas shopping season following Al Gore’s Nobel-Prize winning
activism, more consumers say they are trying to “shop green.”

~A

Boomers discover that it’s easy being green – USATODAY.com
In a Christmas shopping season in which former vice president Al Gore won a Nobel Prize for his work alerting the world to the dangers of global warming, more consumers say they are trying to “shop green.”

One in five people surveyed said they will buy more eco-friendly products this holiday and shop more at “green” retailers that make efforts to save energy and resources in their stores and operations, according to Deloitte, a consulting firm.

Filed under: Baby Boomers, Consumer, eco-friendly, environment, gift giving, holidays, shopping, trends

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