The empowered consumer paradox

There have never been more channels to reach consumers yet paradoxically, engaging them is increasingly difficult for brands and retailers.

The empowered Consumer / no gated

As of 2019, in an Internet minute, 188 million email messages are sent and 3.8 million Google search queries are processed. On mobile phones, 18.1 million text messages and 41.6 million WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger messages are sent in the same time span. And in 60 seconds, 87,500 Twitter users post tweets while at the same time 347,222 Instagram members scroll through content


Challenge of engaging the new consumer

Reaching consumers should be relatively easy in the digital age with all of these and many more channels, yet it is increasingly difficult to truly engage them. Today's empowered consumers have access to an unlimited array of offers across borders and time zones. They communicate with one another on social media platforms, sharing observations on purchasing experiences and product quality, even posting details like snapshots, instruction manuals and brand or retailer correspondence. Beyond price and product considerations, labor standards and environmental impact are factors that can influence their purchasing decisions.


An indifferent, brand-neutral demographic

Despite the expanding array of ways to connect with consumers, it’s actually becoming more challenging. Their selective, discerning buying behavior is especially evident in young Millennials and Generation Z. A 2019 study commissioned by Swift Prepaid Solutions suggests that young people born after 1990 exhibit greater price sensitivity and less brand loyalty compared to previous generations. According to survey findings, 60% of the young Millennial/Generation Z demographic is less inclined to care about logos, demonstrating no special preference between name brands and private labels.

The survey also found that consumers from this demographic are influenced mainly by friends and family when forming opinions about brands. Because they spend a significant amount of time on social media platforms, they expect retailers to reach out to them on their channel of choice, preferably through a personalized consumer experience. This implies customizing communications based on the convergence of many factors, which can be challenging for brands.


The promise of data analytics

To better gauge consumer interests and channels of predilection, leading fashion players capitalize on accurate data metrics to gain useful insight into demonstrated purchasing behavior and product preference. This enables them to devise new strategies of engagement on the basis of incentive and loyalty. The opportunity for brands and retailers to grow their customer base lies in reaching consumers across channels, by appealing to both their purchasing criteria and their user communities. By unlocking the actionable insight of consumer data, brands and retailers can make more informed decisions to maximize the impact and value of their marketing communications.


Read our e-guide to find out what it takes to win over empowered consumers.