Porter Novelli survey suggests opportunities in reaching fickle consumers

NEW YORK: Porter Novelli released an analysis identifying the top 10 holiday shopping trends and key consumer behavior for marketers to watch this holiday season.

NEW YORK: Porter Novelli recently released an analysis identifying the top holiday shopping trends and key consumer behaviors for marketers to watch this holiday season. The analysis is based on data from its annual ConsumersStyles survey completed in August, which segmented four consumer groups, including impulsive (34%), savvy spenders (17%), bargain hunters (26%), and want-it-buy-its (23%).

Of the top trends, Michael Ramah, partner and director of strategic planning at Porter Novelli, points to the “Decidedly Undecided” - consumers who want to buy but don't know exactly what they want - as particularly relevant for PR professionals. He said it's an opportunity to focus on experiential marketing such as pop-up retail.

“How can we make that more exciting and engaging and play to the adrenaline rush of the sale?” he asked.

Another trend the survey found was what the agency calls, “All in for Next-Gen.” It suggests that marketers should “bundle the old with the new,” based on high expectations for new technologies that “bundle” capabilities, such as Blu-ray players, smartphones, and HDTVs.

“Ultimately it's about store retailing, how to put together retail value proposition from a story that's relevant…[and getting the] consumer to think differently about a product,” Ramah said. "With a new application that's not exciting, don't focus on the application, focus on when you bundle it into something else and what it allows you to do,"

The PR industry also needs to find ways to tap into unmet needs by finding new ways to talk about them, Ramah said.

“We went from [consignment for] people of lesser means to designer consignment, a fundamental repositioning of something that was around for long time," he said. "We need to take the mundane and make it desirable.”

Cause tie-ins are one way to boost a product's appeal for consumers that might be undecided on a purchase, he added.

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