CivicScience continually tracks current and anticipated consumer trends. Here are three key insights marketers should know this week. All insights are derived from the CivicScience Social | Political | Economic | Cultural (SPEC) Report, a weekly report available to clients covering the latest news and insights. Get in touch to learn more.

1. Americans overwhelmingly find it important to live somewhere with laws and cultural norms that are in line with their personal values.

The recent Supreme Court decisions on abortion, LGBTQ+ rights, and other social issues have contributed to a growing discrepancy between blue states and red states. Given such polarization, it’s unsurprising that CivicScience’s latest polling reveals an overwhelming majority, 90% of U.S. adults, consider it at least ‘somewhat important’ to live where local laws and cultural norms match their personal values. While 49% of the Gen Pop believe it’s ‘very important,’ that percentage jumps to 60% among Republicans – 15 percentage points higher than Democrats and Independents. 

In a deeper dive into factors swaying where Americans decide to live, nearly half (48%) cite either cost of living or family/friends living nearby among their top three factors. Meanwhile, close to one-third list the alignment between local laws and personal values as one of their most important considerations. They’re also more likely to prioritize personal values over employment/educational opportunities, history in the area, or available entertainment options.

Those living in urban areas are focused on slightly different priorities – city-dwellers are less likely to say their place of residence was influenced by family or friends living nearby, and more likely to list employment opportunities as a top reason why they live where they do.

2.  Video streamers prioritize new/ongoing content amid Hollywood strikes; Gen Z looks to content creators.  

As the simultaneous writer and actor strikes continue into September, just how much are consumers missing the production of new shows and movies? Quite a bit, it turns out. When considering which video streaming services to subscribe to, consumers say the selection of new movies and ongoing TV shows is more important than the catalog of older movies and shows, by a margin of nearly 2 to 1. This could only intensify platform competition for subscribers amid a growing sense of subscription fatigue.

Younger adults are more likely than older adults to say the back catalog of out-of-production content is the most important factor when choosing which video streaming platforms to use. Either way, many viewers are still embracing reruns – 50% of American streamers say they rewatched a show or movie they’ve already seen before in the past week, compared with 54% who watched something new (to them). 

Another potential avenue for fresh entertainment amid Hollywood strikes? Independent content creators. Online platforms (including YouTube, Twitch, Patreon, and OnlyFans) allow users to pay a recurring subscription fee directly to creators and influencers in exchange for access to additional content or other benefits. This trend is particularly popular among Gen Z adults, with over 80% at least following creators on these platforms, and nearly half report holding a paid subscription to at least one content creator.

3. Small and local businesses look to play an increasing role in holiday shopping this year. 

This year, more Americans are leaning towards doing their holiday shopping at small businesses, independent shops, and local boutiques. Compared to early September 2022, consumers are three percentage points less likely to opt for discount stores such as Walmart and department stores, and six points more inclined to support smaller, locally-owned establishments for more of their holiday lists. It’s important to note, however, that these consumers who plan to shop locally, in particular, appear to be especially wary of products prone to dramatic price increases

Interested in an in-depth look at the data featured on these topics, along with additional consumer insights from this report? Schedule a meeting to see how you can gain access to the full SPEC Report sent to clients every week.