The Gist: Over the past several quarters, we’ve seen a significant rise in socially conscious consumers. As we’ve observed in our past research, many of these consumers are willing to put their money where their morals are, which makes them a valuable audience across multiple verticals.
Since Q2 2016 (before November’s election) we’ve seen a consistent rise in socially conscious consumers. In fact, 36% of consumers currently say that a company’s social consciousness is “Very important” in choosing where to shop and what to buy. The last time we reported on this data, the number of socially conscious consumers stood at 29%.
It’s rare that we see a spike this large in such a short period of time, but the data don’t lie. It wouldn’t be a stretch to purport that the election and the current political climate are forefront contributors to this trend. Look no further than how people reacted to controversial ads from Pepsi, merchandising decisions at Nordstrom, and a litany of other examples since President Trump took office. People are hyper-sensitive right now and it’s affecting their brand affinity and shopping behaviors.
It’s worth noting that we’ve noticed this increase in social concern across all generations, with the most prominent shifts stemming from Millennials (18-34) and Gen Xers (35-54).
WHAT IMPLICATIONS DOES THIS HAVE?
The dramatic rise in socially-conscious consumers, who say that they are very driven by corporate social responsibility, should be a signal to today’s businesses and marketers. To attain these important customers, valuable products can only go so far. Taking a stand, one way or another, may be a prerequisite for any company in the current world order.