Because we generally stay out of traditional political polling, we had the luxury this week of NOT obsessing about James Comey or the dumpster fire that is our political landscape right now. Thoughts go out to my political pollster friends. I don’t envy you.
No, we got to spend our time studying things like avocados, cheeseburgers, avocados ON cheeseburgers, and virtual reality – which seems more appealing than real reality at the moment. Here are a few of the more interesting things we saw this week.
Look for good sales numbers from McDonald’s in the coming weeks. Consumer interest in Mickey D’s new Signature Crafted sandwiches looks uncannily similar to numbers we saw before their all-day-breakfast launch. It’s unlikely we will see a boost that big – mostly because the breakfast diner is an entirely different cat – but McDonald’s should see a noticeable jump in visitors. A secondary finding in this research: People like bacon. Somebody alert the press.
Rising avocado prices are unlikely to scare away their primary consumers. About 10% of Americans eat avocados at least a few times every week, a number that has been steadily on the rise over the past two years. The good news for avocado growers is that avid eaters fall at the higher end of the income spectrum. A $.30 or $.40 increase won’t move the needle.
The socio-political landscape seems to be impacting Sprint more than other wireless carriers. Since the November election, the percentage of Sprint customers who say they are at least somewhat likely to change carriers has increased from 14% to 19%. Why? Sprint customers over-index heavily as Democrats – and we know Dems have demonstrated significantly lower consumer confidence since January. As we’ve seen in other categories, this cohort has become increasingly price sensitive and ‘long-term-contract-averse,’ as a result.
Virtual Reality device ownership has doubled since last July but it may not break through the virtual ceiling. Respondents in our database who reported owning a VR headset jumped to 11% of U.S. adults, up from 5% last summer. Product intenders, however, remained in the single digits, suggesting that VR may not break the magical 15-20% barrier that plagues most early-adopter tech (see: Smartwatch, Smart Home, Virtual Home Assistant, Paid Music Streaming).
People are paying a lot more attention to fashion trends. Since 2015, the percentage of people who say fashion trends impact what they wear “a lot” increased two-fold. This shift is directly attributable to the proliferation of social media platforms like Instagram and Snapchat, which ratchet up our sense of peer pressure and keeping-up-with-the-Joneses mentality. But what the hell do I know? I’m still wearing the same jeans and T-shirts to work that I wore ten years ago.
Most importantly…brace yourself…
49% of people crack their knuckles, 29% of people bite their nails, and 13% do both. They all skew heavily male, Gen X, and Hispanic (Hispanics are two times more likely to do either). No need to thank me for that earth-shattering insight.
Hoping you’re well,