What comes next for consumers, brands and retail?

29 April 2020

The world changes forever post Covid-19, but how, and what is required to win in the ‘new normal’

The words ‘new normal’ are being used everywhere at the moment but what is it going to be and how do businesses plan now to succeed in the future?

Whilst the world remains gripped by the Covid-19 crisis, we’re beginning to turn our thoughts to what the post Covid-19 world will look like and how businesses can succeed going forward. It’s difficult to predict exactly what the ‘new normal’ will be but it’s likely to be driven by two factors:

  • Time: How long government social distancing measures are in place will drive how consumers behave, because it enables new habits and behaviours to be embedded
  • Unwinding Process: How governments unwind the measures put in place and how long that takes will drive consumer thinking and behaviour

Jill Ross, McCurrach Group CEO shared her view on what businesses need to focus on to be future ready, “Covid-19 will be a profound moment of economic and social reset. As consumers, shoppers and employees, we will all emerge from Covid-19 with renewed values and personal priorities. For business, the new economic reality means facing into an environment of low consumer confidence. But new realities bring new opportunities, and businesses can continue to be successful in tough economic times. Speed, agility and purpose will be critical, and those businesses that implement a strategy early will be the ones who succeed.”      

Gordon Neil, McCurrach Group Strategy and Marketing Director shared his view, ‘What we’re seeing with Covid-19 is an acceleration of trends that were already slowly developing. For people, areas like Agile working, Omnichannel shopping and buying local were already developing trends, but Covid-19 is forcing faster change that will last forever. In business, we are seeing an acceleration of brands in the middle of each sector disappearing. The common factor is that the brands disappearing are ones that were already in difficulty, either financially or because consumers had lost interest or confidence in them. Covid-19 and the economic reality that follows will see the survival of large businesses who are financially able to cope, and thriving small/local businesses who have a clear point of difference. It will also force the much-needed revolution in bricks and mortar retail, entertainment and leisure, because consumers will need reasons to be drawn back to those spaces.”

Over the next four weeks we will explore our views on the post Covid world and how businesses can poise for success through four lenses:

  • Consumer and lifestyle: How consumers will behave, what will be important to them, how they will work and how they will shop
  • Cities and High Streets: The chances are cities and highstreets will look and behave differently, including physically and in terms of gatherings of people
  • Shopping Environments: We’ll look at the shape of shopping environments and how bands operate within that
  • Store of the Future: The role of bricks and mortar retail will change, so we’ll explore what that’s going to look like and how brands can help traditional retail succeed and win for them

We hope you join us over the next few weeks as we explore the above lenses through the eyes of different sectors, channels, and markets. Follow our LinkedIn page to be kept up to date with our latest content.

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