Cost of living crisis: how can I protect my brand from decline?


There are going to be some big changes in the market over the next few months as consumers adapt to the rapidly increasing cost of living and especially to escalating fuel bills.

Brand Owners too will have to cope with increasing costs at a time when their consumers have fewer pennies to spend.

Predicting what this will mean for your brand and how you need to act to maintain sales and market share is going to be difficult

Consumers do not act logically, their decisions tend to be emotionally driven.

As consumers’ spending power decreases how will they react?

One thing we can be sure of is that there will be some big surprises. Some brands will see increased sales as consumers take refuge in the safe and familiar or they turn to everyday – or maybe more prestigious – luxuries to console themselves during hard times.

 We may see some brands doing very well even as their category suffers dramatic decline, while other brands experience calamitous declines out of all proportion to their category.

Consumers do not act logically, their decisions tend to emotionally driven. They may feel a stronger need for certain brands in their life while others – logically more important – are sacrificed.

The opportunity for every Brand Owner is to ensure they are maintaining the emotional link with their consumers. To find, within their own category and circumstance, the element of their brand that has the strongest emotional appeal to their consumers and ensure they are reminding them of this in communications, at the point of sale and every time that they use the product.

All colas refresh and most are cheaper than Pepsi or Coca-Cola, but the other brands are unlikely to make many inroads into the dominance of Pepsi and Coke this winter. All surface cleaners make the kitchen shine, why will consumers stay with your brand rather than move to a cheaper one?

Understanding the consumers’ emotional connection with your brand and how you can build upon it with every interaction your consumer has with the brand is more important now than it has ever been.

 Times may be tough for everyone over the next few years, but this is your opportunity to be different.

Chris Lukehurst is a Director at The Marketing Clinic:

Understanding the connections between the consumer experience and emotional responses.