Consumer Behavior Monitor

With the increase in easing, we see that the Netherlands is moving again. And the mobility sector is benefiting from this: purchases of personal means of transport (car, bicycle, scooter) are on the rise. We also see that audio is on the rise, especially among young people. Both podcasts and a relatively new live platform like Clubhouse. Because of all the affaires concerning personal data, especially people in their 30s and 40s are more sensitive to communication concerning privacy.

Government relaxations cause shift in consumer behaviour

Since this week, society has opened up a little more: we are allowed to stay on the terrace longer, we can go to amusement parks, open-air museums and the gym again. The influence of this on consumer behaviour, which we already signalled a fortnight ago, continues. Now that we are going out again, we pay more attention to our appearance.

Willeke Brokking, CMI Lead Benelux at Unilever: "We have seen that personal care products such as shampoo and conditioner have sold much less since corona. Apparently, by sitting at home so much, people wash their hair a lot less often."

Now, however, such purchases are likely to increase. In our Consumer Behaviour Monitor, for example, we see that the number of people who have spent money on fashion has increased in recent weeks. While the group that spent money on streaming services and offline hobbies is decreasing. Another trend, which applies to virtually all product categories, is that fewer people are orienting themselves purely online with regard to a purchase, and more and more people are doing this in physical shops. This also applies to the actual purchase.

More purchases of own means of transport, preferably in physical shops

One of the sectors that benefits from the switch from online to offline and the opportunities to get out of the house again is the mobility sector. We want to go somewhere more often and want to get there as quickly, easily or cheaply as possible. A product category in which we clearly see the shift towards more offline shopping is personal means of transport (car, bicycle, scooter). When people want to buy a new means of transport, they increasingly do so offline. This group of consumers has increased from 30% to 40% since the end of March. The group indicating that the purchase of a means of transport is not applicable, has decreased in the same period from 32% to 16%. Consumers are more open to the purchase of a means of transport and prefer to go to a physical shop for this.

Older people spend more money on their own means of transport than younger people do. However, about half of the young people are orientating on a new own mode of transport and they do this both offline and online. For the younger target group, it is therefore important as a brand in the transport sector to be present both online and offline.

Cathelijn te Koppele, Insights Consultant at Validators: "Less and less Dutch people (want to) travel by public transport because of the corona crisis. A large part of the youngsters does not have their own means of transport yet, but the need for this is increasing. This is particularly relevant because they are going on holiday in their own country more often and are going to natural areas for walking and cycling. The offline shop remains very important for young people. Whereas social media serves well as a means of promotion, a physical product such as a car or electric bicycle still needs to be tangible."

Growing popularity of podcasts offers interesting advertising opportunities for brands

Spotify gained more customers in the last quarter of 2020 than they actually expected. How did this happen? Because of the increasing popularity of podcasts, if you Spotify itself ask. Also in our own Consumer Behaviour Monitor we see the popularity of podcasts, especially among young people. Almost one third of the Dutch people between 18 and 34 listens to a podcast at least once a week. This is twice as much as the average in the Netherlands, which is 16%. This relatively new medium type offers brands interesting advertising opportunities. Recently, networks such as Dag and Nacht Media have found ways to make the production of podcasts profitable. Brands can have their ad heard at the beginning, in between, or at the end of the podcast. It is also possible to be a sponsor of a podcast. Then the hosts of the podcast discuss your brand during the podcast. Because the podcast is a type of medium that generally gets a lot of attention, this means quality exposure for your ad and brand.

Another interesting form of audio to keep an eye on is the Clubhouse platform. One year after its launch, no less than 15% of young people listen to this platform at least once a week; the average in the Netherlands is 8%. The platform revolves entirely around live audio. Via Clubhouse, users can have conversations in real time and listen in on conversations. The app was for a year only available for iPhone, but is now also launched for Android. This will probably lead to a rapid increase in users.


Privacy and processing of personal data important issue for 35-54 year olds

Podcasts and apps like Clubhouse fit in with the shift to the digital world. In this world, we can no longer escape leaving personal details behind wherever we go. The recent reports about the benefits affair, data leaks and other privacy-related mishaps have clearly had an impact. Specifically for the 35-54 age category, we see that the number of people who attach importance to communication by brands about privacy and the processing of personal data has risen sharply since the end of March, from 13% to 22%. This makes this topic the most important one for this age group, after health, sustainability and corona. By carefully dealing with privacy as a brand and communicating this clearly, you can remove barriers for this age group to purchase your product or service.

Do you also want free access to the Consumer Behaviour Monitor? Then sign up now.