Mindshare research explores the evolving power dynamics between consumers, brands and media
The power dynamics between consumers, brands and media are changing and evolving.
The digital transformation has given the individual access to the platforms and the power to stand up for what they believe in – on an unprecedented scale. Online communities are thriving as consumers share their opinions and the democratising impact of digital media means that anyone with an online connection has a voice.
Consumers are more frequently and collectively demanding brands drive purpose and positive change, leaving nobody safe from call-out culture and backlash for less ethical decisions.
Mass movements demanding radical change such as the BLM movement and the growing intolerance of unsustainable and unethical practices are just a couple of examples of this new power dynamic, which is being expressed in every aspect of consumer’s lives, including their purchasing decisions.
Mindshare’s latest research found that 40% of consumers globally have been more involved in activism and supporting social causes, with 63% buying from brands and companies with caring, ethical and transparent practices, 51% preferring global companies that play an active part in their local community and 48% recently switching to buy environmentally friendly products.
The new empowered voice of the consumer means people are finding it easier to spread information, share their opinions and fight for causes they care about. Our research found that 42% of people join online communities and groups to share interests with other people and 56% of people say they like to ‘pass it on’ when they see or hear something interesting about a brand. Today, peer recommendation is the currency of influence.
There is also an increasing awareness of the power and impact that digital platforms, particularly social media platforms, have on people’s lives and both brands and consumers are demanding that these platforms protect users from harm. We found that 66% of people think that digital platforms have too much control of people’s data/information, with younger populations (18-34 years) more aware of this power dynamic and 42% thinking about deleting or closing their social media account.
Consumers are more empowered than ever before, with 64% of people thinking that brands should be more involved in activism for social causes and that no brand is safe from call-out culture or potential backlash. This rise of empowerment enabled by connectivity is disrupting the status quo and challenging people, brands and media to drive purpose and positive change.