Are We Now Marketing To A More Compassionate World?

This questioned was addressed and answers were put forth and discussed during a Calgary Marketing Association(CMA) Webinar on Tuesday, May 28.

The CMA has been offering timely, relevant and we believe applicable marketing content since March 31st, shortly after Social Distancing was put into place. Around the same time, Anstice Communications surveyed anglophone Canadians to understand how our current crisis has affected us and how it will change Canadians going forward. Dr. Mark Szabo, Director of Insights & Engagement at Anstice Communications presented his findings as a means to educate and better arm marketers on how to adjust the way we communicate with our clients, customers and markets during and after restrictions are lifted.

From these findings, and specifically as a result of this webinar, Dr, Szabo shared with us his top 5 AHA’s:

  • Back to Basics: 67% of respondents Strongly/Agree that the basic aspects of life are now more important because of this crisis. The basics include family, human connection, altruism, practical support, essential services, public-mindedness, less materialism, freedom of movement, simplified lifestyle, access to outdoors, and quality and longevity in products.
  • Consumerism is Cancelled (or on pause): When asked to rank expectations of brands they support, the highest priority, by far, is Be Compassionate to Staff. The next priority is Live their Values Beyond the Product, followed by Demonstrate a Local Connection and Helping Me Live My Own Values. Comparatively less important is Easy Online Purchasing and Connecting with Me Individually. In terms of spending changes they expect to make post-COVID, respondents said the following: Save & Prepare (44%), Necessities First (38%), Spend Less (28%), Not Sure (15%), Meaning Over Things (9), More Charity (4%), etc.
  • Energy Matters Again: 43% of respondents Strongly/Agree they have a new-found respect for people working in the energy sector and only 14% Strongly/Disagree. Reasons included Their Work Ethic, Essential Services, Risking Their Lives, Unfairly Vilified. Similarly, 50% of respondents have a few-found appreciation for their utility provider.
  • Working from Home is a Mixed Bag: 34% of respondents have worked from home during the crisis, 57% of those would like to do so more often, and 14% would not. The highest priority challenges respondents face are not technical, but interpersonal. They ranked their challenges in this order: Missing Basic Human Connection; Difficulty Coordinating Task Items; Hard Time Keeping Myself Motivated; Challenges Collaborating and Brainstorming; Reasons to Get Dressed and Be Presentable, followed by Access to Files and Documents, and Video Conference Technical Challenges.
  • Now It’s About Strangers: 38% of respondents Strongly/Agree that they feel more altruistic to strangers now. Interestingly, 27% report a renewed sense of religious faith, and 37% did not.

Jan Wood             &             Dr. Mark Szabo


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