Businesses and consumers have spent most of the last year adapting their behaviour to the exceptional conditions. Although the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic has not yet been won, the light at the end of the tunnel is already visible.
The year 2021 will be a year of transition; businesses and consumers will now also start making longer-term plans for the future again instead of just thinking from day to day.
As the consumer trust returns, pent-up consumption will also set in. This can almost certainly be predicted as it has been the case in all previous economic crises. This is where the level of consumer investment will have to be directly related to the depth of people’s confidence.
Since the service sector was hit particularly hard by the restrictions, it can be assumed that the greatest pent-up demand will also be found here. This will therefore particularly affect hotels, restaurants and events.
In tourism, holiday travel will once again find its place, while business travel may be asked more frequently about the necessity of it. Video conferencing will play its part in professional communication and replace many face-to-face meetings. But if it proves that companies with face-to-face meetings are more successful after all, competitors will not be willing to stand back. However, it can be assumed that the level of 2019 will not be reached again in the business travel sector.
We are assuming positively that the crisis will trigger a wave of innovation and that digitalisation will be the key factor behind this wave. In this regard, online customer service, the redefinition of logistics and the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) will be synonyms for this wave of digitalisation.
It should also be noted that the Corona crisis has once again intensified consumers’ focus on green and sustainable products.
With all foresight, however, it remains to be seen at what kind of pace and with what intensity consumer trust will recover; this will be the decisive factor that will drive the changes previously described.
However, no matter how fast consumer confidence returns, changes in buying behaviour can already be observed, especially a reduction in brand loyalty due to increased online purchases. In order to reach and engage consumers after the crisis, companies must be open to direct and personal communication.
Therefore, now is the time to focus on brand experiences again. We believe this summer will be the time to interact directly with consumers. It will be the time to show the human, physical and tangible side of a brand.
In this summer will be the time to celebrate the little things and relive social interactions.
We at ST-PROMOTIONS are right now, already planning promotional activities for our clients for this time that is coming up soon. It will be a unique opportunity to redefine customer relationships.
Feel free to contact us if you are also looking for support in direct customer engagement.