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Brand switching grew during pandemic - Why?

39% of Consumers tried a new brand and 34% bought from a different retailer during the pandemic vs pre with >80% of each intending to continue using them. [McKinsey Consumer Sentiment report]


That's a notable amount of brand switching.

Below chart shows REASONS FOR TRYING A NEW BRAND, with interesting differences by age cohort:

  1. "Value" is # 1 and most important for all cohorts -- this isn't surprising, price/deals predominantly drive switching at any time

  2. "Availability" is #2 with high importance for Baby Boomers. I expect this to grow in next few months with continuing supply chain issues

  3. "Purpose driven" (sustainability, supporting local businesses etc.) and "Better Quality" were priorities for Gen Z/Millennials to try new brands

  4. "Convenience" was major reason for Gen X and Baby Boomers to switch during the lockdown

Bigger brands grew in the beginning of the pandemic as they elicited more consumer "trust" during the huge time of uncertainty, but in 2nd half 2020 into early 2021, McKinsey notes small and midsize companies regaining sales growth (including Private Label)

It will be interesting to see how this evolves in 2022 and which brands are successful in driving consumer switching and retention and how!

Brand trial by demographic cohort during pandemic
Reasons for trying a new brand
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