Gen X. Millennials. Baby boomers. The backgrounds and behaviors of these groups impact everything in today's world - from shopping preferences to technology adoption. Each of these groups has vastly different buying behaviors and packaging considerations, which in turn influence the design and technical considerations for each of your package projects.
The behaviors and preferences of these generations has created several distinct trends:
- Aging consumers: in the United States there are 109+ million people over the age of 52, which represents $7.6 trillion in annual spending. These consumers are concerned with living longer and healthier, so they are looking for products geared towards health, wellness and anti-aging.
- Younger consumers: on the other hand, you have a group of consumers that are accessing technology earlier and earlier and staying at home later and later. As their exposure to social media and advertising grows, so does their influence on family consumption and purchasing.
- Personalized, specialized design: “mass” production has begun to lose appeal, and instead consumers are looking for products that appeal directly to their unique personality and preferences.
- Faster shopping: since the rise of e-commerce (i.e., Amazon Prime), consumers are expecting faster and more convenient delivery times. This trend is even causing a reduction in the number of successful brick-and-mortar operations who cannot compete with such demands. Marketers are even faced with demands for real-time, virtual dialogue (via chat, FAQs, Twitter, etc.) with brands.
- Authenticity: millennials and younger generations connect with social and influencer advertising as opposed to more traditional marketing methods. This extends to packaging, as these groups look for more health- and eco-conscious packaging materials and more approachable branding.
- Diversity in flux: brands are being forced to think about the unique person, and the identity, behind the purchase. Think of the breakdown of racial and gender lines or the increasing desire for gender- and orientation-neutral products and product marketing.
- Personalization: in line with the third trend, we see individuals looking for a personalized touch to the brands with which they interact. Consumers want fast service, but they also want that experience to be customized for them personally.
- Post-purchase: the customer experience no longer ends with the purchase. Customer service, durability and sustainability after the "buy" is important as consumers utilize new digital and social channels to interact with and evaluate brands.
- Privacy and security: digital purchasing has unleashed new ways for consumers to be affected by harmful entities. Not only that, but they're looking for safety in their products: from air purifiers to online healthcare screening to product freshness.
- Wellness as a status: the trend towards health and wellness has also placed an emphasis on using overall well-being as a status symbol. Consumers use healthy product labeling, holistic experiences (wellness vacations) and wearable health trackers as a means to promote their overall health and fitness.
Learn more about how generational preferences and behavior impact packaging design. Watch our webcast now.