Consumers Don't Want To Be Seen As Consumers, Study Finds

People are tired of being thought of only as consumers — they want brands that understand them as humans, judging by a new study by communications agency CTP.

Of those surveyed, 64% prefer brands that cater to their personal needs.  And that number jumps to 72% among 23- to-34-year-olds. 

That means emails have to be personalized on a meaningful level. 

Shoppers are comfortable sharing basic information when they feel a personal connection with a brand. Those include name (48%), email ‘(51%), birthday (52%), personal taste like music (58%), favorite hobbies (54%).

But they are less willing to willing to provide details such as income (34%) and home address. And they are unwilling to share any information whatsoever when they feel no connection to a brand. 



At the same time, two-thirds are willing to pay a premium to brands that communicate with them on a personal level. 

In addition, six in 10 will buy more from brands that reward loyalty, and four in 10 will do the same with firms with which they have a real relationship. 

At the same time, 72% of adults who earn $100,000 or more feel they can have a meaningful relationship with brand versus 56% of all respondents. But there is a gender disparity — 73% of men ages 25-54 feel they can have such a relationship, compared to 52% of women. 

All this has led CTP to conclude that the label “consumer” no longer works.

"It's time for marketers to outright cancel the consumer," said Steve Angel, CTP's senior vice president and director of strategy. "That's what the people in this survey told us loud and clear. They want to be treated as humans, not transactions.”

CTP surveyed 1,200 consumers.


1 comment about "Consumers Don't Want To Be Seen As Consumers, Study Finds".
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  1. Chris Kuenne from Rosemark, April 1, 2022 at 9:06 a.m.

    Thank you for doing this very important piece of research.  I would only add that the dimensions of personalization you reference (name, birthday, hobbies, musical tastes) are just the beginning of making your brand personably compelling. In our work at Rosemark we have found brands that grow faster than their competitors are those who personalize their programs and experiences on the basis of the underlying motivations and preferences that drive an individual's economic value (brand choice, useage, share-of-requirements, price elasticity, etc.). It is in this manner that brands can concentrate their customer base with those best aligned with their value proposition achieving faster and more profitable growth and a more valuable consumer franchise.

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