Direct-to-Consumer Disrupts How Brands Engage with their Customers

While Direct-to-Consumer Brands are not new, the way they are challenging retailers by radically reorientating consumer expectations is ground breaking. Big and small brands of all kinds have embraced this model as consumers seek authentic and engaging brand relationships in an increasingly virtual and digital world.

In our latest survey we look at how some of Asia’s Direct-to-Consumer brands have succeeded in reimagining relationships and changing perceptions of convenience, quality and trust.

Successfully cutting through the noise

A Direct-to-Consumer brand’s success depends on its customer acquisition strategies, these successful brands manage an online presence across multiple platforms, building and growing a loyal base of followers that both support and believe in the brands key messaging.

Direct-to-Consumer brands prioritise customer engagement combined with their ability to be far more agile than traditional brands when adapting to new trends among consumers.

Staying current and responsive to their consumers has allowed successful Direct-to-Consumer brands to grow rapidly and achieve the reach that most retailers lack.

From Yours skincare is a good example of this, 58% of our respondents were the most aware of this Direct-to-Consumer brand compared to Sugar skincare (25%), Saturday spectacles (25%), Pomelo Fashion (17%) and Mejuri jewellery (8%).

More is needed to reach audiences

There was a split between most of our respondents when asked how often they see advertising for Direct-to-Consumer brands, 42% claimed to not see them very often, while the other 42% did. Only 17% claimed to see Direct-to-Consumer brand advertising regularly.

The most popular channels were online ads (75%) and on social media (83%).

Larger and established brands have an advantage when dedicating more resources towards developing their Direct-to-Consumer channel, brands like Nike and Xiaomi have both seen enormous success in this area, with forecasts for Nike as high as 30% of all their sales will be coming through this channel by 2023.

Changing Consumer Perceptions

A strong preference for Direct-to-Consumer brands is suggested in our survey with 92% of respondents claiming a preference towards purchasing directly from the brand itself rather than going through a retailer.

84% reported that it was likely they would even try a new Direct-to-Consumer brand, however only 42% were somewhat trustful of new Direct-to-Consumer brands. New brands contending for market share need to be wary that 75% of the consumers we surveyed still regard that established brands products are superior in quality.

Reimagining the consumer journey in a changing retail landscape, with more customer centricity using a direct approach, simplifying purchase and logistic processes, while embedding social proof in multiple parts of the purchase experience is likely the recipe for success.  

To learn more about consumer behaviour and trends reach out to us. 

The effects of the Great Resignation felt in Asia

What first began in the US with a staggering 4.3 million people quitting their jobs since January this year, a trend that can be described as a shift in our collective attitude and approach towards work. In our latest survey among workers aged between 18 and 50 years of age we found that while the trend has taken on in Asia, its effects are not the same as in the West. Our findings suggest that workers are conflicted between reconciling the pre-pandemic era’s status quo with today’s new normal. 

Just as businesses were forced to adapt to the new way of working (operating digitally and remotely), workers have also had to adjust to new demands and challenges from both their bosses and their customers. 

Retaining and engaging employees throughout these changes has been a particular struggle that many companies have yet to overcome. In our survey, only 30% of our respondents felt “highly satisfied” with their current job. 

Looking for a pay raise

40% of our respondents claim to be looking for a new job. The motivation for at least half of them is to “earn more money”. 

The level of inflation in most countries has been higher than the rate of increase for salaries. Even in the US, the consumer price index rose by 5.4% in 2021, but many Americans did not receive a 5.4% increase in their salaries. 

This could explain why financial renumeration is prioritised by most workers looking at changing jobs. 

Remote working preference 

We received mixed responses from those we surveyed about their views towards remote working. While 60% somewhat agree that remote working has made them more productive, around 50% showed a preference for working full-time in the office, the rest were also split between a hybrid working model and working fully remotely. 

Video conferencing and other digital tools that help us to collaborate remotely can only go so far to make up for the lack of sense of comradery and office culture possible when working together at the same location. 

Re-evaluating career and personal goals

Over 60% of our respondents claimed to have re-evaluated their career and personal goals in the past 6 months. 

Surprisingly 80% of our respondents would prefer to run their own businesses if given the oppourtunity. Perhaps the Great Resignation in Asia could result in a flare of entrepreneurial spirit with more small businesses and start-ups. 

To learn more about consumer behaviour reach out to us.

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