Following the abrupt disruptions of the pandemic, people emerged in 2021 with a realization that some changes weren’t temporary after all. This prompted a sense of introspection and a reevaluation of their values and lifestyle choices. As a result, they looked for more comfort and ease in their lives, and shifted their focus to the things that matter most to them.
People have endured many waves of change globally and locally over the past two years. As people try to embrace new unknowns in their lives, they’re reexamining former lifestyle choices, once-familiar ways, and the comfort of established routines.
In a recent survey, half of consumers in APAC said the pandemic inspired them to reevaluate what was important to them in life,4 with the most significant shifts in priority towards their approach to finance and savings, time with loved ones, and a greater sense of self-care and “treat yourself” mentality.5 Emotional wellbeing is predicted to be a key focus for people in 2022 as they gravitate towards emotional acceptance and dedicating time to feel.6
From small, everyday upgrades to more major life decisions, searches are showing how people are taking stock of their lives and assessing how closely their choices are aligning with what truly matters to them. Such significant, widespread shifts in life priorities among consumers should be studied closely by brands. The changing core values and priorities of people are often powerful indicators of how they will behave as consumers.
It's not just customers that businesses need to care about. Given how many people are reassessing their careers in APAC, employee satisfaction and wellbeing should be top priorities for attracting and retaining top talent for businesses. And with Gen Z making up the latest wave of young professionals entering the workforce in Vietnam, it’s an opportunity for brands to understand their passions and embrace them.
As people spring-clean their lives, there’s a window of opportunity for businesses to reconnect with consumers. How can you convince your customers to continue to make your brand a part of their new lives? How will you show that your brand's value aligns with their newfound priorities?
Acceptance of a blended life
Even as restrictions ease, it seems a blended way of living is likely to remain. Signs point to a semi-remote future of work. According to Accenture, APAC is readier than other regions to adopt a hybrid working model.7 Searches reflect this adaptation to a more flexible future as people begin taking charge of their own time and space, particularly at home.
Reevaluation of finances
We see people changing the way they view their finances. While some looked for ways to put their savings to work through investments, others searched for deals, discounts, and ways to stretch their dollar. Ahead of 2021’s holiday season, most shoppers planned to either buy less or hold off on buying gifts until they were on sale, due to COVID-19’s impact on their finances.8
Self-care, introspection, and the reevaluation of lifestyle choices
Consumers today view wellness through a broader lens, valuing physical, emotional, and mental health. As people reevaluate their lifestyle choices, we see introspection and consideration for holistic wellness playing a bigger role in their decision-making processes.
From reactive behaviors and short-term solutions, to a greater acceptance of our new blended lives, searches show that people are emerging from the pandemic with updated priorities. As people reevaluate their choices, brands and businesses should also be updating how they show the value they can offer, not just externally to their customers, but also internally to their employees.
"The next decade will be defined by a state of accelerated disruption. In order to enable people to achieve better, more equitable outcomes in the face of increasing disruptions, businesses need to stay curious and cultivate a desire to understand what works - and, more importantly, what doesn’t - to uncover and refine their understanding of users’ true needs."
Today, as shoppers in APAC look for the brands that best align with what they need and value, up to 75% are buying from newly discovered brands rather than familiar ones.9 As consumers look to be empowered and confident about their purchase decisions, Search ranks as a top touchpoint for providing them with relevant and helpful information.
Tap into the power of Search and automation to grow your brand’s discoverability.
15% of queries every day are brand new searches.10 By broadening your keyword match type to Broad Match with Smart Bidding, you’re able to automatically adjust your campaigns to capture the different ways consumers are looking for your products, and act on new opportunities that arise.
When consumers research, they don’t always have a specific product in mind yet. Responsive Search Ads can put your product in the spotlight with personalized ads that are relevant to the shopper.
Create data-driven marketing cycles to keep up with evolving needs.
An adaptable advertising strategy allows you to act on what matters most to consumers in the moment, and adopt a test and learn approach for sustainable optimization.
With the new Insights Page in Google Ads, you can forecast and capture demand with insights tailored to your ads business and identify product offering growth opportunities.
Get inspired by APAC industry leaders, who share how an experimental approach helps their marketing strategies stay data-driven and agile, and turn uncertainty into business growth opportunities.
Nestle Milo Vietnam, for example, embraced experimentation to enhance its customers' digital experience through a full-funnel approach driven by first-party data. The brand experimented with a wide variety of marketing assets and extensions and tested them for optimal exposure across Search, Display, Video, Gmail and the Discover feed. The test campaign drove 40% incremental conversions at a 63% lower cost per conversion compared with campaigns on other channels.
Consider owned, direct-to-consumer channels (a brand.com and app property) that can enable you to build a bespoke brand presence and experience, and showcase your brand values and consumer offerings without compromise. They also give you the freedom to experiment and evolve your platforms to make your brand stand out even more.
Recognize the importance of purpose beyond pay.
Nurture your employees as internal stakeholders and representatives of your brand.
Coca-Cola Vietnam released an uplifting video recognizing its workforce's accomplishments in the fight against COVID-19. As part of its #ForTheHumanRace campaign, the brand thanked employees in the video for their resilient spirit and contribution to support local communities across Vietnam.