A social conscience is worth its weight in gold

Insight

A social conscience is worth its weight in gold

From Amazon’s personalised experiences to Lidl’s culture-shaping communications, UK retailers are experimenting with many levers of Participation. As a result they are successfully eliciting high levels of consideration, purchase intent and brand love. But in a commoditising category, there is one performance measure that’s even harder to shift: price premium. What does it take for shoppers to be willing to pay more to shop at your store? The answer: a conscience.

Evidence

High levels of category innovation and provocation continue to drive feelings of excitement around Lidl. The personalised experience delivered by Amazon is translating into high levels of love for the brand. Ocado’s digital model has high levels of intrigue among shoppers (but a lack of brand presence means this isn’t translating into usage). But for UK retailers wanting to charge a price premium versus their competition the most important thing is to have a Passionate Purpose that shoppers believe in. There is one specific lever more powerful than any other: being visibly bothered about the brand’s impact on society. Amongst 25-55 year old women, the connection is even more pronounced. And it’s the likes of Waitrose, M&S and IKEA who are most successfully delivering against it.

Implication

Caring about your impact on society is no longer a luxury for a brand, but it could turn you into more of a luxury brand. For conscious consumers in the Participation Era, positive social impact is directly connected to shoppers willingness to spend more with you.