ADPR InsightConsumer PREvent PRPostcard FromTop Tips 25.06.2020

The new low touch economy

You may have seen that ADPR is part of the Inspire Elite network, a team of professionals that support ambitious businesses with a desire to grow and expand, by helping them to develop a winning business strategy, make the right connections, source available funding and share knowledge with like-minded successful business owners and professionals.

The team at Inspire has been offering ADPR invaluable support during these recent months, and recently they shared a report with us on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new ‘Low Touch Economy’. It was an interesting read and included some key consumer behaviour shifts that we will all have to navigate in the world after COVID-19.

The report mentioned 10 major shifts in consumer behaviour and expected outcomes. The ones that stood out to us were:

  1. A rise in anxiousness, loneliness, and depression

Unfortunately, one of the effects of this pandemic is that many people will feel more isolated. They may lose their job or become sick, or they may face unexpected relationship issues. This could even potentially happen all at once.

We can expect a rise in need for remote therapy and coaching. Certain regions already see a rise in demand for pets and animal companions. And of course online social games and tools, such as Zoom and Houseparty, are already booming and becoming part of our daily vocabulary.

two hands

  1. Damaged trust in hygiene of people and products

With the viral nature of Covid-19, consumers and organisations are becoming much more careful about the people and products they interact with. Both people and organizations will start to expect formal proof of hygiene and their current health status.

This may result in packaging redesigns, wide-spread sharing of personal health records and temperature, retail and hospitality formats with free service add-ons focused on cleanliness, a preference of science-forward products over ‘natural’ products, and contact-free deliveries and drop-offs.

person holding white plastic pump bottle

  1. Extended travel restrictions, even within a country

The travel and tourism sector has arguably seen the biggest impact as an industry. Travel feels like a risk for consumers who may not be able to get back into their home country or are unsure if they will be covered in a foreign land should another outbreak occur.

Of course, the natural effect is that local tourism will flourish. Traveling abroad may only be considered worth the effort for longer holidays when you take a period of quarantine into account. Consumers may also start combining travel with remote work and the UK’s rural areas will become more of a luxury escape.

low angle photography of airplane on the sky

  1. Optimised setups for working from home, beyond typical office jobs

Home takes on a whole new meaning as individuals and families figure out new ways to balance their work-life needs within the confines of their space. Companies tight on cash will reduce office space and infrastructure and we can expect setups at home that go far beyond a second screen. People will bring in special equipment, machines, and advanced video and audio setups to accommodate this change in lifestyle. Policies and new insurances will need to follow.

MacBook Pro on table beside white iMac and Magic Mouse

  1. Unprecedented levels of global unemployment

Many people will be forced to rethink their career, as switching to another struggling competitor in the same industry will not be an option. Remote reskilling and training will see a peak and at the same time many might switch to an entrepreneurial side-business to boost their family budget. Both options will bring valuable experience once the economy catches on at a later moment in time.

  1. The value of ‘certified immune consumers’

If your business model relies on packing many people in tight spaces, such as theatres, cruises, and festivals, it can seem that there is no light at the end of the tunnel. We will see the rise of solo dining booths or human-free interactions (e.g. robot waiters). One way out could be the rise of a new consumer segment with an official health record to prove an immune status. Would you market only to these people? That seems like quite a scary concept to us!

The full report went into greater detail on defining your business strategy and next steps, and made for very interesting reading. If you want to know more about Inspire, visit or email

You may also be interested in reading this blog about what Coronavirus has taught us about communications so far.

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