Posted January 26, 2015 3:15 pm by with 0 comments

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Culture VultureToday’s informative marketing post is brought to you by a misread. That’s right. I found this extremely interesting report because I misread the headline on the press release; Mindshare North America Releases Annual Culture Vulture Trends Report.

No joke, I thought it was a report about the growing vulture population in the US. Vultures – as in the villainous looking birds.

As it turns out, it’s actually a report that delves deeply into the mind of the American consumer and it’s fascinating.

Mindshare’s survey of more than 2,000 consumers led them to discover 10 trends. We’re going to look a 4. You’ll find a link for the rest at the end of this post.

The New Conspicuous Consumption:

Remember when a tiny alligator on your shirt was a status symbol? When a Nike swoosh meant you were cool but not necessarily athletic? We used to be a country that craved logos – the more obvious the better but the Culture Vulture says that 36% of U.S. consumers dislike wearing brand logos of any kind.

That doesn’t mean we’re done showing off . . . .

Rise of Good Intentions:

An increasing number of people are interested in contributing to a good cause but they’re not about to contribute anonymously. They’re using social media to post their Ice Bucket Challenge videos and Kickstarter donations. What that means is that worthy causes will go unfunded if they don’t have the flash. But if you can come up with a clever twist that goes viral, you can raise money to help wayward aliens find their way home. Eat M&M’s for E.T.!

If you try it and it works, I want my cut.

Unbundled:

Marketers once taught us that we could get more for our money if we bundled. Cable and phone; accessories with the iPhone; get the shave and the hair cut and save 10%.

In 2015, one size no longer fits all. Instead of bundling for a discount, consumers say they’d rather pay to get exactly what they want – no more and no less. From cars to pizza; customization is in.

Age of Shallow Knowledge:

“A third of Americans feel pressure to stay up to date on the latest news, but don’t have time to read all the articles they want.” To get around that, 47% of those surveyed said they prefer to just skim the headlines rather than read the full article.

When you add small, mobile screens into the mix, it’s even more important that marketers front load their selling points. No more waiting until you reach the end of the article for the big punch. Give it to them straight at the top of the page and if they want the details, they can keep reading.

Marketing Is A Game:

This one made me laugh.

More and more consumers have grown savvy to everyday marketing tactics, and now they’re gaming the system. For instance, 31% say “when shopping online, I’ll intentionally leave items in a ‘shopping basket’ in hopes of receiving a discount from the store…”

It appears that we’ve trained consumers all too well. They know our tactics and they’ve learned to take advantage of them. I’ve tried the abandoned cart trick on numerous occasions. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t; but if I’m not in a hurry to buy, it’s worth trying.

It’s up to you if you want to reward this kind of behavior or not. I wonder what would happen if the abandoned cart email said, “sorry you left items in your cart, we were going to give you a 20% discount upon checkout but now you’ve blown it and will have to pay full price.” I doubt such an email would encourage customers to return but it would get you a mention on a marketing blog like this.

For the rest of the trends, check out the free Culture Vulture Report from Mindshare.

(*I know E.T. loved Reece’s Pieces but M&M’s for E.T. has a better ring.)