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The New Consumerism: Redefining Ownership, Values and Priorities

March 2016

As consumers reassess their priorities and increasingly ask themselves what they truly value, a host of major consumer trends have emerged: from the sharing economy to the preference given to experience over possessions, to frugal innovation and trading up and down. This shift towards new priorities is impacting across a multitude of industry sectors and has the power to transform even the most established markets.

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The birth of a new consumerism

Today's consumers are redefining their values and priorities leading to the birth of a new consumerism. This new consumerism unites many of the key consumer trends of our time and these trends share many of the same drivers. The sharing economy is all about supply and demand

Connecting people and businesses....

....with the resources to those that want them, removes market inefficiencies, empowers consumers and has disrupted, or has the potential to disrupt, a wide range of sectors

Reduce, reuse and recycle

The circular economy is one where everything is reused and nothing is wasted. It is the antithesis of the linear build, buy, bury, model of a one-way stream of raw material to factory, to user, then landfill.

Experience more

Experience is the prioritisation of doing, seeing and feeling over having more stuff. The trend is more than this though, with many consumers seeking to do something different; searching for unique, often personalised experiences.

Time: A crucial commodity

More and more people are willing to buy time. This is about more than just convenience, but increasingly about outsourcing tasks. Time has become a luxury in today's connected world. The ups and downs of consumption

Compromise now to "splash-out" later

Think of Chinese tourists staying in budget hotels whilst spending thousands of dollars on a Louis Vuitton handbag. UK shoppers heading in droves to discounters Lidl and Aldi, whilst growth in the UK's luxury goods sector has also begun to strengthen.


We are seeing a range of interwoven trends, sharing common drivers, which combine to impact on a whole range of industries. 

Some have the potential to disrupt entire sectors; much as we have seen the sharing economy impacting on the travel industry, others have a more gentle, but no less, transformative effect.


The new consumerism: the search for maximum v alue
Consumers as they see it…
Waste not, want not
Drivers in common

The sharing economy

Supply and demand
Sharing answers many consumer trends of our times
From retailer to strategic partner
The start-ups disrupting consumer goods sectors

The Circular Economy

Reduce, reuse and recycle
What is driving the move to a circular economy?
The road to zero
Eliminating the idea of waste


Experience more
From conspicuous consumption to conscious consumption
Have we reached “peak stuff ”?
Mindfulness: A booming industry

Buying Time

Time: A crucial commodity in today’s world
Technology can supply the luxury of time
Wearables : The ultimate in convenience tech ?
All hail the robot chef

Trading Places

The ups and downs of consumption
Where do consumers’ priorities lies?
Private label innovation
Super premium adds benefits

Frugal Innovation

The bare essentials
Drivers of frugal i nnovation
Achieving more with less
Frugal innovation at its best

Space for life

Small can be beautiful
Smaller living spaces have a large impact
Form and function
Compact and flexible

The gig economy

The end of the job for life
Work-life integration: the end game?
Engaging and retaining the workforce at IBM
Connecting those who can with those who can’t (or won’t )


The search for maximum v alue
What do you need to know?


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