Reeling under the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, brands will have to start afresh to win back the customers, says a survey.
The brands have lost opportunities, customers have dwindled, revenues hit an all time low and many new challenges have sprung up.
“Customers even forgot their favourite brands. For brands, winning customers back is to start from zero again,” said a survey by Janrise, a Hyderabad-based brand communication firm.
As the lockdown is coming to end and the markets are reopening, the survey on ‘lockdown and branding’ finds that reaching out to customers has to be the number one priority of brands.
“Brands will now have to adapt to new conditions. As much as the world wants to return back to normal, brands are doing all they can to maintain a strong relationship with consumers. Companies are even willing to increase their spends in advertising and promotions,” said Suman Gadde, Director of Janrise.
The survey had 61 percent of the respondents in the age group of 27-35 years and of them 42.4 percent want to first shop for kids clothes, toys and essentials. As many as 53.8 percent respondents stated hanging out with friends as their first activity while only 9 percent wanted to shop for beauty and wellness products.
60 percent respondents were in strong agreement that online shopping is the only safest option while 49 percent said that they wouldn’t be visiting a mall in the near future.
“Only 18 percent showing interest in apparel and jewellery shopping might affect malls in a big way. Restriction on usage of trial rooms and other similar factors might dissuade people from shopping at malls even more.”
The survey says e-commerce brands will have a new challenge of rewriting their delivery and returns policies, even more difficult task being how these brands communicate the changes without offending or discouraging their existing customers.
Swiggy, Zomato or own delivery systems, restaurants and kitchens will have to send out powerful messaging on hygiene and safety as assurance alone can build confidence in their customers.
More than 60 percent won’t go out to eat, 10 percent are not sure and almost all did not prefer to spend time waiting in stores for their food orders. The need to demonstrate uncompromising methods of safety followed right from sourcing to preparation to delivery becomes more crucial even for online orders.
Retailers need to step out of their comfort zones and adopt techniques that can capture customer imagination as mandatory safety measures might increase waiting time for which customers aren’t ready, it added.