A ground-breaking innovative research exercise designed to pinpoint the primary factors shaping consumer expectations during purchase decisions has met with enthusiastic response.
The research findings, undertaken by Ask Africa and commissioned by Ads24, a Media24 group company, were recently unveiled to the advertising industry and major advertising decision makers in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town.
“When we presented the results, we suggested that the findings could – indeed, should – revolutionise the way in which brand owners approach their markets. We suggested, too, that the conclusions could impact, especially, advertising strategies,” says Dustine Tobler, marketing services manager of Ads24.
She underlines the motivation for the exercise as one designed to increase advertising spend through “an elevated understanding of the consumer and mass social consciousness”.
Tobler says the feedback from delegates pointed to a belief that the research did indeed advance the approach to advertising to an elevated level. Thus:
Bryan Gibson, managing director, Opt!mum Media Cape, commented: “A very good presentation with very good content – great that we’re finally getting usable qualitative information rather than regurgitated AMPS data. I particularly liked the fact that it doesn’t attempt to sell Ads24 papers but takes a channel approach – research we can use to decide the best channel for a brand and not only relevant to newspapers.”
Advertising consultant Luisa Belter found the presentation content highly insightful. “It has applications beyond newspapers as it’s a good indicator for psychographic targeting in the communications field, strategic planning and the like. I loved the presentation look and feel. It was excellently put together and visually exciting.”
Ros Walsh, Marketing Manager, SA Natural Products, found that the ten key insights which were presented succinctly explained the mass consciousness trends influencing South African consumers’ engagement with brands. “They are certainly valuable insights to assist brand communications meet the current expectations and trends guiding consumers’ decisions and choices.”
Tobler points out that the prime research objective was to provide brand owners with insight into the important role mass social consciousness trends play in shaping expectations of consumers during purchase decisions.
Following face-to-face interaction with those present at consumer events, mini-group discussions, in-depth interviews and in-home focus groups, the researchers identified 10 “Truths Descriptors”*, which Tobler personifies as the “advertiser’s and band owner’s bible”.
She emphasises the finding that brand communication need not only be visible to the market but should also make a personal connection with the consumer on an emotional and rational level before a successful sale can be secured.
“Brand owners who invest in creating brand personalities for products will reap the financial rewards in the long term.”