CPG Marketing Trends: Consumers Plan To Stay Thrifty, Says NPD

Food and beverage marketers need to be mindful that consumers intend to continue thrifty behaviors well after the recession, according to market research organization The NPD Group.

NPD said that many consumer behaviors that emerged during the recession could be set to continue for the next six to 12 months.

Nearly one in five American consumers expect to be worse off in a year’s time than they are today, and half expect their financial situation to stay the same. The report also said that 90 percent of consumers intend to be cautious about spending on food outside of the home.

The NPD Group is not the only market research organization to suggest that recessionary behaviors are likely to continue. A survey commissioned by ConAgra released last month found that most consumers (79 percent) still did not feel that the recession was over, and 71 percent said they planned to continue the savings habits they acquired during the economic downturn.

And the Nielsen Company has said that coupon use is likely to continue despite a growing economy, presenting growth opportunities for or manufacturers and retailers that know who to target with coupons and how.

How can you take advantage of the frugal consumer trend?

  1. Promote your free offers with local media.  Local media is picking up on the frugal consumer trend and turning it into editorial features. Local newspaper online versions are promoting free or great sales. Doing a sampling event? Running an incredible feature at retail? Offering a great coupon online? Promote it to the local media.
  2. Use online coupons to drive more efficiency. If you look to FSIs as your main coupon source, I sure hope you have a senior-targeted product. A staggering 51 percent of newspaper readers are over the age of 50. Even on Sunday, it’s 48 percent. Twenty of the top twenty-five newspapers have lost significant circulation since 1990.I believe FSI shoppers are deal shoppers and will switch brands at the sight of a good coupon, which means your marketing dollars are going to be lost at the sight of the next competitor coupon. Online coupons allow you to target your offers to a more likely loyal buyer and have shown redemption rates of more than 20 percent.  I challenge you to test online and you will find you can generate higher results with the same spend as an FSI.


Brad is an expert in private label and challenger brand food marketing for Barkley, an integrated marketing and advertising agency. He specializes in working with manufacturing-driven food companies that have aspirations to develop a consumer insight-led strategies to help drive innovation and growth.

Comments are closed.