Aussie consumers look to brands to drive sustainability

New consumer research reveals that Australians now understand that that buying new products all the time, even those marketed as a greener alternative, is not sustainable. Consumers are looking for creative ways of extending the lifecycle of products, a trend termed as ‘Extending Life’.

The Consumer Trends Report 2022: Rebound + Rebalance report, launched by consumer insight agency InSites Consulting, reveals that seven in 10 Australian consumers are keen to follow this trend, and the percentage is even higher amongs NextGen consumers.

“In this inter-COVID time, we found that young generations are eager to re-start their lives by looking for new ways to stimulate their senses, connecting more inclusively and just having spontaneous moments of fun and escapism,” Joeri Van den Bergh, NextGen expert at InSites Consulting and London Business School certified alumnus of the Sustainability Leadership and Corporate Responsibility executive course, said.

The research identifies 10 consumer trends that will define the attitude and behaviour of consumers globally in 2022. Australian consumers are on a par with the global average score for the ‘Extending Life’ trend, but are in front of many of its APAC neighbours including Singapore, Thailand, and Taiwan.

“We know from previous studies that Aussies look to brands for help in taking care of the planet; and the ‘Extending Life’ trend is further evidence of this,” Van den Bergh added. “Brands should look to help Australian consumers extend life cycles and minimise waste in creative but sustainable ways.”

Lily Charnock, Culture + Trends Director at InSites Consulting, said that the research was conducted to because most consumers had not expressed the level of happiness expected from the extra spare time the COVID-19 pandemic had gifted them.

“Global upheaval and changing work-life routines have intensified our complex relationship with time, leading to a collective review of how we spend it,” Charnock said.

“Amidst the ongoing uncertainty, people have prioritised small moments of joy and living for today. Yet, as we enter a new year unsure of what’s to come, we search for stability by setting long-term goals. It is this duality – balancing pleasure against purpose – that we all seek to fulfil to achieve happiness in 2022. The trends identified in this report are driven by a collective desire to satisfy this tension.

“There is no shortage of trend reports available in our industry, and it’s often hard to grasp the value within,” Charnock added. “With our unique methodology, we not only identify trends, but contextualise and quantify them as well. In doing so, we can apply them to a brand’s business challenges, thus driving consumer centricity.”