As the Covid-19 situation in Thailand and many countries around the world has started to improve. The lock-downs are easing and offices are resuming operations whether in part or in full. We can’t ignore the fact that Covid-19 and the lockdown has changed the way we carry out our lives. Rather than the 9-5 – some offices have started alternating shift work and use conference call tools to sync up. Parents, schools and institutions have started looking at options of online learning and even virtual graduations.
Spacing during lunch hours at the restaurant, office lunch space or dining halls has changed dramatically. Some places even offer face shields or clear partitions to separate diners. All these led to the rise of the term “New Normal” which is expected to last. They say it will last even after vaccines or treatments have become publicly available. Why? Because the lock-down has proven that staying at home can sometimes be more convenient than going out. The Internet will become even more important for work and daily activities. More platforms are developing and adapting to meet the needs of the population. This could range from Socializing platforms to the Internet of things.
With these trends, brands and businesses must prepare to market and sell their products or services during the New Normal. Not only is more creativity needed to stand out – but online presence and distribution channels are becoming more and more a must rather than a “good to have”.
Safety in the New Normal
- People are becoming more health conscious. Personal protective equipment (PPE), medicine and nutritious food will continue to be important.
- Even after the coronavirus has been taken care of – social distancing will still likely be a norm. Everyone will likely still be on high alert with their guards on. Personal space will likely be wider and services must be clean, hygienic and convenient especially in the food and service sector.
- Consumers are likely to use more digital and online services. Whether it’s for work, school, shopping, food or entertainment. Instead of going to the mall or meeting up at a restaurant – more people are likely to opt to stay home and enjoy movies, games and food right in the comfort of their homes. Not only is it more convenient – but logistics has allowed this to be possible and hassle free.
- Individuals are likely to leave the house less often. This means that food delivery options are likely to gain traction. Restaurants and other types of services are also expected to provide convenience and slowly turn into a home delivery or onsite services.
- E-commerce and market places are projected to grow. Products that have traditionally stayed offline are having to find ways to go online.
- As more people are more weary of touching things and risking passing germs through bills and bullions. The cashless society concept will likely be fast-tracked and likely with a focus toward Contactless Payment.
- E-learning and Work from Home will stay with more platforms available to meet the demands.
- Home electronics and kitchen aids are likely to grow the multi-function capabilities to facilitate the public’s need of serving their own meals.
- VR/AR is likely to gain traction especially when people are weary of travelling. Instead of physically traveling there – VR will have to do. AR technologies can also help shoppers make the right decision before purchasing – allowing consumers to virtually “try something on” before buying.
- Online call centers or video conferencing will become more important as consumers are looking for options that allow for isolation. Rather than having a technician visiting their houses, apartments or condos – homeowners may opt to do things themselves with guidance where needed.
Finding Value in the New Normal
- As there is no crystal clear exit strategy for socio-economic situations affected by the pandemic – consumers are likely to save up for things they truly need. Rather than spending on luxury goods and entertainment – money is likely spent on daily necessity like food and toiletries. Brands – hence – must highlight the value of their products and services more than ever to stay competitive.
- Subscription model will likely be more popular as consumers may find it of higher value than before. Rather than buying a gym membership or going to the movie theater – an online subscription for a virtual gym-at-home or netflix may sound more attractive.
- While the situation all around us is stressful – entertainment is where people turn to in order to escape reality – even for a little bit. It’s a way for us to rejuvenate the mind and get refreshed. The most popular form of content is video, followed by images, and then text.
- Branded content must be worth reading, entertaining and easily understood.
- Health and Life insurance will gain traction as consumers are becoming more health conscious and looking for investment/savings alternatives.
- Increasing online demand will lead to the importance of Big Data. Collection, handling, transferring of data will be more scrutinized. More businesses and brands are likely to compete for data as well. Not only that – but businesses will look closer at return on investment to ensure that every single penny, or rather satang, is targeted towards achieving their goals.
We hope the information in this article has helped spark an idea or two to help you prepare for the new normal. Although we must admit that the situation is stressful for all but we’d encourage you to look for the silver lining. Who knows – something extraordinary may surface from this entire situation in ways that we could never have imagined. Again – thanks for tuning in and don’t forget to subscribe to our mailing list to stay updated with the latest digital trends! If you’d like to consult with us about how you can digitally transform your business, feel free to contact an Enabler.