‘Pivoting during this pandemic’ is arguably the most frequently used phrase during our surreal days of COVID-19. As corporate executives and business owners, we all have been challenged to be forward-thinking and creative. We are reminded, time and again, that building resilience is key today, and would be the necessary quality. In Sheryl Sandberg’s book Option B, it is defined as the strength and speed of our response to adversity. But with everything that’s going on, where do we start and how do we even begin to innovate and test if we have indeed developed skills for this much needed ability?
By Pinky David
Managing Director/Founder @ PinkTank Asia
Partner/Co-Founder @ Goes Asia
WGSN, an authority on consumer and design trends, recently published The Value Shift, a white paper reviewing consumer sentiments and identifying new drivers that are topmost in today’s changed world. Having an awareness of these and understanding them are most helpful in navigating our constantly evolving circumstances, both personal and professional, during these unprecedented times.
Financial Anxiety: The tough economic climate will drive low-impact consumerism and a desire for products with purpose and longevity.
Health Concerns: Wellbeing was already under the spotlight but add in the fear of physical and mental safety concerns – and with self-care a rapidly growing industry – it’s little surprise that this is a critical consumer sentiment.
The Loneliness Syndrome: A pervasive issue pre-COVID-19, loneliness has been driven by the switch from physical to digital connectivity and an increasingly desynchronised society. Post-pandemic ‘quarantainment’ will increase, becoming a new multigenerational normal.
Quest for Truth: Prior to the pandemic, inaccuracies and falsehoods became a battleground in an increasingly partisan and post-truth world. The Coronavirus has put a premium on truth. Keeping consumers reliably informed has never been more critical.
Safety Fears: From social and political unrest to the global pandemic, safety and security is the great demographic and socioeconomic unifier. We are seeing a rise in collective trauma that is making the sanctuary of the home more important than ever.
WGSN offered the following five Resilience Strategies:
Add Value by creating not just own-value ranges and affordable lines, but also think multipurpose and multifunctional products — and for beauty and household essentials, go big.
Deliver Wellness for consumers who are health-conscious and looking for holistic solutions, addressing diet, beauty, fitness and home hygiene.
Gain Trust for consumers who value truth. Be clear, open and honest about your supply chains. Take corporate social responsibility seriously and show you care.
Promote Togetherness and inspire community spirit in both the real and digital world, through third-space opportunities and products that bring you closer to your customers.
Offer Comfort & Reassurance in multiple ways. Recognise the home as the primary focus for work, rest and play. Add protective layers in apparel and beauty for life outdoors.
These strategies can provide inspiration and guidelines for new business opportunities and create stronger brand values to build on that could resonate and positively impact across all areas of our lives. The challenge now is to connect the dots and make them pillars or tentpoles for your own brands’ growth and businesses’ expansion. We can all be part of this transformation and take calculated risks. The goal is to adapt and grow, add stability to any change and not wait for this crisis to pass.
We can all try to look beyond the challenges and remain focused on not only surviving but also on thriving and getting to the other side, wiser and stronger, too.
For PinkTank, my licensing agency (representing character brands like Sega’s Sonic The Hedgehog, One Animation’s Oddbods, JoyPixels’ Emojis), like most of us adversely impacted due to declining sales in retail, this crisis definitely bred possibilities to extend ourselves and embrace a new industry- that of interior design, décor, furniture and finishings. While holding fast and staying true to my passion for brand marketing, equity building and merchandising sales, I honed in on the concept of sanctuary and shelter. GOËS ASIA was then born to bring the best of Portuguese design, aesthetic, craftsmanship and quality products into the region.
Keeping these strategies in mind and owning them as core values, we are more inspired to develop and curate a portfolio of brands and products that can cater to relevant needs of partners and consumers. While we now spend more time at home (indeed for work, play and rest), we are proudly able to supply and address the basic needs of keeping our homes beautiful, safe and sustainable as we maximize a life of quality in the world of our ‘new normal’ (yet again another phrase that will soon earn its place as the most frequently used words of 2020!).
And on a final side note, Adam Grant, co-author of Sandberg’s Option B, recommends practicing and expressing gratitude to further build and strengthen resilience. So, thank you very much The Bugg Report for this opportunity!
Please visit www.goes.asia or follow us on Instagram @goes.decor to experience the Portuguese kind of sanctuary of beauty and wellness we offer our partners, clients and customers. Consumer trends and resilience strategies are sourced from The Value Shift white paper by WGSN.