NielsenIQ Releases a New Report Focusing on Inflation’s Impact on Small and Medium Brands

NielsenIQ previews a new framework to help small and medium brands scale growth in its latest global study

NielsenIQ previews findings from the Brand Balancing Act, a global study providing a perspective on how consumers perceive small and medium-sized brands in the new inflationary marketplace. Amid supply chain challenges, inflationary pressures, and cautious consumer spending intentions, small brands face a challenging playing field. By focusing on consumer brand preferences, performance benchmarking, trend-cycle timing, and meaningful differentiation, small and medium brands can leverage consumer responses of the volatile economy to their benefit.

“Inflation has supercharged the importance of every investment and strategic effort made by smaller brands. As the cost of products rises, so does the cost of missing the mark with consumers’ expectations,” says Lauren Fernandes, Global Director of Thought Leadership. “The good news for small & medium-sized businesses is that despite many SMBs being largely ‘unfamiliar’ in terms of notoriety according to our recent study, consumers are considering a wider variety of brands when deciding what to buy.”

Large corporations have leverage against inflation and supply chain problems that smaller enterprises often struggle to weather, making the balancing act for small and medium-sized businesses a crucial, but a potentially rewarding effort at this specific point in time. The Brand Balancing Act provides a perspective on how inflationary pressures are impacting small and medium brands and strategies they can use to showcase their value and remain aligned to the core values sought by consumers.

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The analysis also highlighted:

  • 56% of global consumers prefer to buy locally made products from small businesses in their area
  • 57% try to support small brands where possible, but are finding it harder to find them on the shelf
  • 51% feel that small brands are more authentic and trustworthy than big brands
  • 47% think that small brands are usually more expensive but are prepared to pay a bit more
  • 86% of global consumers felt that functional reasons like availability, quality and value for money are of utmost importance when making their purchasing decisions

“Today’s macroeconomic environment has created a perfect storm for small and medium-sized businesses to connect with consumers. But that same storm could shadow smaller brands before than can scale. The key will be finding the right levers, based on the right consumer data, to innovate in meaningful ways,” says Fernandes. “With 48% of global respondents saying that they plan to buy more from smaller brands in the future, the small and medium-sized businesses who can understand motivators for purchase in this new landscape will most likely benefit from consumers’ updated preferences.”

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