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The No Bullshit Brand Diet

May 04, 2017 Future Talkers
insights, marketing, Millennials

Healthy living is no longer a trend or fad followed by a select group of people. It’s a mainstream way of life which consumers strive to achieve every day and apply to every decision they make.

At the MRS Healthy Living Conference 2017, it was made clear the reason behind this is because consumers correlate healthy living with living a happy life.

And boy oh boy has the marketing industry tried to capitalise on this over the last few years, with brands rushing to communicate they’re selling healthy alternative snacks/cereals or that they have created the next big health innovation or self-monitoring app. This however, has led to consumers becoming overloaded with information and struggling to decipher what it all means.

So this article aims to summarise the key outtakes from the Healthy Living Conference, starting with a raw understanding of what healthy living means to consumers and how brands should best talk to them about healthy living in 2017.

Key ingredients to healthy living

According to the MRS Healthy Living Conference, in 2017, the main 2 pillars consumers consider part of healthy living are diet and fitness. These days, the diet and fitness of our consumers are influenced by how they interact with products, technology, branding and media (BTL/ATL) that aim to (hopefully) help them achieve healthy living which in turn helps them achieve happiness.

Surprisingly, when it comes to defining healthy living, areas such as mental health, pharma and disease/illness are rarely associated, unless it is directly linked with diet or exercise. Healthy living is approached much more holistically, with Millennials seamlessly integrating diet, fitness, products, technology, brands and media (esp. social media) into their everyday lives. They’re additionally more aware of the role mental health plays in a healthy living and are pushing to de-taboo it as a topic of conversation (check out this link of the top 10 YouTubers who talk about mental health).

We’re force-feeding consumers

Today’s world is overloaded with an excess of inconsistent content, information, claims and #fakenews. There’s not one reliable source of information to go to, not one global point of view. And so, consumers look towards sources that provide the most reliable, transparent, concise and digestible information (no pun intended).

Millennials are bombarded with an overwhelming amount of content on their social media feeds that contain a highlight reel of how healthy their peers are living. Whilst this can sometimes act as a motivation, it also leaves them feeling isolated when they fall off the healthy living bandwagon. It’s no wonder mental health issues are more prevalent within Millennials when they’re heavily and continuously pressured by their highly curated social media world.

The solution? The no-bullshit brand diet

No bullshit and the need for authenticity and transparency haven’t appeared out of nowhere. They are a direct reaction and need, based on the struggle to find the truth amongst the information overload, fake news and social media highlight reels. 

Therefore, if consumers have a low threshold for bullshit for themselves and an increasingly good radar to spot it… just imagine how much they call out brands on their bullshit...

6 easy steps to lose the bullshit

Put simply,’'less is (not only) more“, but these days, consumers perceive that “less is honest“. Below are a few key ways consumers filter through the branded bullshit to find the truth:

  1. Consumers are looking for concise, consistent and candid messages as this cues transparency and trustworthiness in your brand
  2. Five ingredients or less” or “No products with ingredients I cannot pronounce“, this reassures consumers the product is raw, natural and not full of damaging chemicals
  3. A human-friendly tone of voice in commercials, on social channels or on packaging makes the product feel more human and less “I’m a big brand only in it for the profits
  4. Unfiltered, uncompromised reviews from everyday people (incl. YouTubers). YouTubers KNOW their fan base are keen-eyed bullshit detectors, so the successful vloggers only promote a product if they truly believe in it and if it really works
  5. Looking for products/services that are styled as niche and craft: for consumers, this provides a feeling of personalisation, care and less manufactured
  6. Personal anecdote: I even question the validity and long-term credibility perception of the “free from” claim, since these “free from” products usually replace those ingredients with chemical substitutes.
Originally posted by How Cool Brands Stay Hot