MEMBER RESEARCH: Marketing Post-Brexit

Rakuten Marketing

Adapting Engagement Strategies to Changing Consumer Behaviour. This research aims to help marketers successfully transition their campaigns to continue to reach their target segments in a future outside of the EU.

The report aims to provide marketers with key highlights and marketing takeaways to help them gain insight and formulate effective post-Brexit marketing strategies.    

The report is neutral regarding whether Brexit is a good or bad thing.

Key findings:

  • The UK economy has continued to grow and UK consumers have continued to spend, despite wide forecasts that a vote for Brexit would rapidly lead to a recession. The Bank of England revised its original post-Brexit growth forecast for 2017 from 0.8% (August 2016 estimate) to 2.0% (February 2017 estimate).

  • Polarised views on living standards reflect the Referendum result but the expected collapse in consumer confidence has not occurred. Over the next six months, 37% of people are ‘very’ or ‘quite sure’ they will be better off, whilst 40% think they will be ‘worse off’ or ‘not better off’.

  • UK consumers may favour goods made or sourced in the UK post-Brexit. Although more than one third (33.4%) felt it would ‘make no difference’, 19.6% of respondents felt that shoppers would ‘strongly prefer goods made/sourced in the UK’, and a further 32.6% thought that there would be ‘some effect’.

  • Foreign-produced premium handbags, casual apparel and formal clothing brands are most likely to be affected by Brexit. When asked about specific product categories produced abroad, we saw customer trust vary. The potential loss of trust was strongest among handbags (41.1%), casual apparel (39.3%) and formal clothing (37.8%).

  • Price increases of up to 10% won’t impact all decisions to purchase premium products. When facing a price rise of up to 10%, 61.5% of Brits would buy the premium brand anyway, compared to only 5.9% who would refuse to buy the item. The rise from a 10% increase to a 15% price increase was expected to make over a fifth of shoppers switch products.

  • There is a division in outlook for spending on premium brands. Whilst some consumers remain confident their spending on premium brands won’t be affected by Brexit, others are cautious. 49.6% of shoppers expect to spend the same or more on premium brands post-Brexit, compared to 39.4% who expect to reduce their spend.

  • Female shoppers are more likely than males to research and consider alternatives when facing a price increase. Females were more likely than males to look for a retail-branded item (11.8%), to postpone or reschedule the purchase (11.6%) and to not buy the item at all (6.8%).

  • Brexit is likely to have a significant effect on the holiday plans of people living in the UK. Almost a quarter of people (24.3%) have already made a holiday decision affected by Brexit. However, people are choosing to adapt their travel plans, rather than cancel them. 37.3% of people said they would choose a cheaper destination, while 36.7% said they would travel for fewer days.

  • Planned holidays in the UK are less likely to be affected by Brexit than holidays abroad. 10.9% of holidays in the UK are estimated to be affected by Brexit, versus 26.9% of holidays abroad.

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