As the observed momentum behind sustainability and dynamic shifts in consumer behaviour undoubtedly has profound implications for any company, it is imperative that organisations must keep an eye on particular areas of business.
- Devise a future-proof and flexible strategy. Few companies plan beyond the typical three-year strategic planning window, and even those that do look out five to 10 years tend to focus on expectations for technology adoption. These plans fail to fully consider two other factors that move just as rapidly and with as big an impact: regulations and consumer behaviour.
- Acknowledge a fragmented consumer base. Companies need to deaverage consumers and innovate products and design propositions that appeal to different segments— local markets, consumers with different definitions of sustainability, and consumers with a range of purchasing motivations.
- Test and learn to determine what works—and repeat. In such a fluid environment, companies can lean aggressively on marketing experimentation, using digital tools to quickly test the sustainability messages that resonate with different segments and adapt accordingly. It’s a way to help consumers gain enough clarity to make decisions that are consistent with their values.
- Get out in front of regulations. As we’ve seen throughout the world, government policy inevitably becomes a huge contributor to changing consumer behavior. Across all industries, companies need to be at the forefront of helping to shape the regulations affecting their business. A company’s ability to anticipate policy shifts and build future-proof portfolios will help determine whether it can outpace competitors.