May
15
2014

The changing face of the UK consumer part 2: Rurban Generation

Our recent launch of the new version of the Mosaic consumer classification has really highlighted how much society has changed in the last ten years – housing (a topic covered in my previous post), aging and technology shifts all have a role to play. Brands need to be able to identify the new trends in order to be able to interact with customers the right way to secure engagement and customer satisfaction.

One very specific new trend that Mosaic identifies is the increasing number of people who are moving out of cities and into the countryside – people who we have termed ’Rural Vogue‘.

Social Migration – the ’Rurban‘ Generation

Mosaic-Type-C11-Rural-VogueMeet Declan and Beth. Eight years ago Declan and Beth were living the suburban life in a comfortable semi in the outskirts of one of the UK’s bigger cities. Then along came their daughter Megan, and priorities began to change.

Declan and Beth were faced with a decision, head to a better suburb where the catchment of the schools have an impact on the house prices, or make the big move to a home for life in a more rural location that still enabled them to have access to work and amenities.

Distinct spending behaviour and shopping patterns
Declan and Beth are amongst 490,000 people in Mosaic type C11 Rural Vogue; attracted to the Rurban lifestyle which gives a mix of the country idyll and access to cities for work and leisure. Although often based firmly outside of the confines of the city this group maintains a strong relationship with urban life leading to distinct spending behaviour and shopping patterns – something a brand really needs to understand if they are to continue to engage the likes of Declan and Beth.

Three seconds to appeal to this busy group of consumers
Let’s take retail as a prime example – busy lives and poor access to local shops mean Rural Vogues are heavy users of online shopping for groceries and other consumer goods. They are creatures of habit and have their on-line grocery shopping order set up so that it rarely changes. Therefore new retail and FMCG brands are going to struggle to capture the attention of Beth and Declan. Research from Ipsos suggests that you have just three seconds to appeal to this group with your marketing to communicate brand, product and motivate them to act.

Clothing catalogues work for the ‘Rurban’ generation
Cross-channel marketing campaigns that centre around traditional media is one way of encouraging them to act. The regular flow of high clothing catalogues from brands such as Joules and Seasalt landing on the doorstep shows that those with a targeted offer can find ways of reaching this affluent family. Understanding their needs and providing relevant product information not only can lead to higher conversion rates but also to happier customers , who are receiving information that is relevant to them, their families and which they actively look forward to consuming.

Understanding is crucial

The significant and wide-ranging changes to the social fabric of the UK witnessed by groups including Rural Vogue, has changed the landscape of UK society beyond recognition. The patchwork of different groups and types presents a great opportunity for marketers – with these new levels of insight, brands now have the ability to identify trends within their consumer base they would not otherwise have been aware of, and gives them the intelligence needed to ensure that consumers are reached with the right message at the right time – every time.

If you missed it you can read The changing face of UK consumers part 1: Boomerang Kids here.

» Find out more about the Mosaic cross-channel consumer classification

 

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