After a few months of positivity, the Consumer Confidence index from GfK dropped two points in February and remained the same in March. With a looming General Election, the initial drop coincided with news that the UK entered a technical recession with the economy shrinking 0.3% at the end of 2023.

Our MoneyMinds insight, conducted last year, delved into the major trends impacting consumer behaviour and how customers are interacting with financial services brands. The first trend, lag-flation, impacts purchasing power. While incomes fail to keep up with inflation, there is lower demand for services. And for communicators and marketers, it’s vital to consider how your audiences might be feeling about this, how it’s impacting their spending behaviour now and how it might influence their future decision making. The long-lasting emotional and psychological impact might continue to influence their spending behaviours. 

In these times of uncertainty, brands have a responsibility to show up for their audiences as sturdy leaders who can weather the storm. Those who are willing to step into the role of empathetic partner will find huge opportunities to build meaningful relationships and brand loyalty. Personal finances are a complex and emotive subject and during difficult times, consumers remember the brands which were there for them and supported them. From thoughtful messaging in plain, easy to understand language, to bringing in new resources to meet their needs, it’s imperative that marcomms teams break through the barriers to reach audiences to instill trust and confidence. 

With inflation at a standstill and global elections looming, the macro economic factors at play will continue to impact consumer confidence this year. It’s not too late for brands to step into the role of trusted voice and advisor, and consumers are looking for partners they can count on. By showing up with empathy, financial brands can build customer loyalty and long-lasting relationships that outlast this uncertainty.

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