Our Pandemic Snacking Conduct Reveals the Nice Urge for food for Connection

The global pandemic has fundamentally changed our shopping and snacking habits – with more consumption at home and a shift to online shopping that will continue, especially among millennials. More importantly, it shows an appetite for connection and community that marketers need to embrace.

In our pursuit of marketing precision, we’ve almost gotten too clinical in our approach. We need to get people back into marketing by keeping the connections between people firmly at the center of our actions. I firmly believe that today more than ever, our brands have the ability to bring people together.

At a time when we are more at home than ever and can no longer eat out and eat on the go, snacking is increasing. According to a survey, seven out of ten adults say that they eat at least as much as they did before Covid-19.

It makes sense. As a behavior, snacking goes well with our busy lives and demanding schedules. Snacks add a boost, reward, or much-needed fuel while we recharge our batteries throughout the day, homeschool our kids, and route work calls from our shift offices. For me, it’s a piece of dark chocolate with a coffee that helps me sharpen my mind.

But the rise in snacking doesn’t have to mean a trend towards overconsumption: people, especially millennials and centennials, snack more often, but do so more carefully and consciously, using their snack times as moments of my time to balance their days. Two-thirds of adults worldwide say snack time is one of the few moments of peace (64%) and bright spots of their day (63%), including three-quarters of parents (76%).

For others, especially those who work from home, snacking provides moments of community. It offers them the opportunity to get together with partners or families over dinner, to exchange ideas about shared moments of enjoyment and perhaps to enjoy a moment of lightness in a difficult time for all of us.

Snacking was a way of connecting for most. About three in four adults worldwide have done something in the past six months to interact with others through food (77%), e.g. B. preparing a snack together (40%), giving a snack as a gift (31%) or shopping for groceries. Shopping for someone who could not go by themselves (29%).

For many of us, snacking is a bridge to happier times. More than half of consumers buy nostalgic snack brands from childhood (53%) as they look for snacks that will bring back fond memories during the pandemic (59%).

These moments of humanity – the truths of our lives today – are data points that go beyond dry statistics and provide inspiration for how we all as marketers can stay relevant to the people we seek to reach in this ever-changing world. Most importantly, they remind us that the time has come to stop selling products and services to consumers, and connect and celebrate with others.

Whether in our creative work or what we are committed to, when we get people back into marketing, connections are made, bonds are forged, and relationships are built with the people who buy, love and celebrate our brands.

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