A majority of Indians prefer to buy goods and services from companies that stand for a shared purpose that reflects their personal values and beliefs -- and are ditching those that don't, new research from Accenture said on Monday.
The 14th annual Accenture "Strategy Global Consumer Pulse Research" surveyed nearly 30,000 consumers globally, including 660 Indian consumers, to gauge their expectations of brands and companies. Among the Indian consumers surveyed, 81 per cent want companies to take a stand on social, cultural, environmental and political issues close to their hearts. Another 75 per cent said their purchasing consideration is driven by a company's ethical values and authenticity.
"Price, product quality and customer experience continue to be important considerations but a brand's purpose beyond profit has emerged as a clear differentiator," said Anindya Basu, Geographic Unit and Country Senior Managing Director, Accenture in India.
The study found that companies that stand for something bigger than what they sell, communicate their purpose and demonstrate commitment, are more likely to attract consumers and influence purchasing decisions which improve competitiveness.
"This shift in expectations from 'give me what I want' to 'support the ideals we believe in' provides brands with the opportunity to create stronger and more resilient customer relationships which generate more sales and greater customer lifetime value," suggested Basu.
Globally, 75 per cent of consumers said their purchasing consideration is driven by a company's ethical values and authenticity. Furthermore, 84 per cent craved greater transparency in how companies source their products, ensure safe working conditions and their stance on important issues such as animal testing.
"Eighty-four per cent of consumers believe their individual protest actions, such as boycotting a company or speaking out on social media, can make a difference in how companies behave," the findings showed. "To usher in the next era of engagement, companies need to focus on creating a community of loyal, engaged and valuable brand proponents," said Vineet R Ahuja, Managing Director, Customer Insight and Growth Strategy, Accenture Strategy.
(With inputs from agencies.)