Brands must prepare for rise of 'more socially-responsible' consumers, study shows

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 14 2018 08:23 PM

MANILA - Businesses must rethink their strategies in selling products as consumers start to become more "socially-responsible individuals," an international marketing and communications firm said Tuesday.

About 60 percent of 252 Filipino respondents in a survey said "they will choose a product depending on a company's values or political and social activities," a recent study conducted by the Havas Ortega group showed.

"Filipino consumers today need to grow into and present their best selves, make a positive contribution, support the community, and be less wasteful," said Jos Ortega, Harvas Ortega chairman and chief executive officer.

Another 49 percent "believe in the strength of their purchasing power more than their voting power," the study said.

Consumers have also started to realize their collective power when making purchases, said Philip Tiongson, Havas Ortega's head of Data and Analytics.

"Consumers will start demanding from brands: 'What is your stand on certain issues in society?" Tiongson said.

The higher sense of social responsibility stems from an "amalgam of all the things that happened in the world" and social media, Tiongson said.

"There are more and more people who have become more empowered by social media, by the Internet. It has empowered us and emboldened us to take a stand," he said.

The exposure to more global views and a collective stance on key issues have made consumers shift to making "more meaningful purchases."

"For them, the power to choose is more than just about which brand or product to bring home," Tiongson said.

"The choice also reflects how they are answering the call to be socially-responsible individuals," he added.

Earlier this year, Filipino netizens started an online call to boycott a condiments manufacturing brand after its employees said they were working under inhumane factory conditions.

Movements against patronizing beauty brands that test their products on animals and fashion houses that use animal fur have also gained traction in the Philippines and other countries over the last decade.