Making Sense of Post-Covid Normal

By Author

The Gist

It has been a challenging year.  Frightening, sad, exhausting, and yet interesting and often so inspiring.

3 min. Read

It has been a challenging year. Frightening, sad, exhausting (especially for mothers of young children, like me), and yet interesting and often so inspiring.

As we prepare for our latest public conversation, a review on June 3 of what we have learned during the pandemic, I am struck most forcefully by the resilience of the human spirit. For companies who are prepared, 2021 and 2022 are going to be amazing years!

Our upcoming webcast features some uniquely qualified voices. Professor Jose Luis Nueno is a Marketing legend. He is justifiably renowned for his insights into consumer behavior and how corporate business models should take this into account. The pandemic has made new demands on customer experience that are driving change… we are beginning to see which demands are here to stay.

His research shows these are intensely regional, not the same worldwide. This is especially true for the sudden impoverishment of many millennials in some parts of the world, but not in others. In our discussions preparing for June 3, his enthusiasm is inspiring, as he uncovers major shifts in Retail, the importance of Baby Boomers over the next few years, shifting centers of gravity, and how we are beginning to understand which customer behaviors will have staying power. The pet boom is a wonderful case study. We’ve all seen the price of pooches soaring. In my 20 years of tech and analytics, these behavioral changes are unprecedented. I can’t wait to hear what Prof. Nueno says during our live conversation.

Matthew Mobley, Chief Technology Officer at Merkle, is also a well-known talent. Merkle’s Enterprise Technology Group is an innovator in marketing technology and digital transformation. In the past year, Matt has seen many retailers who thought they were digitizing effectively. Some retailers found out that they were doing nowhere near enough, in specific critical areas. For them, acquisition, retention, and loyalty have been challenged during the pandemic. Other retailers were truly prepared and have seen significant growth, stronger customer relationships, and more powerful brands. With more consumers online more of the time, digital advertising has exploded during the pandemic, accelerating its already impressive growth. Matt has some interesting insights illuminating trends in digital advertising, what’s working, and how these shifts impact how we reach customers at scale.

In just one year we have seen major shifts in the property markets, a diaspora from cities, big changes in talent accessibility, and upheavals in our investment portfolios. But humans are resilient and many habits run deep.

Which changes will stick and which revert? Airlines are another interesting case study. How does the current lockdown compare to the 9/11 scare, and how quickly will travel recover this time? Will the pandemic produce a robust recovery, like the fertility in a valley after a devastating flood subsides?

The increased intensity of our digital lives has heightened the demands for consumer data protection and privacy during the last 12 months of Covid. The adtech industry is in turmoil dealing with changing consumer sentiment and the radical changes driven by Apple and Google. Companies want growth, and it will be achievable, but how can we meet these demands in a tech-smart and privacy-safe way?

Come and listen, and ask a question during our upcoming webcast. I hope you will join us.

This live webcast will take place on Thursday 3rd June at 11:00 EDT.

June, 2021

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