Are you a lifestyle ‘optimiser’? How brands can help consumers squeeze the most out of life

Living Life 2.0: How brands can help consumers squeeze the most out of life, was one of the Festival of Marketing’s insightful sessions revealing exclusive consumer research from the Evening Standard, that lifted the lid on this forward-thinking, influential set of consumers who “want to squeeze every last drop of enjoyment out of their day”. 

The session, led by the Standard’s executive digital editor Amira Hashish, also included Professor Philip Corr, professor of psychology and behavioural economics, city, at the University of London; Pip Black, co-founder of fitness brand Frame; co-founder of research specialist House 51 Ian Murray and planning insights & evaluation controller at Sky, Rupesh Patel.

So, what are optimisers? According to Ian Murray these consumers have “less time, but increasingly high expectations about what life should be”. They tend to be better educated, extroverted and open to new experiences, meaning they are likely to talk about their experiences. Optimisers want to spend money on products and services they feel will enrich their, already pressurised, lives. The session heard that typically optimisers might regularly pay for VIP access to a sports or entertainment event, superior hotel rooms and flight upgrades, personal trainers, nutritionists or pet care. And…they account for approximately a third of the capital’s population.

He explained that the research to understand optimisers came from previous work done around happiness and wellbeing and the simple question of what do people do to make themselves happy? “We found that people who are the happiest are the people who pay the most attention to the things that make them happy…they are very deliberate about designing their lives around those things that make them happy…they are a group of people who have figured it out.”

Pip Black explained that Frame appeals to “classic optimisers”. She told delegates that rather than focusing on fitness goals, members are instead directed to classes based on how they ‘feel’ at any given time. And she stressed that the focus was on “small wins” rather than total transformation.

And Ian Murray said brands, which understand how optimisers organise their lives, could use their marketing to specifically target these influential consumers. He said optimisers “pay more attention to marketing and advertising” because it’s one of the things that helps them to build their lifestyles in the way they want. And he added that optimisers don’t necessarily expect brands to offer “big experiences”. “A lot of it is day-to-day stuff to look forward to…people want small things on a daily basis – not once in a life-time things,” he said.

Professor Philip Corr added that “taking the effort out of accessing experiences” was as important as the experiences themselves, as was allowing and encouraging experiences that could be shared with other people to make lives more authentic and meaningful, and fostering a sense of community.

Here at Brandality we love the fact that the consumer conversation has moved on from being all about ‘convenience’. Of course, optimisers also want convenience, but only if that convenience brings with it greater lifestyle and wellbeing benefits.

And, of course, optimisation doesn’t only apply to lifestyles: it’s also important for brands to optimise everything from packaging look and feel, to brand tone of voice.  One of the first jobs we do when working with new brands is to identify how shoppers interact with the category and the key brand drivers that appeal to the mindset of today’s consumers. From immersive sessions with employees, to in-depth focus groups with consumers, we can get to the heart of your brand proposition to help your brand optimise every opportunity.

To find out how Brandality can optimise your brand, drop us a line at nb@brandality.co.uk