The new Kiwi attitude

Young New Zealanders have their own emerging Kiwi identities, and this is shaping the brands and businesses of the future. A recent study by JWT found that New Zealand is undergoing a major shift in its culture – an upheaval of identity and a “seismic shift” in the New Zealand dream. 

The research delivers seven lessons for local brands:

1. Being local isn’t an automatic pass. New Zealanders are a global community: local brands are showing off their “global citizenry” to earn kudos with the 25- to 35-year-old consumer demographic. 

2. Justify your price. Tight budgets mean that consumers in this category won’t always spend the extra dollar to ‘buy New Zealand made’. Brands need to justify their extra price in other ways, or consumers will look for a cheaper alternative.

3.  Care about the community. A brand with a vision is “seen as useful” if they demonstrate a genuine commitment to helping others.

4. Make ads that are either entertaining or informative. Campaigns based on marketing gimmicks, like the Anchor glass cow and the 100% New Zealand slogan, are seen by young consumers as a waste of their time and the advertisers’ money. Ads that aren’t delivering something to the consumer – either entertainment or information – are seen as “cheap, formulaic or most importantly without effort.”

5. “Determined is the new laid back”. To be taken seriously, brands need to demonstrate effort or determination. Laziness, resting on your laurels, formulaic advertising; these are seen as “a bad look”. 

6. Be ethical. Ethical brands are impressing young consumers; think of Whittaker’s stance on palm oil.

7. Simplicity is valuable. The quality of reliability has gone from dull to valuable. Technology is valued for its ability to make life simpler and easier, not to fill up your free time.

We’re right at the start of a new financial year, and if your customers are in the 25 to 35 demographic, it’s the perfect time to consider what they want to see from your brand in the future. 

By Yvette Earnshaw