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Navigating the Storm with Colgate-Palmolive’s Cherie Leonard

A week may be a long time in politics, but a fortnight can feel like a lifetime in lockdown. Based on our fortnightly COVID-19 reports, which cover both broad societal and category specific topics, it seems that two weeks is the cycle time for change. In this, our third fortnightly webinar, the overriding observation is how consumers are changing from thinking about life after the virus, to finding ways to adapt and live through it. Resolving the Confidence Crisis We know that context is a key driver for behaviour, not just for consumers, but for businesses too; in the context of the world not returning to normal any time soon and the looming economic crisis, lack of confidence is a key issue. It strikes me that one of the key differences between now and the financial crisis in 2008 is the degree of digitisation of our lives. The experience of lockdown would have been entirely different in 2008: at that time Facebook counted its users in the millions, not the billions and only 17% of people owned a smartphone. Shrewd brands are using digital methods to drive innovation and create new opportunities out of the current situation – and at Black Swan Data, we are supporting these brands, using digital methods to listen to what consumers are saying, and to analyse what that means. “This is where the rubber hits the road. Many of us have worked for many years crafting our brand purposes. Now this is the time to put them into action. It’s time for brands to step up.” Cherie Leonard, Associate Director of Foresight and Sustainability Insights, Colgate Palmolive The key challenges and questions we’re hearing from clients right now are ‘how can we be confident about capital expenditure, about which innovation projects to back and which research investment to prioritise?’ Businesses need confidence to drive the economy forward and that’s something we, as insight professionals, have the ability to deliver through robust consumer research. Diverging Behaviours in Personal Care Mike Grogan, Client Strategy Director at Black Swan drew on data from our most recent Personal Care Beacon reports, where we’re seeing discussion moving on from hygiene as the main topic of interest, towards unavailable out-of-home services like spa treatments, hairdressing and dentistry. As we come to accept that these services will be unavailable for longer than first thought, we’re starting to experiment and find solutions. This offers rich opportunities for CPG brands in this space. However, we’re seeing diverging behaviours dependant on the sub-category. Spa treatments: a huge rise in conversations around Manicures […]


Navigating the Storm | Diverging Behaviors in Personal Care

The Personal Care category has arguably undergone some of the most significant changes throughout the pandemic, with consumer needs and behaviors diverging, having implications on the trends that are likely to disrupt the category, at least in the short to medium term. Discover the impact in this blog.


Navigating the Storm | Debunking the ‘New Normal’

In our latest webinar, we set out to debunk the ‘new normal’. Five weeks into lockdown, we wanted to explore what has really changed? How much have we moved on, not from pre-Covid-19, which seems like another world (remember how we used to meet in person back then?) but from lockdown week two? And what will be the changes that stick? It’s hard to make predictions in times of rapid change, but our speakers gave us some great steers as to how to cut through the noise and start to understand the trends that may have traction in the future.


Navigating the Storm | Shifting Emotional & Functional Drivers in Skincare

Skin. It’s our largest organ and plays a vital role in protecting us from outside infection and disease. It’s no surprise that COVID-19 has contributed to an uptick in conversation around skincare (+141% over the past 4 weeks). It’s a multi-faceted conversation that points to a number of direct (hygienic) and indirect (Zoom vanity) implications.


COVID-19 | Taking the Pulse of the nation

At Black Swan we set ourselves a simple, but ambitious goal: to ensure our clients never miss a trend. But how can you do this outside of a specific category, to understand bigger trends that go beyond just a single product group? Step forward our new COVID-19 Pulse reports.


Navigating the Storm | The Route Back for Airlines

Few industries have been as affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as Travel and Aviation. For the past few weeks we’ve been supporting our aviation partners with insight drawn from naturally surfaced passenger conversations and while the picture wasn’t great, it didn’t read like the extinction level event many of us feared it could be. Read on to see what we’ve discovered.


Navigating the Storm | A resurgence for efficacy claims

Over the last several years, leading brands have trusted our Social Prediction technology to identify the significant category growth drivers that will shape the future of their categories and beyond. Read our Client Strategy Director’s data-driven assessment of the impact of CV-19 on key drivers.