Consumed: Rethinking Business in the Era of Mindful Spending [NOOK Book]


As the effects of the global recession linger, consumers everywhere are changing their purchasing patterns, paying greater attention to what and why they are buying, and from whom. While many feel rampant spending is hard-wired into the modern psyche and that we will be back to our wasteful ways soon enough, there are clear indications of a permanent shift in the way we shop. Even before the economic downturn, consumers’ definitions of value had begun to change.  People were becoming more mindful about ...

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Consumed: Rethinking Business in the Era of Mindful Spending

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As the effects of the global recession linger, consumers everywhere are changing their purchasing patterns, paying greater attention to what and why they are buying, and from whom. While many feel rampant spending is hard-wired into the modern psyche and that we will be back to our wasteful ways soon enough, there are clear indications of a permanent shift in the way we shop. Even before the economic downturn, consumers’ definitions of value had begun to change.  People were becoming more mindful about their purchases and more attuned to the social and environmental implications of their choices.

To better understand this important evolution and its ramifications for business, Andrew Benett and Anne O’Reilly launched a groundbreaking study on the New Consumer and the escalating dissatisfaction over hyperconsumerism. Here, for the first time, is an in-depth look at the new face of the global consumer, showing that:

• A significant majority in the seven markets surveyed are deeply worried about the direction in which our consumption-obsessed society is moving. They believe people have become both physically and mentally lazy, and that, as a society, we have lost sight of what truly matters.

• Two-thirds believe they would be better off if they lived more simply, and a quarter say they would be happier if they owned fewer things.

• Half of Americans surveyed are deriving a sense of satisfaction from reducing their purchases during the downturn, and three-quarters are feeling good about cutting back on the amount of waste they create.

• A majority of Americans have no intention of going back to their old shopping patterns, even when the economy rebounds.

Now, as the consumer voice signals its changed priorities, forward-thinking companies are responding by rejecting excess and artificiality in favor of products and communications that offer authenticity, substance, and interconnectedness—all values today’s more mindful consumer craves. In this book, the brand experts look at corporations as diverse as Glenmorangie and Wal-Mart to see what lessons they can offer to businesses attempting to grow in the postconsumerism era. They also spoke with corporate leaders in a variety of industries to learn how they are recasting their businesses and brands in order to prepare for the changes ahead. Through cutting-edge research and a sharp look at new industry models, Consumed provides real direction for marketers and managers.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“The authors apply their marketing savvy and research to forecast the implications of ‘consumers’ growing discontentment’ with lives based on debt-funded extravagance. . . Examining recent trends exacerbated by the economic crisis, they illustrate consumers’ increasing satisfactions through saving and simplifying that can soothe financial and ecological worries.  They offer marketers four guiding paradigms to attract ‘burned-out consumers' gratifications through ‘Embracing Substance,’ ‘Rightsizing,’ ‘Growing Up,’ and ‘Purposeful Pleasure.’ Summing Up: Recommended.  Practitioner and professional collections.” — CHOICE

“The consumer mind-set is undergoing a radical change: People are getting serious about making smarter, more mindful choices and are looking for companies that give them what they want. Consumed acts as a navigational aid, empowering business leaders to anticipate and meet these newly emerging needs.” —Becky Saeger, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Charles Schwab Corporation

“A permanent shift has taken place among consumers. They are far more engaged in every aspect of marketing and manufacturing, and brand that want to win and retain their loyalty will need to listen better, react faster, and be more nimble in everything they do. This book offers a fresh and vital perspective on those actions that will be most essential to future growth.”—Christian McMahan, Chief Marketing Officer, Heineken USA

“The world is changing rapidly, and the brands that will thrive are those most willing to lead that change. In Consumed, Andrew Benett and Ann O’Reilly offer insight and guidance about how best to communicate with and build relationships with today’s more thoughtful consumer. It is essential reading for anyone seeking to win the in the post-recession marketplace.”—Mike O’Driscoll, Managing Director, Jaguar Cars

“This is an important book for executives because the world is clearly changing.  Business leaders need to understand the trends highlighted in Consumed and think deeply about the implications for their brand.”—Tim Calkins, Clincal Professor of Marketing, Kellogg School of Management and author of Breakthrough Marketing Plans

Praise for Good for Business:


“In the emerging world of extreme transparency, customers and employees will trust companies that are truly making a difference in their lives. Being good will trump looking good. This book clearly outlines winning brand values and the behaviors that lead to that most precious bond: trust.”—Stephen Quinn, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Wal-Mart

“With their ‘Four Cornerstones of the Conscious Corporation’ framework, the authors have laid out a clear and compelling vision of a new, more effective way of doing business. Corporate leaders who hope to own the future will heed their advice.”—Justin B. Smith, President, The Atlantic

Good for Business is an excellent guide that shows how transparency and engagement can positively impact a company’s reputation. Readers can immediately employ the lessons revealed in the book.”—Steve Fludder, Vice President, ecomagination, GE

Good for Business blazes a trail for corporate executives who want to succeed in the new economy. The authors offer a big-picture vision about the need for a more holistic and “humanized” view of the corporation, and they provide specific suggestions on how to adapt to a world of empowered consumers, heightened transparency, and changed requirements for leaders. A must read for everyone in the C-suite and all who aspire to get there!”—Dan Esty, Yale University and author of Green to Gold

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230110526
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 7/6/2010
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 383 KB

Meet the Author

Andrew Benett is Global CEO of marketing communications agency Arnold Worldwide and Global Chief Strategy Officer of Havas Worldwide. His career in marketing spans nearly two decades and includes hands-on experience in almost every marketing discipline and across multiple product and service categories. His unique perspective benefits from his experiences working on the client side, in consulting, and for global communications agencies. In 2009, Andrew was named to Crain’s New York Business’s “40 Under 40.” Outside of work, Andrew sits on the Board of Directors of The Make-A-Wish Foundation International. He is married and has two sons. In 2009, he co-authored Good for Business.

Ann O’Reilly is a strategic planner and content director of Euro RSCG Worldwide’s Knowledge Exchange, in which capacity she is responsible for developing and managing the global network’s proprietary research. She has more than twenty years’ experience in marketing and publishing, and is co-author of Good for Business, The Future of Men, and Buzz: Harness the Power of Influence and Create Demand, among other books.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments * Preface: All Maxed Out? * Part I: Unleashed: The Shopper Within * The Birth of Consumerism * Eating the World * Consumerism Hits the Wall * Part II: The Four Paradigms of the Mindful Shopper * Embracing Substance * Rightsizing * Growing Up * Seeking Purposeful Pleasure * Part III: Marketing to the New Consumer * Triggers for Change * Satisfying the Substance Shopper * Speaking the Language of Mindful Consumption * Beyond Consumption: What’s Next? * Appendix: Findings from Euro RSCG Worldwide’s The New Consumer Study

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