Consumers’ ever-evolving perception of ingredients influences the types of foods, beverages and vitamin, mineral and supplement (VMS) products that enter the marketplace. Recent high-profile lawsuits and recalls from trusted brands have made consumers skeptical and uneasy about the types of products they buy. Consumers’ focus on “conscious consumerism” means brands must be transparent and up-front about their label claims and sustainability messaging. Additionally, with inflation and price increases, consumers are buying less in general, prioritizing better-quality items proven to work. With all these factors in play, brands in the Health & Wellness industry must be up to the challenge to earn consumers’ trust and hard-earned dollars.
Top 6 Consumer Priorities in Health & Wellness
1. Taking A Holistic Approach
Consumers are more likely to search for preventative and holistic health options rather than waiting to treat symptoms of illness. They realize how small changes to their diet, sleep or exercise can significantly impact overall wellness. Now more than ever, they’re also becoming aware of the dangers of stress, searching for products that calm or alleviate everyday stress in their lives.
According to the 2022 Food and Health Survey by Food Insight, the most common consumer diet and nutrition changes consisted of eating healthier (54%), focusing on healthy behaviors over weight loss (38%) and following a specific eating routine or diet (37%).
2. Safety and Efficacy
Now more than ever, consumers are doing their research on ingredients. They’re questioning brands and products to find the best solutions to living a healthier lifestyle. Brands hoping to catch consumers’ eyes need to ensure that any ingredient information on their food, beverage or VMS products is clear and accessible.
Currently, half of Americans (50%) say foodborne illness from bacteria is the most critical food safety issue.
3. Recognizable and Natural Ingredients
Consumers want to look at a product and recognize the ingredients on the list. Unnatural-sounding ingredients may cause further skepticism, leading them to pass your product up for something that looks “healthier.” To be successful in the Food & Beverage or VMS categories, a brand should utilize key positionings, such as:
- Clean Label
The global organic food and beverages market is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.0% from 2022 to 2030.
And, when purchasing VMS products, 34% of consumers consider ingredient transparency.
4. Finding Overall Balance
While consumers want to eat healthier, they also see the benefits of small indulgences. By embracing cheat days here and there, they don’t lose focus on the long-term goals of healthier and more sustainable living. Winning brands in this category will promote treats with functional benefits.
The modern consumer also hopes to find a balance between plant-based and meat. According to Mintel, 50% of consumers eat a balanced diet with a mix of animal and plant proteins. Therefore, brands need to provide plant-based products that can be easily incorporated into a consumer’s current diet—rather than solely offering meat replacements.
Consumers want personalized VMS products that address their individual health needs. By utilizing new diagnostic tools, they can discover the source of any vitamin and mineral deficiencies and begin finding unique solutions to optimize their health.
6. Creating Enjoyable Routines
In both the Food & Beverage and VMS markets, consumers continue to search for products that make their lives easier and better. They not only want products that taste good, but they also desire a delightful eating experience. In addition, a big shift in Health & Wellness leads consumers of various ages to choose products that offer cognitive support.
Due to pill fatigue, 41% of VMS consumers prefer gummy formats.
When it comes to snacking, consumers see it as a comfort food and an alternative to a full meal that can be nourishing and beneficial. According to Food Insight, nearly three in four Americans (73%) snack at least once a day, with 43% choosing fruits in the morning while 40% of evening snackers picking savory/salty snacks, 38% gravitating toward candy, chocolate, and other treats and 37% find comfort in cookies, cake, and ice cream (37%).
As consumer perceptions of Food & Beverage and VMS ingredients continue to shift, it’s more significant than ever for brands to keep their product offerings relevant and their messaging fresh. Top priorities such as ingredient transparency and creating enjoyable eating experiences will be appreciated by consumers of all ages, building the trust and loyalty needed to excel above your competitors. ColinKurtis Advertising, a food, beverage, health and nutrition marketing agency, utilizes the newest trends in our marketing strategy to help us effectively target your ideal audience.
If you want to highlight your brand’s benefits with relevant messaging that sets you apart and helps your customers achieve their current goals and lifestyle desires, reach out to Mitch Robinson at Mitch@colinkurtis.com or call 815.965.6657 EXT. 1 to set up an appointment. Discover our latest work here.
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Vice President, Client Services
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