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Going Back to Go Forward: Foundational Needs Take Center Stage
Core life fundamentals are increasingly seen as “luxuries” when — despite seemingly fundamental — they’re increasingly scarce and unreliable
The CQ is Forerunner’s weekly newsletter covering the most pressing consumer trends and analysis, as well as business-building insights from our investment team. Subscribe now to get the latest edition in your inbox every Saturday.
We’re sharing something new and different today, which we’ve been working on since the Summer 2022: research on evolving human behavior and modern culture, and an early look at our new collaborative research platform, The Dinner Party (now in public beta).
In times of economic uncertainty and change across nearly every dimension of life — from a pandemic to remote work, accelerated climate change, social and political unrest, and now a looming recession — research on human behavior is all the more essential. This is true for us as investors, for entrepreneurs catering to an increasingly discerning, complicated set of consumers, and for people everywhere who want to make more sense of the world around them.
Our report identified a broad consumer need for purpose, resilience and direction. Core life fundamentals illuminated a new reality where core life fundamentals are increasingly seen as “luxuries” in the sense that — despite seemingly fundamental — they’re increasingly scarce and unreliable (think: financial stability, personal health, community & belonging, environmental safety). Alongside this, we’re finding that no matter how diverse and complex the consumer becomes, their needs still look remarkably traditional — even if the avenues for which we pursue these needs are new.
Along with these themes, the research identified the eight modern consumer archetypes that represent who who are today: Wellbody, Pioneer, Juggler, Saver, Homebody, Explorer, Artisan, and Maverick. Check out the full report for more on what we learned, and take the quiz to find out which archetype you are!
This Week’s Top 10 Consumer Insights
Lawmakers have proposed a new bill that would ban TikTok in the U.S. This is following as seven states have introduced state-level restrictions on the use of the social media platform on government-owned devices.
Gen Z cares deeply about social issues, with abortion access, climate change, and gun violence topping the list. Nearly three-quarters of young adults buy or advocate for brands based on their values—and they expect companies to take action on social issues.
A new bipartisan bill aims to fix supply-chain issues that could impact national security and domestic manufacturing.
Shein is considering becoming a marketplace. This move would diversify its merchandise and shipping options as well as put it in competition with AliExpress and Amazon.
Amazon is launching a TikTok-influenced shopping experience. The new feature, Inspire, will allow users to buy products from a curated feed of photos and videos made by creators, brands, and other consumers.
Almost half of Americans ages 18 to 29 live at home. This gives Gen Z and young millennials more discretionary spending to splurge on luxury items, like handbags, watches, and jewelry.
Subscription spending is on the up. The big reason: A study found that 100% of respondents didn’t know how much they spent on subscriptions, with some consumers spending over three times more than what they had thought.
Ads on Spotify see 19% higher brand impact compared to other media. According to a new study by Neuro-Insight, Spotify's impact on the brain significantly impacts ad memorability and brand impact.
Brands are coming up with creative ways to find customers: pizza parties, trunk shows, niche newsletters. It’s a means of survival in times when social media ads cost more than ever.
Instagram introduced a few big changes including Notes, which is a Twitter-like take for sharing text, and Candid, which includes features aimed at creating the experience of BeReal.
Faire’s Max Rhodes visits the Masters of Scale podcast with Reid Hoffman.
The Dinner Party was featured in a Forerunner-favorite newsletter, After School.
Kirsten Green shared her 2023 predictions with Rex Woodbury of Index Ventures in his newsletter Digital Native
Work at a Portfolio Company
Art Director, Away | Away is a global lifestyle brand creating thoughtful products making travel more seamless. This role will support the concepting, creation, and production of e-commerce assets in alignment with Away’s e-commerce style guide.
VP Content, Real | Real is redesigning mental healthcare through a digital platform, building an elevated end-to-end mental healthcare experience while also improving the quality of care itself. This role will contribute to the company’s growth by owning Real’s content development and strategy.
ShopShops | ShopShops is an interactive livestream shopping platform that enables a community of shoppers to connect with products, brands, stores, and passionate sellers across the globe. This role will analyze data, advise top executives on strategic finance, and be responsible for leading the financial activities of the organization to maximize ShopShops' profits and plan for its growth.
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