Understanding today's outdoor consumer from THEIR point of view
In many ways, the outdoor industry was born out of a need for outdoor companies to band together and define themselves. And for years, that sense of identity – of being part of a distinctive tribe – helped to develop the strong foundation of an outdoor industry that now contributes over $640 billion to the U.S. economy every year.
The good news is that our industry has grown far beyond a single tribe of enthusiasts and experts. The bad news is that expansion means we don’t always know our consumers as well as we think we do, or as well as we want to know them. Knowing your customer in this day of massive disruption, multi-channel retail and evolving ways they experience and recreate in the outdoors can seem more difficult every day.
Changing Consumer Behaviors
To be successful in an increasingly challenging retail and manufacturing landscape, as an industry, we need to understand current and potential consumers more deeply. It’s critical to learn what they are doing, why they are doing it, what motivates them to go outside and what might stop them from experiencing the outdoors.
Our goal is to understand the fundamental behaviors that are shaping the marketplace and translate those insights to help our members make informed decisions about their businesses. To that end, OIA recently completed an industry-level consumer segmentation study that provides an unparalleled look into the world of outdoor through the eyes of the consumer and deep insights into the needs attitudes, perceptions and behaviors of seven distinct segments of outdoor consumers.
Introducing OIA ConsumerVue: Helping Retailers and Manufacturers Better Understand the Outdoor Consumer
To bring the consumer segmentation data and findings to life, OIA has launched OIA ConsumerVue, a digital research tool that is available to members on our website.
OIA ConsumerVue will help our retailers and manufacturers identify which outdoor customers align best with their businesses and provide the highest return on investment. You’ll learn what motivates their behaviors and purchases by looking at the values that drive their decisions. Are they competitive? Or do they spend time outdoors to reconnect with nature? Are they drawn to experiences? Or do they care more about accomplishment?
The real value in any research lies in the action it inspires. So, we are also developing tools and activation guides to help members apply that information to their own businesses. Our goal is to equip outdoor companies for action by developing guides for each segment that identify things like how to reach and message to them, what product attributes appeal to them, and what strategies are effective for targeting them.
OIA ConsumerVue is accessible through the OIA website and includes reports, infographics, videos and much more to help members understand:
- What the total population of outdoor consumers looks like
- How different segments of consumers are recreate in the outdoors
- What their purchase behaviors are when shopping for outdoor products
- What role technology plays in their outdoor experiences
- How the individual segments will change over the next 5 years
- What macro trends will have the greatest impact on outdoor
Test Drive OIA ConsumerVue
OIA ConsumerVue will give members direct access to a variety of research products and business tools throughout 2015 and beyond. The OIA ConsumerVue Executive Summary is currently available to all for free download.
The changes within our industry have been a topic of conversation and concern for the last several years. Uncertainties and change are inherently unsettling, but the antidote to the stress of uncertainty is knowledge. There are obviously no perfect answers, but knowledge is power and can take the guesswork out of planning for the future.
We talk a lot about the future, but in many ways, the future is now. At OIA, we’re committed to helping our members understand and act on the fundamental consumer behaviors that are shaping the marketplace today and tomorrow.