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Budget 2015 – How will you respond?

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Next week is the government’s final Budget before the General Election. George isn’t going to want to do anything reckless, so I’m guessing the message to consumers will be that it’s OK to spend more but be careful – we’re not entirely out of the economic do-dah just yet.

When the dust is settling and Mr O has once again swapped his big red box for a Mulberry messenger bag, journalists in all media will be analysing the fall-out. Be warned: they’ll try and tell you that some Budget news will impact on consumers and other snippets will do the same for businesses.

They’re wrong – it’s all relevant.

If it affects your customers, it affects you. Spending decisions will be won and lost on the contents of the Chancellor’s annual statement – and that’s always big news for businesses. The Budget will set the mood of the nation – how will you respond?

Your business wants to offer its products and services to the widest market share possible – but to truly engage consumers you need show that you understand them. Remember Santander? They understood what kept us up at night.

The 2015 Endleman Trust Barometer found that 63% of us trust ‘people like us’ over academic experts or celebrities. When you get down to it we’re fragile creatures who need to know we’re understood. It’s why the government have hinted that next week’s Budget will include measures to tackle corporate tax evasion – it gets the voting public angry and so the government will want to show that they’re pretty narked about it too.

You’re going to get all emotional.

Ready for some Monachie Project science? Here’s a question. Do we ever make decisions entirely objectively? Just as a head’s up, choosing to eat the last slice of Domino’s by telling yourself you’ll go for an extra-long run at the weekend doesn’t count.

Our emotions subtly (and unsubtly, if you’re Jeremy Clarkson) shift hundreds of times each day. As we constantly weigh up the different options open to us, emotions play a crucial role in making sure we make the right choices. Good news – but it leaves us open to influence.

Fortunately this is good news for businesses too, as The Monachie Project’s emotive user experience analytics will help you to truly understand your market. We transform good businesses into great ones. Don’t worry, this isn’t some unlawful form of mind-control, it’s more a case of understanding the drives and motivations a person already has.

When you show consumers that understand them, you’re really letting them know that they need your business.

Let me take you back to 2003. Food scare stories were regular news and the foot and mouth crisis, salmonella in eggs and the safety of GM crops were just some of the issues that still weighed heavily on the public’s mind. Scare stories meant that consumers were beginning to demand quality products – and to know where their food came from.

What else happened in 2003? William Chase bought a second hand fryer from a chip shop. It’s OK, go with me…

Chase, a potato farmer, decided to diversify and enter an already crowded savoury snack market with crisps made from his crop. How he did this is a brilliant example of understanding what consumers need at a precise moment.

He promised them no pesticides and fully traceable ingredients – and decided to only allow upmarket stores to stock his brand, reinforcing the message that this was a quality product.

His company, Tyrell’s Crisps, today has an annual turnover of £10 million – not bad for someone that started out with a second hand chip fryer.

So next week, when you’re catching up on all things Budgetary, don’t just think about how your business will be affected by the likes of Big Data and export finance. Ask yourself ‘how will my customers be feeling today?’ And if you really want to know The Monachie Project’s user experience consultancy can tell you.

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