Brands like to align with popular cultural trends to show support for a cause, inject a little humor into a fun cultural moment, or inspire and inform in other ways. As part of the POPSUGAR Insights Content, Commerce, and Culture study, we surveyed over 1,500 women between the ages of 18-44 and asked them to share their personal feelings on how they'd prefer brands to align with popular cultural trends and how alignment with trends impacts their shopping behaviors.
Overall, brands that are considered trendsetters have a unique advantage with female consumers. Nearly 30% of women enjoy brands that they consider to be trendsetters, with 17% of women saying that brands have a responsibility to follow trends that benefit their customers or clientele. That said, the trends that brands align with matter, and over 12% of women said that brands should participate in more trends that benefit or support women and 10% of women said they are more likely to purchase from brands that they consider to be trendsetters.
There are potential downsides to aligning with trends for brands. Thirteen percent of women said that brands should not try to either align with trends or set trends, and 11% of women said that they find brands that follow trends to be less authentic (as compared to the 5% of women who find brands that follow trend to be more authentic).
Women have clear a clear concept of how brands should align with trends to benefit them. Twenty-nine percent of women said that they enjoy when a cultural event is sponsored or associated with a brand that they currently own, and 27% of women said that their perception of a brand is more positive when the brand is associated with a cultural event that they watch, attend, or read about.
Alignment with a cultural event can also significantly impact purchase behaviors. Fourteen percent of women say that they identify more with a brand that sponsors a cultural event that they watch, attend, or read about, and 14% of women also indicate that they are more likely to purchase a product from a brand that sponsors an event that they attend or consume content related to. This alignment positively impacts trust, with 9% of women saying they are more likely to trust a brand that sponsors events they attend or consume content about, and nearly 7% of women say that they are more likely to recommend a brand that sponsors these types of events.