We’re open! (maybe)

1 May, 2020

As the CV-19 curve slowly flattens, governments are thinking about how to reopen their economies and businesses are eager to open their doors.  

YouGov’s report suggests that the return of ‘business as usual’ will not be as easy as simply flipping the ‘Open’ sign in your window when you’re finally allowedOnly about a third of customers report that they feel comfortable returning to restaurants and pubs and less than half feel comfortable visiting a clothing store post-lockdown, suggesting people are cautious about a return to something like normal even when they can.  

However, a report from Kings College London’s report finds three different personality types in terms of responses to the pandemic, which may hold some additional insights into a post lockdown world. These three groups are ‘The Accepting’, ‘The Suffering’ and ‘The Resisting’. The Resisting cluster are least compliant with current lockdown, with almost half reporting meeting up with friends or family outside of their homes. This cluster’s demographic, predominately men and young people, also happens to be the most ‘comfortable’ demographic in YouGov’s report. Are these most likely to be the first customers at the local pub? 

The return of ‘normality’ after lockdown will eventually come through progressively phasing out the strict social measures imposed during lockdownFrom the government, careful planning and monitoring will be needed to ensure a successful de-confinement; from consumers, great patience and further high levels of compliance will be needed to avoid a second outbreak. And it may be that different messages and strategies are needed for different audiences. Will the behaviour of specific groups further complicate the economy’s reopening 

By Marie Guérinet

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