Nature’s idea of putting the world on hibernation has taught major brands to take an introspective view on the way they sell. Today, some of the major retail giants are revisiting their strategy of promoting active consumerism. They believe human connection is prime to selling. Realistically speaking, no one likes to be sold to although they know that’s what is realistically happening.

“Customers want to see empathetic, human communication from brands, which slowly over time builds trust. A softer marketing approach that focuses on human centricity is the only way forward,”


Michael Kalli

Managing director, Ello Media


In a certainly noisy landscape, one innovative strategy is to skip overpromising in advertisements and instead do some soul-searching to establish a marketing message that communicates a brand’s core value. Being too aggressive at targeting customers is not always fruitful and sometimes has a reverse effect. Now what was observed in the recent holiday season is an example of how marketers are aiming to tone down their messaging and focus on themes of togetherness to authentically engage people at a time when they are being lured through gifts and consumerism.

It’s no secret that Christmas and Holiday Season goes wild with discount offers that trigger hyper-consumerism where people end up queuing for long hours outside retail stores ending up buying more than they need. This time around, Target and Starbucks put inclusion and community at the center of their efforts, suggesting how brands may continue emphasizing human-centric campaigns as 2022 marketing plans get underway.

Brands from Gap and Target to Hulu in recent months have repositioned their marketing approach to focus more on brand value than pizzaz, deploying fresh creative campaigns conveying simple concepts like community and joy. It’s a new wave of soul searching by brands to move away from consumerism. Stay tuned for more updates on the topic.