The “new year, new me” mindset looks to be starting ahead of schedule this year, with the importance of investing in health and wellness becoming a major priority for many consumers in light of the coronavirus pandemic. Dietary supplements, in particular, have experienced continued growth and demand, likely because of promises to help consumers lead healthier lives during a time when a healthy mind and body is of great concern across the globe.
The Rise In Dietary Supplement Usage Varies Across Audiences
According to a recent survey from the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), 73% of American consumers shared they have taken dietary supplements this year. This consumer behavior aligns with the steady stream of growth the dietary supplement market has experienced over the past five years, improving from 68% usage among consumers in 2015. Of the surveyed consumers, CRN revealed that “female adults, adults aged 35+, adults with a higher household income and adults with a college degree” showed the highest likelihood of taking dietary supplements. However, factors like a growing aging population have also been attributed as key drivers for the continued growth in 2020, as this demographic continues to seek products that aid in preventing “age-related disorders.”
“Overall health and wellness benefits” came in as the most important reason behind consumers’ choice to use dietary supplements. An increased interest in supporting immune health was also revealed as a top reason for supplement intake, followed by the need to “fill nutrient gaps” in diets and additional heart health support. Vitamins and minerals in particular are the most widely used form of supplement taken by consumers, with 98% of survey respondents sharing they have taken this form of supplement in the past year.
COVID-19 Has Significantly Impacted Consumer Interest In Dietary Supplements
There has been a heightened awareness around what it means to be “healthy” in today’s pandemic-conscious world. With the increased attention on wellbeing, the health and wellness industry has had to respond to a spike in demand. Multinational food processing and commodities trading corporation Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM) revealed that 57% of consumers are “more concerned about their immunity” as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Additionally, 85% of American’s credit COVID-19 as a “reminder to take care of their overall health.”
“Certainly there was a significant peak [in vitamin and supplement sales] around that stock-up period [in March 2020], but they’re continuing at elevated levels [as] buyers continue to pick up more and more vitamins and supplements,” said Kathryn Peters, executive vice president of business development for SPINS, a wellness-focused data technology company.
CRN’s survey revealed that since the start of the pandemic, 43% of dietary supplement consumers have altered their supplement regimens. In fact, 91% of respondents reported an increased usage of dietary supplements — whether through new supplements added, increased dosage or a higher frequency of usage. “We’ve witnessed from CRN’s COVID-19 survey that the pandemic has not only encouraged the majority of Americans to be more conscious of their health and wellness, but the crisis has also forced consumers to adapt to the current reality and change some of their previous lifestyle behaviors,” said Brian Wommack, CRN’s senior vice president of communications.
Health & Wellness Advertisers Can Leverage Increased Consumer Interest & Demand Ahead Of Resolution Season
Health and wellness has evolved into a popular lifestyle value that significantly influences consumers’ purchasing decisions. Now, with COVID-19 top of mind for so many consumers, the shifting of priorities toward a heightened awareness around health and wellness seems to be at an all-time high.
Consumers’ gravitation toward diet supplements to better their overall health – from immunity to mental health to a boost of energy – will likely only continue growing as we enter into peak resolution season. The start of a new year, especially after 2020, which has brought so much concern surrounding health, is always a time when consumers reflect on the ways they can better their physical and mental health. Advertisers across the health and wellness industry should use this increased consumer demand in dietary supplements and overall interest in wellness to aid in building their brand presence.
Advertisers have an opportunity to connect to a growing health-conscious market, as consumers are constantly seeking new and innovative ways to improve their mental and physical states of being. Brands that can capitalize on the upcoming health-focused resolution season and differentiate themselves from competitors in a crowded marketplace will likely become leaders in an industry that shows no signs of slowing down.
“The new normal is by no means in its finality of what it’s going to look like; in fact, I think we are just really getting started, and this new propensity to self-care will last beyond the world reopening,” said Kristin Hornberger, executive, healthcare, for IRI Worldwide.
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