Despite our increasingly connected world, Aussies are feeling more disconnected than ever and are turning back to community to rediscover that sense of connection and belonging, a new study has found.
The study by public relations firm PPR and called Closer: Community and Connections In The Lives of Australians found that over half of the Australian population is at risk of loneliness – impacting Aussies in metro (54 per cent) and non-metro (53 per cnet) almost equally, with men (55 per cent) indexing slightly higher than women (52 per cent). If you live in NSW you are at greatest risk of loneliness (58 per cent) , followed by Victoria and Western Australia (54 per cent), with Queenslanders at lowest risk at 49 per cent.
Some 63 per cent of people rate their relationship with their local community as more important than their social media relationships. And the importance of community is gaining momentum, with almost 60 per cent more interested in their local community now compared to 10 years ago, and 87 per cent interested in what is happening in their local community.
Check out the report’s full findings in the infographic below:
Brands are being invited into those communities, with two-thirds of all Aussies wanting brands to get involved in their local community, and 58 per cent more interested in brands that get involved in their community vs. those that don’t. Over half remember brands that are involved in their community over those that don’t.
This invitation to brands extends beyond the communities Australians live in to their communities of interest – their tribes. 66% wish more brands would get involved in their tribes, with almost 60 per cent more interested in brands that do get involved in their communities of interest over those that don’t. When shopping, 49per cent remember brands that get involved in their tribes, over those that don’t.
The key for brands when it comes to getting involved in those communities is to
be authentic and genuine, with half of the population wanting companies and brands to develop a long-term relationship with the communities they are involved in rather than a one-off campaign.
Community purpose is a pivotal way Australians want brands to be involved and there are some key sectors identified with the greatest opportunity to play in that space, according to the research:
- property developers (44 per cent)
- retailers (39 per cent)
- health and fitness (37 per cent)
- financial services (34 per cent)
- consumer food (28 per cent)