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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Automotive recovery shifts into higher gear

Observation:   A recent story from Automotive News indicates that the car-buying public has moved from “need-based buying (replacing an older car when it becomes unreliable) to “want-based buying” (buying a car because they feel like it).  Click here to see the story.

Implications:   While everyone knows what is meant by the term, “The Great Recession,” few people feel like we ever had the chance to celebrate a “Great Recovery.”  That’s because the turnaround has been very gradual, allowing no great announcement of good tidings.   

But that having been said, the recession lasted (only) 19 months, and at this writing, the recovery has lasted 32 months.  The wariness has, for many people, worn off.  While gradual, the recovery has turned out to be somewhat reliable for many Americans… and they’re ready to get their lives underway again.  That is what we mean when this site references the term, "Reconciliation" (see our other postings on the topic by clicking here).

How are things in your category?  Have consumers begun to return?  Are they coming back so gradually that you’ve failed to notice?  Have they returned to the category, but not your company?  The mindset of many consumers is shifting to the good; has your messaging kept pace?

Mike Anderson, for the Elm Street Economics consumer trends blog. A service of The Center for Sales Strategy, Inc.

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