The report, entitled 'Changing Attitudes in Health and Nutrition Rise of Immunity-Boosting Strategies' and authored by consumer insight expert Amrutha Shridhar, points out that consumers looking to purchase immunity products are being inundated with information from health associations, governments, social media influencers and advertising campaigns.
The white paper therefore outlines the key strategies brands and companies need to take into consideration if they are looking to make an impact with immunity products.
The holistic picture
According to Euromonitor's Voice of the Consumer Health and Nutrition Survey 2021, consumers' top 10 definitions of 'healthy' are: mental wellbeing (64% of global respondents chose this), having a healthy immune system (62%), feeling good (59%), getting enough sleep (59%), absence of disease (57%), emotional wellbeing (55%), maintaining a healthy weight (54%), eating a balanced diet (52%), drinking enough water (49%), and fitness and endurance (48%).
When asked what behaviours they felt had the biggest impact on immunity, 61% of European respondents said that getting adequate sleep (61%), drinking water (51%), consuming fresh fruit and veg (54%), had the highest impact.
"38% of global consumers already participate in stress-reducing activities, such as meditation and massages, at least monthly," writes Shridhar. "Services and products that help consumers switch off and get better sleep are likely to resonate well. However, brands need to remember that these products should work cohesively with their customer’s entire lifestyle and that natural alternatives, such as chamomile tea, meditation and breathing exercises, are likely to be more popular than prescription or pharmaceutical sleep-aids."
In fact, when asked what labels and ingredients consumers most associated with supporting the immune system, most said 'natural' and 'organic'. Protein was also chosen by many. Shridhar says this suggests consumers are looking for more traditional routes to a healthy diet, rather than relying on heavily processed products.
She adds that consumers who follow high-protein, reduced meat, plant-based or raw food diets tend to do so because they are focused on preventative health measures and therefore are likely to be willing to pay more to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Therefore brands and companies targeting consumers who follow these diets will likely be successful if they focus on clear labelling and packaging which outlines ingredients, nutritional information and health benefits.
Convenience is king
Despite consumers claiming they are highly interested in improving their immunity, price and convenience still take precedent on many buying occasions, with 38% of global consumers saying price is their main barrier to eating healthily, and 27% stating that not having time to cook and finding unhealthy food more convenient are barriers to healthy eating.
Convenience is where vitamins and supplements come into play in a big way, with 56% of global respondents saying these are an important part of overall health and nutrition.
When asked which specific vitamins and supplements consumers take in order to build their immune system, the majority said vitamin C, followed closely by multivitamins, turmeric, vitamin D, and probiotics.
But in order to market these products to consumers in an amiable way, Shridhar says it's important to communicate that they are to be used as additions to holistically healthy lifestyles.
"Brands that associate with fitness and other healthy every day activities can become a vital part of consumers’ daily habits. For example, brands can partner with local gyms to provide information on what type of vitamins and supplements should be consumed after a work-out along with a healthy post-workout meal recipe.
"Brands within this market need to ensure that they are looking outside of their immediate industry and ensuring that their products work holistically across a variety of categories."