UNO April 2019

Consumers and brands: a new era

According to a PwC study, more than one in three consumers named brand confidence as one of the main things that influenced their purchase decision, over and above price. At the same time, we have recently witnessed an overall downward trend in the general population’s trust in business and companies through indices such as the “Trust Barometer”. Brands are a bridge, allowing companies to relate in a more fluid and enriching way—but within that relationship, widespread loss of consumer confidence is playing an increasingly important role.

The digital era has offered brands new opportunities to interact with consumers, and data transparency and changes in the privacy model have given rise to new approaches and more personalized experiences. But with opportunity also comes abuse; the misuse of this data and an overload of information and content has eroded consumer confidence in brands. Brands have not always been able to react to the new requirements of transparency, integrity and credibility in time for buyers who are increasingly well-informed, demanding and increasingly equal to companies.

“Brands that are able to focus their efforts on providing inspiration, generating a sense of belonging and improving customer experience will be the best prepared to lead in consumer preference”

This is the complex, uncertain and fascinating environment we explore in UNO Magazine’s issue 32. Faced with a consumer-brand relationship governed by data, in which phenomena such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality are going to play a determining role, renowned marketing and communication specialists analyze not only this new era’s future challenges, but also its opportunities. In it, brands will play a key role—now more than ever—in bringing consumers to companies. Those who are able to focus their efforts on providing inspiration, generating a sense of belonging by adding value and using data to improve customer experiences will be the best prepared to lead in consumer preference. I trust you will find the perspectives of the experts who collaborated on this issue as interesting as I do. It is a true pleasure to share our reflections on the challenges that matter.

Jose Antonio Llorente
Founding Partner and Chairman of LLORENTE & CUENCA Spain / U.S.A.
Jose Antonio Llorente as a specialist in Corporate and Financial Communication, over the course of a career spanning more than 25 years, he has provided consultancy services on numerous corporate transactions: mergers, acquisitions, divestments, joint ventures and stock market floatations. Mr. Llorente was the first Spanish professional to have received the SABRE Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement, a European award presented by The Holmes Report.Mr. Llorente worked at the multinational Burson-Marsteller for ten years, where he was Managing Director. He currently sits on the Board of Trustees of the Euroamérica Foundation and the Steering Committee of the Spanish Association of Minority Shareholders of Listed Companies. He is also a member of the Advisory Council to SMEs of the Spanish Confederation of Small- and Medium-Sized Enterprises, the Steering Committee of the Agencies of Spain Association and the Advisory Council of Executive MBA in the Management of Professional Services Organisations organised by Garrigues. José Antonio has a degree in Information Sciences from the Complutense University of Madrid, and specialist in Public Affairs at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and The Henley College. @jallorente [United States - Spain]

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