The latest AmEx poll reveals that Americans aren’t planning or saving as much this year. Which could be good news for the economy.
The results of the latest American Express Spending & Saving Tracker should give leisure marketers cause for optimism in 2011.
If you’re a leisure marketing pro, get ready for stronger sales in 2011. How can I say that when some consumer confidence polls say just the opposite?
I base my observation on three factors:
- Consumer spending was up 5.5% over last year.
- Our retail and restaurant clients just had their best holiday season since 2007 or 2008.
- The latest American Express Spending & Savings poll confirms that consumer confidence, and spending, will defy prognosticators in 2011.
People are saving less and setting fewer financial goals this year:
- Americans surveyed in the latest AMEX Spending & Saving tracker are planning to save only $2600 this year versus $14,000 last year.
- Only 83% are setting financial goals, versus 89% last year.
- This tells us that 6% of Americans have either dug themselves out of their debt, or are confident enough in the economy they’re not as scared of their debt as last year.
Americans will spend the majority of their incomes on making themselves look and feel better.
- Grooming (73%)
- Health/Fitness (70%)
- Clothing for themselves (61%)
It’s no surprise that Americans are spending so much on grooming and clothing. But an increased interest in health and fitness spells an increase in confidence, which leads to increased spending.
Their top 4 New Year’s resolutions involve improving their savings, health and friendships:
- Saving money.
- Spending more time with family and friends.
- Exercising more.
- Losing weight.
Again, while saving is still high on people’s priorities, look at how little they plan to save compared to last year. And their next three resolutions all involve leisure time activities.
Almost 1 in 2 Americans plan to spend more on health and fitness in 2011:
- Gym Memberships: average of $131 per month
- Fitness equipment: average of $127 per month
- Personal trainer: average of $127 per month
- Eating Programs: average of $75 per month
- Fitness-related video games: average of $60 per month
I don’t know about you, but when I’m depressed and afraid I don’t spend money on fitness equipment or eating less. I do just the opposite.
Folks, we are in a different frame of mind than last January. Just ask yourself if you spent more this past holiday season, and if you stuck to your budget like you did last year.
If you’re a leisure marketing specialist, how can you plan for a great year?
- If you’re selling at retail, stock up on your health and fitness equipment.
- If you’re a restaurant, promote your healthier offerings.
- If you’re in the outdoor category, sell the health benefits of your brands.
What are you doing to get ready for a stronger 2011? Tell us about it.