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The new Thai Consumer 2022 from Mintel highlights Thai consumers’ changing attitudes towards their everyday lifestyles and provides a guide for brands that includes robust consumer and market data, combined with expert insights and recommendations needed to be successful in today’s fast-moving marketplace.

Pongsanguan (Woon) Jiradechakul, Associate Director, Lifestyles Research, Mintel Reports India and Thailand, said:

“The events of the last two years have left an imprint on consumers and have had a greater than anticipated impact on their lives. While the pandemic has accelerated the growth of digital adoption and e-commerce, it has become a hindrance to Thai consumers’ pursuit of sustainable consumption.

“The pandemic has also led to financial difficulties such as increased household debts and increased unemployment. On the plus side, Thais are now better prioritising health and wellness. Moreover, female consumers are playing a key role in driving the adoption of e-commerce and foodservice.”

Motivate Thais to be more eco-conscious

The latest findings from Mintel show that 82% of Thai consumers try to act in a way that is not harmful to the environment. However, the environmental impacts brought by the surge of online shopping and delivery services, including significant generation of waste, gas emissions, and overconsumption, have run counter to Thais’ desire to live more sustainably. 

“Brands need to double down on convenience, health benefits, cost-effectiveness messaging and proactively communicate the positive impact of sustainable products on social media and on packaging to persuade Thais to adopt sustainable lifestyles,” said Woon. 

Assist consumers towards financial wellness

Household debt is putting a strain on Thais’ finances and has been exacerbated by rising unemployment and lower incomes. According to Mintel research, the majority of Thai consumers (73%) are prioritising emergency funds. But debt is also a worrisome issue with half of Thais (52%) — particularly those living in rural areas — are prioritising debt repayment. 

“Our research suggests that Thais will be in a better financial position if there are tools to help them manage their finances and repay their debts. Brands can assist them with financial products or services that promote responsible spending behaviours.

“There is also a greater need to improve Thais’ financial literacy. Faced with a high financial burden, financial investment advice on both traditional and trendy digital products can make financial planning more achievable for consumers particularly those with lower incomes,” continued Woon. 

Help Thais live healthier lifestyles

Four in five (81%) Thai consumers are now concerned with what they eat, how to live a more active lifestyle and how to manage stress. Latest findings from Mintel show that more than 60% of Thais maintain their health by consuming balanced diets and healthy beverages with added nutritional benefits such as vitamins in an energy drink.. However, the lack of time, inconvenience and unappealing taste also complicate their desire for healthy living. 

“Brands can engage consumers by addressing issues that are relevant to each age group, explaining how their products and services can solve such problems. Brands also have more opportunities for ingestible product innovation as our research shows that consumers are increasingly willing to spend more money in support of their health,” Woon went on to say.

Tap on the rise of ‘she-economy’

Mintel Thai Consumer 2022 indicates two key reasons Thailand’s ‘she-economy’ is gaining traction. First, during the pandemic, female consumers played a key role in accelerating e-commerce by becoming frequent users of online shopping and food delivery. Second, the increasing awareness about women’s empowerment and gender equality, especially among Gen Z and Millennial women, is driving purchase preferences. Moreover, the concept of natural beauty that boost one’s self-worth and confidence is becoming more important for 51% of Thai women, providing brands with the opportunity to push this agenda further and be an advocate for positive beauty experiences for women.

“While women were quick to adapt to more online grocery shopping and food delivery services during the pandemic, lifestyle concerns vary by age group, ranging from health to finances. Brands can tailor their offerings based on those specific needs thereby enhancing women’s online shopping experience and supporting their frequent online shopping habits. 

“What’s more, increasing awareness of gender equality has more female consumers looking to support brands that reflect their personal beliefs. Brands with values that align with female empowerment in an authentic way will do well to promote messages of gender equality and the like in their campaigns, furthering engagement and spending from the modern female shopper.”  

Mintel’s Thai Consumer 2022 is available for free download here.

For more information or to schedule an interview with our analyst team, please contact the Mintel Press Office at press@mintel.com.