Stewarding the Resource of Time: America’s priorities shift during recession

AUTHOR:

Chris Stone


How do Faith Driven Consumers compare?

Time, talent and treasure – these three resources are constantly being juggled on a daily basis by Americans.

In the 2010 American Time Use Survey, the U.S. Bureau of Labor identified how Americans use their time throughout the day. The study found that—besides work and work-related activities—Americans spend a majority of their time involved in leisurely activities.  This includes watching television, leisure and sports, eating and drinking, and personal care.

For the average American, consuming products and entertainment in order to enjoy their leisure time doesn’t require much thought or effort—they simply buy products that fit their immediate needs.

In contrast, however, there is a rapidly emerging and economically powerful market segment known as Faith Driven Consumers that behaves in ways that are polar opposite to the patterns of the average American.  As a unique subset of the broader American Christian population, these Faith Driven Consumers apply different filters to how they spend their time and money, and they respond very differently to messages in the marketplace.

Comprising 17 percent of the U.S. adult population – equivalent in size to the U.S. Hispanic population – the 41 million Americans who are Faith Driven Consumers spend $2 trillion annually. While they engage in the marketplace daily like other Americans, Faith Driven Consumers make product and entertainment purchasing decisions that are informed by their faith – with little distinction between the secular and the sacred.  Thus, in their daily life and spending decisions, Faith Driven Consumers are actively seeking options that are compatible with their faith-based values and worldview.

And when it comes to worldview, the key to understanding what motivates Faith Driven Consumers to action is knowing that they are fueled by a desire to steward their time, talent and treasure in ways that bring glory and honor to God.

So while most Americans – including Faith Driven Consumers – spend 2.5 hours watching television daily, Faith Driven Consumers are looking to be engaged with this medium in ways that respects their values and ethics. The same can be said for the time and treasure they spend at work, in school, eating and drinking, in leisure and sports, doing household activities, caring for household and non-household members, and even in participating in organizational, civic and religious activities.

Faith Driven Consumers are everywhere.  And they participate in the same marketplace as everyone else.

Does your brand know how to create distinct messaging that will resonate on a heart and values level with the increasingly enfranchised Faith Driven Consumer market – which encompasses one out of every seven Americans?

Do you know which marketing channels are most effective in reaching this highly differentiated market – in whichever activity of daily living they may be engaged?



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