Creating a special setting? Food and drink? Laughter? What’s the most important element of a gathering? Well our customers have spoken and it’s laughter.
We surveyed our consumer customers and that was their verdict. Almost half said laughter compared to just one in five for food and drink. Which is fine by us because – from ice breaking trivia to blowers - we have always been committed to producing products that add fun and style to a gathering.
In what is very good news for our sector, a strong majority plan to entertain more at home and eat out less this year. 87% intend to do more entertaining at home while 70% are planning less eating out. While the cost of living crisis is a likely factor here, we believe that since the pandemic people have increasingly valued spending time with loved ones. Netflix party, girls night in, having friends or family over for dinner; we are increasingly finding happiness in every day moments in life and appreciating the time spent with those closest to us.
Like a lot of businesses, we give a name to our customer to make her more real. We call her Trudy. We believe Trudy is a busy person but loves to host. While she appreciates design, she isn’t particularly interested in creating an immaculate setting. For her it’s about bringing people together. And that’s what the survey confirmed. Over half said bringing people together is most important for them. In contrast, just 6% said it was wowing their guests.
There’s further positive news for our independent stores as this is Trudy’s first choice for shopping for paper party and event essentials. Indies are significantly – 10% - ahead of Amazon, followed by online party shops, with supermarkets and department stores bringing up the rear.
You can expect to see your host up to four times a year as over half host a gathering every three months. And while dinner with friends and family is by far the most frequently hosted get-together, birthdays are the occasion she is most likely to buy paper items for.
Over half of people surveyed said design was the most important factor when making a purchase, with a quarter saying sustainability. In terms of sustainability, over half considered reusability most important, followed by recyclable in their own bin, then plastic free. Over a third had heard of B Corps, this compared to 25% among general shoppers.
As a bit of fun, we asked which of a number of celebrities they would most like to invite to their get-together. Tops was wit and raconteur Stephen Fry. He was followed by Olivia Colman and Reese Witherspoon, all of whom are known for their humour. Together they took 75% of the votes, with Jamie Oliver, Martin Lewis and Kirsty Young a fair way behind. Which brings us back to laughter…
The survey was carried out in June. There were 71 respondents, 89% female.