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Microsoft Advertising data reveals new consumer attitudes

November 03, 2021

Microsoft Advertising first-party data reveals four new consumer attitudes

Work and life blending, combined with political and social upheavals over the last few years, have brought about new consumer attitudes that will impact your marketing programs. These shifts in behavior and privacy expectations are creating permanent changes in how people engage with brands.

We used our first-party data and advanced analytics to study web browsing activity and identified emerging attitudes and behaviors. These four new attitudes, which are explored in greater detail in a more recent blog post and a free e-book, are driving changes in how we reach and relate to our customers across industries. They are:

  • Luxury Shoppers
  • Digital Nomads
  • Empowered Activists
  • Self-Care Enthusiasts

In the last 18 months, we've seen shopping and searching evolve rapidly, especially among these four new groups. Luxury Shoppers shifted from in-store preferences to almost entirely online overnight. A new breed of traveler – the Digital Nomad – quickly emerged as people were freed from their offices.

We saw activism take on a new face as people, Empowered Activists, stood up for civil rights and began voting with their wallets, forcing brands into the fray with them. At the same time, we learned to care about ourselves and each other in more intentional ways than before. Wellness is front and center for Self-Care Enthusiasts, from simple acts of personal kindness to sweeping health choices.

The cultural and social changes shaping these new attitudes impact everything from shopping and traveling to finding new brands and businesses to support. Below is an early look at the four new attitudes detailed in an upcoming ebook to help you better understand and reach these evolving consumers.

Luxury Shopper

The online Luxury Shopper proliferated at the start of the pandemic, when luxury retail locations were closed. What used to be primarily an in-store audience quickly shifted online. The trend has lasted even after the re-opening of storefronts.

This shopper is searching for items to elevate their everyday experiences with finer things. They value quality and seek ways to make everyday items more luxurious. Their preference for luxury extends into expecting the same seamless, personalized shopping experience in online service as they would receive in-store. They conduct extensive research and use multiple queries and search engines to find brands that meet their expectations. See our study of first-party data for recent online luxury shopping trends.

Digital Nomad

The Digital Nomad arose from digital transformation, the expansion of the gig economy, and the increase of remote work. These location-independent people make a living working online while traveling. The behavior is so prominent, an entire industry is springing up around them. One example is RVShare, one of the first RV rental marketplaces that nomads are excited about.

As shoppers, Digital Nomads use online research across verticals as much or more than any other consumer group. They are looking for housing and transportation on a recurring basis and all the needs, services, and amenities that accompany daily life in new locations.

Their use of mobile devices, changing locations, and various search terms make them a viable target for multiple verticals and business types. A look at their daily search history might include travel products, transportation, housing, grocery and dining and entertainment and more.

See our RVShare customer success story to see how they managed their massive growth over the last 18 months.

Empowered Activist

The Empowered Activist is a consumer who votes with their wallet by purchasing only from brands that align with their values. This could mean seeking out eco-friendly, minority-focused, and small business brands. This shopper prioritizes authenticity and businesses that demonstrate their values with more than marketing messages.

This consumer is more likely to be interested in and search for environmental, political, and social issues. They’re vocal about their beliefs and values and are more likely to identify as an online activist than the average internet user

Self-Care Enthusiast

The Self-Care Enthusiast came into being during the first months of the pandemic. The uncertainty and fear, combined with political and social upheaval, created stress and anxiety for many. This consumer managed it with self-care.

This shopper values spending time and connecting with the people in their lives and focusing on mental and physical health. They are often looking for new diet tips, fitness ideas, and ways to manage work, school, life, and leisure activities in their hybrid work-life reality.

Self-Care Enthusiasts are masters at switching between work and life during the day. Because of this, they expect to get information quickly and to have a seamless digital experience across multiple devices.

Reaching these audiences

It’s from changes and insights like these that Microsoft Advertising has adapted our products and platforms. In union with these insights, products like Microsoft 365 and Windows 11 allow marketers to continue to reach people across their professional and personal lives.

Everything we’ve built is part of an ecosystem recognizing these new beliefs, expectations, and behaviors and employing these insights to help people accomplish their goals. Using Windows, Edge, Microsoft News, Bing, and, people get more done as they switch seamlessly between work and life, no matter how much work and life changes.

Many facets of life continue to evolve, and time is a precious commodity. Finding ways to relate to your customers on the things that are important to them will be paramount in reaching them.

Microsoft Advertising gives you various ways to reach this new breed of consumers while they continue adapting to rapid changes taking place around them. Their growing numbers, predictable behaviors, and a wealth of new advertising opportunities make it easier to connect with them in the spaces that matter most. Download the free Life Reinvented: Emerging Consumer Behaviors e-book to learn more about these consumers and how to reach them.


  • Nora Xu


    Nora Xu
  • Stephanie Worley


    Stephanie Worley

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