“Mall culture” driving brand influence
Shopping malls in the UAE are driving consumer behaviours and influencing brand perceptions according to research conducted by Praxis Research Partners.
Consumers in the UAE “show greater willingness to form strong emotional connections with brands” than those in America, and are also exposed to a greater number of international brands.
The MBLM Brand Intimacy 2015 Report, which examined responses from 6,000 consumers in the UAE, US and Mexico, highlighted the role of a tax-free environment, and how most segments of the population have greater disposable income, bringing more brands within their reach.
“It seems clear that the growing mall culture we have in the UAE has a big influence on how people feel towards brands,” said William Shintani, Partner at MBLM, the brand intimacy agency.
“This extra engagement with brands sets up the foundation for a more intimate relationship. Of course, this is a relatively new consumer experience in the UAE compared with the U.S. where people are more sceptical and jaded following decades of hyper-consumerism,” he added.
“Malls here offer a complete retail, leisure and entertainment experience, and ever-increasing numbers of people spend a great deal of time visiting them. Once inside they are exposed to brands from around the globe to a more concentrated degree than consumers in other markets,” he continued.