Out of 198m adults aged 18-65 in the US, 60% qualify themselves as outdoor consumers

Out of 198m adults aged 18-65 in the US, 60% qualify themselves as outdoor consumers

The Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) has launched OIA ConsumerVue, an online and interactive research tool on the OIA website that will provide the organisation’s members with valuable insights into outdoor consumers’ desires, attitudes, and behaviours - and aid them in utilising those learnings to create business opportunities.

Following the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market show in January, where attendees had an opportunity to demo the ConsumerVue, the OIA has also made an executive summary available which outlines a number of the study’s key findings.

“The world is changing quickly, and with it, outdoor consumers are changing how they shop, how they think about brands, and how they engage with the outdoors,” the summary acknowledges.

Out of 198m adults between the ages of 18-65 in the US, 60% qualify themselves as outdoor consumers. Of these, 34% live in cities, are young and ethnically diverse, and spend the most on outdoor gear. The average outdoor consumer spends $465 a year to outfit themselves for outdoor activities.

Most outdoor consumers intend to remain active as they mature; and the 43% of outdoor consumers with children encourage them to enjoy outdoor activities as well, the survey found. The top motivations for getting outdoors include enjoying the benefits of sunshine and fresh air, spending time with family, and having fun.

Based on participants’ attitudes, motivations and hindrances regarding the outdoors, the study identified seven consumer segments and their participation and purchasing behaviours, along with the percentage of consumers in each segment, and their percentage of overall outdoor spend.

These segments include the Achiever, the Outdoor Native, the Urban Athlete, the Aspirational Core, the Athleisurist, the Sideliner, and the Complacent. The executive summary provides a brief analysis of each group, and identifies key opportunities to connect with them.

For example, the Athleisurist segment, comprising 20% of outdoor consumers but only 12% of the spend, enjoys more relaxing outdoor activities, prefers traditional outdoor brands, and tends to be price-sensitive. Their focus is said to be on the experience, not the performance.

The study’s qualitative and quantitative research was conducted in 2014 by Egg Strategy on behalf of OIA using 2,562 online surveys, one-on-one interviews, and participation videos from consumers.

The ConsumerVue tool uses the consumer segmentation to allow OIA members to better understand their existing customers, identify targets for their business and new/existing products, and understand which segments are likely to generate the best ROI.

"OIA ConsumerVue allows our members to use data in a more interactive way than traditional methods like research reports," explains Christie Hickman, OIA’s vice president of market & consumer insights. "By visualising the data in a digital environment, we are able to bring to life the different types of outdoor consumers and present the findings in a way that is not only insightful but digestible."

Through the coming year, the ConsumerVue will release a series of products including reports, infographics, videos, and activation guides; and will examine how the individual segments will change over the next five years, and the impact of consumer macro trends on the outdoor industry.