Finding Joy in 2020

It’s been quite a year. So much so that there’s no need to write the perfunctory paragraph spelling out all of the things that caused us anxiety and disrupted our lives throughout the year. We get it and we lived it. Yet, despite the emotional (and physical) strain we experienced in 2020, some bright spots shone through as we discovered new sources of joy, pleasure and passion.

By analyzing millions of social media conversations, as well as content from thousands of digital media publishers, MarketCast was able to identify what people are buying and doing to help lift their spirits during this challenging time. We looked at the key consumer product categories and evaluated what kinds of products and services people talked about the most, wished for, found happiness in, and used discretionary income for themselves and others.

We pulled all of these findings and analysis together in our new Sources of Joy 2020 report, which you can download here.  

Report Key Take-Aways

Some of our research surprised us:

  • Millennial and Gen Z social media conversations about spending on high-end cooking brands, like Le Creuset and Great Jones, jumped more than 58%.
  • Conversations about skin care are up 93%, but discussions about healthy food is way down.
  • A lot of young people are turning to reading and even writing letters (yes, letters). In fact, a new Twitter pen pal matching initiative quickly surpassed more than 6.6K members.

By contrast, some of our other findings were more obvious:

  • TV and streaming fans turned to more uplifting streaming programming, like Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso and Netflix’s The Great British Bakeoff.
  • Many work-from-homers swapped office wear for yoga pants. In fact, athleisure brands, like Lululemon, Alo Yoga and Champion, experienced nearly 40% increase in social media chatter as so many of us turned our workout gear into work outfits.

As the holidays approached, consumers set their sight on decorating and gift giving:

  • As family get-togethers again fell victim to stay-at-home orders, many people started decorating for the holidays earlier than usual.
  • Others turned their attention to holiday gift giving, but with an emphasis on buying or creating more meaningful gifts for close family and friends only.

In such an unusual year, where are consumers finding joy right now? Click below to check out the full report.

Download Report