Enabling people to embrace their passions

This week we explore what Australians love to do, and compare people across our country, with a particular focus on South Australians. Since May Square Holes has been exploring what Australians love to do and the role big and small businesses can play, through a national survey of 2,000 adults and eight focus groups across age groups from primary school to 70+ year olds.

Good food, travel and spending time with friends and family make up the top 10 loves of Australians, from a list 35 aspect lifestyle aspects measured.

These are activities with very few haters across Australia.

The research reveals our big love is family, with 74% of South Australians loving their family and all but 6% either liking them a lot or a little, this is consistent across Australia.

There is so much more South Australian love do from spending time in nature to good food and music.

“I love to be outdoors. Especially now it kind of sucks being stuck inside the whole time. So just going outdoor sort of relaxing and unwinding. Bringing it back to the roots and just being away from technology. Especially work, you’re always around technology and stuff like that. So being outdoors, me and my partner we like to go rock climbing and that sort of stuff. So that’s sort of our sort of nice escape.”

[20-29 YEAR OLD]

“Being in nature and gardening, it’s that real connection to the Earth and to life outside of just your regular day-to-day.”

[30-39 YEAR OLD]

“Going out and enjoying food with good company. Even just with family, it brings people together. We are not home a lot, all at the same time to sit down and eat meals anymore, but lately we have been so yeah it brings you together. It gets you talking.”

[40-49 YEAR OLD]

“I love all sorts of music but my real passion is live music. I love going to the Wheaty  and The Gov and the Trinity Sessions on Goodwood Road. I like to hear live music at least every two weeks, if I can. So I haven’t been since about early March. It’s the atmosphere of other people sitting around you and listening. And things can go wrong, like the musicians have to get there early and set up. Just being able to have a smile with someone or a chat in the break, or buy a CD afterwards and get a signature and have a hug, a photo.”

[50-59 YEAR OLD]

“I think, for me, travel’s really important because it widens your world. You start to appreciate the people that you didn’t appreciate before. It certainly removes a lot of prejudices that you might have and opens your mind. That’s what I like about the overseas bit, is as an extension of where you’ve been in the past, which is really nice.”

[60-69 YEAR OLD]

It is interesting to compare States, with South Australians emerging overall all as less passionate about many of the lifestyle aspects to other areas, particularly the ACT and Northern Territory.  While the sample sizes in ACT and NT are smaller from the overall sample of 2,000 Australians interviewed in May this year due to smaller relative populations, the survey reveals adults from both regions higher in the ‘love’ or ‘like a lot’ than other Australians across activities. Northern Territorians were particularly high for camping, with 64% loving or liking a lot. People living in the ACT were particularly passionate about food, travel, wine and even listening to podcasts compared with other Australians.

The top five passions for South Australians were …

  1. Good food
  2. Listening to music
  3. Using the Internet
  4. Watching movies
  5. Travelling within Australia

South Australians recorded notably lower levels of love or like a lot than the total Australian sample for eating out at restaurants, cafes etc (49% love or like a lot, compared with 60% of Australians), travelling overseas (51%, compared with 60% overall), and cooking at home (38%, compared with 48% overall).

When exploring the South Australia data further, 50 to 64 year olds emerge as the most passionate about many of the lifestyle aspects, followed by 18 to 34 year olds, 35 to 49 year olds, and South Australians 65+ recording lower levels from the lifestyle aspects listed.

South Australians aged 18 to 34 are particularly passionate about …

  1. Social media (47% love or like a lot, compared with 30% of all South Australian adults); and
  2. Going to the beach (56%, compared with 45% overall)

South Australians aged 35-49 recorded above average levels of passion for …

  1. Experiencing new things (58%, compared with 49% of 49% of all South Australian adults); and
  2. Spending time / going out with friends (66%, compared with 56% overall)

South Australians aged 50-64 recorded above average levels for …

  1. Travelling within your state / territory (78%, compared with 62% of all South Australian adults; and
  2. Reading (69%, compared with 53% overall)

This age group also recorded well above average levels for gardening and good wine.

South Australians aged 65+ were particularly passionate about …

  1. Spending time with children / grandchildren (78%, compared with 53% of all South Australian adults); and
  2. Gardening (46%, compared with 36% overall)

Males illustrated stronger passion towards beer and watching sport than females, who indicated stronger levels of love and like a lot for shopping, creating art / craft and listening to music.

When comparing South Australians living in Adelaide versus regional areas, out capital city was stronger in passion for watching sitcoms and series on TV, eating out at restaurants and cafes and watching reality shows of TV.

The research also explored the brands Australians love or like a lot, with Apple, Cadbury and Nike emerging as the top three. Findings of the reveals brands and businesses, big and small, playing a critical role in enabling the passions of Australians. Apple’s omnipresent synchronicity enables many of the loves of life. Cadbury enables sharing time and food with friends. Nike fitness and fashion.

COVID-19 has bought much chaos and uncertainty, yet the passions of South Australians and other Australians still remain, with many new opportunities emerging. Overseas travel stopping for example, now diverts opportunity to local tourism businesses. Buy local discussions are leveraging a passion for food, especially in crazy times. The fundamentals of life in pandemic times and otherwise continue to come back to the basics the love of family, time with friends and enjoying simple pleasures. Importantly, the passions of one person likely differ from others due to age, gender and other factors. Likely this is where business growth will come from the disruption of 2020, enabling people to better enjoy their passions in life, even when the world feeling unstable.

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