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Seven new trends in shopper marketing

Shopper marketing is in the spotlight and these seven new trends, coupled with good digital and experiential strategies, will maximise marketing spend, driving more feet in-store and product off the shelves.
  1. Shopper showrooming: Trend of viewing the products in bricks-and-mortar settings (experience, trial and price), and then ordering your products online instead, to take advantage of discounts and the convenience aspect of the product and service. Globally, top retail chain stores have started charging for the shopper experience (trial of and interaction with products) as well as rewarding shoppers, as a means to secure a shopper purchase (eg trying on clothing is linked with on-the-spot rewards). South African consumers will embrace online shopping more if retail drives experience linked to online purchase rewards, eg via NFC loyalty rewards and Geo-targeted campaigns. Brand and retailer loyalty will need to be seamlessly integrated for true shopper value.

  2. Age of apps: Apps are becoming a way to manage, explore, decide on and simplify the world around us. From RSP comparison checks (retailpricewatch.co.za) to sunscreen apps and fitness apps, more shoppers are embracing the app world to manage their lifestyle. The challenge for brands is to utilise apps within programmes that deliver tangible brand benefits and rewards, and not just develop apps for the sake of it. More shopper programmes will include an app that benefits the retailer, the experience (brand) and the shopper mode of experience.

  3. Store of tomorrow: The retail world no longer follows the 4Ps - right product, right promotion, right price and right placement. Shoppers are increasingly choosing how and where they want to experience and purchase a brand, so the store needs to come to the shopper. This has been seen in the explosion of pop-up experiential stores and more modern takes of augmented reality invisible stores, to create brand hype and display digital technology. Brands will create and customise segmented offerings on the go to create the experience that drives shoppers back to store.

  4. Mission-based shopping: This double-digit growth driver accounts for the increase in basket size growth for cross-selling categories. More attention will be paid to this, to work out how to market products and services to shoppers effectively if one understands the missions they are on and, more importantly, the opportunity to cross-sell within these missions. More companies will deploy insights to target shopper missions and create/leverage occasions accordingly, rather than view product categories in isolation. Increasing pressure on advertising spend and programmes will see brands and retailers working closer together to market to 'their shoppers'.

  5. Three's the trick: More marketing efforts are targeted to driving the interaction between retail space, digital engagement and experiential marketing. The brands that will own spaces in shoppers' minds will seamlessly entrench the engagement or experience with digital shopper rewards. 60-70% of marketing budgets will span these core disciplines, with other media as support and amplification of the campaign.

  6. E-couponing: Although heavily driven through compatibility with retailer redemption technology, more shoppers are starting to manage their grocery shopping and bills, with coupon downloads. Eezi Coupons, for example, ensure the right offer and right place with the right mechanic. Accessibility of coupons will drive store choice and product purchase in the long term. Shoppers are becoming increasingly 'aware' of the catches in loyalty cards to increase purchase, and will be looking for smarter and more efficient ways to be rewarded in real-time purchases rather than in points.

  7. Money back guarantees (MBG) linked to product satisfaction: Increasing focus from top CPG companies is building MBG into product marketing messages. The effects are twofold - reassures the shopper that the product is fail-safe ("I can hold you to that") and repositions a product effectively against competitors offering the same benefit. Shoppers will start to demand brand transparency on product delivery. The MBG will need to be a packaging seal across all brands.
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About the author

Carolyn White is the business director of shopper marketing at Mortimer Harvey.
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