Shopper Marketing For Today’s Digital World

July 31, 2019 Kathy Bryan

shopper marketing

Shopper marketing is the practice of targeting in-store shoppers with messages that encourage last-minute, impulse purchases. Using actionable insights, both aggregated and based on the individual, shopper marketing campaigns build brand awareness and drive sales. But like most everything else, even though shopper marketing is focused on in-store shoppers, strategies are increasingly leveraging multiple channels, including digital media.

Most In-Store Shoppers Are On Their Phones While In Stores

Smartphones are ubiquitous. Even when in brick-and-mortar retail locations, two-thirds of consumers are on their phones. What are they doing?

  • 69% of in-store phone users are looking at product reviews
  • 58% are researching comparable products
  • 55% are looking at product specs
  • 53% are searching for deals and discounts, including digital coupons

With the majority of shoppers on their phones and happily digesting digital content while shopping, it benefits retailers and manufacturers to think of phones (hence, the entire internet) as part of the shopper marketing experience. Consequently, point-of-purchase promotions are no longer restricted to physical materials.

Here’s a look at three recent shopper marketing campaigns that merged the physical and digital worlds to engage consumers and impact sales volume.

Albertsons X Unilever “Make Sweet Memories”

This summer, Albertsons partnered with Unilever for their “Make Sweet Memories” promotion. Customers purchasing Unilever ice cream products (including Talenti, Magnum, Popsicle, Klondike and Good Humor) were encouraged to submit their receipts to the campaign microsite. After $20 in cumulative purchases, customers received promo codes valid for $5 Fandango rewards. Plus, throughout half the year, there was a sweepstakes winner each week who received a year’s worth of ice cream.

The Albertsons X Unilever “Make Sweet Memories” Multi-Channel Shopper Marketing Campaign Leveraged The Following Elements:

CVS ExtraCare H(app)iness Event

CVS ExtraCare H(app)iness Event

CVS has long leveraged its ExtraCare loyalty program to collect customer data and reward shoppers with personalized offers. Recently, in an effort to increase usage of their app, CVS launched a campaign that connected their in-app and in-store experiences, requiring consumers to leverage both digital and physical CVS outlets to benefit from the promotion.

The CVS H(app)iness Event Multi-Channel Shopper Marketing Campaign Leveraged The Following Elements:

  • Offers, including coupons, ExtraBuck rewards and free products, available only in the CVS app and redeemable only in CVS brick-and-mortar locations
  • Exclusive loyalty member-only surprises within the CVS app each week
  • Promotions in CVS print and digital circulars
  • Display ads on CVS.com
  • Dedicated email messages
  • Campaign-specific social media alerts

Kroger X Hasbro Family Fun Night

With the objective of boosting sales by encouraging families to have fun together, Kroger and Hasbro teamed up to promote Family Fun Night. This feel-good promotion helps families plan nights inclusive of dinner and snacks, kid-friendly activities and multi-generational conversations.

The Kroger X Hasbro Family Fun Night Multi-Channel Shopper Marketing Campaign Leveraged The Following Elements:

  • Promotions in Kroger print circulars with discounts on Hasbro games, Dr. Seuss books, movies and food
  • Special in-store merchandising
  • Display ads throughout the Kroger website
  • A dedicated Family Fun Night web page featuring digital coupons, recipes, family conversation-starter activities and functionality that lets page visitors add promoted items directly to the digital shopping cart

Physical & Digital Retail Worlds Have Collided. Shopper Marketing Must Span Both Worlds, Too.

Physical & Digital Retail

In a world where consumers shopping habits fluidly transition from online to in-store, retailers and brands must facilitate today’s shopping styles with marketing that is equally seamless.

Catalina Marketing, once known primarily for their ability to target receipt coupons to loyalty program shoppers, recently announced a new program that will help brands track shoppers from online research to in-store purchases. Once the dominant player in shopper marketing, Catalina is trying to reposition themselves after their 2018 bankruptcy. And their story may be considered a warning for all retail brands: the world has gone digital, and so must you.

Brands With Long Email Subscriber Lists Have A Head Start On Digital Communications

There are many ways to engage consumers digitally, including the big three in terms of U.S. advertising revenue: Google, Facebook and Amazon. But while these three ad platforms can drive brand awareness and retail success, they regularly change their rules of consumer engagement. For brands committed to digital engagement with prospective and loyal customers, owning first-party data and enewsletter subscriber lists is often warranted.

Shopper marketers looking to launch or grow their email marketing campaigns can work with partners to help source subscribers who opt in to receive branded content, promotions or offers. Strategic partnerships that leverage people-based marketing to drive targeted traffic to a brand’s website or offer reliable, scalable data from opt-in forms on their own sites can result in highly effective lists of subscribers who stick with a brand, even when the big digital platforms change their algorithms.

Reinventing Your Shopper Marketing Strategies?

Contact DMS

About the Author

Kathy Bryan

Kathy Bryan is the Chief Marketing Officer at Digital Media Solutions (DMS). In this role, Kathy is responsible for all aspects of marketing and communications for DMS, the leading global martech company leveraging innovative, performance-driven brand and marketplace solutions to connect consumers and advertisers.

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