5 STRATEGIES TO BOOST HOLIDAY RETAIL SALES

Written by ERP Analyst, Software Advice

The holidays are a make-or-break season for many retailers. This season is expected to bring in up to $877 billion in sales, including as much as $37 billionfrom e-commerce. But consumers are tightening their belts. A recent Northwestern Mutual poll found that 52 percent of consumers are creating holiday spending plans this year.

To help retailers ensure they’re part of those spending plans and keep point of sale systems humming, I’ve put together five straightforward strategies to increase traffic, revenue and conversions this holiday season, while building customer loyalty to encourage continued spending into 2012.

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Categories: In-store, Mobile, Online, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

LOYALTY PROGRAMS TAKE IT PERSONALLY

From time to time, marketing conferences take a step back to reflect on where we are in the evolution of personalization. Sometimes they add a twist, such as focusing on new data sources or location-based marketing, but the common thread is the  promise of relevance.

I recently participated on a panel discussing how far consumer marketers have progressed in unlocking the value of data to enable personalization.

Such discussions often begin with a short debate about what constitutes “loyalty.” Some will argue that incenting people to buy more isn’t enough—loyalty takes emotions as well Continue reading

Categories: Loyalty, Mobile, Promotions | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

MEDIUM IS INCREASINGLY THE MESSAGE

Marshall McLuhan, who was born 100 years ago today (July 21, 1911), authored “the medium is the message” in 1964. He explained that the nature of media influences how messages are received without receivers realizing it. For example, motion pictures require less interpretation by viewers than radio.

Digital marketing validates the same point in a completely new way. Current day technologies spawned by the internet allow messages to be fleeting, even expendable, as media platforms test and refine them.

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Categories: Analytics, In-store, Online | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

WHERE IS RELEVANCE? EXACTLY.

Relevance marketing is one of those terms that is hard to disagree with. Joel Rubinson recently made a great case for it.

The words themselves sound unassailable. Who would argue that marketing shouldn’t be relevant? Of course it makes sense to tailor marketing  to be more appropriate, and now we have better tools than ever before to do it. But there are more effective and less effective ways to be relevant in shopper marketing. Let’s look at Who, What and Where.

Who

Media buying often focuses attention on relevant individuals.  Marketing  lingo is replete with “audiences,” “segments,” “target markets” and the like. Continue reading

Categories: Analytics, In-store, Pre-store | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

THE RIGHT QUESTIONS ABOUT SOCIAL ROI

Retail and CPG marketers are scratching their heads about measuring social media. The main reasons are that it comes so many forms and we know so little about them.

It can be an ad network. Facebook is now the #1 display ad network, delivering 31% of impressions.

It can be a PR vehicle. The number of PR firms receiving more than 15% of their revenues from social media activities is up 50%+.

It can be a market research source. Over 75% of respondents to a survey by Valued Opinions said they use social media to share thoughts on a product or service. Continue reading

Categories: Analytics, Branding, Online, Pre-store, Social | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

GENERAL MILLS: THE SCOOP ON GROUPON

What was General Mills thinking?

The marketer offered a $40 sampler kit and coupon book for $20 to consumers in Minneapolis/St. Paul and San Francisco. The offer included delivery of product to consumers’ homes.

Let’s look at that again: a 50% discount, plus up to 50% of the net revenue shared with Groupon, plus free shipping.

At first glance, this would be a nonstarter in most CPG marketing plans. But taking a second look at the idea, General Mills did 8 things right:

1. Being creative about “value.” Continue reading

Categories: Online, Pre-store, Promotions | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

SHOPPER MARKETING: MEDIA, NOT TRADE

I’ve attended the Shopper Marketing Summit (formerly In-store Marketing Summit) for the last 3 years. Each year I find that shopper marketing is looking less like trade and more like media. Here are 5 observations:

1. Shopper marketing is growing. Shopper marketing is the fastest growing category of marketing, according to Ad Age figures quoted by Greg Murtaugh of Triad.

2. Stores are powerful reach vehicles. Pete LaFond of Walmart noted Walmart.com reaches 53MM uniques per month and Smart Network reaches 150MM per week. Together they reach 1/3 to 1/2 of US shoppers each week. Continue reading

Categories: In-store, Online, Pre-store, Promotions | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

PUMPED UP ABOUT FUEL REWARDS

How a big a hit can fuel rewards be? As gas prices approach $4 a gallon nationally, they can be a big hit for Kroger.

Kroger last week expanded its rewards program to allow shoppers to save more per gallon based on how much they spend in-store. Spending $100 in a month saves them $.10 a gallon (the minimum), while spending $1000 or more saves $1 a gallon (the maximum). 

Shoppers can save money at Kroger stations or Shell stations. This is a optical benefit for shoppers and a clever move by Kroger. Continue reading

Categories: Analytics, In-store, Loyalty, Promotions | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

HEAVY LIFTING IN MOBILE SHOPPING

Today, 90% of Americans between 18 and 64 have a mobile phone, according to Arc Worldwide. Half of those are using their phones to shop. Of this half, 20% are driving the majority of mobile shopping behavior.

Translation: 10% of US adults are the mobile shopping heavies.

How do you compel more consumers to join this base of heavies? Arc looked at segments of shopper activity and suggests 5% of the 40% of casual users may be convinced to be heavy. Continue reading

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AVOIDING A SOCIAL MEDIA DOWNER

To know the road ahead, ask those on the way back. That’s a proverb worth heeding by retailers and manufacturers engaged in social media marketing.

Doug Stephens of Retail Prophet recently asked a full auditorium of marketers how many were engaged in social media.  Most of the hands went up.  Then he asked how many were disappointed. The hands stayed raised.

Many social media marketers have been disappointed because they lacked clarity in two areas: (1) purpose for their brands and (2) expectations about their audience. Continue reading

Categories: Branding, Online, Pre-store, Social | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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