Skip to main content

Study: Digital revolution transforming shopper marketing


Online marketing is sparking radical changes — and growth — in shopper marketing.


That’s according to a new report from the ANA (Association of National Advertisers), conducted in partnership with market research firm GfK, which finds that  shopper marketing, long considered an in-store discipline, is evolving into an omnichannel approach designed to reach shoppers at all touchpoints.


The report came in the wake of an ANA/PQ Media US Brand Activation Marketing Forecast report, which said that between now and 2020, investment in shopper marketing is expected to increase 5.8% to $18.6 billion, outperforming the growth of total brand marketing spending.


“The point of purchase is no longer just in-store, and shopper marketers are struggling to reach consumers across the right touchpoints at the right time,” said ANA president and CEO Bob Liodice. “Our research shows that the new goal of shopper marketing campaigns is to make brick-and-mortar visits mirror the effectiveness of the online environment while delivering a seamless shopper experience.”


In a key finding, the study confirmed that mobile has become an important component of shopper marketing campaigns, attempting to engage people in-store and extend a connection post-visit. Mobile is being furthered leveraged pre-visit with geolocation, targeted mobile marketing, and promotional apps.


• Shopper marketing has progressed from only driving short-term sales to motivating shopper behavior. While the primary role of shopper marketing has always been to convert shoppers, it now has to deliver a combination of short- and long-term benefits, including driving conversion among shoppers, motivating shopper behavior through levers beyond price, and executing solutions to shopper challenges and purchase barriers.


• A dedicated shopper marketing team is more likely to be viewed as a competitive advantage today than it was in the past. Among respondents in organizations with a dedicated shopper marketing team, 51% indicated that shopper marketing was a competitive advantage, and 55% said shopper marketing reflected the convergence of brands, shoppers, and retailers.


• When shopper marketing reports to marketing, it likely to be more strategic and more highly valued within the organization. The discipline began to change dramatically as shopper marketers became more strategic and began leveraging shopper insights. When shopper marketing began reporting directly to marketing rather than to sales or other departments, it created greater opportunity for integration.

This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds