Written by Aly Howard and Rachel Majors
Can you believe it? 2015 is three-fourths of the way through. We know, we’re just as shocked at the realization as you are. Going into the final months of the year marks a great time for reflecting on what has happened and preparing for what’s to come. We turned to our CB leaders – Amy Callahan, Co-founder and CCO, and Bill Sussman, CEO – and asked them to reflect on Shopper Marketing in early 2015, as well as give us some insight into the end of the year and 2016.
Bill believes shopper marketers will continue to look for efficient social and digital media solutions that help them support their most important retail customers, and that this trend will continue to accelerate in 2016.
Amy agrees with Bill, “especially as retailers continue to eliminate in-store tactics for suppliers, social and digital will be efficient spends to target their customer to point them back in store for purchase.”
It will be interesting to see how brands change their social and digital efforts to reach consumers. Will these advancements hurt in-store sales? Only time and continued digital efforts will tell.
It’s no secret that brand involvement in social media is practically a necessary tactic nowadays. But rather than getting platform specific, our leaders recommend that brands focus on creating shareable content.
“To me, social platforms are the distribution vehicle to reach lots of people,” Bill states. What matters more is the content that gets created to be shared on those social platforms. Great content equals engagement.”
Amy sees content the same way, and also addresses the possibilities of new platforms entering the market:
“All platforms are going to continue to gain importance and new ones are going to keep popping up. What I think is more important than focusing on just one “important” platform is to create enough quality content that can be tailored to live on any social platform.”
The consumer should be able to see and understand the content no matter what platform they are using. Just like we post the same picture of our dog to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram so all our friends can see how awesome he is, brands should focus on doing the same so their audience can receive a unified message.
The news of social platforms adding “buy buttons” has been in your newsfeed for weeks. With several brands testing out the new buy buttons on sites like Pinterest, we wanted to see what our CB shopper marketing professionals thought.
“I think buy buttons are great if they are placed in the appropriate places,” Bill said. “If a user’s mindset is not aligned with having a buying experience and they are only visiting your site or social platform as a browsing and idea generation experience, then buy buttons will get in the way and chase away visitors/traffic.”
It’s not all business for our leaders, though. After all, it’s practically a dream come true to be able to click away to your heart’s desire on everything “Pinteresty” and actually receive those products you love. Amy said, “I personally like buy buttons, but I am not your typical shopper/consumer. If I find the right item and the buying experience can be made simpler for me, I am all in.”
We got some great insights from the CB leadership. One thing’s for sure though: brands are seeking new ways to personally connect with their consumers. We are confident that digital efforts will continue to be essential for shopper marketing. Let us know your predictions on these topics and the rest of 2015 in the comments below.