Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Kmart Provides Assistance to the Unemployed Through its Savings Card

This post on retailwire discusses how Kmart will be offering assistance to customers who have lost their jobs with a 20% discount on private label items through its Smart Assist Savings Card. This program allows customers to access discounts for a period of 6 months. Participants in the program are required to show Kmart their valid state unemployment ID. Tom O'Boyle, senior vice president, president, food and consumables for Kmart, recently mentioned:

"We've seen in Michigan that the Kmart Smart Assist Savings Card has helped cardholders keep good quality food on the table and their households stocked with staples while they get back on their feet. We hope that this program has the same positive impact across the country."

Government officials have already praised Kmart for their kindness in offering those in need. It shouldn't be too much longer before we see other retailer giants follow in the same foot steps.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009 Speaker: Anne Howe, MARS

Anne Howe
SVP, Market Intelligence

As Senior Vice President - Market Intelligence, Anne Howe serves as the agency futurist. Focused on interpretations of overall market trends, Anne develops both immediate and long-term strategies for the agency and its shopper marketing clients. As a member of the Executive Team, she also leads the agency's industry association activation efforts.

Anne brings to MARS more than 24 years of experience in all aspects of consumer and shopper marketing. She is responsible for the formation of the agency's Insights and Planning team and also played a large role in the development and organization of the Account Management and Promotion Development departments.

Previous to MARS, Anne's extensive marketing communications background includes a Regional Sales VP position with Sara Lee Hosiery. She also has shopper marketing knowledge in consumer packaged goods, food and beverages, hotels, intimate apparel, appliances, personal care products and more.

Anne's biography courtesy of MARS.


We recently asked Anne a few questions about the importance of Shopper Marketing, here are her answers:

1. Why do you feel shopper marketing is getting so much attention?

Anne Howe: Shopper marketing is getting attention because of the results realized from shopper-centric marketing.
Manufacturers and retailers working together to create better shopping experiences and solutions for shoppers understand the power of collaboration against true insights.

2. What do you think needs to happen for it to progress?

AH: In order for shopper marketing to reach its full potential, all the players have to share data, insights and be open to out of the box ideation. The future is about meeting unmet needs that the shoppers can't articulate.
Taking the industry forward will require marketers to integrate budgets across all phases of the Shopper's Journey, not just inside the store.

3. What are you speaking about and how will that information help
move the industry ahead?

AH: John Andrews of MARS affiliate Collective Bias and I are speaking together on the intersection of social media and shopper marketing.
The "wisdom of the collective crowd" continues to grow as an important purchase influencer, impacting brand relevancy and business results for both manufacturers and retailers. We will help marketers learn why social media matters and how community influence programs can be the catalyst for success before the store, at the shelf and beyond. The shopper marketing industry will be able to better understand how social media efforts can create not just buzz, but relevant brand influence and sales growth.

Anne will be speaking at Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009 with her presentation, "The Power of Bloggers: Integrating Social Media in Your Shopper Marketing Plan" on October 14 at 10:30am.

We'd love to have you join us next month at Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009. Join the most progressive BRANDS, RETAILERS and VISIONARIES for the first and only event to tackle the
true integration of ALL marketing functions - category management, in-store marketing and shopper marketing - to create a seamless experience from start to finish beginning with the first emotional trigger to the final point of purchase and beyond.


Monday, September 28, 2009

Private-Label Growth in Every Channel reports that despite remarkable strides made during the past several years, private-label sales are concentrated in the hands of a relatively small number of consumers. The top 50 private-label categories, representing 17% of CPG categories, account for 69% of store brand sales. As a point of comparison, the top 50 national brands represent less than half of total dollar sales. Even heavy private brand buyers allocate just 22% of their CPG budget to store brands. recommends that retailers begin to look at a multi-tiered perspective in order to fully take advantage of the private label products on their shelves. With customers continuously looking for value and affordability, retailers who embrace private labels may make increase revenue and profitability during the economic downturn.

Private-Label Growth in Every Channel

Friday, September 25, 2009

Paper Coupons are a Thing of the Past

This post on retailwire highlights how J.C. Penney is rolling out a mobile coupon campaign in Houston in which consumers are allowed to download discounts to their cell phones, and then it can be scanned by a special reader at checkout. Is this the direction that coupons are headed in?

Mike Boylson, CMO for J.C. Penney mentioned:

"We've always made it easy for our customers to save money. These mobile coupons are the ultimate in customer convenience, because there's no need to clip or carry around a printed coupon, and they can be instantly scanned from a cell phone. It's another way we're innovating to enhance the customer's shopping experience."

J.C. Penney will try to rollout this digital coupon campaign to over 1,100 stores nationwide wide if it is successful. A NY Times report also noted that digital coupon usage is up 25% in the first half of this year versus last year. We should definitely be on the lookout for more and more companies adopting this in the future.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

New Content Added to Walmart Presentation at the Shopper Marketing Fusion Event!

Walmart has added a new section to their presentation entitled “The Walmart Smart Network: Smarter Shopping, Smarter Marketing." In addition to the original content, Walmart has added a new piece around “halos” which will be shared for the first time at this event.

James Beck, General Manager, Walmart Smart Network, Walmart Stores, Inc.

What is an in-store marketing halo? When marketing drives lift beyond the advertised item to other related items and beyond the campaign to subsequent weeks. It’s the inverse of cannibalization or forward buying.

On Friday, October 16, learn more about this outcome and see examples from the Walmart Smart Network that include brand halo and post-campaign halo.

Plus, James will share:
The Walmart Smart Network: Smarter Shopping, Smarter Marketing
The Walmart Smart Network was introduced a year ago to improve the shopper experience and to drive higher sales lift. Since then, it has delivered impressive results for Walmart’s partners. What has been achieved? What has been learned? What does the future hold? Learn how the Walmart Smart Network combines expertise in retail messaging, dynamic targeting in- store, and reliable insights to accelerate business results.

Key Takeaways:
· How partners on the Walmart Smart Network have achieved exceptional marketing results.
· Programs and programming that deliver what shoppers want and inspire them to buy.
· New approaches to optimization that drive higher sales lift.

James Beck, General Manager of the Walmart Smart Network, guides a team that is helping moms shop smarter and Walmart suppliers market smarter. Prior to the Walmart Smart Network, James led Walmart’s Home and Hardlines category marketing teams. Before joining Walmart, James served in executive marketing roles with Coca-Cola, Pillsbury and General Mills.

We hope to see you next month!

Shopper Marketing Fusion

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009 Featured Company TracyLocke in the News

Shopper Marketing Fusion featured company, TracyLocke is in the news. The brand to retail marketing agency recently helped the iconic lock company Schlage kick off a national television campaign last week to support the LiNK remote home-management system, which enables homeowners to lock and unlock doors, monitor live camera feeds, and control temperature, lighting and other devices from a computer or Web-enabled mobile phone. Delivering more than 190 million impressions, the 30-second spots will run through mid-November on HGTV, DIY Network, Food Network, Travel Channel, TLC, The History Channel, MSNBC, A&E and NBC`s Today show.

Al Witteman of TracyLocke will be speaking at 10:30am on Friday, October 16 with John Dranow of Smartrevenue. Their presentation will discuss, "Solutions without Walls."

Because over 50% of purchase decisions are made in-store, there is a new paradigm. This new paradigm creates complexities that require understanding the purchase decision. Understanding the purchase decision requires the integration of consumer segments with shopper types and the retail environment. Purchase understanding drives a new model that is consumer-and shopper-centric and internally & externally collaborative. In this session, you will learn a new model that has been constructed by a best of class companies working collaboratively to provide Solutions without Walls.

To find out more about the presentations at this year's event, please download the brochure.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Amazon's Private Label Goods Continue

The Wall Street Journal reports that Amazon is quickly and quietly moving into the private label arena. Reporter Geoffrey A. Fowler says that the latest sign: The Seattle-based e-commerce giant, last month received a U.S. design patent for a wooden chopping block. Also, in June Amazon launched a new collection of private-label kitchen utensils, designed by Seattle Chef Tom Douglas and sold under his name.

Amazon won't disclose any other patent applications, but says it is always evaluating opportunities to patent the designs it develops for private-label products.

As Amazon expands from a book seller to a certifiable retailer, what other private label avenues do you think they have in the works?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009 Podcast Series: Jesse Spungin, VP, Shopper Marketing, ConAgra Foods

Recently we had the pleasure of speaking with Jesse Spungin, VP of Shopper Marketing at ConAgra Foods. We invite you to hear our discussion by listening to the podcast or you may read the transcript below.

Melissa Sundaram: Thanks for joining us today for the Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009 podcast series. I'm Melissa Sundaram, Online Producer for the event and I have the pleasure of speaking today with Jesse Spungin who serves as the Vice President of Shopper Marketing at ConAgra foods. Jesse will be speaking on Tuesday Oct 15 on The Anatomy of a Winning Shopper-Centric Strategy.

MS: Thanks for joining us today Jesse.

Jesse Spungin: Thanks for having me, Melissa

MS: Jesse, let me begin by asking you--why do you feel shopper marketing is getting so much attention?

JS: You know I really feel like shopper marketing is quite frankly reinventing a lot of other names in the past. Regional co-marketing, account specific marketing; but I think its getting a lot of attention both on the manufacturer side and the retail side, quite frankly. Because finally we've gotten to a place where we can both agree on which is the mutual shopper and it really all starts with the shopper. The account shopper as well as the shopper for the manufacturer that picks up their brands.

MS: What do you think needs to happen for it to progress?

JS: think a couple of things need to happen for all the great momentum that has built around shopper marketing to continue. I think strategic planning with each other, and when I say with each other I say both the manufacturer and the retailer, is critical--not just looking at the quarterly short term quarterly leads. But where is it going and how do we get there? I think the second thing that needs to happen in order for it to progress is on the manufacturer’s side, I think that more and more manufacturers need to build this capability inside. In order to do that it takes a decent amount of commitment not only from the human capital perspective, but also financial resources. And also a commitment to really getting at what are those insights, those deep shopper insights. Because without those, quite frankly, programming is just programming instead of stuff that can drive results for both the manufacturer and the retailer.

MS: As I mentioned earlier, you'll be speaking on the Anatomy of a Winning Shopper-Centric strategy, how do you think that information help move the industry ahead?

JS: I think its going to show clearly ConAgra Foods has the capabilities that we've built as an integrated customer marketing team. Not just a shopper marketing when you harness the power of shopper insights, category leadership, in-store marketing with shopper marketing. How you bring all four of those disciplines together and the power it can have on volume, growth and profit. That's what we hope to display, that's what I know we will display during that conference. And I think that will educate a lot of people on what does it take to do best in class in shopper marketing and achieve the kind of growth that both manufacturers and retailers want.

MS: Again, I'd like to thank Jesse Jesse Spungin and all of you for joining us today. We look forward to seeing you this October 14-16 for the 2009 Shopper Marketing Fusion conference at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point in Bonita Springs, FL.

JS: Thank you, Melissa

MS: Great, see you in October!

Join the most progressive BRANDS, RETAILERS and VISIONARIES for the first and only event to tackle the true integration of ALL marketing functions - category management, in-store marketing and shopper marketing - to create a seamless experience from start to finish beginning with the first emotional trigger to the final point of purchase and beyond.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The evolution of shopper marketing

Brand Week recently sat down with Dorothy Allan, the senior vice president of retail strategy for TracyLocke and looked at how shopper marketing has evolved over the years. She talks about the importance of understanding human mind when it comes to reaching in-store audiences. Read Dorothy's full interview here.

One of the things Dorothy mentions in the article is the importance in reaching the shopper and getting them to make choices in the store. How do you best identify what's getting in the way of your shoppers when they are making decisions in your store?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Shopper Marketing Fusion Speaker: James Damian, Best Buy

James Damian
SVP, Experience Design Group
Best Buy, Inc.

As senior vice president of the experience development group at Best Buy, James Damian is responsible for reinventing the experience of shopping in a big-box retail store. He is, in his own words, a “right-brain ambassador for the value of design within the left-brain world of consumer electronics.”

In 2004, Damian led the design of Best Buy’s first concept stores—Studio D and Escape in Chicago—and developed the company’s “new store experience” R&D capability. He continues to lead optimization of the big-box design for a shopping experience that not only answers, but anticipates changing customer desires. He names legendary Tiffany’s window designer Gene Moore as his primary source of inspiration.

Prior to joining Best Buy in 1998, Damian held positions with Howard Sant Partnerships, a London architectural firm; Harvey Nichols, a London-based luxury retailer; B. Altman & Co. and R.H. Macy & Co. department stores in New York; and Hindsgaul Mannequins Worldwide of Copenhagen, New York, and Paris. He also served as president of Damian Randd (Resources Advancing New Design Directions).

In 2005, he received the Markopoulos Award for his many contributions to the design industry; in 2006, DDI recognized him as one of the Design Influencers of the Year. He also recently received Best Buy’s Culture of Innovation Award in recognition of his leadership in concept development and execution. A graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology (F.I.T.) in New York City, Damian holds a degree in retail store design, exhibition design and corporate identity.

Damian is a member of the board of directors of NADI, NASFM's visual merchandising division, and serves on the advisory board for DDI magazine. He is also a member of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and the Minnesota Orchestra Board of Directors. At Best Buy, he is executive sponsor of the employee resource group P.R.I.D.E. (People Respecting Individual Differences Equally).

Biography courtesy of A.R.E.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Call for Submissions: Achieving Customer Relevance, the destination those looking to understand how to reach targeted life styles and stages.

Achieving Customer Relevance
Strategies for Connecting Lifestyles within Life Stages
May 10-12, 2010
Chicago, IL

The Institute for International Research is excited to announce that production of the Achieving Customer Relevance conference is underway. We will be reviewing presentation submissions until September 21st – space is limited so please submit your ideas TODAY! This three-day event is the destination those looking to understand how to reach targeted life styles and stages. From the segmentation to the marketing, explore best practices for pinpointing innovative ways to deeply connect with profitable segments, growing segments and new segments to maximize lifetime value and achieve sustainable growth.

Your Opportunity
We are currently recruiting corporate practitioners to share unique ideas, perspectives and case studies related to future trends. Got a good story to tell? Have a provocative perspective that needs to be shared? I’m interested in hearing from you.

Session topics include but are not limited to:
• Transition in Life Stage: How Your Customer Evolves
• Breaking into New Life Stages without Alienating Your Consumer Base
• Products Across Life Stages- Which Ones Succeed and Why?
• Common Threads and Differences in Specific Segments
• Creating an Authentic Message to Build Loyalty for Life
• The Spread of Technology through Life Stages
• Keeping Your Product Relevant as Your Consumer Ages
• Trends in Social Media and Technology

Submission Guidelines & Deadline
For consideration, please e-mail Amy Kritzer at with the following information by Monday, September 21st:
• Proposed speaker name(s), job title(s), and company name(s)
• Contact information including address, telephone and fax numbers and e-mail
• Title of presentation
• Brief overview of the presentation (1 paragraph plus 3 – 5 key audience “takeaways): Please write this with the knowledge that if your proposal is selected, this description will be printed in the brochure
• Previous conference presentations and/or brief speaker biography

Due to the high volume of responses, we are unable to respond to each submission. All those selected to participate as speakers will be notified shortly after the deadline.

Thank you for your interest in Achieving Customer Relevance!

All the best,

Amy Kritzer
Senior Conference Producer
Marketing and Business Strategy Division
Institute for International Research

Friday, September 11, 2009

Price Comparison Works for Retailers

According to this article in retailwire price comparisons might not only work insurance companies, but it will also work for e-tailers. The article reveals research conducted by the e-tailing group that shows that 36 percent of consumers spend more than half an hour comparison shopping before they make their purchase decisions. Almost two thirds spend at least 16 minutes.

What this mean for retailers? Consumers want to be able to view competitors' prices when shopping at a retailer website. More than seventy five percent of consumers mentioned that they would return to a site that showed competitors' pricing. This is definitely a great way to increase customer loyalty.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Shopper Marketing Fusion Company TracyLocke Talks with Brandweek

TracyLocke will be represented at this year's Shopper Marketing Fusion Event by Al Wittemen, Managing Director for Retail Strategy. Alan's colleague, Dorothy Allan, SVP, Retail Strategy for TracyLocke, was recently interviewed by Brandweek editor, Todd Wasserman. In the interview, Allan discusses how she has helped packaged goods enhance their ROI from shopper marketing. As she notes, CPGs have to communicate value quickly in-store or they lose out. And that's too bad, because consumers aren't only motivated by price.

Here are a few highlights from their discussion.

BW: What are some lessons you've learned in shopper marketing? (Granular
stuff, like "red doesn't work")?
DA: I’ve learned a lot about the human mind in this role. We all make decisions in basically the same way. We classify and sort information based on pattern recognition over the course of our lives. We deselect before we select. Our minds are designed to remove extraneous pieces of information to get to a decision, which is why shopper insights are so important. It gets to the very heart of what’s getting in the way of making a choice. On the granular side, there are principles of how human beings process information that need to be followed to achieve success. For example, if you want to be able to read anything from 10 feet away, you need to use a font that is at least three inches. If the store is dark, you need to use light colors for contrast. Color has meaning: Red is an action color; pink used to mean “girl” and now it stands for breast cancer; green equals the environment, etc. The first thing and last thing you read, you will remember twice as long as the lines in between, and the last line you will remember two times longer than the first. What’s the last piece of information on almost every Walmart point-of-sale unit? – “Save money. Live better.” I don’t think that’s a coincidence.

BW: How has shopper marketing reacted to the economy?

DA: This year, there has been a lot of information that really makes a case for the entire path to purchase and a cohesive approach. The In-Store Marketing Institute conference, as well as IRI and A.C. Nielsen, have begun to illustrate that the point of decision has crept out of the store. Clean store policies are forcing brands to use their leverage outside the store, and thankfully for the first time in 10 years, consumers and shoppers are reading. That is a good thing for brands. If you group shoppers into segments, you’ll find that the shopaholic is “out” and the mission-minded, pragmatic shopper is “in.” Value is the new darling, and brands have to find ways to quickly communicate their benefits to differentiate – or shoppers will default to comparing prices. Shoppers are looking to brands to help them make better value decisions. It’s not always about price, but price does have influence.

For the interview in its entirety, please click here.

Why Pink Means 'Cancer' at Retail

Al Witteman, will be speaking on Friday October 16 at the Shopper Marketing Fusion Event. Don't miss his presentation, "Solutions Without Walls" with John Dranow, SMARTREVENUE

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Private Label Impact Conference 2009 Speaker: Michelle Barry, Ph.D., SVP, The Hartman Group

Michelle Barry, Ph.D.
Co-Author, A Brand Called Hope
SVP, The Hartman Group

Michelle is the Senior Vice President of The Hartman Group. Since joining The Hartman Group in 1999, she has managed the ethnographic, retail, trends and innovation consulting divisions of the company and pioneered new ways to leverage professional anthropological analysis and creative fieldwork techniques to help clients' efforts in truly understanding consumer behavior and long-term implications of cultural change.

She currently oversees the Business Development, Marketing & Communications divisions incorporating innovation and analytics into business strategy. Michelle has consulted with food and beverage, consumer packaged goods, pharmaceutical and technology companies across retail channels in developing both strategic and tactical direction in today's marketplace.

Prior to joining The Hartman Group, Michelle owned a design and branding business and has 18 years in the health and wellness arena as both a practitioner and analyst. With a doctorate in sociocultural anthropology and extensive work in communications and consumption, Michelle has co-authored two books with The Hartman Group: Reflections on a Cultural Brand and Marketing in the Soul Age, and has appeared on MSNBC, NPR, Oxygen, as well as in national and industry publications as a thought leader in human behavior and cultural trends.

Michelle's biography courtesy of The Hartman Group

October 27-28, 2009
Chicago Marriott
Chicago, IL

Friday, September 4, 2009

Retail Brands are not Engaging Women Through Social Media

This post on retailwire discusses how a recent study conducted by ad:tech Chicago and Q Interactive finds that three out of four women do not feel engaged when interacting with a brand via social networks. Matt Wise, president of Q Interactive mentions, "Although women are socializing a lot more with each other, they are not interacting with brands more. The brands are falling behind in this game and they are not opening dialog with women in this arena. We're seeing a divide right now of where the women are leaping ahead of the brand and the brands are struggling to find how best to interact with them."

A small percentage of women who friended brands actually had a positive reaction. Sixty four percent of survey respondents felt neutral and nineteen had a negative reaction. Brand marketers will have to improve on engaging women on social networks in the future.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Publicis Groupe Announces Acquisition Agreement of Unilever C.R.M. Program "Pour Tout Vous Dire"

reports that the French company, Publicis Groupe has announce that it has signed an agreement to acquire the Unilever subsidiary in charge of the customer relationship management program Pour Tout Vous Dire. This acquisition is part of Publicis` digital strategy. The goal here is to build a benchmark e-CRM platform for the Group`s clients that showcases brands and fosters interaction with consumers. Pour Tout Vous Dire will operate on an
open architecture basis so that it can accommodate any and all consumer retail
brands and fast moving consumer goods.

Major household brand names will be able to leverage the platform to engage
consumers in one-on-one communication - highlighting their latest innovations,
demonstrating their value, rewarding loyal customers, and ensuring easy access
to their products.

In conjunction with the transaction, Unilever has signed a five-year service
agreement with Publicis Groupe to keep its brands in the program and thereby
boost the incremental revenue it generates.

Today's blog post has been brought to you by Shopper Marketing Fusion 2009. Join the most progressive BRANDS, RETAILERS and VISIONARIES for the first and only event to tackle the
true integration of ALL marketing functions - category management, in-store marketing and shopper marketing - to create a seamless experience from start to finish beginning with the first emotional trigger to the final point of purchase and beyond.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

More Online Stores Might Give Amazon a Run for Its Money

This post on retailwire highlights how might soon surpass's online retail success with its new launch. Kerry Cooper,'s CMO recently mentioned:

"We've added nearly one million new items to our online assortment with the introduction of Walmart Marketplace, making it even easier for customers to find more of what they want when shopping Working with select retailers, known for their strong customer service and large online assortments of new merchandise, gives our customer more reasons to choose when shopping online."

Walmart is expanding its product offering through product merchants, but they are not alone as well., Overstock, and are among others that also do this.