New Grocery Manufacturers Association-Booz & Company Research Reveals Playbook for Shopper Marketing Success

Majority of manufacturers will boost shopper marketing spend annually.

NAPLES, FL—Over the next three years, 83 percent of food, beverage, and consumer product manufacturers plan to increase their investments in shopper marketing, according to a new report issued today by the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and Booz & Company. A majority of companies (55 percent) rank shopper marketing as their number one investment and will boost spending by more than 5 percent annually.

The report, titled Shopper Marketing 4.0 Building Scalable Playbooks that Drive Results, also found that 62 percent of shoppers search for deals digitally before at least half of their shopping trips. This highlights the urgent need to identify the most effective shopper marketing strategies for engaging consumers along the entire path to purchase, not just in the store.

“Shopper marketing presents boundless possibilities for reaching consumers in new and innovative ways,” said GMA Director of Sales and Sales Promotion Brian Lynch. “This study gives retailers and manufacturers an unprecedented resource that will assist them in the development of customized shopper marketing programs that yield measurable results.”

Key findings of the study revolve around identifying which shopper marketing vehicles are most effective at achieving various marketing objectives along the path to purchase:

  • When looking to build brand awareness and consideration, platforms such as sponsored results and thematic content on manufacturer and retailer websites are most effective.
  • In-store displays, deal platforms (coupons, circulars, etc.) and personalized emails are most effective when increasing product trial and purchase is the objective.
  • The most effective vehicles for building brand loyalty are of the digital variety: newsletters, word of mouth programs in social media, and virtual displays linked to search results
  • Mobile vehicles are earlier in their lifecycle and show significant promise across different objectives: barcode scanners for awareness, price comparison for action, mobile commerce apps for loyalty
“Imposing order on the vehicle proliferation in shopper marketing is an important task, but shopper marketers shouldn’t lose sight of the crucial role that capabilities play in getting the most leverage from the vehicles at their disposal,” says Matthew Egol, Partner in Booz & Company’s consumer, media and digital practice. “Even the most creative and insightful playbook cannot deliver ROI and brand health if the shopper marketing organization cannot successfully execute it.”

The report findings and recommendations are based on a survey of more than 2,000 shoppers; a survey of industry executives representing manufacturers, retailers and shopper marketing agencies; interviews with industry executives and analysis.