Are marketers really this stupid?

QUICK READ: According to different polls, most brands are shifting more money into digital marketing when people are starting to go shopping again at local retailers. The reason? Because the majority of marketers are brain dead. Marketers are shifting ad spend from traditional channels (especially TV) to digital channels. But in doing so, they risk eroding brand ROI.

46.2% of users worldwide admit to using ad blockers. Why? Because online sites are becoming a pain-in-the-ass to visit.  91% of people believe ads are more intrusive now than two or three years ago, and 79% believe retargeted ads are tracking them. And with more money being switched to digital, it’s going to get a lot worse.

To really understand consumers, marketers have to stop thinking like marketers and start thinking more like consumers. Consumers want to go shopping again, and they have the money to buy what they want. Sure, e-commerce sales exploded during lockdowns, but with over 100 million people vaccinated, more and more people feel safe to go to their favorite stores again.

Online traffics to some Internet sites is dropping like a rock. CNN.com has already seen a drop of over 40% in online traffic, and Fox News is becoming irrelevant (please!). So rather than focusing on keeping current customers happy, marketers feel they need to use more social media and video to reach consumers. This is more than a mistake; it’s an indication that brand executives are being led by agencies who stand to make a lot of money with social media ads that don’t work and video’s that won’t convert customers.

FSIs drive conversion for grocery CPG products

88% of Americans used coupons in 2020 and 72% of shoppers believe they save the most money with coupons and discounts. Millennials are the most likely to shop with coupons, with 80% using paper and paperless coupons. Fewer than 55% of Baby Boomers use coupons at all and 94% of distributed coupons are free-standing inserts.

  • 145.3 million Americans will use coupons in 2021. 
  • 80% of consumers are more likely to shop from a new brand if it has a discount coupon on offer. 
  • Coupon redemption rates for 2020 show an increase corresponding to the pandemic.
  • In 2020, the most searched for coupon category was household items with 46%.
  • 18% of global online shoppers use online and mobile coupons while they are shopping in stores. 
  • 38% of couponers buy something they do not need, discount statistics reveal.
  • According to coupon statistics for 2020, 89% of Millennials will consider a new brand if the brand offers them a discount code or a coupon. 

A coupon is the best way to influence 64% of shoppers to try a new product so why aren’t more brands using FSIs?

POP Displays sell products too

A common misconception is that point of purchase refers only to the space within the store where the transfer of money for the goods occurs, such as the register. Point of purchase can be broader than this, and actually accounts for the entire store.

70-75% of all purchase decisions are made by the shopper as he or she is actually walking around and shopping.  That’s pretty significant and a good reason why POP displays work. Large displays set up in prominent locations in high-traffic supermarkets have been shown to increase the rate of sales by as much as 64-fold over the same items sold from their regular shelf locations. My experience, however, shows that more common sales increases are from one-and-a-half to threefold.

 POP displays break up the environment, helping customers identify a specific product or brand in a sea of small packages. They catch the attention of hesitant or casual shoppers and increase impulse sales. POP graphics are even more effective if they can be viewed from outside the store and attract the eyes of people on the street.

In addition, switching POP displays periodically keeps stores from looking the same month after month. This flexibility gives shoppers a different experience than the one they receive online.

TV is still king for new reaching consumers

 An Accenture study found that TV continues to be a high-performing media channel, outpacing digital media vehicles like Short Form Video and Social Media in brand-building—while delivering strong bottom-of-the-funnel impact and influencing sales long after a campaign has run.

Relative to other media channels, TV drives impressive brand performance, second only to Paid Search. In fact, one of the most surprising findings is TV’s strong lower-funnel brand performance relative to most channels. This counters conventional wisdom that TV’s strength is mostly in impacting top-of-the funnel metrics such as Brand Awareness and Ad Awareness and comparatively weaker in impact closer to actual buying behavior.

Accenture

There’s no sugarcoating the fact that digital media consumption has gained a lot of ground at the expense of traditional over the last two decades. But according to viewing numbers, it still hasn’t surpassed several forms of traditional media. In fact, in reports just prior to COVID-19, traditional TV was still beating online TV across all markets while broadcast radio remained ahead of streaming in a vast majority of markets.

The narrative that digital has killed traditional forms of media is simply untrue. The reality is that people are now consuming media across traditional and digital channels—and not at the expense of one another. People are posting on social media while watching TV, researching products while at the store, reading print publications and following up online to access more content. This behavior has been coined “second screening”.

In a study on consumer ability to recall ad campaigns, research showed that digital media performed lowest of all, peaking at only 30%, while traditional forms of media like television and radio performed best with recall rates of up to 60% for consumer products and services. Traditional channels have also proven themselves to generate the highest ROI while being some of the most underrated channels, even among advertisers!

Switching more money to digital might make sense for products that require a lot of online research before making a purchase decision but for most CPG goods it’s just plain stupid.

Are marketers really this stupid?