Marketing That Makes Sense: A practical marketing series from Ariad Communications. 5 ways to drive in-store sales with

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1 Marketing That Makes Sense: A practical marketing series from Ariad Communications 5 ways to drive in-store sales with

2 2 As marketers it feels like we have the same relationship with as a teenager has with their parents. A few years ago we worshipped them, wanted to hang out with them we knew everything would turn out okay. But now, we re embarrassed to be seen with them. They re just not cool enough. Eventually, though, those teenagers grow up and develop a deeper respect for their parents. They learn to appreciate their knowledge, their experience and their influence. It s time marketers did the same with . Why? Because delivers in today s world. is what your customers want. A recent Forrester Research study revealed that almost two-thirds of consumers prefer to hear about a brand s sales and promotions by . 1 From a marketer s point of view, is cost-effective and easy to track, manage and deploy. It repeatedly delivers the results your boss s boss wants to see real ROI which is easier said than done with newer, supposedly cooler tactics. drives to store. When smart marketers like Apple, Coca-Cola and The Gap are putting as much as 39% of their marketing budgets on the line, you have to figure they re onto something. 2 For marketers, the challenge is how to use to efficiently drive in-store sales. Achieve this and we might be mature enough to never doubt the power of again. To offer some help, here are five tips get your working harder. 1 Peter, Sheldon. (2012). The Brick-And-Mortar Renaissance. Forrester Research. Webinar. 2 Focus Market Research. (2011). Marketer s Benchmarks A survey of Marketers Priorities and Challenges.

3 3 1. Understand the customer journey We re all on a journey to purchasing something. Right now you might be thinking about the weekly groceries, or you might even be close to buying the new car you ve had your eye on. This, of course, is also true of your customers. They re all on a journey that will result in their walking into a store, whether online or offline, and making a purchase. Whether it s your store or your product, if you understand the path that your customers take to reach you, it is possible to build content that supports them at multiple stages of their journey or at the important ones. gives you the chance to reinforce in your customers minds why they choose you. The weekly paper flyer motivates a customer on price to visit a store. But we know consumers are motivated by more than just price. They choose stores and brands that match their aspirations. provides marketers the opportunity to reinforce price-based motivation with well targeted content that creates and supports deeper needs in a way that a paper flyer or ad simply cannot match. From insightful content to smart offers, can deliver. This insight, combined with real-time data from s, enables marketers to craft highly targeted content. Combine this with weekly offers or deals, and rapidly becomes a robust, central part of the marketer s toolkit for driving in-store traffic. Neiman Marcus sends out multiple s per week, all built on their customers wants. If driving traffic in-store and great ROI are the motivators for your program, then you cannot take shortcuts to understanding your customer. Study them. Understand what motivates them, what drives their decision-making, what research they do and how long their journey is. Once you have a rich understanding of your customer, your program will be able to deliver the content that will make a difference.

4 4 2. Make it a flyer Canadians love flyers: The gratification for the consumer of hunting down a deal, followed a few days later by the marketer s pay off: measurable in-store sales. What s not to love? For starters, there s clutter. How many deals fail to be found by valuable customers simply because of the size of the weekly flyer drop on their doorstep? Then there s those big deals. Those too-good-to-be true offers that create a stampede to stores but create so much noise they distract attention from valuable niche opportunities. The answer lies in the best flyer there is: . Send your customers a flyer by , and they will happily tell you what interests them, what big-ticket purchases they are considering and what deals they find most appealing. Every click and every open provides rich data that reveal a consumer s preferences, likes and dislikes key knowledge that marketers can respond to. Retailer CB2 successfully aligns its seasonal catalogues with its campaigns. The two work hand-in-hand to drive in-store sales. gives marketers the opportunity to focus on the unique preferences of an individual. With , marketers can reach consumers with highly targeted offers, based directly on their preferences, which are local and timely. This increases the likelihood that consumers will engage, maximizing the reach and impact of your offers and ultimately driving those consumers in-store. Customize, but let your customers do the customizing. Build your program to automatically react to every piece of data a customer gives you with content that responds. Sears customizes every to suit user preferences, ensuring that the products and content featured match each customer s needs.

5 5 3. Go social Yes, we re still talking about . is the original social media. Remember when your inbox was full of those not-so-funny jokes or pictures of kittens? All the junk may have moved to Facebook and YouTube, but that hasn t stopped anyone from still sharing via . It s just that now we re a little more discerning. On an average day, most of us drown in a sea of new mail in our inbox. It s only the s with relevant content and value that we re prepared to share with our friends, family and colleagues. That behaviour indicates there is a significant opportunity if you are able to create content that is engaging and relevant. So make your easy to share. Embed links so the content can be passed along a variety of channels: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Encourage your subscribers to share. In fact, give them an incentive to do so. Remind them that friends and relatives might also find value in the offerings and content. When you do this, you are signalling to your customers that your has valuable content. Ultimately, you ll increase the chances they will pass your along to a friend, colleague or family member. The more sharing, the further your message spreads, which generates more in-store traffic and more ROI. This from J. Crew includes a forward link but also makes it easy for customers to share on Facebook and Twitter. When it comes to social media, look to your customers. Social media platforms are continually in flux. The only platforms you ll need to worry about are the ones that your customers are using. If your customers aren t using the latest fad, you don t need to concern yourself with adding it to your however, as soon as they do start using it, make sure it s in!

6 6 4. Extend in-store to the inbox We all get excited about upcoming plans. Anticipation is what helps most of us get through our days. And, like most, we love to keep the memories alive through conversation reminiscing over the good times even after an event is long over. The very best marketers harness these powerful states of anticipation and reminiscence. They use to extend the in-store experience, and, by doing so, they use to boost their in-store traffic. For example, think Apple. When Apple releases a new technology, the line-ups outside their stores are all about buzz. That s because Apple is good at playing on anticipation. Consumers can t resist the urge to be one of the first to experience the new hype. Now, this isn t going to happen for every brand, nor does it need to but you can use some of the same techniques as Apple to build anticipation, create buzz, and use to deliver in-store. This could mean hosting exclusive events for subscribers. Use to build up the event and ask subscribers to RSVP. Follow up, and direct them to exclusive offers and content. Keep in mind, it s just as important to deliver afterwards, so be sure to send thank-yous, photos from the event and even consider limited post-event offers. Marketers must make the transition between store and seamless. The service you give your clients in-store has to be reflected in your . If your brand promise is to be helpful and provide advice, make sure your s delivers the same. Be personal and follow up a day or two after purchase with an that encourages the customer s purchase and directs them to relevant content and products. William Sonoma successfully extends the store experience to the customer inbox by maintaining a consistent visual styling from in-store display through to creative. By using to extend the in-store experience, marketers can effectively build up the presence of the store in the customer journey. This will enable you to increase the likelihood of purchase. Responsiveness is key. Whether it s events, offers or promotions, the needs to have a timely response to the in-store experience.

7 7 5. Test, learn, improve The beauty of is its flexibility. Inevitably, your won t be perfect the first time around, but it is relatively straightforward to ensure that every successive out performs and is better than its predecessor. With the right approach to performance, marketers can use to build a culture of continually improving ROI. This means that you ll need to be prepared to accept some stumbles along the way. The impact of every that is sent out is directly measureable through clicks, opens, and of course, the resulting in-store activity. Use those data to test ideas. Consider audience segments, store locations, and the time of day s are sent. As soon as you have a baseline of performance data, you can structure rigorous in-market tests to refine and improve your s and ultimately the in-store results. Every that you send out reveals something about performance. Collect this information, analyze it and then react to it. Your situation is unique. What works for one brand may not necessarily work for yours, no matter how similar your products may be. For this reason, be prepared to test out new methods. Don t be afraid to give new things a try. Soon enough, you ll figure out what s right for you.

8 8 If you haven t already figured it out, is alive and well. With the right approach, you will see in-store results, but it won t come without effort. You ll need to truly understand your customers, be responsive to data with relevant and timely content and test! Above all, is a cost-effective solution that s proven to deliver ROI. What more could a marketer want? Looking to get your working harder? Get in touch, anytime. We d love to connect. Ariad Communications 277 Wellington St. West, 9th Floor Toronto, Ontario M5V 3E4 tel fax ariad.ca Michael Beckerman, President Baron Manett Senior Vice President, Strategy

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