With all the different ways of marketing to consumers these days, retailers sometimes have a hard time knowing where to spend their money. We all know that as the options for marketing expand, the amount of money to spend on them stays the same. With vendor funding evolving as well, sometimes this bucket of money to spend on marketing is even shrinking. This leaves retailers asking the question: What should I do?
- Have a website. If you don’t have a website in 2017 consumers might wonder if you’re even in business. Google processes 3.5 Billion searches each day. It’s the default way people find information. If you don’t have a website, you aren’t helping consumers find you or information about your store. Sharlyn wrote a blog post about why you need a website, you can find it here. Whether you already have one or need one, make sure it is mobile responsive, optimized for search and gives your brand authenticity, Google and other search engines care about all those things when showing search results to consumers.
- Participate in rebate signage programs. This is a given. You get PAID for signage in your store. These programs through Smartsource & Insignia are easy to maintain, drive sales of highlighted products and don’t cost you any money. Signs in the aisles make distracted consumers stop and take another look. Now, more than ever, consumers need help cutting through the clutter. They need to be interrupted in store. Signs do just that.
- Sell gift cards. The gift card industry is a $20B industry. With the pace of consumers’ lives these days, giving them a quick option for a gift lets them know you care about convenience. Plus, you get paid for selling the cards.
- Collect data on consumer purchases. This one might seem a bit high on the list for retailers who haven’t wandered into the realm of frequent shopper cards, but data has become more and more important for marketers and brands. Consumers are reacting to personalized promotions from some of the largest retailers in the world. Content is customized, sale item suggestions align with past purchases and product mix is influenced by trends correlated to data. Purchase data used correctly is becoming standard, but first, you have to have the data. You can’t realistically think about beacons or personalized offers until data is present.
- Go Social. Not everyone is on social, which is why a website is the first most important thing any retailer should do, but the people who are on social know how to share. If you’ve never been on social and want to know which platform to pick first, the answer continues to be facebook. There are 1.86 Billion active users there and while the platform continues to evolve, you can’t argue its reach. Yes, you need content people care about, and that can be difficult, but we’ve found that content doesn’t need to be highly produced or fancy to get buzz. Show your personality, remember people follow you for exclusive information and have fun. People will respond.
There are many other ways to market these days. This list is by no means comprehensive as it is missing some major traditional avenues like print ad, radio/tv, in-store signage and some major modern ones like email, online shopping and apps, but I’ve found that once retailers start pushing out of traditional marketing, the adoption to modern forms happens more quickly. These 5 tactics are the first steps on that journey.