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    Shopper Solutions Strategy Drives Investment, Success

    Research: Growth fueled by new focus on engaging shoppers across path to purchase

    Shopper marketing – the discipline of influencing customers when they are in shopping mode – continues to experience rapid growth.

    That’s according to a new research report from the Grocery Manufacturers Association, Booz & Co. and Shopper Sciences, “Shopper Marketing 5.0: Creating Value With Shopper Solutions.” The report shows that company leaders in shopper solutions experience higher sales growth and a better return on investment for their marketing programs.

    Shopper marketing growth is fueled by a new focus on shopper solutions that engage shoppers across the path to purchase in ways that complement and go beyond promotional pricing, a key objective in today’s value-driven shopping environment.

    Shopper solutions are insight-driven events which often feature two or more products that shoppers can purchase together. They can deliver incremental value to shoppers in terms of shopping and product experience, and thus, simultaneously build brand engagement and drive action.

    “Shopper solutions present an exciting opportunity for national brands to collaborate with retailers to create new value for shoppers, while growing their business together through winning the trip before the store and growing the shopping basket in the store,” said Brian Lynch, senior director of business and industry development for GMA’s Industry Affairs and Collaboration division.

    “This study gives retailers and manufacturers an unprecedented resource that will assist them in the development of more scalable and effective shopper marketing programs that yield a win-win-win for shoppers, manufacturers and retailers,” said Joe Crafton, president of Crossmark, who chairs the GMA committee working with Booz and Shopper Sciences on this year’s study.

    Key findings of the study revolve around defining best-in-class shopper solutions and the capabilities needed to create sustainable and scalable programs. A best-in-class shopper solution capability includes four components:

    Developing and integrating consumer and shopper insights.
    Gaining an intimate understanding of the needs of retailers and opportunities to drive growth together through programs focused where there is the greatest headroom for growth.
    Working with external partners and tap into a full arsenal of platforms and vehicles to deploy shopper solutions across the full path to purchase.
    Creating a well-oiled organizational machine that can effectively and efficiently execute shopper solution programs and measure their results.

    “Using shopper solutions as a filter for investment and capability development enables leaders to amplify the impact of their significant investment in trade promotions, while better aligning shopper marketing and brand marketing across the full path to purchase,” said Matt Egol, partner in Booz & Co.’s consumer, media and digital practice, who has led the GMA study on behalf of Booz for each of the past three years.

    John Ross, CEO of Shopper Sciences, said: “As marketers increasingly come to understand that consumer behavior is not always a predictor of shopping behavior, they are becoming more focused on what drives shopper choice, both online and in physical retail stores.”

    The report findings and recommendations are based on interviews with more than 30 shopper marketing thought leaders; an online survey of more than 1600 shoppers aimed at defining the key attributes of effective shopper solutions; an industry survey into the state of shopper marketing and shopper solutions, completed by 144 executives at major grocery and non-grocery manufacturers and retail chains, conducted in collaboration with the Path to Purchase Institute and Shopper Marketing magazine; and five in-depth cases studies of best-in-class shopper solutions created by CPG manufacturers and their shopper agencies. The full report is available at www.gmaonline.org/publications and www.booz.com.

    Based in Washington, D.C., the Grocery Manufacturers Association is the voice of more than 300 leading food, beverage, and consumer product companies that sustain and enhance the quality of life for hundreds of millions of people in the United States and around the globe.

    Booz & Co. is a leading global management consulting firm, helping the world’s top businesses, governments and organizations.

    Shopper Sciences is dedicated to understanding shoppers and shopping behavior, to help turn shoppers into customers for retailers, brands and agencies.

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