Basket of Trouble

CRUNCHY NUGGETS:  Hello and how are you?  We have been quite distracted here in NJ with the coming and going of Hurricane Sandy.  With the down time I had throughout this week, I remembered an interesting tid bit that I’ve been hanging onto and wanted to share.  It’s about those baskets you see at retail.  You know the kind: the ones you pick up for a quickie shop?  Well, did you know that shopping with a basket leads to “vice” purchasing?  According to a study in the Journal of Marketing Research (as shared in the November issue of Real Simple magazine), when consumers shop holding something close to the body, they unknowingly crave instant gratification.  That said, shoppers carrying baskets are seven times more likely to buy “vice” products, i.e., impulse purchase indulgences.  Baskets would make an interesting space to run media for said indulgences.

So the next time you come home with the Oreo and chips, blame the basket, right?!  Have a good weekend.

TASTY TREND:  Shopper Marketing

Moms, UX, Pups & Pumpkin

CRUNCHY NUGGETS:  A little bitta this…a little bitta that.  Throughout my week I typically hold aside interesting tid bits for the nuggets.  This week I have a bunch to share, so hang in there as today’s post swerves from topic to topic.  Let’s start with moms and mobile….

Moms are SoMo: So huh?!  SoMo = social and mobile  According to a new study released by eMarketer, Moms are among the fastest adopting groups to access social networks on smartphones.  According to their data: 40%, and as high as 60%, of all Moms in the US will be accessing social networks through mobile devices by the end of this year.  What this means for brand-types and marketing folks is this:  cross-platform development.  If you put it on Facebook, you gotta make sure a Mom can access it on her mobile or a tablet.  I just saw a great example of this level of execution in a Facebook post for Boden USA Clothing.  They have a sweeps that calls out how to enter right on FB (in an app) or through a mobile alternative.  OK, so that’s that…onto what I posted in the image…

Social shopping share:  While browsing potential dresses for an upcoming wedding I am attending, I was on Macy’s website.  As I was poking around a piece popped-up for me, offering to share my pictures in a poll that I could post onto Facebook.  So if I wished to, I could share my picks with friends and let them vote on which dress they like best.  Now, what I like about this feature is that it organically shares a retailer’s offerings.  My inner brand person was excited by the thought of passing along great brands, interesting styles, and the net takeaway of “Macy’s is a good place to shop for what I need…”  Particularly for retailers who need to widen their circle of shoppers.  Really good user experience piece, in my opinion.  OK, next…woof.

Pup-Up: Seriously, the concept of experiential pop-up shops for brands has been around for what…ten, fifteen years easily?!  But kudos to Rachel Ray and her new line of premium dog food Nutrish to bring a little fresh twist to it.  As a brand, Nutrish experiences 50% conversion post-sampling efforts, so getting nibbles to dogs and their owners is an important strategy.  RR has taken the idea of a food truck and has dog-ized it for her sampling efforts, with an initial in-market execution in Manhattan.  What caught my marketing eye was: 1. The cleverness of “pup-up.” Cute!  Really great way of using a food truck/mobile effort. 2. The smarts of taking sampling out and about to find lots of pet owners who are also out and about walking their dogs.  And 3. The “well duh”-ness about it.  Simple. Makes sense to point of almost being a “duh” idea.  But in a good way.  Here’s the NY Times article about this effort: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/18/business/media/rachael-ray-promotes-nutrish-dog-food-with-a-truck.html?ref=media  And lastly, who put pumpkin in my….

Pumpkin Flavah Crave: Do feel like you’re seeing pumpkin-flavored-this and pumpkin-flavored-that a lot lately?!  Well as someone who actually likes pumpkin flavored goodies, I certainly have and there’s good reason.  NY Magazine stated this past week: “Pumpkin is the New Bacon.”  And noting that not only is this year “one of the most active years for seasonal pumpkin menuing,” but also that sales of pumpkin drinks specifically has risen 400% in the past five years.  The list of pumpkin-touched foods and drinks is extensive.  Almost shrimp-ala-Bubba-Gump-like.  But here’s a few: Pop-Tarts, Pringles (yes, the chips in a can have gone pumpkin), ale, martinis, margaritas, bagels, English Muffins, Eggo Waffles, Dairy Queen Blizzard, Jet-Puffed marshmallows, lasagna noodles, and of course…Starbucks lattes.  *Phew!*

I have other nibbles to share, but will keep this nice and nuggety.  Hey, no matter what your plans for the weekend — a little bitta this, little bitta that, hope it’s a good one, enjoy!  TASTY TREND: Here and Now, Go Mobile, Mobile Moms

Mobile My Groceries

CRUNCHY NUGGETS:  About three years ago (my time flies), I started using the hand scanner at my local Stop & Shop to do my own organizing/bagging/scanning for groceries.  A hand-held wand lets me scan products’ bar codes throughout the store; and then after adding them to my “cart,” I literally add them to my cart in bags.  So by the time I get to check out, I have my grand total, everything bagged as I wish, and all I need to do is redeem any coupons and pay.  Love it.  Well…this past weekend I found myself in a quandary.  ALL of the handscans were charging and none were ready for shopping.  “Could be two minutes…could be a half hour” is what Customer Service advised *ugh!*  But alas…I noticed a big QR code and a sign that said that I could use a mobile app to do the very same thing!  It’s called ScanIt!  and it first launched in a handful of stores back in 2011, eventually going into full roll-out this year.  I found it on my iPhone’s app store and downloaded it immediately.  Now…in the meantime, a kind soul returned his working-fully-charged handscanner, leaving me with no need to go mobile.  But wow!  The app linked to my frequent shopper card and would have let me “scan” (photograph, really) barcodes to do exactly what the handscan device does during my trip.  It would have also shown me offers.  I must admit that I am a little bit hesitant to do a full-0n shop with this app — with the nightmare of having to go to a manned-line if anything goes wrong, noooOOOOOooo!  I’m so used to the scanner.  But I do intend on giving it a whirl for a mini, fill-in shop soon, it’s seems terribly easy. I won’t I just look like a cool tech geek at the grocery store!  Here’s a video on how it works: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=nF_TrEnZv2M

What’s next?  I’d guess use your smart phone to pay, too.  And also send in your Deli order (no need to go to a kisok).  Maybe even your Starbucks order with a pick up time, hey now that’s  good idea!!  What about a social extension:  “I just saved at Stop & Shop!!”  So what do you think?  Too much “big brother” for you are more old school?  Or is this the way to go?  TASTY TREND:  Go Mobile; Here and Now

Hmm!

CRUNCHY NUGGETS:  I am going to go out on a pop culture limb and totally date myself here…Back in 1990, CC Music Factory had a hit called “Things that Make You Go Hmm…”  And I bring this relic of a phrase from the past forward to now, as I share a few, tasty tid bits I’ve read recently that made me go…oh you know….

Social Politics — My last post talked about Pinterest.  And guess who’s just joined?  Michelle Obama.  According to the Washington Post, she only has three boards, but already over 4,000 followers.  Her GOP counterpart, Ann Romney, has been a pinner since February.  Now…Why? you may ask.  Well, let’s review:  Female users; big national reach; very active group; and the First Lady just released a book.  So I ask you back: Why not?  It is, in fact, being lead by the campaign.

Guys Gone Grocery Shopping — New stats from Cone Communications reveal that 52% of Dads say that they are the primary purchasers now at grocery, they do the shopping trips.  And 35% of Moms say “yep, that’s true…Dads are doing more grocery trips.” Also interesting are their behaviors around grocery shopping with Dads slightly less likely to make shopping lists  (63% Dads vs. 65% of Moms), collect coupons or read circulars (56% vs. 62%).  However, Dads are actually meal planners, with 52% Dads vs. 46% Moms saying they’ll think ahead and plan out what the family is going to eat. And they are significantly more likely to research grocery products –24% Dads vs. 11% Moms — wow!  So, will Dads flip through FSIs?  In terms of media: 44% of Dads use online sources.  Dads also seek information in-store:  promotions (57%), advertising (50%).  And they also look to traditional like newspapers (where I’d count FSIs), magazines and television (40%). All of which come in higher than word of mouth from friends and family (38%).

All good stuff that made me go…wait for it……..Hmm!  Hope it did the same for you, too.  TASTY TRENDS:  Socially Acceptable; Social Curation; Today’s Parents

More List-Making Stats

FRESH FACTS:  Oh my heavens I have been so very easily distracted this afternoon.  While searching for client needs, I stumbled upon this nuggety chart that complements my last blog post about shopping-list-making habits.  This chart shares what drives consumers to put items on a shopping list.  (Note that it’s consumers who have access to the internet — that’s how the were segmented and participated in this survey, granted, so not every last lovin’ consumer.)  What I found most interesting:

Brands still win — Loyalty, peeps, loyalty.

Followed by coupons — A good deal will consumers’ attention.

And then look at #5, WOM — Jump back a few blog posts and we noted how word of mouth is still the most trusted form of communication among consumers.  But personal experience, a good offer, a deal at-store, and the need for an item in a recipe will trump WOM.  Huh!

Boo hoo for TV spots coming in dead last with small percentages noted.  Oh well.  This chart gives nice splits of gender and demos, too.  Hope you find it helpful.  And hope you have a wonderful weekend!  TASTY TREND: Shopper Marketing; Retailers Rule

Shopping List Truths

FRESH FACTS:  Do you make a list before you go grocery (or drug store, or mass merch, or club) shopping?  I do…and I certainly stray from it (try new things, buy things I know I need anyway, regularly, etc.).  My Husband (when he had his own household to maintain) did not stray from his list, not at all.  So…which behavior is more common?  Mine, apparently.

According to a study just shared by the Integer Group and M/A/R/C Research, 9 out of 10 consumers make impulse purchases, straying from their lists.  Why?  Sale and deal driven: 66% of them said were motivated by a sale or promotion, and 30% said they found a coupon.  And interestingly, as a treat: 23% wanted to “pamper themselves.”  Now, as brand and marketing types, this can be good news, because it means that in-store promotions, offers, and deals are important; and there is still time to convince a consumer in-store that your brand or product is what needs to go into baskets and get purchased.  Particularly if it has “treat” value.  But alas, out of store consideration and brand loyalty still plays a role with 61% of consumers saying that their impulse purchases were primarily influenced by a brand they currently use.  So how many impulse items are we talking about?  Not many apparently: 61% of consumers who shop off-list purchase an additional one to three items.  By the way, this study was noted in both Progressive Grocer and Drug Store News today, in case you need.

So do you make a list and then go astray?  Do you have regular purchases and do they make the list?  My brain can’t hold that much, I have to have a list for some guidance.  You?  TASTY TREND:  Retailers Rule; Shopper Marketing

Reward Realities

FRESH FACTS:  I just read interesting stats this week about loyalty programs and the power that best customers have in terms of driving sales.  That said, my most loyal readers, I’ll get right to the nuggets.  Did you know that…

15% of a retailer’s most loyal customers can account for as much as 50% of its sales (according to Keith Jelinek, director in the retail division of consulting firm AlixPartners).

And that it takes between 12 and 20 new customers to replace a lost loyal customer, yikes! (according to Keith Colbourn, vice president, global loyalty practice leader at Dunnhumby; who, by the way, didn’t say the “yikes” part, that was me).

So what does that mean for marketers?  Well…obviously do things that keep your best peeps happy and coming back for more.  I’ve heard so frequently: “but we’re just rewarding our most loyal users.”  Um…and why is that bad?! Sure, you need to attract new users, but hello.  Don’t walk away from the bread butterer (that’s a phrase, right?!)  And why having relationships with your most loyals outside of the store is also very important.  Think Facebook activity, think Fan of the Week, think emails to customers, etc.

The article from which these nuggets were extracted is from the Wall Street Journal and goes far more in depth about different rewards programs and strategies if you’d care to check it out:  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703834804576301221367302288.html?KEYWORDS=rewards

Hey go enjoy your weekend and be sure to honor your favorite Mom for Mother’s Day this Sunday.  I will enjoying my own rewards from my most loyal peeps that day, for sure!  TASTY TREND:  Shopper Marketing