Chris Hoyt defines Shopper Marketing with The Elephant and the Blind men parable. The parable involves six blind men, each charged with touching an elephant and then describing the experience.
Shopper marketing is today’s marketing elephant – not only because of its size or its power but because all of the confusion about what it really is recalls the parable of the blind men and the elephant.
Chris Hoyt defines the elephant as – virtually all shopper marketing initiatives (our elephant!) is one or more of the following activities.
- Make it easy for the mutual shopper to find and buy one’s brands
- Extend the equity of one’s brands through the door of the store straight up to the point of sale
- Provide a source of differentiation for both sponsoring brands and participating retailers
- Activate purchase at the point of sale by delighting, engaging and motivating the mutual shopper
- Tailor the above activities to align with the objectives, strategies, platforms and protocols (dos and don’ts) of different channels, formats and retailers
The Blind Men
Now that we better understand what the ‘elephant’ is, let’s take a look at the ‘blind men’ and how they view shopper marketing. Each is representative of a group, and yet each sees only a part, not the whole, of shopper marketing. Consider how those who are contemplating getting into shopper marketing might be affected by how each frames the issue.
- Advertising and media agencies
- Promotion agencies
- Consulting firms
- Sales departments
- Marketing departments
Moral of the parable
If you are contemplating getting into shopper marketing – or want to revamp your current approach – know the point of view of those with whom you are talking and talk to as many people as possible in order to understand the composition of the entire elephant before making decisions!
Reprinted with courtesy of The HUB Magazine.
Detailed information on this article can be found in the Shopper Marketing book. The book is available on Amazon.com.
About the Author
Chris Hoyt is president of Hoyt & Company, LLC, a marketing and sales consulting and training organization, based in Scottsdale, Arizona, that specializes in helping marketers quickly become proficient at shopper marketing.
Chris is a frequent speaker at industry conferences, including multiple appearances at the PLMA, Beverage Retailing, Promo, United Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Association and Supermarket College annual meetings. Receives consistently high marks for data-packed content, knowledge of the subject matter and entertaining style.
Guest lecturer in marketing at the Columbia Graduate School of Business.
Written a monthly column on marketing since 1993. Has been a regular contributor to Promo Magazine, Brand Marketing Magazine, Supermarket News, Hub Magazine, an online publication for consumer goods marketers found at www.hubmagazine.com. Frequently quoted in trade magazines such as Grocery Marketing, The Packer, Brand Marketing, Advertising Age, Brandweek and Discount Store News, as well as mainstream publications such as USA Today, Business Week and the Wall Street Journal.
Chris may be contacted at email@example.com.