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The Engagement Appetite

By Susmita Das | March 14, 2014

The digital era has given rise to new kind of shoppers; often, they are the primary consumers and creators of social media, as well as innovators within it who are hugely driven by engagement, says Haresh Nayak, Regional Director Posterscope Asia Pacific. Read on to know more.

I lived and grew up in a time when choices, distractions and attention seeking options were limited. As a kid and later as a youngster, I was content with a few choices of entertainment, of products and lifestyle. Today, the tech-revolution has turned things up side-down since. The youth today, have a million things vying for their attention. Smart-phones, Tabs, TVs have become parents' nightmare.

In a scenario so cluttered we often feel the youth is unapproachable. Surprisingly though that isn't true! I debated, "How could they be present when their attention span was so fragmented”?

Amidst the glowing screens of TVs, Tablets and smartphones the kids seemed to be doing and achieving it all! I had an epiphany that despite my convictions, they seemed able to function at a different, higher, more engaged level — as did their peers, and their more contemporary role models. Outside the walls of an average Indian home, brands are facing the same realization. The digital era has given rise to new kind of shoppers; often, they are the primary consumers and creators of social media, as well as innovators within it who are hugely driven by engagement.

The more they get, the more they want. Given the opportunity to engage in ever-new endeavors, today's shoppers across economic, ethnic and geographic targets, demonstrate an outstanding capacity to multi-task, compartmentalize and adapt. This change creates a compelling need for brands to rejig their thinking and remix it with a different approach;'The shopper centric approach'. We need to understand the fact that the new world shopper is multi-tasking and multi-dimensional and they consume media in a very different and haphazard manner. No longer can you expect a one-dimensional message to induce purchase. To influence purchase decisions you have to be more immediate, closer and more last mile. And this last mile communication needs to be tied up and coupled with emerging media options like social media, mobile marketing.

Here is how the equation works -

Weaving relevance into Shoppers lives through usage of Emerging media + Creating engaging and effective last mile campaigns = Conversion.

Emerging media is your gateway to the shoppers consideration list, you talk to them like peers and friends on their favorite social platforms and they like you;'literally and figuratively'. Once they like you they put you into the'can buy-can try list'. Now the shopper is in the store, and he/she likes you but from like to buy is a journey in itself. This journey needs, to be constructed and completed using'Shopper marketing'. Use your shopper insights well, and convert them into engaging in-store activities. Irrespective of the retail scenario - be it general trade, modern trade, mall, lifestyle retail make customized and well tailored POS materials, add an engagement quotient to them and this will ensure conversion.

So it's like story telling, you have a great beginning where your emerging media lures your shopper into the story, and through which you generate a brand engagement relation. And then comes the climax, where innovative in-store activities, elements and POS work towards a happily ever after between your product and them. By catering to the shopper desires — giving them the chance to shop on their own terms — we may harness emerging possibilities within media.

The best part about it is that we don't have to abandon traditional platforms just because we adopt newer ones. Emerging media allow us to implement digital and bricks-and-mortar strategies as complements; if employed properly, the combination of the two feed the hungry mind of the curious shopper who seeks and researches before his purchases.

Retail today, is one of the most competitive arenas where each brand vies for the maximum space for visibility and not only has to shout louder than the competition but continuously create customer engagement with a "through the line” approach!

We at Hyperspace have conclusively understood that each of the millions of shoppers' is unique. Hence, it's required to map the behavior of these shoppers. We adopt a phased analysis and behavioral mapping of the shoppers in the retail space. For each of the brands that we work with, we map the TG and their reaction to the category/ brand/ competition and influencers to their buying behavior. It's imperative to understand what influences a recall/ reaffirmation at the point of sale and how the visual merchandise, communication dissipating elements and product stackers can be designed to tow the right communication line.

Shoppers are ravenous for it all — the personalization; the communication between marketer, brand and consumer; and the multi-faceted approach that uses both digital and in-store elements.

So why not satiate their appetite for engagement by creating a shopper-centric media weave?



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