CPG brands face many challenges in determining how to reach customers effectively. The category is filled with competitors, and often, competing products sit right next to one another on the shelf. CPG brands must compete with brands with better name recognition, lower costs, and stronger reputations, and they only have a few moments to make an impact. To do so, these brands must be prepared to prime customers for sale both ahead of time and as they shop in the store.
The ability to differentiate a CPG product is what gives brands of all sizes their competitive edge. While these products may seem similar at first glance, brands stand out among the competition through their strategic marketing efforts. When it comes time for sale, these brands continue to stay top of mind by leveraging mobile marketing to its full advantage.
How to Reach Customers Effectively Through Differentiation
Standing out in the CPG market is difficult, especially as new entrants like challenger brands enter the field and slip market share away from their competitors. However, brands don’t have to change their products to differentiate themselves. They can instead adjust their strategies using several different methods.
- Identify underserved niches: A strategy many CPG brands look to in differentiating products is to address segments within their market that may be underserved. Before beauty blogger and influencer James Charles became CoverGirl’s first-ever CoverBoy, not many makeup products were geared toward men. Now, the cosmetics industry is a popular spot where segmentation works, whether brands are categorizing their audience by age, skin type, race, or even gender. Brands that can best identify the non-traditional users of their products will be prepared to meet their needs.
- Establish added value: Another way to gain consumer loyalty is to establish an added value to a product by presenting it in a way consumers may not have considered before. Consider the popular children’s drink Pedialyte. The company was able to improve sales by highlighting other uses for their product aside from providing a healthy drink for children; the ability to “cure” hangovers. While the brand admits that it doesn’t cure any medical conditions, it can help consumers rehydrate after a heavy night of drinking, which made it popular among the college crowd.
- Leverage brand equity to target loyalty: Some brands can stand out simply by leveraging their name and catering to their loyal audience. This is a strategy Kellogg’s leverages with their Kellogg’s Family Rewards program. The CPG mega-brand provides a rewards program that encourages consumers to keep buying from their portfolio of products in exchange for incentives like gift cards or branded merchandise.
- Consider direct-to-consumer models: Some brands have been able to find success by focusing on direct-to-consumer models that cut out the retailer. Dollar Shave Club took advantage of this model by turning razor purchases into a subscription model that simplifies the process for consumers and makes it easier to remember to buy razors. It was this model that helped drive the brand to success.
- Change the focus to a vital attribute: As consumers become more concerned about the chemicals in their foods, cosmetics, and everyday products, many brands are refocusing their product labels to highlight in-demand attributes like “organic,” “natural,” and “non-GMO.”
There are many ways brands can stand out and reach customers effectively without the need to change products. By adjusting their marketing strategies, brands can reach new demographics or focus on vital attributes to their product, which may have been overlooked. Another alternative is to leverage mobile apps to gain the attention of consumers in the shopping aisle.
Standing Out in the Aisle With Mobile Apps
A smart way for brands to connect with customers in the store is to reach out to them through mobile apps. By partnering with an app designed to improve the consumer’s shopping experience, brands can guide them to products and eliminate the competition.
This is often a reason brands choose to partner with Shopkick. For example, Rimmel London wanted to reach more consumers in the shopping aisle and gain a competitive edge over other cosmetics brands. After contacting Shopkick, the brand was able to implement an in-store rewards program which encouraged consumers to scan product UPCs with their phones in exchange for kicks (rewards points). Overall, Rimmel reported pulling 14% market share from competitors in stores where this strategy was implemented.
When looking at how to reach customers effectively, brands must first consider how they can differentiate their products. By reaching out to new markets or engaging consumers in a way that makes them view a product in a new light, companies can better encourage spontaneous name recognition that drives sales. By pairing such a strategy with a robust mobile marketing campaign, brands can pull the consumers’ attention away from competing products and increase their market share.
Shopkick shows our partners how to reach customers effectively in the shopping aisle by leveraging our unique mobile app. To see some of the results of our past campaigns, check out our success stories.
Images courtesy of Wavebreakmedia