Consumers take the lead from in-store digital marketing campaigns to boost alcohol sales

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To reach consumers at the moment that most influences their buying decision is the primary objective of marketers and this is exactly what the drinks retail industry in South Africa is doing most effectively. It has adapted its marketing and promotions strategy to target customers in-store through the use of digital marketing campaigns. As a high footfall retail business, alcohol brands and stores are spending more of their marketing budget on reaching their target audience at the decision-making point in-store instead of spending huge amounts of budget on TV and radio advertisements; and the resultant increase in liquor sales proves that consumers are engaging with and reacting to these in-store campaigns.

Moving Tactics, South Africa’s leading digital signage solutions company, has been working with well-known drinks brands and drinks retailers such as Pick n Pay Liquor, Ultra Liquors and Makro’s Liquor division to put in place digital in-store marketing campaigns and strategies. These campaigns not only track the customer’s journey through the store but also target promotions and new product information to customers at key strategic areas within the stores to maximise sales. The system also monitors customers’ engagement with the campaigns and automatically aligns the in-store content strategy accordingly.

Chris Smeda, network account manager – Liquor at Moving Tactics, said: “The digital screens installed in liquor stores not only add vibrancy and energy to the in-store environment but they also inform and entertain consumers. The promotions and advertisements flighted are used to influence the consumer to either try a new brand or encourage them to purchase additional items; and the feedback received from retailers and liquor brands proves that this strategy is working very well in increasing sales on promoted products.”

What the client says

As Helmuth Kisting, junior brand manager Klipdrift Gold and Klipdrift Black Gold at Distell, said: “Klipdrift runs in-store marketing and promotional campaigns on a regular basis and the way in which our brand messages have been tailored across the various in-store platforms has encouraged brand awareness and purchasing behaviour, which has proven to be very effective time and time again. We believe that great value has been added to the Klipdrift brand campaigns using the Moving Tactics Point-of-purchase communication network over the past several years.”

The shopper journey

Digital screens are placed strategically through the store to track the customer journey – from the entrance, down the main aisles, to the tillpoints. In addition, screens are strategically placed above the beer fridges, a 32-inch screen is bolted onto the beer fridge doors and a 4-screen bank is positioned above the spirits section.

Retail analytics

“Using digital screens fitted with our retail analytics tools allows us to track the customer throughout their journey in the store and provides us with tactical information that feeds into the content marketing strategy,” said Scott Matthews, new business developer at Moving Tactics retail analytics. “Cameras fitted to the digital screens pick up on a number of variables such as consumer engagement, conversion rates and the demographics of the customer base. We also use heat maps to determine high dwell areas and consumer zones within the stores, which enable us to position screens at the most effective spots in-store.

“Instead of having a customer glance at the screens, we want engagement.  And we measure this by the amount of time the customer makes eye contact with the screen. This type of information is crucial when it comes to justifying Return on Investment for liquor brands and enables them to convert sales, not just build brand awareness.”

Tracking the change in consumer behaviour

The general perception of buying alcohol has changed in the last 10 years, with gender and frequency being amongst those statistics that have altered the most. Chris Day, managing director of Moving Tactics, said: “Our analytics have shown that more and more women are purchasing alcohol for the home and that it often becomes an addition to the grocery shop.  Also, instead of alcohol mainly being purchased on weekends, we find that consumers are making smaller, but more frequent trips to buy alcohol, with figures showing two to three purchases per week.

“This increase in purchasing frequency means that liquor brands and retailers are getting more exposure to their in-store marketing campaigns and, as a result, the campaigns are running for longer. By the time customers walk into the store, they don’t always remember the TV or radio advert, so it’s best to target them when they’re at the store and about to make that purchasing decision”.