DOES DISTANCE FROM THE TILL MATTER?

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Our regular blogger Lisa Homewood, Planner at iD Experiential, talks to us about if distance from the till really matters...

Does distance from the till matter? That depends very much on your objective. On the day conversion to purchase generated by in-store sampling in supermarkets is generally substantially higher than sampling activity at the front of the store. This is primarily because you reach the consumer in the aisle, where the purchase decision takes place and you can virtually pick up the product and put in their basket. Activity we have delivered in the food & drinks categories (coupled with an enticing price promotion) have generated on the day conversions of up to 20%, so as an immediate sales-driving tactic, it certainly ticks the box.

However, if your objective is reach & visibility or perhaps driving brand preference, you’re going to achieve much more further away from the till.

Thinking about reach, not every shopper is going to visit your aisle and the number of samples or engagements that agencies that provide in-store staff usually commit to is only in the region of 300 per day. Activity at the front of the store has the opportunity to engage every shopper that enters the store which presents a much bigger opportunity to get in the basket as an unplanned purchase.

Coupled with this, is the fact that at the front of the store there is a lot more space to create an engaging brand experience which drives a deeper connection with the consumer, whilst fully trained, on-brand staff communicate key brand messages more effectively than Betty-from-the-Bread-Counter. In combination, both elements create a memory, which in turn is more likely to have a longer-term impact on sales, preference and loyalty.

But activity can be equally as successful even when it isn’t anywhere near point of purchase. Independent research was commissioned to evaluate the success of a campaign for a market leading coffee brand. The activity was implemented at Front of Store and also at major shopping malls, where the experience was more engaging. Four weeks post-activity, 15% of engagers had gone on to make a purchase, but the most surprising thing was that the % did not vary between the two environments as you might expect. Furthermore, 90% of those who went through the shopping mall experience claimed a better understanding of the brand vs. 52% of those that were at Front of Store. And finally, almost double the amount of people who went through the shopping mall experience had gone on to recommend the product to a friend.

So in summary, distance from the till does not matter as much as depth of engagement unless the aim is just to shift volume.

Thanks for listening,

Lisa Homewood

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