Changes ahead, but traditional media still tops
The ongoing shift in consumer media usage habits from traditional to digital media will be pushing the grocery industry in a distinctly social direction, according to research from media and marketing services firm Valassis.
Three-quarters of grocery retail executives surveyed in the US in March said they would use print media this year for marketing purposes, but just 17% expected to be doing so five years from now. Social media, by contrast, was expected to go from just 12% usage in 2012 to 65% usage in the next five years.
Social media was not expected to be the only beneficiary of declining interest by consumers in print media. The grocery retail executives said they would be changing their promotional strategies to account for lower newspaper circulation by increasing investments online in general (22%) as well as in shared or merged mail (19%) and solo or direct mail (14%).
Respondents saw the role of online advertising differently from that of broadcasts or printed circulars. Nearly half of respondents agreed that broadcast was best used for acquisition, while about the same number said circulars were good for increasing traffic and sales. But grocery executives were split on the benefits of internet advertising, with nearly equal numbers naming acquisition, retention and increased traffic as its primary role in the marketing mix.
For now, though, old media are the old standbys for consumers as well as retailers when it comes to grocery purchase decisions. Parents surveyed by agency Cone Communications in May said that in-store promotions were the top marketing channel they used to gather information on their grocery purchases (69% among moms and 57% among dads). Just 12% of mothers and 18% of fathers used online media for this purpose, and 8% and 11%, respectively, used social media.
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Check out today’s other articles, “SMBs Struggle to Adopt, Integrate Social Media” and “Australia Tops World in Digital, Total Ad Spend Per User.”