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Smart Insights: Consumer Goods

The number of touchpoints between brands and consumers is increasing at an unprecedented rate. Consumers are seeking richer retail experiences, rather than simply acquiring new products. There is also an intense competition for loyalty.

To be successful, consumer goods (FMCG, domestic appliances, home and living) companies need a comprehensive understanding of what is driving consumer choices and experiences at every touchpoint.

GfK's consumer goods research and insights illuminate the trends behind today's market realities and tomorrow's consumer demands.

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    • 04/19/17
    • Technology
    • Consumer Goods
    • FMCG
    • Global
    • English

    From “mission impossible” to “mission accomplished”: How tech manufacturers can maximize the media mix

    As a marketer of durable goods, your likely mission is to build brand image, optimize your media budget and ultimately to generate profit. While that might sound like “mission impossible”, the good news is that there is a tested research technique that can help. Marketing mix modeling offers a way for marketers to successfully overcome the mounting challenges they face. In this blog, we explore four reasons why marketing mix modeling is as relevant to manufacturers of durable goods as it is to the consumer goods industry. In doing so, we will help you navigate from “mission impossible” to “mission accomplished”.

    Mission one: Harness the digitization of media

    Put simply, in the digital age, there are more media channels and more connected devices. Consequently, Connected Consumers are exposed to more advertising messages than ever before. This media fragmentation makes it difficult for manufacturers to know where, when and how to reach consumers. In addition, the immediacy of the digital channel has placed more pressure on marketing campaigns to deliver short-term sales. Add to this the proven decline in consumers’ average attention span, and you have a challenge that even the Impossible Missions Force’s Ethan Hunt might be happy to see self-destruct in five seconds. The success of any campaign depends on getting your media mix right. In order to maximize your budget, it is essential to have accurate insights on how your ads are performing at any given moment. What you need to understand is which campaigns on which media platforms positively impact sales of your product. Marketing mix modeling evaluates the contribution of the different media channels – both online and offline – enabling you to allocate your budget so that it delivers maximum ROI.

    Mission two: Think omnichannel

    In the technical consumer goods (TCG) sector, e-commerce is an extremely important channel, and its share of sales is growing annually. According to our Point of Sales (POS) Tracking data, online accounted for 23.1% of overall sales in 2016 (see infographic). Shoppers have adopted an omnichannel approach to shopping in the TCG sector. The message couldn’t be clearer: if your products aren’t available across all channels, you are losing sales. Omnichannel shopping is becoming the norm across many categories % of shoppers reporting having shopped online and in store for a product, GfK FutureBuy, 2016 Online has also given consumers the power to check prices and compare products. This, in turn, has amplified the importance of both the manufacturer’s and retailer’s promotional activities. Marketing mix modeling enables you to understand exactly which of your promotions work, providing you with the intelligence you need to support your marketing decisions. Measuring the effectiveness of your executions gives you the power to fully optimize your activity for each channel.

    Mission three: Dealing with product feature commoditization

    When technology is new, success can be built on product features. However, as tech markets mature, all brands and models become very similar. In this type of market, it becomes virtually impossible to stand out for having a “great product”. Commoditization is rife, and manufacturers and retailers must find new ways to differentiate themselves from their competitors. Today’s Connected Consumers will only engage with, relate to and buy your product when they’ve had a brand experience. And they’ll only return to your brand if their experience of it was memorable. Consequently, we’re seeing the trend for marketing campaigns that focus more on product benefits and less on features spread across the globe. It is becoming more common for technology manufacturers to focus on a compelling brand experience in their advertising. Source: GfK Consumer Life A clear communications campaign is required if you are to succeed in conveying your product and brand values, and provide a memorable experience as well. Marketing mix modeling measures the sales impact of these campaigns and the media used to distribute them. It identifies the ROI for each channel and evaluates cross-media and cross-channel synergies.

    Mission four: Tackling the shorter product life cycle

    In consumer tech, the product life cycle is getting faster while the re-purchase ability slows down. At the same time, for almost all brands, advertising campaigns tend to be short-lived and focused specifically on new product launches. Ultimately, this means there is less time to deliver a margin. When planning your next advertising campaign, you may need to choose between investing in an intensive short-term but high-impact, high-cost TV spot versus a longer-term digital execution delivered via social networks. The commercial success or failure of your campaign may rest on this decision. This is where marketing mix modeling can provide directional insight. By providing weekly sales contributions for the different elements of your campaign, it can help you identify the most appropriate media plan to drive sales at the crucial moment. At the same time, it can also support your brand’s growth in the longer term.

    Summary: Mission accomplished

    We’ve addressed four of the key challenges faced by TCG marketers and manufacturers. Marketing mix modeling can help you understand how your above- and below-the-line marketing activities are driving your sales. We believe it is the way to accomplish your mission in today’s highly competitive global marketplace. Bjoern Kroog is Global Director of GfK POS Analytics. To share your thoughts, please email bjoern.kroog@gfk.com or leave a comment below. hbspt.cta.load(2405078, '0e591424-2780-48f3-9850-174d860e088d', {});
    • 04/19/17
    • Technology
    • Consumer Goods
    • FMCG
    • Global
    • English

    From “mission impossible” to “mission accomplished”: How tech manufacturers can maximize the media mix

    As a marketer of durable goods, your likely mission is to build brand image, optimize your media budget and ultimately to generate profit. While that might sound like “mission impossible”, the good news is that there is a tested research technique that can help. Marketing mix modeling offers a way for marketers to successfully overcome the mounting challenges they face. In this blog, we explore four reasons why marketing mix modeling is as relevant to manufacturers of durable goods as it is to the consumer goods industry. In doing so, we will help you navigate from “mission impossible” to “mission accomplished”.

    Mission one: Harness the digitization of media

    Put simply, in the digital age, there are more media channels and more connected devices. Consequently, Connected Consumers are exposed to more advertising messages than ever before. This media fragmentation makes it difficult for manufacturers to know where, when and how to reach consumers. In addition, the immediacy of the digital channel has placed more pressure on marketing campaigns to deliver short-term sales. Add to this the proven decline in consumers’ average attention span, and you have a challenge that even the Impossible Missions Force’s Ethan Hunt might be happy to see self-destruct in five seconds. The success of any campaign depends on getting your media mix right. In order to maximize your budget, it is essential to have accurate insights on how your ads are performing at any given moment. What you need to understand is which campaigns on which media platforms positively impact sales of your product. Marketing mix modeling evaluates the contribution of the different media channels – both online and offline – enabling you to allocate your budget so that it delivers maximum ROI.

    Mission two: Think omnichannel

    In the technical consumer goods (TCG) sector, e-commerce is an extremely important channel, and its share of sales is growing annually. According to our Point of Sales (POS) Tracking data, online accounted for 23.1% of overall sales in 2016 (see infographic). Shoppers have adopted an omnichannel approach to shopping in the TCG sector. The message couldn’t be clearer: if your products aren’t available across all channels, you are losing sales. Omnichannel shopping is becoming the norm across many categories % of shoppers reporting having shopped online and in store for a product, GfK FutureBuy, 2016 Online has also given consumers the power to check prices and compare products. This, in turn, has amplified the importance of both the manufacturer’s and retailer’s promotional activities. Marketing mix modeling enables you to understand exactly which of your promotions work, providing you with the intelligence you need to support your marketing decisions. Measuring the effectiveness of your executions gives you the power to fully optimize your activity for each channel.

    Mission three: Dealing with product feature commoditization

    When technology is new, success can be built on product features. However, as tech markets mature, all brands and models become very similar. In this type of market, it becomes virtually impossible to stand out for having a “great product”. Commoditization is rife, and manufacturers and retailers must find new ways to differentiate themselves from their competitors. Today’s Connected Consumers will only engage with, relate to and buy your product when they’ve had a brand experience. And they’ll only return to your brand if their experience of it was memorable. Consequently, we’re seeing the trend for marketing campaigns that focus more on product benefits and less on features spread across the globe. It is becoming more common for technology manufacturers to focus on a compelling brand experience in their advertising. Source: GfK Consumer Life A clear communications campaign is required if you are to succeed in conveying your product and brand values, and provide a memorable experience as well. Marketing mix modeling measures the sales impact of these campaigns and the media used to distribute them. It identifies the ROI for each channel and evaluates cross-media and cross-channel synergies.

    Mission four: Tackling the shorter product life cycle

    In consumer tech, the product life cycle is getting faster while the re-purchase ability slows down. At the same time, for almost all brands, advertising campaigns tend to be short-lived and focused specifically on new product launches. Ultimately, this means there is less time to deliver a margin. When planning your next advertising campaign, you may need to choose between investing in an intensive short-term but high-impact, high-cost TV spot versus a longer-term digital execution delivered via social networks. The commercial success or failure of your campaign may rest on this decision. This is where marketing mix modeling can provide directional insight. By providing weekly sales contributions for the different elements of your campaign, it can help you identify the most appropriate media plan to drive sales at the crucial moment. At the same time, it can also support your brand’s growth in the longer term.

    Summary: Mission accomplished

    We’ve addressed four of the key challenges faced by TCG marketers and manufacturers. Marketing mix modeling can help you understand how your above- and below-the-line marketing activities are driving your sales. We believe it is the way to accomplish your mission in today’s highly competitive global marketplace. Bjoern Kroog is Global Director of GfK POS Analytics. To share your thoughts, please email bjoern.kroog@gfk.com or leave a comment below. hbspt.cta.load(2405078, '0e591424-2780-48f3-9850-174d860e088d', {});
    • 04/04/17
    • Consumer Goods
    • Global
    • English

    3 things brands need to know about marketing to today’s dads

    My wife and I recently binge-watched “This is Us.”  As a father of two, I was attuned to the portrayal of the dads on this fictional NBC show (for the un-initiated).  Randall, William, and Jack make up an all-star cast of TV dads.  Sure, all three have their flaws, but I’m convinced that some combination of these TV dads is the actual father I’m supposed to be.  Kind and loving like Randall, strong and inspiring like Jack, wise and cool like William.  But all three share a common thread – a willingness to take on a large role in their kids’ and grandkids’ day-to-day lives.

    An important message to marketers

    There is an important message in the show to marketers about dads (and granddads) like Randall, William, and Jack.  According to research from GfK Consumer Life’s global study, fathers averaged across 18 countries are more likely today than in the past to take on household chores like cooking, cleaning, and shopping for groceries.  In addition, as “This is Us” aptly displays, common dad tropes are being replaced by a more dynamic and realistic archetype. That’s not to say that fathers are the new mothers.  Sure, dads still love to kick back in the man cave with a cold one and hide from folding the laundry (don’t tell my wife).  And in fact, there are recent studies suggesting that attitudes towards more traditional gender roles are making a bit of a comeback – especially in the US. Recent studies from GfK Consumer Life in the US have similar findings (more to come in a future post).  But modern reality dictates and encourages dads to be more omni-present in chores and their kids’ lives.  There are a few recent ads that speak to these themes.  I’m partial to this one from Google (Dear Sophie) and this one from Hyundai (Dad’s Sixth Sense). So what do marketers need to know about today’s dads?
    1. We like to blaze a trail and create new ways of doing household chores. Especially watch out for us in the kitchen, where we will experiment a bit more than moms.  This domestic innovation isn’t always appreciated, as about half of dads claim they are the best cook in the house, while overwhelmingly kids are much more likely to say that Mom is the best. (pro-tip: kids don’t like sriracha mac and cheese, but they do like ‘regular’ mac and cheese).
    1. We are smarter shoppers with go-to brands, and a pinch of nostalgia. Dads bring a unique perspective to the weekly shopping trip.  We are increasingly deal-oriented, but still tend to be influenced heavily by brands – especially brands that we remember from our childhood.
    1. We put in a lot of research when making a purchase decision (especially for bigger ticket items). Increasingly, dads are likely to consult their on-line and off-line networks before making a decision.  And for all the jokes about men never asking for directions, growing numbers will ask salespeople for information.
    The role of fathers on TV, advertising, and in real life is forever changed.  As marketers, we have a responsibility and a business imperative to engage them in a realistic fashion, without patronizing.  Now excuse me while I grab my herb-infused duck breast from the oven, my four-year old is sure to love it this time! Tim Kenyon is Vice President on the Consumer Life team at GfK. He can be reached at tim.kenyon@gfk.com.
    • 03/31/17
    • Press
    • Financial Services
    • Health
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Retail
    • Technology
    • Automotive
    • Consumer Goods
    • FMCG
    • Global
    • English

    UK Consumer Confidence stays at -6 in March

    GfK’s long-running Consumer Confidence Index remains stable at -6 in March.  Three of the five measures stayed at the same level and two measures saw increases.
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