Is it me? Or is Q4 2021 starting to feel a bit like the good ‘ole days? Sure, the uncertainty brought on by the pandemic is still wreaking havoc on the supply chain, marketing strategy, and budgets (of course), but with Covid cases decreasing, the potential for a strong holiday season is real. According to the recent Roku/Harris poll, 72% of holiday consumers have expressed confidence that the economy will improve in the next 12 months, and more than 1 in 3 holiday shoppers plan on spending more this year, a significant increase from the past three years. The NRF has predicted sales in November and December will grow between 8.5-10.5% from 2020 to $843.4-$859 billion—the highest holiday spending on record!
Importantly, people are also expected to return to stores to do their holiday shopping. Forrester has estimated 72% of retail sales in the US will take place in store, with consumers citing the ability to test products and immediate gratitude as key drivers (47% and 38%, respectively). Further, retailers have announced 4,969 new store openings as of mid-September—a 58.3% increase from 2020, with more stores opening than closing for 2H 2021.
Don’t Fall Into The Same Old Trap
The unprecedented “unknowns” combined with the elevated consumer optimism that comes with the holiday season means the competition to engage in-market shoppers will be as fierce as ever. Add a fragmented media landscape to the mix and marketers are justifiably feeling intense pressure to allocate all dollars to working media. Given these dynamics, I would argue that this year, perhaps more than any other, it is vital for brands to understand how their media and marketing efforts perform in real time, and to be able to optimize accordingly and report results in real time. Prioritizing measurement and analysis during your campaign can drive explosive ROAS, while dismissing it as a “nice to have” will put your brand at an incredible disadvantage.
Measurement To The Rescue
Location-enabled measurement in particular can improve a campaign’s efficiency and effectiveness by ensuring media is targeted at consumers (and regions) most receptive to messaging, and optimizing the tactics and channels that are performing in real time. Specifically, measurement will help you:
- Understand Incrementality: Gain access to incrementality at the consumer level and understand whether your brand’s advertising is actually changing consumer behavior by driving additional footfall and adjust accordingly.
- Improve Media Mix: Fine-tune budget allocation by first understanding which network, program, or creative is performing best with respect to driving store visits.
- Lower Cost per Visit: Compare costs of attracting new vs. returning customers, for a data-driven approach to decreasing CPV/CPIV.
- Gain Customer Insights: Reveal behavior of new and returning customers to evaluate campaign success and refine your targeting and messaging strategies.
It’s been a long year and I share the collective fatigue of trying to navigate through this stubborn pandemic. The weight of the decisions we make as marketers feels overwhelming in the face of the optimistic predictions and unprecedented challenges to our respective business. Cuebiq has spent the past 18 months helping our clients understand real world behaviors to inform these types of decisions. Let us help you—contact your Cuebiq sales representative or email me at [email protected]