MINNEAPOLIS — Kantar Media on Wednesday reported that overall retailer advertising expenditures increased 1.6% and retailer participation in Free Standing Insert coupon promotion pages increased 30.7% over calendar year 2011, versus the corresponding year-ago period. Additionally, digital coupon events increased 40.4% during this period across the leading retailer websites monitored by Kantar Media.
“Retailers and manufacturers are working together to implement integrated advertising and promotion programs that reach shoppers in the home where they are creating shopping lists and planning shopping trips," said Dan Kitrell, VP Marx Account Solutions at Kantar. "However, important differences in advertising and promotion tactics were observed among leading retailers. Manufacturers need to understand which retailers are increasing their ‘share of voice’ to drive more trips and win key weeks with their shoppers. Additionally, manufacturers must understand the strategic role of their categories at each retailer together with how their brands both complement and compete with other brands within these categories, including private label brands."
Significant shifts in advertising and promotion activity were observed among leading retailers across the food, drug and mass and other retail distribution channels. For example, Walmart decreased total advertising expenditures 27.2% across the 18 media monitored by Kantar Media, while increasing their participation in FSI promotion pages by 677.2% and having 989.6% more digital coupon events distributed on Walmart.com during CY 2011 versus CY 2010.
In addition to Walmart, Kantar broke down the advertising expenditure changes by retailer:
Total advertising expenditures were up 6.8% at Target — FSI promotions were down 1.9%, while digital coupon events were up 37.6%;
At Kroger, total advertising was up 8.9%, with a 23.1% reduction in FSI promotions and a 33.3% increase in digital couponing;
Safeway decreased its total advertising spend by 16.1%, though FSIs were up 15.5% and digital coupons were up 17.2%;
Similarly at Supervalu, total advertising spend was down 5% and FSIs were down 43.8%, while digital couponing was up 3.8%;
Walgreens, which just announced a partnership with Foursquare, increased its total advertising by 8.5%, with a 39% lift in FSIs and a 190.8% increase in digital couponing; and
CVS reduced its total advertising expenditures by 8.4% reflecting a 14.7% uptick in FSIs and a 25.1% decrease in digital couponing. (Walgreens' and CVS' digital coupon events were based on a comparison between Feb. 14 through Dec. 31, 2011 and the same date range in 2010, as opposed to full calendar years, Kantar noted.)
“Retailers are targeting shoppers in the home to drive trips, transactions, and profits for their stores," Kitrell said. "Some manufacturers are leveraging the strength of their brand portfolios as part of corporate scale themed events that ‘stack’ retailer-aligned advertising and promotion support to break through the clutter with shoppers, improve the return on promotion programs with retailers and convert category shoppers into brand buyers in the store during … peak weeks.”