Playing to consumers’ needs proves to be a valuable strategy

Rite Aid has been beefing up its virtual presence lately, having ventured into such social media venues as Facebook and Twitter within the past month.

“We will start now aggressively trying to attract followers on Twitter and fans on Facebook,” John Learish, Rite Aid SVP marketing, told Drug Store News. “It’s a great vehicle for us to get some very rapid viral communication of a lot of the front-end offers and pharmacy services that we are currently doing.”

An added benefit, Learish said, is that the Facebook and Twitter sites can act as feeder sites, funneling consumers onto a Rite Aid-branded page. “All of our posts have clickable links to the other services that we’re offering. So we can link to Video Values, or you can sign up for wellness+,” Learish said.

Rite Aid’s Video Values online initiative, now 1 year old, has gained significant traction, Learish said. “Video viewership has grown exponentially and increased every single month,” he said. In July, more than 7,000 videos were accessed and viewed on the site, and as of mid-August, Learish expected viewers would again surpass that mark for August. “In July, the average customer was watching almost 40 videos,” Learish said.

Like the wellness+ loyalty card program, Video Values generates a significant amount of actionable data by marrying consumer demographics with the videos they watch, which coupons get printed and then which coupons are redeemed. Rite Aid then can take these data-driven learnings and apply them to merchandising and marketing programs in store. “One of the [benefits] we get from this program is unbelievable metrics,” Learish said.

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