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Target gives $37,500 for tornado relief

BY DSN STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS — Target has donated $37,500 in monetary support and product to assist with tornado relief efforts underway in the central United States. The donation includes $25,000 cash for the American Red Cross to aid their efforts and an additional $12,500 that can be used either as cash or product donations to local organizations in Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky and Missouri.

“When disaster strikes, Target listens and acts quickly to donate time, money and essentials to help support the needs of our communities,” said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and CEO of Target. “Our thoughts are with those affected and we hope our donation will aid the recovery efforts.”

In addition to financial contributions, Target teams are volunteering in their local communities. For example, 60 Target team members are volunteering with the Red Cross and United Way in Henryville, Ind., by unloading, sorting and delivering community donations to surrounding shelters.

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Kantar Media releases 2011 retail promotional activity report

BY Michael Johnsen

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.”



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RILA releases comprehensive supply chain industry report

BY Michael Johnsen

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Retail Industry Leaders Association, in partnership with Auburn University and with sponsorship from Accenture, on Wednesday released the third annual State of The Retail Supply Chain report.

@RILAtweets will moderate a live Twitter chat March 7 from 12 noon to 1 p.m. EST via #RILAchat to discuss the report findings.

"This study will be essential reading for a wide cross-section of retail supply chain executives seeking insights into the key supply chain trends taking place in retail, including multichannel operations," stated Parag Jategaonkar, senior executive with Accenture’s Retail practice. "Accenture’s own experience with clients indicates an increasing focus amongst retailers on developing their supply chains to more effectively deliver a compelling customer experience, regardless of the channel." The most significant takeaway from the report centered on the importance of multichannel operations including fulfillment of dot-com, mobile, and tablet orders.

The report states that electronic e-commerce sales have grown by more than 15% to $35.3 billion, versus an overall sales growth of 4.1% versus the previous year. With predictions that e-commerce sales will grow 10% annually, multichannel has become a game changer for retailers.

According to the report, more than 85% of survey participants indicated that direct consumer fulfillment is a top priority for them. "Consumer expectations are changing, and as a result, retail business models are changing," RILA EVP retail operations Casey Chroust said. "Traditionally, retailers have used separate operational models to move goods and fulfill orders. Now those models need to be merged so that companies can continue to deliver the products consumers want across any channel without losing efficiency or adding cost."

The report also highlighted the various multichannel challenges facing retailers, including: variation in shipment size, order filling processes and delivery methods, as well as the inconsistent SKU assortment of multichannel retailers. Less than 18% of the retailers surveyed offer the same SKUs across channels. "The real challenge for today’s multichannel retailer is to become channel agnostic and fulfill demand effectively regardless of order type or origin," stated Brian Gibson, professor of supply chain management at Auburn University. "As sales volume grows in nontraditional channels, achievement of technology integration, operational flexibility, and process visibility will separate the leaders from the pack."

The report data was compiled through a series of executive interviews and industry surveys with retailers across every segment of retail, with the goal of understanding the capabilities that drive exceptional retail supply chain performance. All told, 199 retail supply chain executives took part in the research.

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