One Blog |August 19, 2013 | POS Tracking Software

Traditional Media is a Sitting Duck vs. POS Marketing

Mark Fullerton

The Shift from Print to Digital Print

My wife recently cancelled her subscription to Runner’s World. Her intentions, going forward, appear to be to subscribe to either the on-line paid version (which costs $5 less per year than the traditional printed version) or the on-line free version which she feels provides most of the same content.

Last year we cancelled our daily newspaper delivery in favor of a version we typically read on an iPad or a Kindle Fire HD (this is a paid newspaper subscription, by the way).

My wife’s arguments for dispensing with physical magazines and newspapers include such things as ‘briefcase real estate’. Since she always has her iPad with her, she now always has access to a growing digital newsstand complete with local and national papers and magazines — and besides she doesn’t have the room in her briefcase for the newspapers and magazines she consumes on a daily basis.

Skipping the Advertising

Another reason to cancel subscriptions to actual printed materials in favor of fee or free on-line digital versions (or apps, in some cases), is that the digital materials allow an ad-skip capability somewhat like the 30-second fast forward button on DVRs. No longer do readers find themselves having to “continue reading on page xyz” only to wade through several ads and putting up with those infuriating contact cards inserted in most magazines. Today readers can simply swipe their finger across the screen of their smart device of choice, instantly zipping by even full-page ads until they get to the rest of the story.

Today, with the adoption of digital “print media,” magazine and newspaper readers (the consumers) have the ability to easily skip over any content they don’t want to interrupt their reading. We consumers are becoming empowered; we now have control over much of what is called “traditional media.” More and more we watch what we want to watch, when we want to watch it, meaning we often “hop” right over the 6 or more commercial interruptions typical of contemporary TV fare; moreover, we swipe right past the ads as we consume the (digital) written word on our tablets, smart-phones and e-readers.

Reach Consumers Where They Buy

I must say this consumer empowerment is liberating and encouraging. We consumers are liberated from having the content we want to consume interrupted by advertising messages (that we don’t want to consume) when we’re not actually shopping.  Likewise, the rise of the empowered consumer serves to encourage advertisers to focus their informative and persuasive messages at the time and place when we consumers are most able to act upon them and when we are most likely to seek them out - When we’re shopping.

As the proliferation of online and on-demand content erodes traditional media’s audience (and hence its marketing power), it is becoming clear that marketing messages on a go-forward basis will be, increasingly, at the time and place when shoppers are looking to become buyers - at-retail. Traditional advertising — via traditional media — is a sitting duck.

The Implication for Consumer Goods

There is no question that B2C marketing (and we’re primarily talking about the marketing of consumer goods) has changed since the digital era started to gain traction with consumers in the mid 90’s. There is also no question that point-of-sale, at-retail and shopper marketing is the best way to reach and persuade consumers to buy.  

The implications for consumer goods manufacturers and suppliers should be that they adopt tools that will allow them to study what retail marketing elements engage and influence shoppers to become buyers.

This can be significantly accomplished by correlating point-of-sale (POS) marketing characteristics (i.e., placement, types, message and costs) to sales impact. Doing this requires tools that will facilitate the tracking, measuring and management of at-retail initiatives.

OnTrak provides such tools, so click the following button to learn more:

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