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CPG Archives - NVISION

Three Reasons Why Direct Mail is
Still Alive and Kicking

direct mail-blogheader

For some brands, direct mail marketing campaigns have been brushed aside and made a thing of the past. Some brand marketers assume that the largest emerging group of consumers, Millennials, can’t be reached through print marketing campaigns. However, studies indicate that this is far from the truth.

Brands who fail to prioritize direct mail marketing initiatives as a value-adding supplement to their campaigns risk missing out on an effective, simple opportunity to increase profits and engagement, and enhance brand awareness.

So, why exactly should brands capitalize on the value of direct mail?

NVISION postcard - direct mail

It delivers an emotional and physical connection

Consumers have busy, stressful lives. By sending direct mail, you can actually save potential consumers valuable time and brainpower. Recent studies have found that direct mail takes 21% less cognitive effort to process than digital ads.

But just because direct mail requires less effort to process, that doesn’t mean individuals aren’t giving it their undivided attention. In fact, 80% of direct mail recipients scan or read each piece before disposing of anything.

“It’s one of those marketing vehicles that just has a special touch, literally. Millennials, whom everyone thinks don’t want anything but a computer screen, are fascinated by it,” explains Marjorie Taucher, Senior Print Specialist at NVISION.

When individuals are exposed to physical mail, they experience a heightened feeling of excitement. It creates a connection. And this connection leads to desire, loyalty, and making a purchase.

“With email and social media on the rise, your mailbox is actually a lot less crowded than before. It’s more unique and special to receive something physical,” Taucher states. And that generates very real demand for your brand.

In order to gain the most benefits from sending direct mail, brand marketers need to ensure that they send engaging, eye-catching postcards, and mailers that will capture the attention of potential consumers.

“It just resonates with people. It just keeps it in your brain,” says Taucher.

human heads for creativity illustration

It delivers a great Return on Investment 

Direct mail has a median return on investment (ROI) of 29%. This is a staggering number considering that paid search has delivered 23%, and the online display has an ROI of 16%.

And not only does direct mail have a strong ROI, but it also has a higher response rate compared to most online marketing campaigns. As Taucher explains, “Direct mail has a response rate of over 5%. Email gets half a percent usually.” This is because, unlike with emails, consumers physically hold mail in their hands. Individuals are less likely to forget something tangible that they can actually touch, that suggests more care and effort taken by a brand to connect with them.

Another benefit of using direct mail is increased brand awareness. Some recipients may not have an immediate need for your product. However, they will look at your postcards and coupons. Their brain will retain that information, and their countertops likely will for a few days, too. And, when the day comes that they develop a need for your product or services, guess who they’ll shop with?

a hand with pencil on a calculator - ROI

It delivers better targeting and personalization

The key to effectively engaging with and retaining customers is providing them a personalized experience. And, as long as you know who your target audience is, direct mail can be highly specific.

Taucher explains, “Direct mail can now take all the information available on a customer on file – what tires you just bought, how many kids you have, what your favorite color is – and pull it into a formatted template that is TOTALLY personalized to them.”

An effective method is to send repeat customers printed reminders about routine services and promotions. “We’re just putting it to smarter use, so they feel like ‘Oh, wow, you really know me well. That’s helpful!’ And know them well enough to remind them when they need things, like oil changes, etc.,” Taucher says.

To really impress and satisfy potential and loyal customers, brands should anticipate what they need before they even realize they need it, and then bring those needs to their attention through captivating pieces of mail.

Brand marketers can also target broad swaths of demographics through the use of direct mail marketing. According to MSP article, 95 percent of 18-to-29-year-olds – a key demographic for many brands – have a positive response to receiving personal cards and letters.

And what’s more, everyone checks the mail. Because of that, your direct mailers can convert literally anyone into a customer.

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As the consumer market continues to evolve, brand marketers must implement effective approaches to engage with potential and established customers alike. But the somewhat prevalent idea that direct mail marketing tactics are no longer valuable for brand success is inaccurate. In fact, it is just the opposite.

Sending direct mail to individuals is an effective and important supplement to any campaign. By delivering a physical and emotional connection, a great ROI, and better targeting and personalization, direct mail creates opportunities to improve brand awareness, increase sales, and generate higher demand for your products and services.

And by working with a trusted partner who can help you capitalize on the use of direct mail marketing campaigns, your brand can compete on the quality and effectiveness of these engaging physical marketing assets.

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Why NVISION?

For more than three decades we’ve partnered with Fortune 500 companies to deliver marketing operations solutions. Led by a strategic account management team, we’ll help you develop, procure, fulfill and distribute printed collateral, signage, point-of-purchase displays, direct mail, branded merchandise and much more.

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Future of CPG Marketing: Building a Winning Strategy

man on speedy go kart - full

The Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industry marketing is changing. The game and the rules are evolving, and brands need to identify and implement new and strategic ways to keep up in order to remain profitable.

According to Clare Gordon, Nicolas Willemot, Eileen Shy, and John Grudnowski in their Bain & Company article, “Today, marketing consumer products is more like a sprawling contest of mixed martial arts, with new competitors playing by different rules; an unprecedented complexity of channels, content, and partners; and a step-change in speed and ways of working that has punches flying at incumbent consumer products companies.”

To ensure future success, CPG brands need to transform their marketing operations to better connect with consumers in this ever-changing industry. Here’s how brands can prepare for the future of CPG marketing.

Define New Growth Platforms

In the past, brand marketers just considered geographies and nearby industry verticals when brainstorming marketing methods. However, this approach is no longer effective. Brand marketers need to take more factors into the mind and remain aware of new marketing trends that emerge in the CPG industry when coming up with marketing strategies.

CPG marketing trends have shifted from services to experiences, and now further to communities, and brands must discover new growth platforms in order to keep up with this pace of change. To determine the most effective marketing methods and growth platforms, they need to evaluate the past and the future. Brand marketers can enhance their marketing methods by combining the old with the new.

So, instead of relying only on legacy marketing tactics, brand marketers should think “outside the box.” Consumers today want more engagement with brands. Marketers should create innovative ways to connect with consumers based on demand while envisioning marketing strategies that influence every touchpoint of the individual consumer journey in the long run.

By taking a step further and implementing a growth platform that enhances marketing tactics of the past to improve the future, CPG brands can transcend beyond their current products, business models, and capabilities.

man with tablet showing charts-growth

Rethink Your Brand Portfolio

The truth be told. The conventional marketing formula no longer brings growth. As the marketplace undergoes a rapid transformation, marketing leaders are compelled to rethink their brand from its competitiveness to capabilities and the way they connect with consumers.

Disruptive industry trends and insurgent brands have raised the bar on consumer expectations that force brands to build and manage a more diverse brand portfolio to meet the demand.

By focusing on refining optimal portfolio roles, identifying winning strategies, determining the level of investments and ROI expectations, will help marketing leaders to develop a 360-degree consumer engagement strategy through omnichannel touchpoints of the customer journey. According to the article, “CMOs need to reassess growth platforms and future brand portfolios, along with developing a supporting strategy on data and technology,” to fulfill their newly assigned role as growth drivers in this versatile CPG marketplace.

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Transform Your Operating Model

Brand marketers should consider adopting a new operating model and partnership structure that falls in line with the emerging trends in the CPG industry. They must also ensure that they have an effective process in place to manage this transition.

Brands should collect and utilize customer data in order to personalize the shopping experience for their target market and make it as engaging as possible for shoppers. As Gordon, Willemot, Shy, and Grudnowski explain, “Take control of targeting and consumer data to build differentiated capabilities for retargeting groups of consumers, as well as driving insights and guiding strategy.”

Consumers expect to see advertisements that are specifically targeted to their needs. Brands can put their consumer data into good use to tailor their marketing techniques to fit the profile of their target audience.

When you identify the needs of your customers and effectively use personal information, you can influence their shopping process, convert them to loyal customers, and simultaneously drive sales for your business.

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As new trends and changes emerge in the CPG industry, it is essential for brand marketers to be aware and plan new marketing strategies for the future.

By defining new growth platforms that involve “thinking outside the box” of legacy marketing methods, focusing on refining optimal portfolio roles by revamping your brand portfolio, and transitioning to a new operating model that satisfies customers’ shopping experiences, CPG brands can generate demand, drive sales, and keep up with the fast pace of industry changes.

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Why NVISION?

For more than three decades we’ve partnered with Fortune 500 companies to deliver marketing operations solutions. Led by a strategic account management team, we’ll help you develop, procure, fulfill and distribute printed collateral, signage, point-of-purchase displays, direct mail, branded merchandise and much more.

LEARN MORE

Three Key Tips to Gain Competitive Advantage in CPG

man looking at consumer product at a grocery store

Undeniably, the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industry faces unique challenges. Over the past five years, many CPG brands have experienced a decline in revenue and profits. Brands are struggling to keep up with changes in the industry, and some are consequently falling behind as the broader retail landscape changes.

According to Bain & Company’s Matthew Meacham, François Faelli, Eduardo Giménez, and John Blasberg in their article, “When we analyzed the performance of 34 of the world’s top 50 consumer goods companies in the last few years, we made the unsettling discovery that 85% of those big companies had seen a decline in either revenues, profits or both.”

In order to ensure future success, brands need to find ways to combat the current challenges in the industry. So, what can CPG brands do to overcome the current crisis in the industry?

shadowed people with bubbles - account management

Be Agile with Emerging Trends

With advances in technology and the emergence of a new generation of shoppers, the CPG industry is constantly evolving. The wants and needs of customers are changing, along with the ways they shop. Brands that hope to survive in this ever-changing market need to keep up with the new trends.

One of the most significant trends is rapidly shifting in consumer behavior as they become more socially, environmentally, and health-conscious. This fast-growing trend contributed to the considerable disruption caused by small insurgent brands in many product categories, making the competition even more intense.

In order to support the new wave of consumers and to compete in the current market, brands should focus on establishing a robust multi-channel presence to connect with the target consumers where they are comfortable to interact and share.

When brands are aware of emerging market trends, they can come up with a plan to prepare for them ahead of time. By serving the consumer in the way they want to be served on par with the current trends, brands can outsmart the competition to be successful in the marketplace.

Reinvent Brand’s Image

Brand marketers need to start thinking “outside the box” when it comes to engaging with customers. Instead of relying solely on legacy marketing tactics, brands should consider ways to draw in customers that they haven’t used before.

Meacham, Faelli, Giménez, and Blasberg explain: “Winning companies will innovate their way out with new products, new systems, and new needs that help elevate their categories to premium status while increasing product and assortment penetration.”

If keeping up with the current trends is “today forward” strategy, brands also will need to take “future back” approach to set their own destiny and progressing toward it.

By redefining the vision for your brand, and your company – future back approach – to rearticulate a meaningful, sustainable, and consumer-driven purposes will inspire to reset the brand’s sense of urgency and to become the frontline innovator.

woman shopping on tablet - CPG

Directly Engage with Customers

Traditionally, most CPG brands don’t maintain a relationship with customers after they make a purchase. However, if brands take the initiative to connect and develop lasting relationships with their shoppers, they will drive sales and increase their opportunities for upselling and cross-selling.

Adding the data-driven personalization in every customer touchpoint will significantly improve customer commitment to the brands, especially when a customer feels connected, understood, and valued by the brand.

One way is direct mail follow-ups with customers after they’ve purchased your product. Consumers typically respond positively to direct communication because they appreciate feeling that their feedback is important.

Also, brands should consider opening pop-up brick-and-mortar stores to improve engagement with consumers. Brands can more easily establish impactful connections with their shoppers in a physical store, where the entire consumer experience is curated by the brand.

There is no sales method more effective than good old-fashioned, positive, face-to-face interactions. When a customer leaves your store feeling like they’ve had a good experience, they are more likely to come back and also to encourage their friends and family members to shop there.

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The current crisis in the CPG industry doesn’t mean that your brand is doomed to struggle. Instead, brand marketers should see these market challenges as opportunities to redefine their business by thinking of new, creative ways to engage with customers and drive sales.

Making sure you stay in the know regarding new market trends, coming up with innovative ideas for products and marketing tactics, and putting in the effort to reach out and directly engage with your customers are important steps you can take as a CPG brand marketer in order to flourish in today’s challenging market. By understanding these useful actions, CPG brands are more likely to remain profitable and ensure a successful future for their business.

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Why NVISION?

For more than three decades we’ve partnered with Fortune 500 companies to deliver marketing operations solutions. Led by a strategic account management team, we’ll help you develop, procure, fulfill and distribute printed collateral, signage, point-of-purchase displays, direct mail, branded merchandise and much more.

LEARN MORE

The Omnichannel Future of CPG

How CPG brands can prepare for changing customer expectations.

Digital disruption has already begun to come to food retailers, and smart brands are adapting to these new realities.

That’s according to Julia Russell at SmartBrief, who states that today’s consumers, many of them digital natives, want on-demand, omnichannel access to their food that mirrors the level of responsiveness they’ve come to expect from other industries. Many of them prefer to look up a product online, then go find and purchase it in the store. Similarly, many of today’s consumers prefer to check out a product in person in the store, then buy it online at their convenience.

As Bobby Marhamat puts it, “Consumers want to be able to have access to merchants and information on their terms. It’s a matter of being available where the consumer wants to access that information and/or purchase from that merchant.”

But while many CPG brands count omnichannel transformation among their top priorities, there are important steps they must take to have a truly effective approach looking to the future.

A Uniform Foundation

One of the most important things a CPG brand can do to prepare for omnichannel success is ensure their customer experience is uniform across all channels.

Your brand’s mobile, online, and in-store experience should be set up the same way, so consumers can shop exactly how they’re used to, regardless of channel. This establishes a consistent brand experience and builds brand familiarity.

people looking up-crowd

Determine Your Brand Target

Brands should take the time to conceptualize their target buyer, and let that determine whether to pursue a mobile or online experience first. Further, ensuring that each channel is deeply embedded with the same experiences brands cultivate on their shelves is critical.

Russell says, “This is essential for allowing the brand to track their customers all the way throughout their buying experience.” As she explains, brands that let their customers make purchases via the channel they naturally prefer have a much higher occurrence of brand loyalty.

What’s more, brands that have a strong, uniform omnichannel strategy can allow their customers to purchase online, as well as in-store, and they can track those shoppers, analyze their behaviors, and market to them more effectively.

Partner With a Trusted Expert

CPG logistics are complex, and that complexity is increased tenfold when pursuing an omnichannel strategy.

But with complexity comes a multitude of opportunities to optimize, trim costs, and eliminate waste. A trusted partner with experience facilitating CPG marketing efforts can find those opportunities, and work with you to continue to improve critical flows, save you time, costs, and give you the ability to be responsive and ready for whatever your customers demand.

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Why NVISION?

For more than three decades we’ve partnered with Fortune 500 companies to deliver marketing operations solutions. Led by a strategic account management team, we’ll help you develop, procure, fulfill and distribute printed collateral, signage, point-of-purchase displays, direct mail, branded merchandise and much more.

LEARN MORE

Innovation: The Secret Value Hidden by Misconceptions

In hyper-competitive markets, innovation is the key to standing out. This is especially true in the consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry, where finite shelf space requires each brand to maximize every advantage it can.

But innovation can be a tricky thing. Not only can it be difficult to tell good change from bad before you’ve invested in and committed to it, but the true meaning – and value – of business innovation is widely misunderstood.

That’s according to Greg Satell of the Harvard Business Review, who explains that while many enterprises pay lip service to value “innovation,” few are taking the steps to actually do so, and even fewer are capitalizing on the enormous value lying hidden in modern business innovation.

Here are some of the biggest misconceptions, and areas of untapped value, surrounding innovation today.

Innovation: A Common Struggle

It’s no secret: no brand wants to be seen as the one that doesn’t value innovation. That’s why in a recent report from McKinsey, 84% of corporate executives claimed innovation is “key to achieving growth objectives.” Yet of those same executives, only 6% were satisfied with the “innovation performance” of their firm.

This is widely attributed to the fact that innovation is seen as a luxury, a “nice to have” asset rather than a core competency, and indeed, one that can fundamentally detract from operational efficiency in the here-and-now.

But this is simply a misconception, and an opportunity hiding in plain sight.

AI-machine learning

Sow Innovation, Reap Returns

Look, we are not going to tell you not to focus on ROI. No business person worth his or her salt would. But in this case, it is helpful to think of ROI not just as Return on Investment, but as Return on Innovation, as well.

ROI is generally maximized by making continuous, incremental improvements in efficiency, thereby realizing a competitive advantage. And do you know what that is? Innovation.

Innovation can be a scary word, but it doesn’t necessarily mean monumental, gigantic, moonshot-level change. Innovators – and partners who know how to sniff out innovation – can often find clever ways to optimize efficiencies that have been hiding right in plain sight. Little tweaks here and there, slight changes to well-trod processes, at an enterprise level all add up to improvements in your bottom line that will have you hailed as a visionary innovator.

At the other end of the spectrum, corporations should not shy away from big, innovative ideas only because the return on their investment is more protracted and less guaranteed. Technology and a changing global economy are bringing disruption to each and every sector, and it’s already here for consumer packaged goods companies. When the round peg of disruption comes for the square hole of your tried-and-true processes, you’ll wish you had invested in innovation sooner. Return on investment in innovative research in the public sector is already estimated to be between 30% and 100%.

Innovation Solves Problems, Not Ideas

Innovation is not some highfalutin, head-in-the-clouds, abstract concept. It is about solving problems. That’s it.

Organizations that develop a systematic and disciplined process for identifying new problems outside of traditional methods are more frequently able to innovate consistently over an extended period of time. Establishing a framework for analyzing problems and minimizing bottlenecks in operational efficiency, or working with a trusted partner who specializes in doing so, is exactly how you embed sustainable innovation deep within the DNA of your company.

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Why NVISION?

For more than three decades we’ve partnered with Fortune 500 companies to deliver marketing operations solutions. Led by a strategic account management team, we’ll help you develop, procure, fulfill and distribute printed collateral, signage, point-of-purchase displays, direct mail, branded merchandise and much more.

LEARN MORE