Retail Communication• Communication program (C.P.) needed to build appealing brand images, attract customers to stores and internet sites and encourage them to buy merchandise• CP informs customers about the retailer as well as about merchandise and services it offers and also plays a role in developing repeat visits and customer loyalty.• CP-1-long term- to create differentiated image, which develops 1-customer loyalty , provides strategic advantages., 2- short term- for increasing sales ,discount coupons for specified periods.,3-motivates repeat visits and purchases.• CP- develop brands and build customer loyalty.-value of brand image offered to store –i.e. a brand equity- brand –a distinguishing name or a symbol which 1-identifies class of its products or services at store , 2-differentiates from competitors. 3-helps increasing margins,4- leverage to introduce new concepts, launches with limited mktg efforts.• Activities to build brand equity for store and its pvt labels merchandise r-1-create high level of brand awareness,2- develop favorable associations with the brand name, 3- consistently reinforce the image of the brand.
• Creating brand awareness- i.e. the ability of a potential customers to recognize or recall that the brand name is a type of retailer or product /service.• Brand awareness is the strength of the link between the brand name and type of merchandise or service in the mind of customer.• Range of brand awareness from aided recall – i.e. when consumer indicate they know the brand when name is presented to them to TOM awareness- highest level of awareness, when consumer mentions the brand name first when they r asked about type of retailer.• Retailers build TOM awareness by repeated exposures to C thru advt, sponsorships and using memorable symbols. Symbols-visual images r more easily recalled than words. e.g. MacDonald. Sponsorships of TV programs helps.• Creating brand associations- linked to consumers memory with brand name. Some common associations r like-1- merchandise category- fast food-MacDonald, book stores-cross word,,2-price/ quality-walmart,3-specific attribute or benefit- service of dominos,4-lifestyle or activity-high end stores.
• Creating brand image- It is a set of associations that r usually organized around some meaningful themes.• Consistent reinforcements needed for developing and maintaining retailers brand image thru communication programs as well as thru elements of communication mix such as merchandise assortments, and pricing, the design of its store and websites, and the customer service it offers.• To develop a strong set of associations and a clearly defined brand image, retailers need to b consistent in portraying same message to customers over time and across all of the elements of its retail mix.• Role of marketing in retail org is 2 fold-1- informing to existing consumers,2-for getting closer to the end users.• Retail marketing mix- 1-product/merchndise-it’s a) line-group of products closely related-,e g menswear section at dept store -formal +casual +accessories. b) Variety- different merchandise lines-mens wear + womens wear c) breadth-assortment – number of merchandise brands say of formals .d) depth – average number of SKU’s-as it carries individual products defined by rand ,size, colors, styles ,price points
• 2-price- policy related to target for its range of products and whether unique or substitute products available. e.g. designer clothing always expensive.• 3-Place-Still important although IT and TV shopping• 4-promotion-advt budgets, s.p. publicity, and p.r. r very imp in a competitive world of retailing. All promotion activities to b developed in line with target market and products.• 5-Presentation-store layout, ambience created, visual merchandising -orderly display in store.• 6-customer service- credit policy, product return policy need to b clear to sales staff, relationship mktg, CRM enhances customer service.• 7-people- front end people r face of retail org for customers, their attitudes product knowledge plays a big role in building long term relations with customers.• STP approach in retail mktg.- geographic, psychographic, target mkt, position based on merchandise, trading format, customer service• Retail Image-
• Image of a retail store- affected A) primarily by features of merchandise, place/location of store, pricing of products, manner of presentation of products, advt and promotion of store, B) shopping experience, customer service, sales staff, and brand associations also contribute to image of store.• Retail communication mix-• Communication an integral part of retail marketing as it informs customers about the retail org, products and services. Unlike one way from store ,now two way as interactive needs of customers to b fulfilled.• Use of IMC rather than creating unique CP. Without coordinated CP thru IMC, some methods ay work at cross purposes-e. g.. simultaneous announcement of low price and exceptional customer service• Elements of retail communication mix- 1-advertising,+ 2- sales promotion +3- Public relations,+ 4 Personal selling,+,5- direct marketing• 1- Advertising –• paid form of non-personal presentation and communication thru mass media. Aims to selling to a wide mix of consumers and also to induce repeat purchases.
• Advertising-functions- 1-Creates awareness,2- informs to create image, 3-create desire to want a product,4-informs store policy,5-inform abt national brand associations,6- to reposition store,7- inform bargain sales, and CP schemes.• Medias to advertise in retail-press, print-posters, brochures, pop displays, outdoor. internet banners.• Advertising budgets planning- methods-1- % of sales.2- competitive parity,3- research or task based,4-incremental , 5- affordable.• Deciding message-communication platform- – base on target customers select platform stressing unique features, lifestyle, testimonials.• 2-Sales promotion-• paid non-personal form of communication, that incetivises customers to visit store and purchase merchandise during specific period of time.• S.P. Programs 1- attract traffic and enables quick results.2-Help increasing impulse buying,3-generate excitement ,4-motivates other channel members.
• S.P. aimed at consumers (C.P.) for various reasons like-1-to stimulate trial purchase,2-to encourage repeats and large purchases, thru coupons for next buy ,price reductions/discounts for large,3-to introduce new brand /product,4-to counter competitors strategy. common sales s.p. (fig)• S.P.(T.P.)-participate in trade fairs and exhibitions and conferences organized by a sectors like textiles, leather, jewelry.• 3-P.R. and publicity.• It is a mktg communication function for creating goodwill. Retail store creates and sustain favorable image with consumers, stake holders and public at large.• Retail org makes integrated p.r. efforts thru press releases, feature stories, and co’s news letters or interviews with pres, press meets/conferences• Publicity is a important component of P.R. It is a non-paid form of media coverage. Difficult to get free media coverage these days but some events like opening of store, renovation, celebrity visit, awards received celebrations, fashion shows etc merit publicity.
• 4-Personal selling-• A paid form of personal advertising where sales people assist customers in satisfying needs thru P 2 P exchange of information. Aimed at specific individuals. Expensive method.• POP displays-Help in- store product branding, enhance retail sales, provides info to customers. almost 70 % purchase decisions r made in-store and so use of pop in styles, fashions, quality, price to b emphasized.• Direct marketing- data base provides buying occasions and preferences. Types of communications used in direct mktg r,1- direct mail,2-catlogues and mail order,3-telemarketing –few retailers use it a combination,4-Electronic retailing-many have started combining with store retail.• Store positioning- it stand test of time• IMC- to add value strategically stores use as a concept