Promotion: A Quintessential Tool for Marketing?
A store may contain all items that customers need for their daily requirement but such extensive effort would go in vain if customers are not informed. Promotion is the tool that FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) companies use not only to communicate with prospective clients about companies and their products but also to attract buyer response in a stronger and quicker manner. FMCG companies use promotion to boost sales in short run by drawing consumers' attention towards ongoing product offers. At the core, promotion uses the fundamental principles of human communication, keeps open the possibilities for constant evolve and adapts with the ever-changing strategic measures of modern business. While it is commonly interpreted that promotion, as a member of marketing mix, is a rigid domain, in reality, a dynamic and encompassing one takes within its scope several promotional tools, namely:
- Discount on Pricing
- Contest draws
- Scratch Cards
- Extra Amount on Every Purchase
- Bundling Offer
The Great Indian FMCG Market: Pros and Cons
The Indian retail FMCG market, as per the 2011 estimation, is one of the pillars of the country's economy. The estimated value of the market is no less than $450 billion and contributes up to 15% to the overall GDP. It has further been observed that during 2013 growth in the retail sector has been 67% and during next 5 years, the market will maintain the growth rate of around 50%, thanks to increasing popularity of online retailing among Indian customers. Currently, this highly prospective segment is experiencing several impediments, such as:
- Manual retail management and operations
- Inadequate infrastructural support for logistics and supply chain co-ordination
- Connectivity issues
- Lower brand awareness
Combine I&O with Business? Why?
The best way to overcome these problems is sincere effort from retailers in merging I&O (infrastructure and operations) with business disciplines. Witnessing the growth and prospects of online retailing and the attractive promotional strategies they are adopting, India's brick-and-mortar retailers are also coming forward with the aspiration to deliver customers with seamless in-store experience. However, the main problem is they are facing difficulties with promotion and delivering services as per the promise, owing to the aforesaid factors. Considering the fact that Indian customers are almost obsessed with receiving services worth their expenditure, the need to opt for a centralized system that simplifies the mode of promotion and also delivers real-time signals to store owners for better supply chain, inventory management looms large on the horizon. The emphasis on improving modes of promotion from the traditional model can be justified once a direct leap is taken at the importance of promotion for Indian customers:
- An effective method to increase short-term sales
- An excellent method to increase brand awareness among customers
- Functions as a great medium to inform and persuade customers
Indian Brick-and-mortar Store Getting Ready for the Giant Leap at Proximity Marketing
The modern brick-and-mortar stores of India, however, don't want to be limited anymore with the same old benefits and their attainment. While on one hand, they are striving to provide customers with state-of-the-art in-store experience, on the other hand, it is strategically crucial that the newer method should be less-time consuming and budget friendly. The idea of proximity marketing is ready to provide Indian retail storeowners to find a more simplistic solution to the promotional complications. With this technology, storeowners can deliver digitized promotional content to customers' mobile phones via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity. Furthermore, by integrating I&O with business disciplines, customers' can be guided to the exact location, where the product is stored. In terms of in-store operation and aisles management significant improvement can be introduced as concerned persons will continue receiving real-time information about their inventory. Accordingly, they can plan the necessary course of action to replenish stock and prevent customers from experiencing the disappointment of 'out-of-the-stock'.
Let's take a look at the immediate benefits that proximity promotion has to offer:
- Immediate, real-time delivery of digitized content
- Ability to launch promotional campaigns immediately
- Scope for businesses and brands to influence customers decision making real-time
- The window of opportunity in terms of understanding customers, their purchasing habits and delivering notifications, based on the derived data
- Increase ROI (Return On Investment) over the traditional methods
- Round-the-clock visibility of the supply chain along with valuable insight at the in-store operations
- Convenience for customers in terms of payment processing (freedom from following the queue)
Conclusion: Promotion in FMCG Finds Perfection in Proximity Marketing
There is no point having a lot of quality products in your store ? unless you have successfully figured out the way to deliver it to customers. Without successful promotional campaigns, it is almost impossible to make a mark in the retail FMCG domain and it is especially true in the Indian market. Ability to deliver the right content to customers at the right time caters the impression that the business is responsive to customers. This is the sole way?to win customers' loyalty ? the key resource to create a niche in an extremely competitive FMCG market such as India's. Proximity marketing is the most reliable catalyst to help with continuing the reaction successfully without interruption.