Mobile Marketing: Strategy vs. Tactics

Posted April 18, 2012 by

By Chris Marocchi, Klever Marketing, Inc.

April 18, 2012

Although mobile marketing has been around for quite a few years, the grocery retail industry has been slow to adopt the technology. In fact, many large grocery retailers are just now hitting their stride in utilizing the web effectively.  According to a recent study published by Brick Meets Click and GSN, out of 23,000 consumers surveyed, 80% still find circular ads useful, but a growing 70% find going online useful as well. Although only 21% of surveyed consumers are using mobile apps for their grocery shopping, the upside opportunity in mobile is favorable, with 40% expecting to start using one this year.  The study states that the most popular tools offered by retailers online include ads, recipes, and shopping lists.

With retailers becoming increasingly aware of these trends, the grocery industry is quickly moving into the mobile marketing space, with many of the major chains adopting ready-made apps to deliver shopping list, coupon and loyalty programs via mobile delivery. This certainly serves consumers well as an additional vehicle for coupons and some convenient features, such as recipe offerings. But is there a bigger opportunity that’s being missed here? Many grocery retailers appear to be taking a very tactical approach to mobile. Within this industry, the power of mobile is being underutilized. Instead of being viewed as an alternative delivery vehicle for coupons and recipes, perhaps a more comprehensive and strategic approach could be taken.

For example, when one considers the immense power that consumers hold in the palm of their hand each time they access their mobile device, the options seem practically endless. What are these shoppers’ demographics? What are their shopping habits? Purchasing habits? What influences their product selections? Or where and when they shop? A well conceived strategy combined with data capture would address these issues and apply how mobile technology combined with the right tools can track and capture these metrics. Then, with the use of custom apps and campaigns geared specifically toward the mobile customer, the retailer can leverage that information flow into personalized offers that more effectively  influence the behavior of the consumer, thus resulting in increased store traffic and basket lift.

So, the challenge is this: the next time you consider launching a mobile product, ask yourself this question – Why? If the answer is to generate another vehicle for coupon delivery, then you’re in great shape. But if your real objective is to gain a bigger slice of the competitive pie, you might want to look a little deeper – and approach the problem more strategically.

Chris Marocchi is the Marketing Director for Klever Marketing, Inc., a mobile solutions provider for the grocery retail industry. You can reach Chris at, or you can follow via Twitter at @klevermarketing.

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