February 22, 2007 11:09 AM
Launching first flyer survey at RAC Flyer Symposium
We are pleased to announce that we will be at tomorrow's RAC Flyer Symposium to start collection of data for our flyer research. The first study will start this week and will focus on the current practices of retailers in measuring the effectiveness of their flyer programs.
Upon completion of our report, aggregate results of this research will be sent out to RAC members, survey participants and those who attended the symposium. If you wish to participate in the research or receive a copy of the report, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here to read my previous comments on the flyer symposium.
February 16, 2007 11:27 AM
Topics for flyer research
Some initial thoughts on direction for our research into retail flyers are recorded below. The specifics of each study will be refined in conjunction with industry peers in order to ensure that the information gathered will be as useful as possible. If you have any suggestions, please send them to email@example.com
Financial Management Processes
How do retailers make decisions regarding the financial elements of their flyer program? Do they do the work in-house, or outsource, and why? How are co-op funds allocated?
- Measurement of effectiveness
What is the nature of the interaction between marketing and merchandising? How do retailers manage the trade-offs between their own goals and those of their vendors? How does a flyer program affect the buying process?
- Selection of advertised products
- Distribution to support flyers
- Special buys for ad periods
- Regional pricing and product selection
Creative & Production Processes
What processes do retailers use to take a flyer from a list of SKUs through to a printed advertisement? What technology is in use, and how has has it improved the workflow? How have changes in prepress and printing technology affected flyer programs?
- Page Design
- Page Layout
Media Management & Distribution Processes
How do retailers decide where flyers will be sent and who will deliver them? How do they manage the communication of these details with suppliers in multiple markets?
- Distribution planning
- Media selection
- Media management
What do retailers do in their stores to support and enhance the flyer program? Is store signage and merchandising changed? How is inventory managed and what is done if the store runs out of product?
- Staff levels during flyer period
- Educating staff about specials
- Inventory management
- Special merchandising
- Rain check policies
Research on retail flyer publishing
As a retail marketing manager, I found it difficult to find information and advice about flyer advertising, despite the $20 billion spent on this form of advertising in North America. Anything I did not learn from watching colleagues, I had to suss out for myself.
That is the impetus behind our decision to launch a series of studies on current practices in the retail industry. Areas that will be covered over the course of this research include:
- Financial Management Processes
- Product Processes
- Creative & Production Processes
- Media Management & Distribution Processes
- In-Store Processes
Please click here for more detail on the topics included in each of these areas.
By carrying out studies on the current practices of the industry, we hope to develop a body of knowledge that will help current practitioners to improve their flyer programs and provide guidance to new publishers as they define their processes.Those who will be helped by this research will be individuals who find themselves in the same place I was: trying to stretch their advertising budget while meeting the demands of stakeholders ranging from the vendors who supply co-op advertising funds, to the store managers and franchisees (who are the direct link to customers).
If you would like to participate in the research or receive a copy of published reports, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
January 21, 2007 10:08 AM
Why flyers deserve some love
Retail flyers are the pariahs of the advertising world. Nobody loves them, everybody hates them, why don’t they eat some worms?
Because they work, that’s why. Most retailers believe that flyers are one of the most effective means of retail advertising, providing a high degree of consumer awareness, and more importantly, above-average return on investment.
What’s the secret?
It’s all about the money.
It’s a lot easier to get a high return on your advertising investment when you don’t invest your own money. Most flyer programs are funded from vendor co-op advertising funds, making the vehicle a no-cost option for the retailer.
Why do they work?
Flyers are a highly efficient way of using small amounts of co-op funding from a multitude of suppliers. They are highly visible, and despite the “no flyers” signs popping up on some doorways, customers actively seek out flyers for categories of interest to them, because they see them as valuable sources of product information.
Junk mail is only junk when you’re not in the market for the product being advertised. When you are, it becomes information.
So why do marketing people hate them so much?
Because most creative people like to come up with new campaigns using this season’s hot colour palette, and measure success by the number of awards they get from their peers. Flyer programs, on the other hand, are driven by vendors' co-op dollars and measured in sales – numbers, numbers and more numbers, and nary a GRP in sight.
There may be little difference in effectiveness between an attractively-designed flyer and an ugly one, and it’s beneficial to have a consistent look from month to month and year to year in order to get customers’ instant attention when the flyer arrives at their door. It's important to note, though, that even though it may not matter if your flyer is ugly, it's not a requirement.
So give flyers the love they deserve
Love them just the way they are - don't try to make them something they're not.
Focus on integration with the rest of your marketing. Spend time working with all stakeholders in the process, be it buyers, store managers, customers or warehouse staff. Work with industry suppliers to improve your processes. If you or your customers are concerned about environmental impact, work on optimizing your distribution through geodemographic targeting and/or arrange for offsets like tree planting.
A well-planned, well-executed flyer program is a thing of beauty, at least in the eyes of this beholder. I hope you can see it that way too.
January 20, 2007 10:46 AM
Focus on Flyers
Those who know me know that retail flyers, for whatever reason, fascinate me. That's why it's good to see others dedicating some time and attention to understanding the work that goes into creating flyers and recognizing those who do an oustanding job of publishing them.
The Retail Advertising Club of Canada is holding its 3rd National Retail Flyer Symposium on February 22, 2007. I've been at the last two and it is well worth it for anybody who works on a flyer or is thinking about adding it to their marketing mix.