Grey and G2 Eye on Asia - Retail Study: Engaging the Smart Asian Shopper
Imagine a shopper in a retail store. There are many thoughts going through her head. Her shopping purchases are made with reference to not just her need for the category and brand but also in the way she views herself as a shopper, housewife, person and the degree to which the proliferation of brands, categories and information are affecting her.
What does she really want? What are the products that catch her eye? Why does she choose one brand over another? And the biggest question asked by all marketers, what can we do to make her choose our brand over the others?
Answers to these questions and many more are captured in Grey and G2's Eye on Asia - Retail study. The study covers eight key markets in Asia, including Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia and Vietnam. The countries were selected to establish a close representation of developed and emerging markets. A mixture of interviews and shop-along trips were conducted to unveil the considerations of shoppers when she is out buying our brands.
Over 2,100 shoppers revealed their shopping secrets, a mix of single females and mums with kids between four and 12 years of age. The study covers four retail channels, including hypermarkets/supermarkets, pharmacies/drugstores and provision stops/mom & pop stores, with a focus on categories encompassing over-the-counter (OTC) supplements and treatments, health food and drinks, beauty and snacks.
The breadth and depth of the study is a large differentiating factor against other retail studies conducted so far - especially since a variety of techniques is used to study shoppers' habits, as opposed to reporting retailer data. The study draws linkages and gives marketers a full picture, enabling them to redesign the store the way they engage with the consumer when she becomes the shopper.
In this article, we shall explore two key findings. Firstly, the study showed almost half of the promotions done in-store are wasted. 62% of Asian shoppers do not buy products on promotion and among those who do, 40% of Asians are not influenced by the promotion and would have bought the brand anyway. One might have expected that it would vary from category to category, that Shoppers should be more loyal to their health food and drinks and beauty products versus snacks. But the truth is that shoppers do not buy into promotions in any category if they do not see the value in the promotion. The smart Asian shopper has already figured out that promotions are not always to their benefit. They can tell when cheap or unsold stuff is being off-loaded on them by marketers. In fact, a Malaysian shopper that was surveyed captured this mindset in her quote:
"I avoid those that give me free gift of their cheaper stuff. No sincerity."
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About the Author
Bindu Sethi is Chief Strategy Planning Officer at Grey Asia Pacific
This article was originally published on Warc (www.warc.com) in August 2010.