As more location apps become available, grocers need to make sure they don't lose control of their store space to CPG companies, the president of Placewise Media told a workshop audience Monday during the annual National Grocers Association convention  in Las Vegas.
"Grocers need to be the ones who control the messages to customers at the point of sale," John Dee said. "You don't want to let the vendors have that control."
Speaking on the same panel, Kristie Maurer, store director for Fresh Madison Market, a store located on the University of Wisconsin campus, said retailers, especially independents, need to become proactive on digital merchandising. "Don't be scared of it," she advised. "You're still in the business of selling — you're just doing it through digital media."
Added Dee, "Use the tools that are available to promote your business as you always have. AmazonFresh does not have a leg up on you because people have still got to go to the store for bananas and oranges, so use the tools you have to make them continue coming to you."
Eric Anderson, co-president and CMO for Fresh Encounter , Wooster, Ohio, suggested independents tie promotional offers to digital applications to get themselves used to digital. "Digital is easy and effective, and it's still just grocery," he said.
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