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Retailers Rise to the Occasion

SCHAUMBURG, ILL. — There are several reasons why occasion-based shopper marketing is important today, says one expert speaking at this year’s Shopper Marketing Summit here.

Margaret Lewis
Margaret Lewis

The first is that we live in a demand-creation economy, not a supply-driven economy, said Margaret Lewis, senior vice president of marketing services company CatapultRPM, Westport, Conn.

“That means we have to think about the shopper first and design solutions that work for them,” Lewis told SN.

Lewis will speak during a seminar at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday about the subject.

Another factor affecting occasion-based marketing is today's "recovery" environment, in which shoppers are very choiceful about what they spend their money on and what they don't.  

“Occasions provide that context to give purchases meaning for shoppers,” said Lewis.

Likewsie, today’s younger generations of shoppers shop differently than older generations.  There are fewer stock-up trips, and a greater number of quick trips, likely driven by specific occasions.  

Seth Diamond
Seth Diamond

“We will need to tap into those occasions to reach and be relevant with these younger shoppers,” said Lewis.

CatapultRPM defines occasion-based marketing as the activation of shopper needs that are triggered by an occasion. Occasions are defined by fully understanding the shopper's needs and their responsibilities and aspirations to themselves, their family and their friends.

While nearly every retailer has a promotional calendar that encompasses big occasions (typically holidays) that retailers can use merchandising to support those events, more effort is needed, said Seth Diamond, executive vice president of CatapultRPM.

“We believe the area of occasion-based shopper marketing is largely untapped, with huge room for growth,” said Diamond, who will also speak at Wednesday’s presentation.

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