Ready, set, action in the aisles

November 20, 2012

Consumers view many more CPG videos today online. Is it time to revisit their presentation in stores?

Despite the checkered past of video viewing in stores (remember separate efforts by Videocart and Ted Turner), new research shows a sizeable jump in online viewership of CPG videos.

Between Q2 and Q3 2012, consumers watched 44% more CPG videos online. This led to a 49% brand lift and 20% lower cost per acquisition, according to 33Across, a social ad targeting company.

Also, in Q2 2012, food and drink video ads had the highest viewing completion rate of all CPG categories measured (78.18%) by VideoHub. Their clickthrough rate was the lowest, however (0.48%)—perhaps because these items are so widely available that there is no need to click. The ads primarily brand rather than elicit direct response.

These findings beg the question – can food and beverage videos in-store help grow brand and category sales?

Definitely, maybe. Video does have considerable power in Niketown stores, a singular brand environment where the targeted audience is active or aspires to be.  Video adds to the excitement and fits the culture.  Images are shown in a bigger-than-life wall-sized way.

Supermarkets may want to look again at video as a way to differentiate stores and engage consumers, we feel at The Lempert Report.  In the produce department, for instance, an oversized video could underscore the local sourcing, maximum freshness and just-picked, wholesome quality of fruits and vegetables on hand.  Short interviews with local farmer-suppliers could yield insights about the foods that make people feel good about buying and eating them.  Mention limited supply and that could create urgency in shoppers—especially those who want to eat better and feel the videos make the food seem special.

In frozens, a 15-second video clip of a celebrity endorser, perhaps a comedienne, could play on the glass door.  If it’s fun and informative enough, the video could steer shoppers to a healthier choice, a new item, or a special promotion.  In the ice cream case, a short video on the glass door could tie a brand to quality entertaining at home.  Similarly, a video featuring a chain’s cheesemonger could point out special varieties that go well with wines and other foods.

Videos may not work everywhere.  But where their content supports a chain’s values and differentiating aspects—and addresses shopper motives to be healthier or entertain better—they could set a retailer apart.