What’s the deal with digital flyers?

More companies are shifting spend to discount apps to reach consumers during vital pre-shop moments.

The pre-shop, especially in a pandemic environment, is having a significant impact on how CPG products are purchased, with top of funnel being more top of mind.

While consumers are increasingly interested in trialing new products, a decrease in the amount of shopping trips they are making means they are not putting in the same amount of time to find them in store.

That’s where discount flyer apps come in.

Aaron Richman, marketing consultant and president of Jamz Marketing, who says that because of the uncertainty COVID has wrought, consumers remain very much motivated by price and value. That means they are putting together very detailed lists pre-shop, and that more CPGs are increasing digital spends to reach them on the platforms they are using.

“We want to make sure they are prepared and get everything on their shopping lists when they go into store,” Richman says.

Richman, who has helped brands activate on digital flyer apps Flipp and Reebee, says sites like these are increasingly popular, especially with the former’s recent introduction of programmatic digital ad buying capabilities.

People are going to these apps to see what’s on sale at their local retailer, and with tracking and store proximity data, CPGs can hone in on the audience they really want, such as people who have been recently searching for yogurt.

Flipp launched its CPG-focused program last year to compliment its retailer efforts, and told strategy it’s been adopted by over 70 CPG companies in that time frame.

Danone was among the first major CPG clients to sign up with Flipp, back in early 2018.

“Pre-shop is always an important area for us,” explains Arthur Sylvestre, director of media, digital and e-commerce for Danone Canada. “It’s the point of conversion and what we want is for consumers to purchase more Danone products at our retailers, as it’s a win-win and delivers lots of value,” he adds.

During its three-year partnership activating on the platform, Sylvestre says digital flyers have been a “very successful tactic” for Danone, and performing above average in terms of CPMs, click-through rates and conversions.

Digital investment remains an ever-evolving but key area of its investment, Sylvestre maintains.

“The key benefit to a manufacturer like us to advertise on Flipp is to ensure that we increase the visibly of certain brands and SKUs during key periods of activity in-store,” Sylvestre explains. “We are always lining up our Flipp investment with marketing events, and it’s now a part of our omnichannel and 360 plan.”

According to Sylvestre, sites like Flipp sit at a particular stage of the consumer journey, when the consumer is already aware of the brand. It enables brands to connect to consumers at a time when they are increasingly making their decisions about what they are going to put in to their baskets.

When it comes to messaging, the approach is similar to the mindset the brand has to digital media, targeting specific types of shoppers, and Sylvestre says there are growth opportunities to target shoppers that are a bit younger than the Canadian average. Danone also experimenting with different digital flyer programs, and that each have their own set of pros and cons, depending on a campaign’s objective.

While other CPGs are emphasizing microsites and DTC, Sylvestre says the Kraft and P&Gs of the world operate in multiple categories where it makes more sense to operate this way. For Danone, he says, there’s an opportunity for manufacturers to develop what he calls “beautiful” relationships with retailers to drive its business.