Why My Marketing Friends Need to Attend SIA 2011

The Shopper Insights in Action 2011 conference sponsored by IIR USA convenes on July 11 at the Swissotel in Chicago. My marketing friends should be there. And it’s not just because of the impressive lineup of keynote speakers like A. G. Lafley, former CEO, P&G; or Jonah Lehrer, neuroscientist and author of How We Decide: The New Science of Decision Making; or Dorlisa K. Flur, Executive Vice President & Chief Merchandising Officer, Family Dollar Stores, Inc. (although, I’d have to admit those are good reasons).

No, my marketing friends need to attend because it’s like taking a shortcut to get to shopper insights faster. Shopper marketing is one of the fastest growing segments in the marketing mix (see this recent study by Booz & Co.) with new tactics and emerging opportunities to drive better results. But it’s also becoming increasingly complex. The Booz & Co. study arrays 49 different tactics across 7 different platforms; twenty-two of those vehicles are still very much evolving. All of them have varying levels of effectiveness depending on where and how it’s used along the consumer path to purchase. Measuring the effectiveness of traditional marketing vehicles can be difficult enough. But with all these new vehicles, it’s exponentially more complex now.

So instead of going it alone, sorting through everything yourself, and taking the long way to better shopper insights, you can shorten the cycle time by learning from others; what’s working, what’s not and under what circumstances. Taking a shortcut to better shopper insights and better results makes sense to me. That’s why my marketing friends ought to be there…