Woman on Cell Phone in a Grocery Story

In Our Work, What's Happening | By Hothouse Marketing

Taking on Amazon and Winning

November 27, 2018

The retail grocery market is a hyper-competitive segment, characterized by super-slim margins and cut-throat competition. Traditional marketing tactics that have supported the food trade over the last few decades are steadily declining in their effectiveness. Of paramount concern for all, is the decline in use of the printed weekly flyer, which has for decades driven weekly traffic at a store level and funded most retailers marketing activities. On top of all that, Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods makes a tough retail environment get a whole lot rougher.

Despite this, we managed to take on Amazon in the digital arena and came out on top; providing an increased share of Whole Foods’ loyal shoppers to our client, a mid-size grocery chain offering a high-end retail experience whose primary competition is Whole Foods.

Our task was to replace the traditional flyer with a technology-driven alternative, capable of showcasing featured products and driving store traffic and sales. This is a tall task but we were more than up for the challenge. Utilizing programmatic advertising in a short-term, highly-targeted manner, we pushed promotional messaging for our client’s featured products to Whole Foods customers.

The results were impressive; our acquisition strategy attracted Whole Foods customers by the droves. Specifically, we were able to attract almost 700 new shoppers into our client’s store over a one-month period. Through the use of advanced tracking technologies, we were able to verify that all of these new shoppers were in fact “new,” in that they had not visited our client’s store in the last 60 days.

And that’s not even the half of it. With a little analytics magic from our talented digital marketing team, we are also excited to report these results:

  • Our programmatic advertising campaign drove a click-through rate of over 1.5% (in case you’re wondering how that stacks up against the rest of the digital advertising world, the average click-through rate for display ads is 0.11% according to Google)
  • Our cost-per-acquisition was less than the cost of a small cup of coffee
  • Based on Canadian Grocer’s average receipt, our campaign generated an ROI of over 100:1 for our client

Needless to say, we are counting this as a big win in our books. It’s not every day you can take on Amazon and win, right? This demonstrates just how powerful digital marketing is. When leveraged right, it can level the playing field between the players of all size.

To learn about what programmatic advertising can do to take you from status quo to status grow, find out more from our sister company H2 Digital.