Last weekend, every visitor to the International Plaza Mall in Lake Forest, CA, was handed a coupon for 10% off to celebrate the grand opening of Johnny Rockets. Users of the 7-Eleven app are awarded 11 free Slurpee coupons once seven Slurpee drinks have been purchased. And to introduce the new PowerBar Clean Whey bar, Kroger loyalty program members got a coupon for a free one in their inboxes.
The means in which coupons can be used in marketing are endless and coupon use is holding steady with 90% of consumers getting their coupons from both them online and offline sources. And every demo and generation is using them, including Millennials, multicultural consumers and parents, according to the 2K17 Valassis Coupon Intelligence Report.
The use of paper coupons is on the rise up 30%, and 36% have increased their use of digital coupons typically downloaded onto a store loyalty card.
When asked about their habits along the path to purchase, 84% of consumers use coupons they chose when making a shopping list. Since more than 45% of consumers make CPG purchase decisions at home before their shopping trip, it is important for brands to reach them early in the planning stage, the report said.
The report also found:
• There is still significant opportunity to impact buyer behavior in store, with 86% of shoppers making a purchase based on a discount in the store.
• The buying process does not end with a purchase, as 53% of consumers scan receipts with a mobile device to receive cash back and/or points, providing a ripe opportunity to increase brand loyalty post-purchase.
• Mail ranks as the most preferred way to obtain coupons with 44% of consumers preferring this channel. Smartphones/mobile devices recorded the greatest increase with 32% of consumers preferring this method versus 24% in 2016.
• If the right deal presents itself, 79% of brand loyal consumers (self-defined) are influenced to buy a brand they wouldn’t typically have purchased due to coupon influence.
• Millennials are increasingly using coupons: 94% of Millennials are using coupons, versus 88% in 2016—the only generation showing growth year over year.
In addition, the report found that brands and marketers can influence consumers during multiple stages of their path to purchase:
At Home: 82% of consumers switch stores to take advantage of weekly specials and 67% decide which store to shop based on where they can use paperless discounts received via mobile devices.
In Store: 81% of shoppers search for deals via in-store circulars while shopping and 51% make a purchase based on a mobile notification received in store.
After Purchase: There is a tremendous social currency post-purchase; among mobile coupon users, 79% share brand reviews, along with information about product savings, with family and friends following a purchase.
“It is important for marketers to understand that the shopper journey is not defined at one specific point—the consumer can be influenced before, during and after the point of purchase,” said Curtis Tingle, chief marketing officer, Valassis. “Our research indicates that there is an opportunity for brands to influence how shoppers plan, where they shop and the products they buy—which can be achieved by dynamically targeting the right audiences with a strategic combination of print and digital incentives.”