It’s become more critical for CPG businesses to innovate outside the traditional B2B business model to distinguish their brand and exceed customer expectations. Strategic and growing businesses are using a digital direct-to-consumer (D2C) model to provide them with a competitive edge and add value to their customer relationships.
D2C commerce isn’t just about creating new revenue channels–a D2C model is also about brand-building and connecting with customers through a more direct marketing channel. An eMarketer StatPack showed that in 2018 the CPG industry will invest an estimated $9.40 billion in digital ad spends. And that number is expected to increase 17.3% in 2019. CPG businesses are increasingly investing in marketing efforts to connect with consumers more directly.
US Digital Ad Spending, by Industry, 2016-2019 (billions and CAGR)
Savvy CPG companies are taking back marketing engagement with D2C methods that supply valuable data insights and enable more meaningful connections with consumers. These insights also further inform their customer journey, helping them to better understand consumers–what they like, their interests, and how they use the product. And with that knowledge, CPG businesses can create personalized shopping experiences anytime, anywhere.
In the eMarketer guide, Grocery Digital Marketing: Using Ecommerce to Shape Brand Messaging personalization is underscored: “Selling mass-market products to targeted audiences is not easy, but it’s a critical tactic to master. Consumers expect personalized messages and offers, and brands that can deliver this will have a huge advantage.”
For Nestle, addressing the pain points of parents helped foster a long-term customer relationship. Nestle BabyNes, a connected machine with pods that delivers hygienic, lump-free formula, and a happy bottle-feeding experience for babies, provides a service parents often need. A companion app helps track serving size and frequency, and tells you when pods are running low.
In a recent presentation, Forrester’s Michelle Beeson shared her insight on the brand’s digital transformation. She noted that BabyNes is now “a service that connects the customer not just at the point of purchase and fulfillment, and the specific product, but it’s actually connecting the brand and the services throughout the customer life cycle.”
Nestle isn’t just thinking about selling their product. They’re thinking about customer needs and how to provide the best experience possible anytime, anywhere. By creating superior experiences through direct-to-consumer selling, Nestle shows us that brands thrive when they connect with consumers more personally.