September 27, 2011

In the first nine months of 2011, 214 new products included free-standing insert (FSI) coupon support as part of their introduction according to Marx, a Kantar Media Solution. Digital coupons were used in 83 of these 214 new product introductions, or 38.7-percent, during the first nine months of 2011.

Digital coupon events for new products were observed across coupon network, retailer, and brand websites. However, retailer websites were the most frequently used tactic with 95.1-percent of the new products that distributed a digital coupon event doing so on at least one retailer website. The top five retailer websites distributed 72.2-percent of the digital coupon new product events among the retailer websites tracked by Kantar Media.

Other new product digital promotion tactics may be illustrated by a recent Cereal new product introduction which distributed coupons on five retailer websites, delivered digital coupons one week prior to the first FSI coupon event, and offered higher Average Face Values through brand and retailer websites than those offered on coupon network websites.

“Digital coupons are becoming an integral tactic within new product introductions,” said Dan Kitrell, Vice President of Marx Account Solutions at Kantar Media. “By distributing digital coupons on retailer websites prior to the first FSI coupon event, brands are able to build retail distribution, secure shelf space, engage with trial purchasers, and align with retailers that seek to be first-in-market with new products. By offering higher face values on brand and retailer websites, marketers are providing an incentive to shoppers to engage with the brand either directly or through the retailer. This helps retain the equity of the event for the brand or retailer rather than having it accrue to the coupon network website,” concluded Kitrell.

Key Network Websites Trend Down

Digital coupon event activity across key coupon network websites declined 7.8-percent through the first nine months of 2011 as compared to the same nine months in 2010. Additionally, 278 manufacturers distributed digital coupon offers during the first nine months of 2011, a 7.3-percent increase versus the number of manufacturers that distributed digital coupon offers during the same nine month period in 2010.

“More manufacturers are leveraging digital coupons to reach shoppers in-the-home where they are building purchase intent and planning shopping trips,” said David Hamric, General Manager of Kantar Media’s Marx solution. “However, as manufacturers increase their alignment with strategic retail partners and experiment with new digital coupon platforms, the traditional print-at-home digital coupon networks will need to work harder to retain their share. Kantar Media continues to be the leading source for digital coupon insights across network, retailer, and brand websites to help our clients build effective plans and to monitor competitive activity,” said Hamric.

Non-Food Areas increased their share to 48.6-percent of digital coupon events in the first nine months of 2011 (NOTE: Sum of all Areas may be greater than 100% due to events which include more than one Area). Three of the four Non-Food Areas increased share of activity in the first nine months of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010. Health Care and Household Products each increased their share of activity by 4.5 points, the largest growth for all Non-Food Areas. Food Areas represented 52.7-percent of digital coupon events with all five of the Food Areas decreasing in share of activity. Dry Grocery had the greatest decrease, declining 5.1 points. This reflects an acceleration of the downward trend across Food Areas observed during the first six months of 2011 versus the same period in 2010

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