SN: How can you be sure you are using the right advertising medium and getting out the right message to your customers?
. But because so many consumers are so busy, a lot of people don't read ads any longer. As a result, we see advertising departments trying to get retailers to recognize the need for using multiple advertising media instead of relying solely on print.
When you look at advertising, information is crucial to getting to know your customers better, and scanning is the key. We see more direct-mail advertising as more customers get frequent-shopper cards. OMERNICK: Advertising is changing, and we're doing some experiments at a couple of stores using direct mail. While we still must evaluate the results, direct mail will change the way we advertise.
We have to be willing to let go of some of the more traditional, established avenues for supermarket advertising and use more direct advertising to customers. NOWAK: We're using more mixed media now, including an experiment with direct mail, using data from Plus Cards, so we can target our marketing efforts directly to customers. HOSEY: We use all media, including some direct-mail coupon books. In addition, being involved in the community helps build your image, and that's an important form of advertising as well. SCROGGINS: I see more in-store marketing and less external advertising. Stores have to be so unique to their neighborhoods that marketing to their specific customer base rather than the mass market can be more effective and more efficient at many locations. MATHEWS: We've tried to simplify our advertising programs to respond to consumer needs. For example, we group items by category to make the ads less cluttered, and we run institutional ads that address health, nutrition and safety issues. CROWLEY: We've seen some of our customers change the ways they advertise, with some operators running impact ads on a single item, like bananas.