Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

Why you should invest in retail media in 2023

by Jean-Vincent Chardon, International Sales Director at mediarithmics

For years, the retail industry has had cause for celebration. 

Wouldn’t you agree? If we weren’t immediately facing market growth or enticing investment, other opportunities were on the horizon. Online sales became a dominant part of retailer revenue, with digital marketplaces developed into entire ecosystems. More recently, ‘retail media’ has emerged as a major force in digital advertising, offering new opportunities to explore.

As our industry gained the ability to access a global audience, powerhouses like Amazon and Walmart were able to dominate new markets and make the most of ecommerce.

Do you want to join their ranks?

The state of the global Retail Media market

In recent years, retail media has reshaped our industry – where market leaders have been using an aggressive spending strategy to tap into a whole world of potential. 

Due to this, the value of the global retail media market has reached an all-time high. A recent report from Group M has revealed that retail media’s total global revenue will hit $101 billion by the end of 2022. That’s a significant $20 billion increase from last year.

This trend is led by brands such as Tesco and Woolworths – who have been buying into the promise of a strong ROI and funnelling ongoing investment into their marketing. They’ve recognised the value of online and offline media and now look to make the most of the advantages promised.

Other retailers in the space, then, would be well-advised to follow the path that these global corporations have set by creating and utilising their own retail media strategy.

“So far, large companies have led the way in retail media, creating urgency for companies of all sizes to seize and maximise this opportunity or risk losing out to the early adopters.” – BCG

What is a retail media proposition?

Retail media is essentially advertising sold within digital retail environments — typically retailer websites and apps, as well as online marketplaces — in which products or services are also sold. Increasingly for digitally savvy businesses, retail media also includes ‘off-site’ campaigns run on behalf of third-party brands that have their products listed on a website or app.

It should outline a clear offering for media brand activations (such as sponsored products, banner adverts, pop-up promotions, coupons, display adverts) while also covering your target platforms, including social media, and any relevant information you hold on your customers.

As a part of your wider retail media proposition, companies should also look into the retailers who are building vast data networks that they can take advantage of. 

“As marketers bid farewell to cookies, the hunt is on for a workable replacement. It’s not going to come from any single source, but Retail Media Networks are set to be a significant piece of the puzzle. First-party data collected by retail platforms is arguably more reliable than cookies ever were. If the retailer running the platform offers a loyalty scheme, the info you get on customers could be deeply personalised.” – The Drum

Reasons you need a retail media strategy

How much growth are you anticipating over the next few years? A little? A lot?

Regardless, in a world where there’s a positive CAGR for almost every retail sector until 2026, you can’t deny that how you act in the next few months could be critical to your profitability.

The media market is experiencing incredibly vast growth and opportunities to advertise are numerous. With the aid of a comprehensive media strategy and an informed selection of the platforms that can provide you with the best targeting capabilities, you can reach purchase-ready customers more efficiently to: capitalise on the growth of ecommerce; scale incremental revenue; and increase overall margins across the business.

The CAGR of retail media sectors in 2022-2026.

Regardless of whether you choose to invest in offline or online media, designing a retail media strategy is a sensible way forward. It’ll give you a clear focus to work towards and set clear employee expectations. 

This will grant you a significant and incomparable competitive advantage. Is that something you could benefit from?

The role of data in a successful retail media proposition

To increase your results in retail media, there’s something you need to do… fine-tune your approach through the use of marketing data.

By using a combination of data sets (such as user behaviour data, transactional data, offline data, CRM data, loyalty card data, and customer experience data) to inform your strategy, you can decipher exactly where the value of an audience lies. From there, you’ll be able to target media perfectly and see an incredible return on investment.

This will prove to be particularly useful in a post-GDPR world where cookies are soon to be removed, where many employees have been forced to take a ‘spray and pray’ marketing approach. 

Using data in you retail media strategy

Data is a game-changing addition to retail media.

Today, the volume of insights available to retailers is astronomical. Correctly analysing this information is nearly impossible without the right infrastructure in place. 

To succeed, one of the technologies you will need is a Customer Data Platform. This infrastructure will enable you to onboard all types of data (1st, 2nd and 3rd party), review trends and activity in real time, pursue advanced segmentation of audiences, and take action on your desired channels (e.g. display, social, email etc.)

By getting your data game sorted with a clear strategy (and the strong, stable technology to underpin it), you will be in an incredible position to yield the benefits of a retail media proposition in the upcoming year. And at mediarithmics, we should know, with experience deploying some of the more advanced retail media propositions for the likes of Fnac Darty and CDiscount.

2023 is the year to start investing in your retail media future.