As the world grapples with high inflation rates and supply chain disruptions fueled by the pandemic, triggering rapidly rising prices for many consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands, shopper intelligence leader Catalina has released “The 2022 Ultimate Pricing & Promotion Inflation Guide for CPG Marketers” to help navigate current economic challenges.
Per the Guide, brand loyalty is being challenged like never before, as more people change their shopping behavior by looking for lower-priced alternatives, including store brands, and seeking more promotions and discounts.
“This inflationary period is unprecedented. Marketers shouldn’t be looking back to their 1980s playbook for guidance. This perfect storm of raw goods price hikes and supply chain disruptions – on the heels of forced trial during the pandemic — has thrown the concept of loyalty up in the air and is redistributing it,” said Sean Murphy, Catalina’s Chief Data & Analytics Officer. “Marketers need to closely monitor and quickly respond to changing consumer purchase patterns across grocery categories.”
To illustrate the current economic climate, Catalina tapped into its Shopper Intelligence Platform to track price increases across ten common product categories. The result is its new Catalina Shopping Basket Index, which found that the aggregate price of those ten categories in Q1 of 2022 was nearly 10% higher than the same quarter in 2021. This echoes the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index. Prices for food enjoyed at home have risen 11% over the 12 months ending April 30, 2022. The food index overall increased nine percent, the largest 12-month increase since the period ending May 1981.
Price increases in the basket were led by Cereal (+13%), closely followed by Frozen Prepared Food (+12%), Soft Drinks & Water (+12%), and Soaps & Detergents (+12%). At the other end of the spectrum, the basket’s average price increase was mitigated by relatively modest increases in Hand & Bath Soaps (+6%) and Frozen Vegetables (+4%).
Get ready for – and manage – the Great Loyalty Rebellion.
Ultimately, the Guide offers several ways for CPG marketers to fight the Great Loyalty Rebellion by offsetting inflationary price increases with personalized marketing campaigns that rebuild consumer trust and loyalty. Key takeaways include:
- Dissect specific brand buyers using first-party, purchase-based insights and identify those “most at risk.”
- Increase reach and penetration with custom audiences based on real-time purchase behaviors and the product attributes and lifestyle preferences that match the brand.
- Use marketing automation solutions to efficiently serve personalized incentives based on target audiences – from awareness ads for new users to higher discounts for more price-sensitive shoppers.
- Work with a media partner that can provide attribution measurement and a test-and-learn approach to understand what omnichannel activation works best.
“Brands need to step in and help consumers during these challenging times by developing a more sophisticated, consumer-centric approach. CPG marketers need to think beyond this quarter and create a new, long-term loyalty playbook with next-generation marketing support. This is a generational shift,” said Murphy.