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Live at Cannes: The Purchase Journey – MEC Unveils Momentum

“What does Momentum tell us about the purchase journey?” Yesterday the DGC team attended a MEC press conference at MEC’s Cabana No. 5, for the global launch of Momentum — a proprietary global study that takes a new approach to understanding and measuring how consumers make purchase decisions today.

MEC’s Global Head of Analytics and Insights, Stephan Bruneau; Stuart Sullivan-Martin, Global Strategy Officer, MEC UK; and Damian Thompson, Head of Consumer Insight, MEC; walked us through what Momentum means for marketers.

The study examined purchase decisions of over 100,000 consumers across 12 categories and 11 markets. Momentum quantifies consumer bias in categories such as, CPG, retail, durable goods and electronics. The research defines the following stages of the decision-making process: Passive, Trigger, Active and Purchase.

More than half of us have a clear idea of what we will buy before we enter the buying process. This is called Passive Stage bias. People with Passive Stage Bias consider fewer brands and are less concerned with price when making their choice. Flat-screen TVs, for example, have the lowest passive stage bias with 25%. This new approach to understanding the purchase journey can help to develop better brand strategies and grow your brand.

MEC built on its client work in understanding the purchase journey and combined it with theories that have emerged over the last five years. Here’s how Stuart Sullivan-Martin, Global Strategy Officer, MEC UK, explains it:

The Momentum study closes gaps in understanding between what shoppers do during the purchase journey, how their perceptions of a brand influence their behavior, and how they use media and brand communication to make choices. Here’s a look at what Charles Courtier, Global CEO MEC, had to say about Momentum and its impact for MEC’s clients:

 Charles Courtier, Global CEO, MEC, discusses MEC’s groundbreaking study, “Momentum,” at the press launch held at MEC’s Cabana No. 5

My-vertising: Making Your Consumer The Center Of Attention

Forgive my artistic license of interpretation, but there is a great line in Gladiator that can apply to the brand advertising world — “Win the crowd, you will win your freedom.” If you remember, this was said to Maximus (Russell Crowe) by his mentor before leading a band of gladiators to fight against the emperor’s men in the Coliseum.

Conventional brand advertising wisdom isn’t much different and often dictates that empowering your customers is a great starting point for success.  This involves much more than just adhering to the old cliché that the customer is always right.  In today’s Facebook  generation, brands are starting to understand that consumers want social empowerment – they want to take credit for discovering that cool app their friends would want to use.  Brands are deliberately blurring the proverbial line between themselves and the people they sell to for the benefit of getting their story told by the most influential people of all – their customers.   If done right, consumer advocacy can be the most powerful tool in a brand’s arsenal.

According to Dietmar Dahmen, a Vienna, Austria-based ad man who was previously creative chief with BBDO (Vienna) and executive creative director at Ogilvy (Vienna), the best way to earn a thumbs-up from your audience is to address both your brand and your consumer in your advertising efforts. And the best way to think about this is from your consumer’s point of view.

With this in mind, Dahmen has created a system that lets a brand tell its story, making sure that the consumer sees it, loves it, uses it and promotes it.

One of the pillars of this system is called “My–vertising.” Focusing on the location and preferences of a consumer, My-vertising puts the individual in the center of the program. Imagine an app that shows a dog-owner only dog-friendly restaurants in his/her vicinity that are open now–that’s My-vertising. It cuts through the dense woods of over-information, showing you a few needles, but not the whole haystack.

As a result, My-vertising maximizes ego-relevance, and makes a consumer feel important because of what it does for his/her personal brand. This extends to sharing information about a brand on Twitter or Facebook. As Dahmen points out, Mike Arauz famously said: “’If I tell my friend about your brand, it’s not because I like your brand, but because I like my friend’ is just one more ‘I’ added to the already five I’s and my’s. Plus, I look cool doing so.”

Sharing information through social media is just another, sometimes faster, way of building one’s image.

We have to always remember that social advertising is essentially non-social. People collect friends to look cool, and they share information with those friends so they can be heroes to others. Your brand can help your consumers do that, and they will be grateful if it does.

Alain Groenendaal, CEO of Wing, at the Latin Vision CEO Summit

Is it time to ditch the concept of a “general market” agency? This was one of the hot topics at the 2011 Latin Vision Summit featuring Alain Groenendaal, CEO of Wing. Alain agrees that given the changing nature of the U.S. population, it may be time to eliminate the “general market” mind frame, because it perpetuates outdated thinking that no longer reflects the reality of the American consumer. Find out Alain’s other key takeways from Latin Vision in this video interview with DGC.

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