Boosting Local Awareness with Co-Op Funds this Holiday Season

As we head into the holiday shopping season, merchants can expect heavy mobile device usage by consumers, who have put smartphones at the center of the “path to purchase.” Yet mobile is just one of many platforms or channels that consumers will utilize to help make buying decisions.

According to a statistic shared by Google at our recent LSA Bootcamp in Portland, consumers consult an average of 10.7 information sources before making a significant purchase decision. LSA small business survey data show that merchants are using almost as many tools, channels and media (an average of 7.2) to reach those consumers.

This is where co-op comes in.  Co-op has enormous potential to boost campaign visibility and reach. For those unfamiliar with co-op advertising, a little background.

As I outlined in a post last month, co-op advertising refers to an agreement between a manufacturer and a retailer to share advertising costs, while at the same time creating brand name awareness. Some brands recommend retailers save a specific percentage of their co-op budget for the fourth quarter in order to drive more awareness at a time of increased purchase activity.

For example, to coincide with the holiday campaign, Hearts on Fire (HOF), a jewelry manufacturer, encourages retailers to use at least 50% of their co-op budget for the fourth quarter. The HOF program offers funding for digital, online video, internet radio, SEM, SEO and even offers display remarketing for search ads on DoubleClick Search and the Google Display Network.

From the small retailer’s perspective, these funds provide exposure that they couldn’t afford on their own. The lift provided to their advertising budgets helps them better compete with national retailers, and this is most critical during the holidays when local consumers are conducting purchase research online.

Many brand name manufacturers are realizing the importance of boosting local, digital awareness via co-op advertising. There are over 2,000 of these brands in our LSA Co-Op Online Database and we continue to add new and updated programs daily.

To help your retailer clients take advantage of these funds for the holiday season you first need to know what kind of funding is available. We have a variety of ways to help you do that. Email me today to learn more.

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