Guest post by Stephanie Redish Hofmann, Head of Agency IPG, Google
As festive shoppers deck the halls earlier each year, putting their bargain detective hats on in search of products that provide the best value for each dollar spent, marketers have had to change the way they think about reaching these savvy shoppers. Because while a shopper’s first interaction with a product, the First Moment of Truth (FMOT), used to occur when that person saw a product on the store shelf for the first time, the advent of the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT) — the online moment at which a person first develops an opinion about a brand, prior to encountering it in the physical world — is changing the way marketers think about the digital path-to-purchase.
In turn, the Shopper Marketing Agencies (SMAs) that work closely with marketers to capture mind and market share during each holiday shopping season and beyond have been working hard — using rich data and deep understanding and insights — to help companies evolve their digital marketing strategies to ‘win’ this newly defined and important moment in time. They are a vital part of a vital marketing transformation, which has changed the game for modern marketers.
We’ve always valued our relationship with these SMAs — but it occurred to us, as this uber-busy season approached, that it would benefit consumers, advertisers and SMAs alike to work even more closely together, delving deeply into understanding the ZMOT model as applied to shopper marketing and digital brand activation along the path to purchase.
To do this, we formed The Google Shopper Marketing Agency Council. This group is comprised of leading SMAs, including Arc WW, DraftFCB, Integer, Mars, Momentum, RPM Connect, Saatchi & Saatchi X, Shopper Sciences, ShopWork, The Marketing Arm, Triad Media, TracyLocke, and Upshot — and its goal is to advance understanding of how online and offline behavior drives purchase consideration and decision-making, and to overcome the challenges related to communicating this transformation.
We’re looking for this group of marketing innovators to help guide the way Google engages and partners with SMAs and the industry in general, and are sure it will help us better support SMAs in search of the best way to help their clients’ brands win the ZMOT. Stay tuned for news and updates!