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[PODCAST] The evolution of e-retail media: why retailers must think and act like publishers

What is e-retail media?

Essentially e-retail media allows brand advertisers to target their audiences across a retailer's digital properties by tapping into its deep behavioural data. Developing an e-retail media approach requires retailers to begin thinking of their web properties as media properties.

Why it matters

Increasingly brand experiences and sales are happening online, and retail websites are critical in helping consumers research, discover and buy brands. Brands want to invest in channels that reach actively buying consumers at the point of purchase. By leveraging their data, enabling it at scale, and proving the commercial value they deliver, retailers can help brands achieve a range of business objectives and attract a more significant share of brand budgets.

Epsilon has created Among partner podcast to find out more about the evolution of e-retail media. 

Deeper dive: three areas to focus on to deliver a compelling e-retail media offering

Use first-party data to create attractive offerings:
To take advantage of e-retail media opportunities, retailers must operate as a media business.

Retailers with unique information on how people buy - now and historically - need to be thinking about how best they can leverage this critical information. Joining the dots across all their data – online, in-store and loyalty programme data – and making this actionable across their web properties puts them in a powerful position to help brands build effective go-to-market strategies.

Become a valued partner to brands:
Adopting a data-led media mentality allows retailers to move conversations from a tactical to a strategic level. This elevates discussions away from individual marketing channels and focuses on delivering marketing objectives that impact the bottom line.

Shifting a brand's attention to the bigger picture enables retailers to help advertisers understand the customer journey. By recognising the importance of channel interaction and not looking at activities in silos, brands can avoid myopic thinking, which can lead them to make incorrect – and costly – marketing investment decisions.

Retailers can use their rich insights to solve key marketing problems for advertisers, be that helping them merchandise or stock better to differentiating their promotional activity. From digesting the data, actioning it and feeding back the bottom-line impact to the advertiser, retailers can become a critical marketing channel for brands.

Package your offering to encourage brands to spend money with you:
A successful e-retail media offering calls for retailers to develop a packaged offering that delivers in five areas. It must:

  1. Demonstrate how their media achieves an objective. Additionally, retailers must have an element of forecasting to indicate what they'll deliver for the brand if they run a campaign with them.

  2. Deliver audience insights. Retailers have audiences primed with purchase behaviours and must create audience profiles to showcase their data and make it attractive to brands.

  3. Provide strong creative options. Much spend will come from the brand teams. They want to showcase the integrity of their brand most effectively. Offer creative options that deliver what advertisers want while balancing the retailers branding requirements.

  4. Offer inventory options. Have a range of different solutions and package inventory to give brands a choice and make it attractive to them.

  5. Ensure insightful reporting. Help brands understand the performance and value you deliver, preferably in real-time.

The bottom line

In a post third party tracking world, first-party data is critical, putting retailers in a powerful position. By activating their first-party transactional data, retailers can help brands targeted their audiences and create personalised experiences for them. In embracing a media mindset and developing their business offering, retailers can form unique partnerships with advertisers and grow their digital ad revenues.

Find out more about the evolution of e-retail media by listening to our latest Among Partners podcast.