Advice and Opinion

Mall media and advertising is a pivotal platform for brand awareness

Deshendri Smit, Primall Media’s Executive Head: Media Sales shares her unique insights on just how effective mall advertising is in building brands, gaining increased exposure and providing a tangible and lasting presence with shoppers.

According to STATS SA, real monthly retail trade sales reached the R60 billion mark in 2014, with an annual growth of 2.4%. General dealers like food and grocery outlets (41%), textiles and clothing (21%) and food and drink outlets (9%) were the top three biggest category contributors.

“There are many different facets of mall advertising to consider before launching an advertising campaign. As mall advertising specialists, one of the first things we do with our clients is to understand what their objectives are and then match those to the correct mall, advertising platform and shopper. Developing retail solutions with our collective mall assets based on client’s critical media, brand and business objectives is critical to the effectiveness of a product or campaign” states Smit.

According to the South African Council of Shopping Centres (SACSA), malls account for 70% of retail value in SA with 36% of that spend attributed to the presence of in mall advertising. The Shoppertunities study conducted with Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) in 2013, also showed us that 8 in 10 mall goers make a purchase during their visit and 4 in 10 are actively influenced by advertising and activations in the mall.

The research also showed that on average, mall goers visit nine retail categories per visit (restaurants, banking, clothing stores, household groceries etc). Of those nine categories, just three are planned. This tells us that consumers are very influenced at the point of purchase and can be persuaded to visit other categories of shops, making unplanned purchases depending on how persuasive the advertising, location and method of delivery is.

Mall advertising can build new brands, remind shoppers about existing brands and specials or even act as an entertainment platform. It also has the ability to drive conversion, consideration and can encourage trial of brands and their products. We need to understand what makes a shopper tick, what they respond to, what influences their decisions and what they’re in the market for. Through understanding the consumer journey, what influences shoppers’ buying decisions and how to assist them through the use of mall media to make the right purchase decision, Primall Media and mall advertisers alike, seamlessly meet the objectives of our clients and needs of our customers.

“It’s a strategic science and our collective mall assets allow us to develop retail solutions that suit a client’s media, brand and business objectives and budget whilst also serving the needs of the consumer and indirectly, the mall’s brand, retailers and property owners,” informs Smit.

Just like brands and consumers, malls also have their own profiles. Understanding the tenant mix of a mall and what role they play within the retail environment assist our advertisers to be correctly matched with the correct portfolio of malls.

Essentially, mall media offers advertisers the ability to drive consideration, conversion and trial of their brands and products. As advertisers within malls, we are in a uniquely placed position to offer this experience in real-time.

Primall Media also balances revenue expectations from property owners and the interests of our advertisers, by understanding media investment across all media platforms; packaging branded elements together to maximise impact in high reach nodes of the mall.

Collaboration with advertisers to match the right messaging to the right inventory type is also key for a dynamic and impactful advertising solution, as is collaboration with advertiser creative agencies to develop artwork that both suits and adds to the malls aesthetic value.

Ultimately, Primall Media helps clients build their brands in the retail environment whilst serving the needs of shoppers, retailers, mall brands and property owners through our research, understanding of the mall environment, shopper psychology and targeted advertising. The role of mall media is fundamental for brand awareness, consideration and conversion.