How Many Shoppers in Your Category are Up for Grabs?


How Many Shoppers in Your Category are Up for Grabs?

Brands are competing for shopper attention, but the truth is that only part of the market is actually available to have their decisions changed or influenced by a brand’s marketing efforts. Alter Agents’ Marketing Communications Manager Clayton Southerly writes about some of the findings from our Shopper Influence Research, and how we categorize different shopper types, in his latest column for AdvertisingWeek, titled “How Many Shoppers Are Actually Up For Grabs?”


He maintains that it isn’t enough to advertise products and services to a large number of people in the same way, even if they fall into similar demographic groups. In truth, even within recognized segments, shoppers can behave and feel wildly different from one another. Clayton writes that advertisers need to focus on “reaching people who can be won over.” Our recent research gave us a window into which consumer segments might be “winnable” for brands looking to expand market share. 


The article profiles four key shopper types, something we call the Shopper DIAL:

Defectors – had a brand in mind but were swayed during the purchase journey to a competitor.

Impulsives – make decisions on very short notice.

Ambivalents – have no particular brand in mind, and are up for grabs.

Loyalists – have a brand in mind and stick to it.


It’s important for advertisers to understand where their audiences fall on the DIAL, so they can develop specific strategies and messaging in order to be successful. Clayton provides a list of best practices in his article, including the creation of campaigns that speak to different parts of the DIAL and doing proper research to boost audience understanding in this framework.


He concludes with: “Thinking about your category’s shoppers in this way, and doing the research to understand exactly what the real world looks like, can give you the tools to sharpen your target messages to win over more shoppers.”


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