NEW YORK: Walmart, the US retail giant, is looking at new ways to partner with brands and consumers, such as having them supply content or deliver goods bought online.
The company recently announced plans to launch Print Plus, a mobile app designed to turn print ads in its weekly circular into digital ads. The app will allow shoppers to scan Walmart print ads with their smartphones to view extra content supplied by brands, such as recipes or how-to videos.
"I'd be surprised if 15% of the content comes from us," Clint McClain, senior director, marketing communications platforms at Walmart, told delegates at the Path To Purchase Institute's Shopper Marketing Summit, covered by Advertising Age.
As an example of how Print Plus works, he talked of a customer scanning a Ragu ad in a circular and being offered four recipe choices. Clicking on one of these would then produce a digital shopping list of ingredients.
Tony Rogers, the firm's senior vice president, added: "We have a good marketing department, but it's not that big. So we need your help."
He told brand marketers: "I bet you're sitting on content that together we can take and put in front of the right customers."
Walmart's search for content extends to the highest echelons, as it has taken footage from the US Defense Department for a new ad in which it promises to hire any honourably discharged veteran.
"We didn't shoot it. We curated it," said McClain, adding that by acting as a curator Walmart could add value to branded content by giving its third-party credibility.
In a separate development, the retailer is examining the possibility of using its own customers to deliver goods to online buyers who live nearby. Those signing up to act as a courier would then get a discount on their own purchases.
Data sourced from Advertising Age, PSFK; additional content by Warc staff