How Elizabeth Arden generates shopper insights

Stephen Whiteside

Becoming customer-centric is a vital aim for any company reacting to the rise of mobile, social media and ecommerce. Shopper marketing, which was once essentially a blank canvas letting brands and retailers target a captive audience in bricks and mortar stores, is similarly now more demand-driven than ever before.

"We're no longer thinking about what we want to do, or what we can do," Misty Duffy, director of shopper insights at beauty group Elizabeth Arden, told delegates at The Shopper Marketing Expo. "You might be limited to certain things. And you think, 'What can my company actually do?' You should not be asking that question first at all. That question should be wiped from your mind. The first question you should be asking is, 'What does our shopper want us to do?'"

Tackling this problem, however, has grown increasingly complex. "If you have research data that is five years old, three years old, or even two years old, it is outdated," Duffy said during the opening day of the event, held in Chicago during October 2013. "Every two years, you should be looking at updating your data. And in a couple of years, it'll be every one year. And then it'll be every month."

Separating shoppers from consumers