A recent study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) found that consumer goods companies are increasingly experimenting with new ways to establish and enhance direct, two-way relationships with consumers.
The report, “New Directions: Consumer Goods Companies Hone a Cross-Channel Approach to Consumer Marketing,” surveyed 221 consumer goods executives worldwide from a wide range of industries to determine how companies are integrating new channels such as social media and mobile into their marketing mix.
The report found that the use of social and mobile channels are increasingly helping consumer goods companies become more comfortable with the direct-to-consumer selling model, with the number of companies selling products directly to consumers expected to increase from 24 percent to 41 percent over the next 12 months.
The results also showed that over the next 12 months consumer goods companies plan to leverage social media for a broad range of marketing activities, including product promotion (74 percent), capturing consumer feedback (63 percent) and customer service (62 percent).
Despite the growing social and mobile marketing trend, survey respondents and other consumer goods executives see their nascent e-commerce efforts as complementary to, not competing with, existing retail channels, but are committed to expanding their direct-to-consumer strategies.