Q&A: Foresight ROI Leaders Discuss Retail Media

Jacqueline Barba
Associate Editor
Jacqueline Barba profile picture
a man and a woman wearing a suit and tie

Founder and CEO of Foresight ROI Rick Abens and Tammy Brumfield, the company’s senior vice president of business development, both have a passion for shopper marketing and analytics.

As innovative executives with experience at Coca-Cola, Conagra Brands and Kraft Heinz between the two of them, they now deliver insights on omni-commerce ROI measurement for Foresight ROI, which provides marketing analytics meant to optimize marketing spend.

Brumfield has a track record of success leading high-impact shopper and omni-commerce organizations for some of the world’s most visible brands, and Abens has more background in data science and analytics. Brumfield is a long-time Institute member and, along with Abens, has spoken at events and contributed content to its publications. She was also named to the Path to Purchase Institute’s “Who’s Who in Shopper Marketing” six times between 2012 and 2020.

Path to Purchase IQ recently chatted with Brumfeld and Abens about omni-commerce ROI measurement and the fast-moving retail media sector. (You also can hear more insights from Brumfield and Abens during their virtual session, “Weaponry for 2022 and Beyond: Retail Media Mix Management,” at 3 p.m. on Sept. 13 during the Shopper Insights and Measurement Forum.)

P2PIQ: Given the rapid shift in consumer behavior and rise in digital commerce largely brought on by the pandemic, how would you say retail media has evolved as a byproduct of that and become a more strategic shopper marketing tool?

Foresight: The pandemic accelerated the rise in retail media and e-commerce. CPGs are trying to figure out how to organize to better manage retail media and e-commerce, and many are adding these responsibilities to their shopper marketing organization. Due to this, shopper marketing spend has increased significantly — now making up 19.2% of total marketing spend, according to 2021 research from the Path to Purchase Institute. As a result of this shift in shopping behavior, retailers now have greater first-party data than ever before across these modalities of engagement. However, understanding across all investment types including digital media (on and off platform), e-commerce and brick-and-mortar (both in and out of store) sales is more essential than ever to deliver growth. Therefore, marketers need a partner that can take an objective point-of-view and provide a standard metric for learning. In our opinion, the CPG company that best understands and standardizes learning across all retailers to deliver decision support insights is the CPG that will win incremental organic growth.

P2PIQ: What role do you think retail media will play in 2022 and beyond?

Foresight: Retail media should play a very important, strategic role. It is becoming big enough to get noticed by the “C-Suite,” and CPG leaders are now being challenged with justifying the increased spend. We recently spoke with a major CPG brand that is significantly increasing its retail media investments and being charged with providing learning to its organization. Retail media will require a standard metric(s) for success for CPG brands to compare across all retail media platforms to understand where to reallocate marketing investments.         

P2PIQ: And how should brands leverage retail media?

Foresight: Embrace it! It is the way that shoppers are behaving today, and it is strategically important to brands for driving conversion. Understand the differences between awareness, consideration, demand and conversion as retail media plays a strategically important role across each of these levers, and it should be considered in brand marketing strategies. If retailers want to be considered for marketing investments, they must look, act and smell like a retailer marketing entity. This means that retailers need to be fully transparent with learning to garner greater investment in the future.

P2PIQ: How does Foresight ROI distinguish itself from other companies who focus on shopper marketing ROI measurements and solutions?

Foresight: Foresight ROI is completely dedicated to providing omni-commerce ROI measurement. We offer a proprietary model that untangles the impact at the most granular level to learn which tactics work and don’t work and the synergies between. An example of synergies is the role that retail media and shopper marketing plays with trade merchandising. We seek to unpack the learning of each and then combine it to understand how it compliments each investment.