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Step up your brand tracking

May 26, 2022

Nepa Finland MD Eeva Karhu speaking about Data Driven Brand Management

Karen Chandler


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After two long years, Nepa live events are back! Last week Finnish MD Eeva Karhu hosted a hybrid event in Helsinki on the theme of Brand Tracking, and how to make the most of your data. But why is this important?

What should you know before starting your Brand Tracking?

Eeva Karhu presenting at the breakfast event about Brand Tracking

Brand Tracking isn’t a secret ingredient – it’s used by many companies. However, are they doing it right? Our experience is that companies are often under-using their brand tracker and aren’t taking full advantage of the insights being uncovered.

In a tumultuous economic environment, brand tracking is more important than ever. It can help CMOs and marketing teams quickly spot and address the challenges of an ever changing landscape. Additionally, with consumers now being able to compare brands online in an increasingly competitive environment, companies need to nail their positioning and establish new digital business models.

Differentiation is important, but it’s not easy. To stand out, brands need clear, actionable insights. You want to know what consumers think (about you!), and if they change their minds. That’s why tracking is so important.

There are two different types of Brand Tracking formulas, The Report Card and The Business Tool.

  • The Report Card is best used when a client is focused on just a couple of KPIs. It’s mainly used to keep track of the marketing department’s decisions on brand. These are used to measure a brand, target groups, and attributes connected to the brand strategy.
  • The Business Tool does all that and even more! It aims to understand the wider market and the ‘why’ behind consumer decisions. Brands can identify new business opportunities as they arise, answer the questions posed to your business, and choose the right outcome. This type of tracking is used daily, and it involves people outside of marketing and insights; the C-suite, the finance department, and customer services.

READ ALSO: What is brand tracking and why is it important?

What is the best practice for Brand Tracking?

We believe that a successful brand tracking should not only be used as a Report Card but also serve as a Business Tool, with continuity being key. Continuous brand tracking can assess marketing efforts and measure both media efficiency and long-term brand building. However, the key brand tracking factors include:

  • Proactivity This covers competitors and consumers beyond your target group. This is how your company can learn and see what competitors are doing right and wrong, and what consumers are being swayed toward.
  • Longevity This allows for Brand Tracking to withstand changes in the market. Even when your brand strategy changes, your Brand Tracking can stay on course.
  • Engagement This aspect will create questions from all levels internally and boost the usage of the data within the business.

To understand how to get the most value out of Brand Tracking, some fundamental questions must be answered first: What is playing on your stakeholders’ minds? What are your business goals? Where are you threatened? Where are the opportunities? Think about your planning cycle, when do budgets come out? When do decisions on media plans happen? With this knowledge you know exactly when certain insights are needed.

There are several different Brand Tracking modules to consider. If you’re focusing on communication, you should consider aspects such as your brand funnel to know whether your brand is moving in the correct direction, demographics to understand if extra work is needed to regain or bolster the targeted audiences, and media habits to decide which media channels are most successful. This is used best in a company with high media spend, as it monitors communication effectiveness, whilst offering the ability to optimise the media and develop new, more effective creatives.

If your brand wants to focus on positioning, brand tracking is best. It can monitor exactly where both you and your competitors sit in the landscape, alongside how everyone’s marketing activities are affecting your brand image. The best modules for looking at brand positioning include the brand funnel and demographics, as well as drivers to understand what the brands main associations should be. Brand Touch, on the other hand allows you to recognise if your brand is developing according to the positioning strategy, whilst Willingness to Pay shows you how much a consumer would pay for the service and to find out the real value of the brand. It’s best practice to look at your metrics before and after the campaign.

Getting the correct technical set-up is just the start; you also need to grow a sense of ownership and engagement to guarantee that your organisation uses your Brand Tracking to its full potential and makes the most of the investment. Get everyone on board, with start-up meetings and workshops, keep it simple with a dashboard designed for marketers, and keep it interesting with meetings around challenges the brand faces. Don’t just present the data.

For more information on our Brand Tracking, reach out to us at hello@nepa.com.

COMING SOON:  Nepa Originals report: ‘A view from the future – Outlook on what the future holds from foresight experts.’

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SWEDMA Webinar – Get a Comprehensive Picture of Marketing Effects

October 20, 2021

Sam Richardson


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Webinar: How can you get a comprehensive picture of the effects of marketing? by Kalle Backlund, R&D, responsible of Nepa’s Marketing Mix Modeling offering.

 

The event will take place on 10th of November 2021, last day for signing up 8th of November. Webinar is free of charge and will be held in Swedish.

 

Sign up for the webinar here.

 

For more information on Nepa’s Marketing Mix Modeling offering, click here.

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Maximize ROI on Sustainability – Analysis of Swedish & Finnish Brands

March 19, 2021

Sam Richardson


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Companies are investing more on sustainability in order to tackle global challenges, but how can one tell if their efforts are improving their brand perceptions? Do the consumers recognize these actions and are companies able to charge more for these brands?

View our webinar “Maximize ROI on Sustainability – In-depth analysis of Swedish and Finnish brands” and learn how to measure ROI on sustainability by providing insights into brand personalities.

During the 60 minute webinar you will learn how to measure your sustainability efforts and gain insights on how these efforts affect your brand.

Key takeaways:
● The importance of implementing sustainability into your marketing strategies
● Findings on Sustainability vs Willingness To Pay in regards to brand communication, from Sweden and Finland
● Case study from Finland: Perceived sustainability and brand perception of social media brands
● Case study from Sweden: Market maturity in regards to sustainability and what it means for your brand

Speakers:

Robert Beatus, Head of R&D at Nepa Sweden. robert.beatus@nepa.com

John Palm, Senior Analyst at Nepa Sweden. john.palm@nepa.com

Moderator:

Milla Westerlund, Head of Account Development at Nepa Finland. milla.westerlund@nepa.com

Click here to view the webinar

(Please note: We had some technical issues regarding the audio for our first speaker, though it will get better after 5-10 min)

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Learn how to drive sales by optimising your Marketing Mix

November 18, 2020

Sam Richardson


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During the 60 minute webinar you will get a clear understanding on how to optimise your Marketing Mix and analyse the effects of your media investments – for maximum sales and brand impact.

Additionally, we will present an exclusive study recently released by Nepa and Facebook on how to best use Social Media Marketing to drive retail sales.

Take aways:

– The new marketing landscape: Media investments in a post-pandemic era

– Marketing Mix Modelling: The Nepa way!

– Nepa/Facebook study: In-depth learnings and insights for your Social Media Marketing

– Facebook’s perspective – the importance of measurement, incrementality and why companies should adopt a “test and learn” approach

Speakers:

Kalle Backlund, Marketing Mix Modeling lead at Nepa. Kalle.backlund@nepa.com

Johan Kvist, Nordic Science Lead Facebook. johankvist@fb.com

Moderator:

Frida Wallsbeck, Marketing lead at Nepa. frida.wallsbeck@nepa.com

Click here to view the webinar

 

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Brand is back panel discussion

July 07, 2020

Sam Richardson


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Live panel debate “Brand Is Back – Covid edition”, lead by our UK stars Lindsay Parry (previously Cowan) and Sam Richardson .

The 45 minute debate covers three key topics and includes discussions with two leading industry brand experts Mateusz Samolyk (Brand & Sponsorship Insight Lead at Kindred Group plc) and Danny Denhard (founder of Focus Brand Consultancy and former Marketing and Growth Director at JustGiving.com).

Topic 1: “Budgets are tight! Will investing in brand equity really show as a clear ROI?” What’s the real value of investing in your Brand….when cash flow is currently king?

Topic 2: “Driving sales is key in the short term, but so is longer term profit.” How do you balance being relevant in the short term, whilst also building longer term strategy?

Topic 3: “Flexibility to adapt your brand tone is fundamental right now.” But how easy is this to achieve? What actually makes the real difference to customers and ultimately to your bottom line?

Click here to view the panel discussion

 

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Path to Purchase Webinar With Lindsay Cowan

August 17, 2018

Sam Richardson


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Retail Revolution Webinar w/ Matt Nitzberg

July 16, 2018

Sam Richardson


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Are You Prepared For Rapid Changes In Retail?

Our resident retail expert Matt Nitzberg is back from The Shopper Insights & Retail Activation in Chicago where he spoke about the retail revolution.

In this presentation you’ll find:

  • A current assessment of the new retail environment
  • How businesses are winning despite new challenges
  • A quick intro to Nepa’s Consumer Science Platform

We’re happy to share with you this recording of Matt’s presentation from the conference. Please contact us with any questions regarding CX and/or Marketing Optimization.

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Event: Level up your CX

February 15, 2018

Sam Richardson


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Welcome to an exclusive opportunity to “Level Up your Customer Experience”. It´s a free CX seminar that is being held in Stockholm March 20th and then in Helsinki March 22nd.

This event promise to inspire CX professionals with ways to improve CX Insight programs – whether just starting out or looking to revamp a long standing program. Don´t miss out on this opportunity to learn and network with other CX professionals.

Whether you will join us in Stockholm or Helsinki, you will personally meet and listen to our keynote speaker Luke Williams, New York Times Best Selling Author of “The Wallet Allocation Rule”.

Keynote speakers in Stockholm:

  • Luke Williams, New York Times Best Selling Author of “The Wallet allocation Rule”.
  • Niclas Öhman, Founder of Stockholm School of Economics Retail program.
  • More to come…

Keynote speakers in Helsinki:

  • Luke Williams, New York Times Best Selling Author of “The Wallet allocation Rule”.
  • Kati Sulin, Chief Digital Officer at DNA.
  • Kalle Peltola, Director, Marketing & Sales at Finnkino.

Registration

Stockholm, March 20th

Helsinki, march 22nd

Space is limited so be sure to register now!

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Retailers are you ready for 2018?

February 12, 2018

Sam Richardson


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Retail continues to be at a tipping point with shoppers that are drastically different than even 3 years ago, and still many retailers are using a model that – at times – is over 50 years old.

Modern retail as we know it started with using scale to deliver a huge amount of goods to the consumers at a radically lower price. These retailers thrived on being experts a running retail at scale, efficient purchasing, logistics and the large outlets that consumer went to in order to get the low-priced goods. This led to the rise of the malls and super stores, with Walmart leading the way.

But today’s retailing has shifted with the rise of technology. Amazon launching smart shopping, the e-tailer being able to offer a depth and breadth of assortment unheard of for a traditional retailer.

Which brings us to the question – are retailers ready for 2018?

We keep hearing the same stories over and over again.  Poor service, store closings, empty shopping malls. In 2017, we saw a record number of store closures, nearly 3 times the number in 2016, and according to many this trend will increase in 2018.

Is the Brick & Mortar retail business destined to completely fail?

For many years, stores have had the strategy of being building more locations to be “more convenient”, but there are others that now compete on convenience instead of just location – which is what “more stores” really means.

What’s interesting is the stores that are shutting their doors – we see highly specialized stores like Radio Shack and Payless closing, along with many clothing retailers. But while we talk about all these locations closing, there are some brands that are expanding drastically to the tune of over 4K+ stores opening.

When we look at these, we see Value, Price, Convenience and EXPERIENCE (O´Reilly Auto might not be a store many of us have gone into, but everyone that works there has experience of cars and are really passionate about what they do – not someone that just applied for a job).

So, if scale and efficiency was the way for the 20th century retailer, focus and specialization will be the 21st century’s winning recipe. Because, in today’s rapidly changing competitive environment you have to choose what your competitive edge will be, is it:

  • Convenience
  • Assortment
  • Low price
  • Experience

We argue that it is very hard to choose all. There are no right or wrong choices, you just have to make one and then commit to it 100%.

What does this mean for the brick & mortar retailing?

Looking at the inherent strength on the physical world compared to that of on-line world:  the person to person interaction gives brick & mortar a strategic advantage in the area of customer experience (CX). All the other, and on-line is as good or better equipped as Brick and mortar. This said, you can be very successful when running a brick & mortar 2018 with other strategies than Customer experience. Some examples: Price (Lidl, Dollar general), Assortment (Victoria Secret) and Convenience (7-eleven).

However, regardless of your chosen strategy, a company that wants to evolve and prosper must be equipped to handle rapid change in customer preference and behavior as new technology is introduced to the market, and make no mistake, the rate of change will increase. Things such as Robots and machine learning are already changing the way we do business, but has yet to really show its true potential in the off-line world of retailing.

The CX strategy – a winning path for retailers

Unless you’re going to drastically change what you sell or have plans to become a discounter, there is one approach that really can change the way your customers view your business without “confusing them”, it’s called the CX strategy, or just plain CX.  The CX strategy takes time to implement and the rewards might take some time to collect, but when you do excel in customer experience you enjoy high margins, fiercely loyal customers and organic growth.

In order to be really CX centric, you need to do things on a strategic, tactical and operational level. One or two alone will not suffice. So, what do we mean by strategic, tactical and operational level?

Strategic – the foundation

Even though you need to work on the CX strategy on all levels, it starts at the top. There are three major pillars that needs to be in place to hold up the CX strategy:

  • Top management must genuinely believe in the CX strategy, it can’t just be something that they say and put in the annual report. It must be something that they live, breath and sleep.
  • You must supply the organization with the right tools to understand the customer (HR, customer service, customer feedback systems etc.).
  • Finally, it must be a long-term effort. The organization must be resilient. A successful CX strategy takes time to implement all the way to the front lines.

Tactics – the bridge

There are three major areas that you as an organization must ensure on a tactical level to be a truly customer centric company:

  1. Empower the employees (link to my “magical experience” blog post)
  2. Think local! With such a diverse market place, you should give command to the people on the ground. Provide them with local intelligence in terms of: where are we winning/loosing, which are our strongest local competitors etc. Then let the local manager make the judgement call.
  3. Ensure that the HR process really embeds customer focus in its hiring and development programs. Award people skills and genuine customer interest. Create champions and good examples.

Operations – The moment of truth

The customer centric strategy comes down to the personal interactions between your business and your customers, the moment of truth. These are directly or indirectly always the result of your employees on the floor. If you give the right set of tools, and if they have the right mindset, you will be hard to stop in your market place. This has been proven again and again.

However, a word of caution: Never relax, always use data to monitor your customers, competitors, your business, stores and managers, because you can always improve and aggressive competitors are just around the corner. How can you ensure that? Through a comprehensive analytics platform!

Analytics at the heart of your CX initiative

Although there are many important tools that you must have to implement a CX strategy successfully, we at Nepa believe that the analytics platform should be at the heart. With analytics you can have the customer centricity of the old convenience store, but at scale! But to have an analytics platform that can achieve that, you must use a platform that merges 3 dimensions of data:

  1. behavior (x),
  2. sentiment (y) and
  3. financial ($).

Let’s go a little deeper into each of the necessary data sets:

Behavioral data (x-data)

The behavioral data is basically the existing BIG data stream within the company. It looks at the patterns and build forecast models based on historical behavior. It will detect anomalies and be able to predict changes.

The shopper (y-data)

An even better analytics platform will enable you to understand the shopper in the context of their behavior, often referred to as the Y, i.e. you need to understand why the customer is behaving the way it is in order to be able to predict how it might impact your business.

Financial impact ($-data)

And finally, a true CX analytics platform is tying that behavioral data and shopper insights into top and bottom line results. Enabling you to successfully predict where to invest you hard earned dollars to get the best possible return, this based on your chosen strategy.

An analytics platform implemented in the right way will act as a catalyst for many of the key elements for a successful business. It will:

  • Show to top management how shopper drives their business.
  • Provide local managers with local, tactical information.
  • Build stories that resonates emotionally in all employees.
  • Keep tabs on changes in customer behavior and how those impact your business.

A true CX analytics platform will be the catalyst for change that you need. Let us discuss how to evolve your analytical tools for your CX platform to be a true catalyst…! Please don’t hesitate to contact us.

If you want to listen to our webinar that goes more in-depth into retail trends, and why customer experience is really the difference in competing in 2018. Here is the link .

Erik Enecker
Chief Product Officer at Nepa USA & COO Global Product at Nepa

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Webinar – Does your data have purpose?

September 25, 2017

Sam Richardson


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We see many companies out there – both market research and customer experience – talk about democratizing data. Their mission is not invalid. I think we all agree that we need to have a data purpose and get the right data to the right person at the right time. Is that enough, however? Do consumer insights affect the bottom line? Absolutely!

Join our webinar about data purpose October 10th

Nepa shines a fact-light on customer experiences, breaking down feedback and sales data silos – to pinpoint the experiences that lead to sales.

Excerpt from the seminar:

  • Actions speak louder than words – Why do we have data, if not for doing something with it?
  • Unleashing data for the good of the business – How to affect the bottom line.
  • Democratization of data – When we have consumer insights intersecting with data science, there is a need to take what is distributed to the next level – in a user friendly format that drives action.
  • A specific example from a big grocery retailer.

Sign up for our free webinar by clicking this link and entering your name and email address. You can also download our CX IQ eBook here.