Walmart is going all-in on digital marketing.
In an interview with Advertising Age
, the retail giant’s chief marketing officer, Stephen Quinn, said Walmart is placing a “big bet” that all media will eventually become digital in one form or another, so it’s preparing for that. As part of the push, Walmart is offering to pay for some digital marketing for suppliers through a program called Walmart Exchange, or WMX.
"If you think of a [Procter & Gamble] and Samsung, it lets them see that their marketing is actually having an impact at Walmart, and we're able to speed up reporting in real time,” Quinn said.
It’s all part of a big push for Walmart to collect consumer data, not just from sales but from social media and other digital arenas. The chain’s even looking to collect data from customers through a program called Savings Catcher, which encourages them to save images of paper receipts in a mobile app.
There is some question as to whether suppliers will sign on to the program. Many already have digital marketing plans and work with their own agencies. Some suppliers say the WMX plan is in line with Walmart’s open desire to lower costs for suppliers, so it can reduce its own prices.
What do you think? If Walmart offered to pay for digital marketing for your organization, would you take the offer?
Shmuli Rosenberg, CEO of digital marketing firm fwdNYC
says the value in Walmart's offer all depends on perspective.
"An offer like this from Walmart can be great for those who heavily depend on major retail," he says. "For those who can do better with their own online or Amazon store sales, this is a way for Walmart to create a dependence on them, and probably not a good strategy."