Maximizing Your Digital Marketing Potential: Lessons from an Industry Pro

Matt Corbin, Director of Marketing for Lowe’s Market, on what matters most in retail marketing. 

With a rapidly changing landscape and constantly evolving consumer preferences, the grocery industry is no stranger to the need for adaptive retail marketing strategies. As print ads and flyers shifted to digital circulars and websites, retailers have had to keep one eye on changing trends and the other on effectively communicating with their customers. 

This was the case for Matt Corbin, Director of Marketing for Lowe’s Market in Littlefield, Texas. Upon taking over at Lowe’s Market, he and the leadership quickly realized that they needed to make some significant changes in their strategies in order to stay current with the latest digital trends in the industry. Matt recently sat down to talk about the process of building a digital brand from scratch, the state of retail media, and how Webstop helped along the way.

A Digital Presence Leads to In-Store Sales

Despite the growing options for online shopping, the fact is that the majority of consumers still prefer to shop in brick-and-mortar stores. In fact, a recent survey reported that 91% of respondents did at least half their shopping in person. But the popularity of shopping in person doesn’t mean that a digital presence is unimportant. 

Research shows that up to 88% of consumers pre-research products online before going in-store. This means that even though customers are making purchases more often in person, keeping up-to-date digital channels is as important as ever. For Lowe’s Market, this meant updating traditional strategies to fit more in line with what the modern shopper is looking for. Customers have come to expect an easy-to-use digital experience where they can find all the information they need before entering the store. Otherwise, they’ll go elsewhere. 

Navigate the Noise

In taking over the marketing at Lowe’s Market, Corbin understood their marketing channels needed to be revamped. But he also knew it wasn’t enough to just add features without a strategic plan that lead to a cohesive shopping experience. Lowe’s Market needed something “seamless and extremely easy to get from our digital and social advertising strategies, and campaigns, to the website…look at our digital coupons, clip them, claim them, come to the store and cash out.” 

Corbin knew that a seamless digital experience from one channel to the next is essential for building shopper loyalty–and he’s right. Research shows that nearly a quarter of all shoppers are unlikely to visit a retail location if they don’t have a strong digital presence. Because most independent retailers have all the baseline features, we’re no longer in an age of adoption, we’ve officially entered into the age of integration. Today’s competitive market demands that retailers effectively integrate all of their existing channels, or they risk losing customers in the future.

Building Meaningful Connections 

For Matt Corbin and Lowe’s Market, the importance of the work ultimately comes down to relationships, both with the customers they serve and the partners they work with. Through data and analytics, there are a variety of ways to track the success of digital strategies. But at the end of the day, receiving compliments from customers on how your website looks, or the layout of your digital circulars is one of the most rewarding ways to see that your strategic approach is working. 

Building out a digital marketing plan from scratch isn’t easy, and the right partner can make all the difference. With Webstop, Matt had confidence that whatever unforeseen problems arose, he had a partner that would help him come up with insightful short-term solutions with an eye on long-term goals. The partnership not only resulted in marketing success for the retailer but an overall sense of pride among the entire marketing team. It’s easy to see why Corbin called working with Webstop “One of the best experiences of my career.”