retail news in context, analysis with attitude

CO reports that "coming this year to more than 9,000 retail locations is a makeover of in-store messaging that harmonizes how CVS and its brands communicate with consumers, informed by shopper intent - whether they’re picking up prescriptions or paper towels … CVS’ new store signage, rolling out chainwide this year, will employ different brand voices depending on what shoppers are doing and where they are in the store. At the pharmacy counter, for example, the CVS brand voice will prevail; at other places in the store, a product supplier’s brand voice will dominate … The objective is to help shoppers find items faster and with greater confidence. The strategy is driven in large part by the extensive research CVS conducted to understand shopper behavior."

Marcy Brewington, director, in-store marketing strategy, CVS Health, says that the bifurcated messaging will work this way:  "When customers go to pharmacy in the back of the store to pick up a script, they expect to hear from CVS, because CVS is a trusted authority. If we blasted supplier messages back there, it wouldn’t work for what they are looking for.

"On the other hand,” she continued, “a lot of our customers are looking to buy by the brand. When they come into CVS, they expect to see the supplier brand voice coming through. We know our suppliers spend a lot of money [on marketing] to help customers understand what their products are and what the brand stands for, so we’ll allow them a place in the store to talk about that.”

KC's View:

If the messages are designed to inform customers about the products they are buying - being a resource of information as well as a source of product - then this is a good thing. 

But I must admit that when I first saw this story, I thought to myself, when I go into the local CVS, I don't want or need harmonized messages.  Shorter lines would be nice.