Walgreens and L'Oréal Trying To See If Mobile ROI Can Be Proven

If any marketing medium could truly deliver provable ROI it should be mobile, which knows exactly who the shopper is and precisely where he/she is at the instant of redemption. If that's so, though, why has ROI proven so elusive? Walgreens (NYSE:WAG)—through its own stories and its Duane Reade stores in New York City—is determined to find out, with a little help from cosmetic giant L'Oréal.

The idea is to complete the in-store/mobile loop, with shoppers scanning various items to clarify pricing and to get additional background information, being zapped relevant coupons and to then be able to instantly redeem those coupons via an associate scan at checkout. Not only does this approach, in theory, deliver the desired ROI data, but it gives shoppers a concrete reason (money and the savings thereof) to interact through the chain's mobile app.

L'Oréal is the first brand participant and will be delivering offers to users of the Pretty in My Pocket mobile social beauty shopping app that can be redeemed at participating retail locations, according to a report in Mobile Commerce Daily. By scanning or searching for a product, users receive item-specific information including how-to videos, reviews, color swatches or a look for select L'Oréal Paris products, the story said.

Caroline Van Sickle, founder and CEO of a vendor called Primp, said that the app's effectiveness—to the extent that it does end up working—starts with the trust that shoppers have the existing brands, in this case L'Oréal, Duane Reade and Walgreens. "The behavior of sharing among a trusted and known community is even more powerful and prevalent" in the Walgreens app, she said, adding that the app's "most popular activities are sharing looks and the specific products attached to the looks, as well as adding products to personalized virtual makeup bags. (The app offers) the opportunity for brands to have an authentic connection to the consumer, to know her likes and to communicate with her in a one-to-one context."

For more:
- See Mobile Commerce Daily story

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