Photograph courtesy of the Giant Company
The Giant Co. and A3 Media have launched a 90-day pilot of Social Shelf, an in-aisle and e-commerce advertising tool designed to supply shoppers with information on smaller and mid-size adult beverage brands before they make a buying decision. The tool, which works with QR code technology in-store, rolled out at 15 Giant locations in suburban Philadelphia on Dec. 15.
Consumers scan the QR code directly on the shelf, which is identifiable in the store by a Social Shelf icon, and instantly get information on the wine or beer in front of them. “It’s like having a knowledgeable salesperson in every aisle,” Trooper, Pa.-based A3 said.
The pilot program at the Carlisle, Pa.-based Giant includes more than 150 brands of beers and wines. Each brand’s custom content page can consist of video, audio and/or text and include information for beer, such as taste, aroma, alcohol content, bitterness, etc. For wine, details such as grape varietal, aging process, bouquet and more may be included. Through the service, Giant and A3 Media are able to track how many times consumers have engaged with each product using A3’s systems reporting tool.
“Nothing is forced on the consumer that’s annoying. It’s not intrusive in any way,” said Frank Gussoni, co-owner and CEO of A3 Media in a statement. “It’s on demand and very social in nature. It’s not meant to be slick or salesy.”
Through Social Shelf, Gussoni seeks to offer an affordable advertising tool that builds brand loyalty, is free of digital fraud, and allows smaller companies to compete with larger national brands.
The online service allows for the same content to be seen but rather than scanning a QR code, a consumer simply needs to click on the Owl icon for the information to be displayed. The online portion of the service is not being used during the Giant Food pilot test, as Giant does not offer alcohol sales online in Pennsylvania.
While A3 Media is launching the service in the alcohol category, it sees the opportunity for Social Shelf to be used in a multitude of areas in the store.
Consumers are increasingly more interested in getting product information when they are shopping, said A3 Media. Social Shelf allows for the brands themselves to provide it with a simple scan. It’s all on-demand and is more useful than a typical commercial, the company added.
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