Technology Ecommerce Colgate

How Colgate is adapting to emerging shopper types in APAC


By Shawn Lim | Reporter, Asia Pacific

November 4, 2021 | 5 min read

Every Asia Pacific market has its own unique split of shopper types, with the main types being bargain hunters, window shoppers, convenience-seekers, reward hunters and loyal brand shoppers. With a growing number of new and emerging shopper types, The Drum finds out what brands can do to better serve the diversity of the region.

The modern-day shopper has become far more informed and unique than ever before because of the rapid evolution of e-commerce, which has been further boosted by the acceleration of digitization over the past year.

Therefore, brands, sellers and businesses must understand the different customers they are marketing to, especially in the highly-diverse South East Asian region.

For example, a recent survey by Shopee with over 35,000 shoppers across Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore and the Philippines found that price is not always king, challenging the misconception that online shoppers only look for the lowest prices.

Consumer goods brands such as Colgate-Palmolive are turning to e-commerce platforms including Shopee to build a personalized relationship with consumers as the advent of these platforms has seen the rise in younger generations becoming key purchase decision-makers of consumer goods products.

It also creates an important avenue for communicating the brand’s product benefits and brand purpose. For instance, Colgate partnered with Shopee on a new toothbrush launch that was created from an insight of gen Z shoppers’ behavior – that they are not engaged with the category and want more personalized experiences.

“We focus on building a seamless consumer journey from discovery to purchase that is derived from data-driven insights and iterated via always-on tests and learns,” explains Mukul Deoras, president for the Asia Pacific at Colgate-Palmolive.

“There were four different co-created designs that reflected four different gen Z personalities of The Achiever, The Optimist, The Creative and The Best Friend, with localized gifts and purchases across the markets. The regional campaign ran in five markets (Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and The Philippines) and was a resounding success, with over 70% new users acquired and 14x uplift in sales.”

Huiyan Pan, regional marketing lead at Shopee, adds the platform also launched a joint oral care study with Colgate to identify unmet needs and behaviors of their target audience.

It analyzed Colgate’s customers on Shopee to better understand key shopper traits such as purchase frequency and cross-purchase behaviors.

“These insights helped shape the joint ‘Brush Your Way’ campaign, aimed at reaching younger and highly-engaged buyers across the region. Through a combination of more targeted messaging across different touchpoints such as social media, in-app push notifications, chat broadcast and search, Colgate was able to effectively reach both new and existing customers,” explains Pan.

“Together with Colgate, we also launched personalized campaigns, such as the Colgate Personality Quiz, to help gen Z shoppers identify the best products for them based on their personality.”

She continues: “By staying relevant to today’s consumers’ changing preferences and offering more unique online experiences, brands can continue to evolve and adapt their marketing strategies to better connect with their customers and engage new buyers.”

The upcoming year-end sales season has become a highly-anticipated shopping event among consumers, as a Shopee survey found that 91% of its users plan to shop ahead of the year-end sales season, carting products up to a month in advance.

Deoras explains Colgate values being consistent in its efforts on e-commerce, and that every day will culminate in rewarding year-end mega-festivals.

“The idea is to always start with an ambitious end goal, and a clear focus to deliver what the consumer wants. The crux is in the ability to connect many pieces of different parts to deliver an easy-to-understand value to the consumers,” he says.

Brands need to build awareness and visibility even before sales season begins, says Pan, as more shoppers come on to platforms already knowing which brands they will shop from.

She explains that despite today’s more complex consumer journey, we see more users starting their journeys in-app. As such, brands must raise awareness around their various channels such as social media and search engines to drive customers to their platform stores.

“This makes it easier for brands to effectively engage with shoppers across the full consumer journey in-app during sales season. Post-sale season, brands can leverage tools available on platforms such as Shopee to encourage repurchasing and build brand loyalty,” says Pan.

“Our Brand Memberships program allows brands to take charge of their loyalty programs and rewards to better cater to their customers. At the same time, brands should also continue to build on their visibility beyond sales season to connect with today’s always-on shoppers.”

Pan adds: “There are no one-size-fits-all strategies for brands at the end of the day. What’s most important is that brands deepen their understanding of today’s consumer habits, and build strategies that guide shoppers from discovery to checkout, and subsequently build brand loyalty.”

Brands including Danone and L’Oréal previously explained to The Drum why they joined the Shopee Mall Brand Memberships program.

Technology Ecommerce Colgate

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