As part of what its chief marketer describes as its “digital transformation journey,” Pattison Food Group plans to stop printing and distributing paper flyers for its Save-On-Foods, Nesters Market and Buy-Low banners effective July 14.
In a statement, Pattison Food Group president Darrell Jones said the company planned to invest the resulting cost-savings into “improved value” for its customers. The company said it would provide customers with personalized flyers through digital channels including email and apps, as well as the flyer on its website.
Jones said customers have indicated they prefer to receive deals and discounts in a digital format, noting that digital flyer use is at an all-time high as a result of COVID-19. “[I]t is the right time for us to move away from a printed weekly flyer and focus on digital delivery of our flyers,” he said.
In an email to Canadian Grocer, chief marketing officer Dan Howe said the Western Canada-based company had been monitoring its flyer usage for several years, including conducting in-market tests of different tactics. “As a result of the pandemic, digital use is at an all-time high, and it is the right time for us to focus on digital delivery of our flyers,” he says.
Howe said the company’s “My Offers” platform enables it to offer customers personalized, data-driven offers and communications. “We are on a digital transformation journey, which includes continuous improvement and optimization of our e-commerce channel and significant investments in our technology platforms to better serve our customers,” he said.
In addition to digital promotions, Howe said the company’s marketing mix going forward will also include advertising in local newspapers and radio stations. “We do extensive work to find the best media channels and get our brand messages to customers, and we feel we can be more cost-effective and customer friendly in our media mix.”
While the end of print flyers has been predicted for several years, a 2020 survey of more than 4,500 Canadians by Postmedia found 85% of respondents read printed flyers at least some of the time, while more than half (52%) indicated they always read printed flyers. Just 9% of respondents said they only looked at digital flyers, while 27% said they never looked at digital flyers.